Parenting 2.0

Toddler Sous-Chefs it up at Thanksgiving

Posted on: October 12, 2011

One thing about a toddler is that they like hanging around with their parents. Whatever the task, however meaningful or menial, these little tykes can be found lingering underfoot, just looking for ways to get involved. In these situations there are two options: include them or don’t. But whatever you decide – to include or not to include – their little hands will find things to occupy them, and if it’s guided by you, you might appreciate the outcome a little more than if they’d gone off and say just decided to colour on the wall or something (but I’ll leave that particular story for another post).

Anyway, Thanksgiving was upon us last weekend, and the cooking escapades started around 9:30 am, with just enough time to enjoy a couple cups of coffee before the labour began. Of course little Niko was lurking, literally squeezing his way in between me and the counter and doing his best to see what was being chopped and diced on the area just above his eye level. (See pic in top right corner: Innovative Niko standing on a makeshift stool – a.k.a. ice cream container – just trying to get a glimpse of the action.)

At first I sort of let him do his own thing, which involved rummaging through his favourite kitchen cupboard, and pulling out whatever caught his eye. Which on this particular day was the empty ice cream container. Oh the fun a toddler can have with an empty, ice cream container. He carried it around with him, doing laps, banging a spoon on it and eventually ended up putting it on his head in an attempt to sing Happy Birthday (see video clip 0:17). How does he think of these things? It was then, when I saw him donned his make-believe birthday hat, that I decided to get him involved in helping, and didn’t he turn out to be a willing set of extra hands. Mind you the tasks did take a little longer, but having him there and focused with me, just enjoying his company and still getting the stuff done that needed to be, was all worth it.

That day I was thankful. Thankful for those little hands that just wanted to help – or colour on the wall, whatever the case may be. Love you big guy!

HOW MY TODDLER HELPED WITH THE THANKSGIVING PREP…

He blended,

picked up the squash rinds,

and put them all in the compost! What an environmentally conscious little guy.

Break time: Snacks replete with complimentary dance moves and giggles (see video clip 0:22).

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