PRAC­TI­CAL TIPS FOR PAR­ENTS

Your Baby & Toddler - - Baby Files -

LIT­TLE FIN­GERS WILL BAT­TLE TO CLOSE

BUT­TONS AND TIE SHOELACES. Stick to pants with elas­tic bands at the top and shoes with Vel­cro straps.

AC­CEPT A SLOWER PACE. Things won’t hap­pen as fast as when you do ev­ery­thing for your lit­tle one. Al­low more time for get­ting dressed, bathing and eat­ing.

BE CRE­ATIVE. Make up silly songs in the bath to keep the peace, like “Here’s the soap Lily’s gonna use to wash her­self. First the neck, then the arms. And then your belly and your lit­tle legs.” The sil­lier your sug­ges­tions, the more she’ll love them. GIVE OP­TIONS, BUT STAY IN

CON­TROL. Have her choose be­tween two dif­fer­ent pairs of pants and shirts; in this way she feels she’s not be­ing pre­scribed to, but you don’t give her the free­dom of her whole wardrobe. DON’T MAKE A MOUN­TAIN IF SOME­THING CAN STAY A MOLE­HILL. You might not think a polka dot shirt goes well with striped trousers but it makes your tod­dler happy to go shopping like that. Leave her be.

OF­FER VARI­A­TION. There’s not only one way to eat pasta: You can put the penne on your fin­gers and pick them off, or you can use a fork. CUT CIR­CLES FROM COLOURED PA­PER AND PUT YOUR CHILD’S NAME ON

THEM. Stick th­ese “bal­loons” in ev­ery room. In this way you re­mind your­self that you need to blow air into your child’s “bal­loon” and not de­flate it.

STAY CALM. If you feel you’re on the verge of los­ing your tem­per, go and take a breather. Count to ten. Go back and try again.

BUY AN EX­TRA TOOTH­BRUSH. Brush her teeth with the one, and give her a chance to DIY with the other one. She gets to prac­tise, and you get to clean her teeth. Two birds.

BE RE­AL­IS­TIC. You can’t ex­pect your tod­dler to be ready on time ev­ery time. Don’t crit­i­cise; re­ward her when she is on time.

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