So it turns out, with lots of begging, whining and meditating, the pregnancy gods have answered my plea and taken away my nausea! I have even stopped taking my diclectin which I'm thrilled about because the added drowsiness was tough. I realize this may be temporary but I am taking the time to appreciate this chance to live a little again. We have gone back to our normal routines and Zinnia is thrilled to not have a grumpy mom blob around the house.
While I was feeling awful, I was trying to pull out all the stops for entertaining Zinnia and I thought I would share a few of them with you here incase you too experience super sick days with a toddler.
Cheerios This simple snack was my saviour for weeks. We used cheerios in so many different ways that I couldn't believe I hadn't yet thought of before. The thought came to me one super sick day, when I knew I couldn't spend another day on the couch disappointing my toddler who just wanted her playmate back. I frantically rummaged through my cupboards and saw an old box of cheerios I knew weren't otherwise going to be eaten. Zinnia isn't a huge fan of cereal and it seems this baby is on a strict Mr. Noodle breakfast diet, I know it's not healthy, but what the belly wants, the belly gets.
These became my go-to activity. Most toddlers love sensory play and cheerios are a safe and diverse tool for entertaining. On the first day I put Zinnia's mini plastic animals (from the dollar store) in a large plastic bin and dumped the cheerios on top. Simple. She went on a safari hunt and seriously played in this bin all morning. She added her large animals once the hunt was over and had a blast! So much so that the stale cheerios are still in her animal bin over a week later.
The next day I wrote the alphabet out in capitals on a piece of paper and hid her magnet alphabet letters in the bin for her to find. Once she found a letter she matched it up to the same letter on her legend. Easy peasy.
Another fun activity with the cheerios was creating fun 3-D art. I drew simple shapes onto paper in various colours, gave her a glue stick and a bowl of cheerios. She glued the cheerios over the lines to remake the shapes. We did this with letters and crazy windy lines and stick figures as well. This was a great fine motor/creative activity that kept her focused and busy for a long time.
We also tossed cheerios into her paint and created a textured paint, to change up the normal paint and paper activity.
Most of these activities can easily be substituted with other items like dried beans, birdseed or other cereals.
Thank you cheerios for all the much needed help for the last 3 weeks. Sorry there aren't more pictures, I spent most of my time on the couch. Blah.
If your an avid reader of the blog, you know how much I talk about the value in rotating your toys. Not only do you get longevity out of the many toys you undoubtedly have, but it gives you a quick way to keep your little one occupied when you aren't feeling up to leaving the house. Knowing where your child's main interests lie is key here. If your child loves cars, they probably don't need 20+ cars accessible at all times. When they're asleep, cut their car collection in half, try to avoid stealing the favourites and hide them away in storage. When you're having a tough day, pull out those "new" cars and watch them revel in excitement.
For Zinnia it's books. My daughter is seriously obsessed and having all her books out at once isn't even possible. We have 4 places in our home designated for her books. On top of that we have two full boxes and a large tupperware bin full of more books. Since we read her books over and over and over and over she can re-tell her stories to herself almost verbatim and will talk about the authors by name (she really loves it when their picture is in the book as well). After our first road trip to Florida last March, she came home and called each book by name, hugged them and told them how much she loved them, read each one and then went on to the next. It was adorable. So when I bring out an old box of books, this child will go off in her own story world, literally for hours. Usually I rotate them, but this time I needed lots of help so I just brought down a whole box. She was SO excited that by the end of the day, my house was covered end to end in books. No exaggeration.
I realize not every toddler is a book lover, which is why using your child's interests is key to this tip. If your child is into Paw Patrol, and you have 2 of each pup, consider only having half the collection out at a time. Not necessarily to pull them out only when you're sick, but to have a chance to rotate your toy selection and keep them interested in what they have. LESS IS MORE with toys.
Midwife In other news, I got a midwife! Anyone who knows me knows how badly I wanted a midwife for my last pregnancy. Unfortunately there were no spots and it just didn't happen for me. In the end, my complications would have placed me in the hospital anyways, so no big deal, but I am really excited to have a midwife for what I believe (Shane laughs at me for thinking this) will be my final pregnancy. I am planning to have a water birth at the Toronto Birth Centre and I couldn't be more excited. I would love to know if any of you have done this and what your experience with a water birth was like!
I will be sure to keep you all informed what having a midwife is like, for any women interested in taking this route one day. Let's hope this baby stays good to me and that I stay feeling better. Especially with spring coming!
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Happy Living Parents!