Updated: Apr 19, 2020
It’s day three of no school/activities/etc., and we’re very conscientious about doing our part to #flattenthecurve when it comes to COVID-19. Here are six things our family is doing to be at our best during this time, and I hope it helps you navigate this time at home with your littles as well!
1. Make a Plan
My husband and I spend ten minutes every night talking about what we want the next day to look like. We do this anyway, and definitely step it up a notch when our regular routine is disrupted. This helps us avoid the “what do you want to do?”, “I don’t know, what do you want to do?” loop that is guaranteed to occur and cause frustration the next morning.
2. Maximize Quality Time
I’ve been having the kids list their must-dos for the day during breakfast. These usually are things like ride bike, paint, do a puzzle, play zingo, etc. They’re easily accomplished, and it helps everyone feel like they get to contribute to the family plan. It also helps us maximize our quality time with the kids, especially as we begin to multitask working at home with having kids at home full-time.
3. Get Outside
Build, play, run, pretend, create. We have no limits on outdoor play at our house, as long as you’re social distancing. Fresh air does a body good, keeps the ants out of our pants, and hopefully helps strengthen our immune systems.
4. Limit Screen Time
It seems so much easier to let screen time go unchecked right now. However, in our family, feisty grizzly bear personalities tend to come out once they inevitably have to turn the TV off, which then seems to impact the rest of our day. No one likes hanging with a feisty grizzly. So, for us, short term pain equals long term gain on this one.
5. Less is More
More toys, books, games, and entertainment seems like it would lead to happier, more entertained kids, but multiple studies show this isn’t the case. Kids are overwhelmed by too many choices and a chaotic play environment, leading to more distraction and more sibling fights. They’re also less likely to use their imagination when there is an unlimited amount of toys to jump around to.
If the kids are antsy and can’t seem to settle on one thing, try simplifying their environment. Reduce the amount of toy options, and rotate every couple of days. Try it! Less really is more!
6. Have Realistic Expectations
Really. For you and for them. Have patience and practice kindness. Reset as many times as you need to. We’re all doing our best during these stressful, uncharted days.
Stay well, friends!