Farming Families – Terrific Toddlers

This week on “30 Days of Farming Families” is KID WEEK.  Last week we talked about marriage (and teammates) and this week it’s the baby carriage.  Yesterday was a quick list about pregnancies and babies.  Today we’re talking toddlers.

Toddlers are mobile, destroying micro-people.  They cannot dress themselves, but they absolutely want to.  All by themselves.  They can feed themselves, but it isn’t pretty.  They may or may not use the toilet.  They may or may not open doors and fridges.

But toddlers are the snugglers.  The ones who ask the best questions.  The ones who say, “You good mom.” and pat your hand.  Toddlers are wonderful.

Toddlers can be helpful as well.  Don’t be afraid to put those toddlers to work:  If they’re old enough to take the toys out, they’re old enough to put them back.  Toddlers are great at unloading the dryer and picking up laundry into a basket and dragging it to the laundry room.  Toddlers can get out silverware and help set the table.

What about outside chores?  Give them kid-sized versions of your tools and put them to “work” alongside you.  Kiddo3 is two and a half and she has her own little buckets that she carries feed in for chickens.  The two older kids each get a full-sized bucket, but only half full.  Why bother when we have to haul 10 pails to the pig feeder?  Their tiny pail and half buckets aren’t really helping, right?  Maybe not.  But soon those buckets will be full buckets and then it will be a help.  Too many people think that little kids are more work than help, but if we don’t teach them to work with us at a young age, they won’t work with us when they are older.

Day 12 Homework:  What other toddler-age tasks can you think of?