“I just can’t play Barbies all day.”
“Playing pretend isn’t in my wheelhouse.”
“I don’t have patience for crafts and messes.”
Maybe some of these words feel familiar to you.
Or maybe you thrive in playtime, but in this 9,000th week of summertime, you’re burnt out and plum out of all things imaginative.
Well, my tired yet joy-seeking mama, here’s a prompt that might save the day:
Think of what YOU love, and…
LEAD THE WAY!
Sometimes (Keyword: Sometimes), I find that if I initiate what JeeWoo + I do, especially if it’s something *I* enjoy, he will feed off my energy and love it, too.
Now, this takes a little creativity and a lot of letting go of what your normal go-tos would be, because ain’t no toddler’s gonna hang through any chatting on phones, playing of instruments (Exhibit A: My last Reel!), writing in journals, typing on laptops, or [insert that soul-feeding activity that was once uninterrupted here].
But over time, I’ve found great success with the following:
- inviting him to help me in the garden.
- making swirls with Play-Doh while he makes roads for his cars.
- pumping up the music and working out together.
- coloring the pavement with sidewalk chalk.
- dancing in the kitchen.
With daddy, I’ve seen him thrive when:
- football is on. (I swear he feels David’s excitement and wants to be part of it.)
- ANYthing needs fixing. (He lives to fix sprinklers and help solve a mystery.)
- ANYthing needs assembling. (He flipped when D set up our hydroponic garden.)
I find that when we make it a special occasion / announce it / invite him before we begin, it usually turns out to be a win-win.
Me: JeeWooooo! I have a very special project I need your help with!
Me: Let’s! clip! roses! together!
Make that small thing BIG from the start, and you’ll likely have their little heart.
What’s sparking for YOU as you read this?
What works for YOU when you lead the way?
Puh-leeease share your ideas in the comments. Some of our sanities depend on it. 😉
This post is part of the Mama Be Present series:
A joy-sparking journey + free community for moms who desire simple yet impactful ways to connect more with their little ones.
Meet new friends. Revel in the small things. Share your memories in the making.