August 27, 2018

How to Encourage Your Toddler to Help with Daily Chores & How We Quickly Clean the House Together!

This post is sponsored by Bona but the content and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

If you're a parent, you know having a toddler in your home is super rewarding but absolutely chaotic. From meal times, to leaving the house, to just daily activities, everything is a production. Whether she's sassing me telling me "I do this", throwing a fit because I'm not letting her have her way immediately, or running out of the room and then back in again, because the sound of our food processor scares her - she's always ready to learn about life and always adding her own little twist to things to make them interesting.

While her interference may be considered a foul in my game plan for each day, I'm learning life really is about those moments. Being a parent has taught me it's okay to take a time out and teach her what I'm doing, dare I even say it's important for me to do this?

The dishes can wait until she's in bed and maybe her helping "fold the laundry" with crumbs all over her hands from snack isn't the most productive thing, but it's fun watching her curious mind learn. She is so intrigued and curious about how to do things that seem so mundane to us. So instead of getting frustrated with her wanting to help, I've learned that she's capable and willing to do chores if I encourage her to do them in her own way.

On that note, today I'm sharing how we make cleaning fun for Delainey and how you can encourage your toddler to help around the house as well!

1. Bona-fide Fun with our Bona Quick-Clean kit - We'll start with the chore Delainey loves doing the most - dusting & mopping with our Bona! It's a quick way to get our floors clean, so I tend to do a quick swoop through the house dancing with my girl, then I lower the adjustable handle and allow my little dancing queen to take over.

She loves running around the room with the Bona® Microfiber Mop, sliding around and dancing like she's in Risky Business... and our floors look superb afterwards so it's a win-win! If you want to encourage your toddler to do the same, make this chore look fun while you're doing it. Pull out all the Tom Cruise moves and dance around to that good time rock n' roll, I guarantee it's a behavior your sassy little sidekick will definitely want to imitate.

2. Make it a competition - We often make things into a game, because I mean... why not? Life is all about having fun, after all! So, whether we're putting away her blocks or stacking her library books before bedtime, I like to encourage Delainey's competitive side while also getting things accomplished a little faster. We race from the kitchen to her bedroom to put on pjs, we spend just seconds organizing her doll house since we're both moving at lightning speed, and she thinks it's hilarious and so much fun. The best way to encourage your toddler to get speedy is again, to exhibit the behavior yourself. Show Junior how fast you can stack his blocks or put away books, then challenge him to do the same. Whether or not he's super fast the first time or not, ENCOURAGE him and I bet he's ready to race you (and maybe win) the next day!

3. Everything has a place - While this may be obvious to some, I didn't live with this mindset until maybe my mid-twenties. I've always been a whimsical (ahem... lazy) person and never really enjoyed cleaning, but after years of being forced to "adult", I'll be the first to admit - I have definitely grown to appreciate a cleaner home... and in that cleaner home, I adore organization (more than I could have ever thought possible). While I'm not sure if she's going to keep a tidy house in the future or not, for now I'm encouraging her to put things away as she plays. It's not a demand, it's more of a gentle reminder that "if we take out our blocks from the closet, it's time to put away our dollhouse next to her toy box". She may not always put things where I want, but I figure it doesn't hurt to encourage and her remind her where things go... and well, if she's helping put things away and she gets close to the right spot, I'll consider that a win in my tidiness book! While we're still working on this, my suggestion to help your toddler learn that everything has a place is to show them and then remind them about where things go until they start remembering on their own!

4. Allow your toddler to lead - Last but not least, never force your toddler to do any household chores they can't handle or absolutely despise... but also, on that same token, encourage your toddler to try doing new activities that help around the house daily. One day she may not be able to climb up and rinse off her plate, but kids grow quick and she may be tall enough tomorrow!

One thing Delainey has recently started doing that blows me away, is requesting to take out our trash and recycling... and while she's not big enough to carry the heavy loads, I sincerely appreciate her willingness. I mean, I just love it when she takes my office trash and is all excited to throw it away. It's funny, because who would have thought... the key to a toddler's heart and the easiest way to make her smile is by letting her do a task that most people don't enjoy doing.

But that... that's why I encourage her to do these things. It not only brings her joy, it helps spread joy in our house. It may sound trivial but these simple tasks and the giggles, love, and sweetness she shares while doing them - it's a reminder of what parenting is all about... and well, really... what life is all about.

Want some extra awesome news? Bona and I have teamed up and one lucky winner will get a FREE Quick Clean Set just for leaving a comment below! Tell me your favorite quick clean tip for your chance to win! You'll also have the opportunity to enter on my facebook tomorrow!

The "Quick Clean Kit" will include:   The Bona® Premium Microfiber Mop for Hard-Surface Floors, The Dusting Solution – Bona® Disposable Dusting Cloths, and The Cleaning Solution – Bona® Wet Cleaning Pads!

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