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Hello! I apologize for the radio silence but this has been the first time I have been able to come up for air. I hope everyone is doing okay and staying safe during these uncertain times. As a lot of you know, I am a Nurse Practitioner. I am definitely not on the front lines of this pandemic but there has been a huge change to our practice over the past almost two months. First, Patrick’s preschool has been closed since mid-March and won’t be opening until June. I have transitioned to working from home mostly with telehealth medicine. My husband who is an attorney is also home a lot since the courts in our state are closed. He has been able to help with wrangling in the little one when I have appointments and the million daily conference calls. I am also still teaching at the local college of nursing. The classes that I taught were already in an online format so that has been very seamless. My child has also been so out of his routine that naps are pretty non-existent. I try to get as much work done during those two hours but most days they aren’t happening. There is also constant laundry, dishes, and cleaning since we are all home 24/7. Most nights I am so exhausted and mentally overwhelmed. I have finally got back into this new groove and felt like popping in here to say hi.
I will say that since I am a working mom and always on the go, I have really enjoyed this time with my kiddo. It has also pushed me past my OCD mom tendencies. I am letting him dig in the dirt, paint, play with play dough, and lots and lots of water time. I usually am not a messy free form mom but I am trying to embrace all the sensory play. We are also going on a ton of walks and sleeping with no alarms. I am soaking up all this time with Patrick before the grind of daycare dropoff and rush to work starts back up. I wanted to share a few things that have helped me through this quarantine with Patrick.
Things That Have Kept Patrick Entertained:
-Basically anything to do with water. This water table, this blow-up pool, playing “car wash” with a big bowl of sudsy water that he drops his matchbox cars into. I gave him a paintbrush to “dust the bubbles off with”. I have this play sink in my cart and think it may be my next purchase. When in doubt a 30-minute bath is the way we unwind every night. I now use the Beauty Counter set for him because with his crazy hair he needs real shampoo and conditioner.
-All the books. If you have a little boy who is obsessed with Cars, you need this book. Seriously, it will keep him entertained for at least a half-hour at a time. The tractor-trailer doors slide up and down and it’s pure entertainment. Also, love this Diggers book and this Truck book. Can you tell what my toddler is loving right now?
-Trying to find the basics have been hard but finally found colored chalk, washable paint, and bubbles. Staples for me locally has the option of buy online and pick up in-store. Also, don’t forget Rakuten when shopping online. For the paint, I bought these brushes and this palette. I also got a bunch of craft materials to keep up with his online classes at Michaels. Don’t forget about their coupon codes. Also, since kids are so destructive. The Dollar Tree is shipping from online and I ordered a few mindless things that I don’t care if he breaks.
-This is the best-valued table easel that I have found.
-A big-ticket item was this balance bike. He is loving it. So far he just drives it around our house but soon enough I think he will be ready to take it outside.
-Of course, his little guitar has still been the number one. He gives concerts every day to us.
-Finally, this stroller has gotten some serious miles during this quarantine. We try to get 3 miles almost every day. This has been my favorite go-to stroller.
-Also, I’d be lying if I said Disney Plus hasn’t been the star of this time. Prior to, I can honestly say my kid would maybe get 15 minutes of screen time a day. Now, Frozen has become our nightly routine while eating dinner. It’s a terrible habit but we are all surviving, right?
I will say when it comes to ordering anything online for a little one during this time definitely price check things. Amazon seems to be crazy expensive. The smaller stores have better pricing and Walmart seems to be not price gauging as badly. Stuff that I bought at the beginning of this quarantine is sometimes already double the price. His daily vitamins and elderberry syrup are now up to $10 a bottle. Kid pools should be around $35 max. A lot of stores you can order online and you can pick up in-store since shipping seems to be taking forever right now. Well, Zappos is still lightning fast as always. I ordered him new water shoes and they were here the next day.
Tell me some things that you are loving with your little ones. Extra points if they are self-sufficient toys that give you at least 20 minutes of time to get a little bit of work done.