11 August 2011

The Neverending Playdate

Sudden empathy with all those who have twins or children very close in age... It is the endless play-date in my house right now. You know, the kind of day when you realise pretty quickly that your toddler is *going* to keep wacking and/or clawing their little friend, and the only thing for it is for everyone to go home, in spite of how much fun the mamas are having or how much the toddlers actually like each other's company. Only we all live here!

One evening the respective mamas had threatened to either shut one toddler in the kitchen, or drop the other out of the window. Martin ended up throwing one on his back and one on his front, and taking them both out for a walk. A friend asked if they didn't keep grabbing at one another over his shoulders. "Nope," he replied stoically, "they were *just* out of each other's eyeline..."

The daft thing is, they ask for each other about a zillion times a day. Connor actually wakes up shouting, "where Ro-ro?!" Rowan goes to bed unwillingly, wailing for Connor. But they are toddlers, with all that implies about property rights and personal boundaries. Us mamas are literally BEAMING with gratitude and relief that after a week they appear to be stomping and yelling at each other more often than shoving and kicking.

I thought I was pretty acomplished at toddler wrangling. *sigh* I was very wrong. I used to desperately want twins - and now I'm pretty nervous about the prospect of hearing two little heartbeats in there next week (what if?) - two toddlers at the same time is fabulous and hilarious but it is The Most Exhausting Thing I Have Ever Done. Bar nothing.

The mamas who do this all day every day? They get a huge round of applause from me today. Well done you. Please tell me - how do you do it? Emma and I could do with your survival tips.


  1. Don't know how they do it, but I know Stuart's aunt had twins, and she would smear jam on their hands, and give them cotton wool to play with, hours of entertainment trying to get cotton wool off their hands, and it kept them in one place!!

    Hope things settle down for the toddlers and the mamas!

  2. LOL I can picture it! Right, off to start some messy play... Maybe in the garden where the rain will wash them off!

  3. LOL partly I end up chucking them out int he garden to play, and setting up a craft activity wit them sat at opposite endds of the table.

    Or I take them to the little park near me and take ride on/bikees and let them tire themselves out, while have kittens when they try to crash into each other, or climb on the play equipment in the park that is a bit beyond them..and have fears of having to fill out a ton of paperwork for accidents lol... And then once back I insist on naptime/quiettime before starting it all again.

  4. oh yeah and playdough I find tends to keep toddlers and young children occupied...solong I have plenty of cutters and rollers so they aren't squabbling for them...and if all else fails I strip em off and get the paddling pool out.

    Oh and taking them over the park with ride on/bikes and letting them run off some energy seems to help..and then I insist on a naptime/quiettime in the afternoon.

  5. Ah Twins takes me back, it's a case of damage limitation, army manoeuvrings and smile through gritted teeth! As in all things it does get easier as they get older.

    Norfolk Punch (non alcoholic) is great as an all round tonic and de stresser if everything gets too much!

    Tell your Martin he's a star toddler wearing those two, he'd come first for sure in the patient dad awards!

    Hugs to you all San xx

  6. It's not only toddlers! When we have the stepkids as well as the kids, we have ages of 8, 7, 6 and almost 5, and the same issue comes up - they love each other but fight. they ask for each other if separated, but when together it's often too intense and I find myself playing umpire all day. I definitely second taking them out somewhere large and green for a very long time and making them run and run till they're knackered, if you can possibly manage it!


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