How to Be Your Kids’ Hero When You’re Not the Supermom Type
Pinterest is fabulous. It's a treasure trove of incredible ideas.
But many times the ideas you find are completely unrealistic for normal people.
It may seem like every good mom makes teddy-bear shaped pancakes for her kids to eat for breakfast. It may seem like every good mom carefully plans out complicated crafts for her kids on a regular basis. It may seem like your children are missing out because you've never made a homemade water blob or braided your daughter's hair like a princess.
Let me tell you something. Most of the moms I know are happy to stick a piece of toast in front of their kids and call it good. Doing a craft means pulling out the construction paper and some crayons (markers only if mom's in a really good mood). Homemade water blobs? Sorry kids, not that, but you might be allowed to play in the sprinkler if I have any clean towels for you to dry off with afterward. And the hair thing? In the amount of time it would take me to watch enough YouTube videos to figure out how to do that, you will have outgrown the desire to have your hair braided like a princess anyway.
But it is still possible to do fun stuff with your kids even if you are regular old, plain jane, boring type of mom.
Here are some ideas of fun things to do with your kids when you don't have 3 hours to assemble craft supplies or watch youtube videos about doing girl's hair.
1. Go outside and play with them. Play with a stick, a ball, a bike, anything. Your kids will be thrilled to have you outside giving them your full attention. No homemade water blobs required.
2. Read books to them. When I was growing up I loved nothing more than for my mom to read to me — and I learned to read and write before I ever started kindergarten. Regardless of what you might learn from Pinterest, children can learn to read and write without creating letters out of playdough, cutting their sandwiches into letter shapes, and tracing letters in the sand. (I'm not saying there's anything wrong with those learning activities, but if you're the non-supermom type, rest assured that snuggling your child in your lap with a book is just as exciting and educational for them.)
3. Buy store-bought treats. Guess what? Your kids will like fruit snacks from the store every bit as much as the homemade ones you saw on Pinterest. (Disclaimer: the homemade ones are probably more healthy, but you can find store-bought organic options without a lot of nasty additives — like these.) The secret is to make treats be…well…treats. If you give your kids treats every single day it's no longer a treat and they will always be wanting something bigger and better. But when a treat is really a treat, you will absolutely make your kids' day when you bring home something fun from the store. (And their health will be a lot better off too.)
4. Let them help you cook. You have to cook anyway, so you might as well let the kids join you. You'll be getting dinner made and spending time with your kids all at the same time. Cutting cheese slices into animal shapes won't be necessary, as it will be all the fun your kids need just to be with you, feeling all grown up about cooking. Not sure what the teeny tiny ones can do to help? Here are 10 ways kids can help in the kitchen. If you want some more in-depth info, Laura at Heavenly Homemakers has a couple great e-books: “What to do With Your Kids in the Kitchen” and “Teaching Your Kids to Cook“, or this 12 Week Cooking With Kids Curriculum is awesome!
5. Do crafts together. Personally, I think a kid gets a kick out of doing crafts regardless of complicated they are. The opportunity to use scissors and glue puts a smile on my kids' face. There are hundreds of incredible craft ideas on Pinterest, but many of them make me shudder at the thought of trying to help my kids complete them without their having a meltdown that their melted crayon art didn't turn out exactly as they'd hoped.
Instead of going for the super-complicated crafts on Pinterest, keep it simple. Your kids will probably actually enjoy it more anyway due to their short attention spans, and you'll be a lot less stressed.
Oh, and if you want to spend a few dollars to take even more stress out of the whole craft thing (can you tell I'm not the crafty kind of mom?), you'll want to take advantage of this free box from Kiwi Crate! This is one of those things that will make you look like supermom without your having to do any work. I normally wouldn't spend extra money on stuff like this, but when you only pay $3.95 for the cost of shipping, I say it's worth it to do something that your kids will think is totally cool! (Just please don't forget to cancel your subscription after you receive your free box – unless you want to keep the subscription of course.) You can get that free box here.
All right, you other non-supermoms – what other ideas can you share? What makes your kids' day without giving you gray hair in the process?
Oh, yes. I'd be bad not to mention this book that is a lifesaver for so many frazzled moms who are trying to get a little housework done without kids making messes behind them as they go. And of course, these are all non-supermom activities! Get more details here, or get it now: