The phrase was on repeat in my mind most of yesterday. It was cold and rainy out, which could be nice in a cuddle up with a blanket, a cup of coffee and a good book sort of way, but if you’re unable to do such things because you’ve got an overly mobile toddler destroying your living room, then rainy days are nothing more than a 12-hour house arrest.
On days such as yesterday, I pull out all the stops. I get out every toy, every book, every snack and every stuffed animal I can find. I hide under blankets and crawl around my Cheerio-littered floor for a game of peek-a-boo. I play a variety of music and dance to the point of embarrassment in order to draw out loud giggles from my son. My attempts at keeping Elliott entertained on a rainy day are usually futile. We spend a lot of time outside the house and he knows it which is why he gets so antsy and feels unsatisfied. That’s what I think anyway. So when my own motherly instincts are no longer up to Elliott’s active standards, I turn to every desperate mom’s online treasure trove of free ideas – Pinterest.
While Elliott busied himself with crumbs and puddles of milk he’d left behind on the floor, I jumped on Pinterest and typed in
HELP Activities for toddlers into the search bar. Tons of pins popped up but I was immediately drawn to an overwhelmingly colorful pin that claimed to have 35 fun rainy day activities for my 1-year old. Ha! To my dismay, many of the activities either required items that I didn’t have lying around the house (not a big ribbon hoarder), or were flopped activities I’d already tried with Elliott in the past such as the homemade guitar (fail), shaving cream-filled ziplock bag (double fail), and most famously, my baller fort (ugh). I scrolled on and 2 activities caught my eye. The first one encouraged sensory play by using a muffin tin and a wide variety of shapes and textures. The second – another sensory play activity – but with edible finger paint.
I hurriedly clicked through to the blogs from which these pins came and sped read all about how little Charlie just loved the muffin tin activity and cracked up each time he managed to put a ball or block in a muffin cup. And then of course sweet Stacey really demonstrated her creativity through the multi-colored, yummy tasting finger paints and thus created her very first fridge display picture. What an artist! A prodigy! And it gave her mom an entire 30 minutes to herself!
Know what Elliott did when I gave him the muffin tin? He sat on it. He waddled over to it, flipped it over and sat on it.
Know what Elliott did when I gave him edible finger paint?
I drank an entire cup of coffee while it was still hot! Wait, no, that was in my daydream. Silly me. I meant to say he hated it.
Do any of you have rainy day success stories? A go-to game or craft? Share your wisdom with me, or else I may develop a bad eye twitch and significant hair loss.