with adam hitting the 18-month mark just the other day, quiet time around the house has become more precious than ever. developmentally, this little guy has a lot going on, so it’s only natural that we’ve started to see the very first of his terrible tantrums. like pretty much every kid his age, he’s super adorable and awfully cheerful most of the time, but we’ve definitely reached the point where we’ve gotta have an arsenal of tools to help keep him calm when he gets worked up. this, my friends, is no easy task. it actually makes the entire previous 18 months of his life look like a walk in the park. in fact, some days it takes all of my effort to simply convince him to go on a walk in the park with me! so today i’ve teamed up with munkchin to share a few of my tips and tricks for helping toddlers (and babies!) get the quiet time they need. because a happy baby means a happy mama.
create a calm and peaceful environment. there are certain areas of the house that we use as “chill out zones.” they’re places we go to be calm and quiet, rather than play. adam’s doesn’t have a playroom, so we simply used a large shelf to divide his bedroom into two spaces: a play area and a sleep area. we have a rocking chair set up with comfy pillows and a white noise machine, cues that help him understand that it’s time to wind down. we don’t play with toys in that area of the room, and if he wanders over when it isn’t nap time, we lay our heads on the bed and pretend to sleep (fake snoring and all!), so that adam knows what the space is for. this is really helpful for those moments when baby is wound up and overtired and just needs a break. in fact, now that he’s a little older, he even sometimes takes me by the hand and guides me to the chill out zone to let me know he’s feeling tired.
the munchkin latch pacifier. munkchin developed their latest pacifier with the help of pediatric dentists and the experience of real moms. it’s a one-piece, lightweight silicone made in a variety of different shapes to help your baby comfortable latch on no matter what their stage of development, from 0 to 3 to 6 months and up. i actually wish these were around when adam was younger, because he had a terrible time trying to keep a latch on his pacifiers! and even if he could, sometimes they had such an odd shape that it didn’t fit well on his tiny face. the latch has a nice, ergonomic heart shape that fits perfectly beneath baby’s little nose. and having something soothing to suck on is really helpful when your little one needs to calm down and chill out, especially because there are times when mom can’t always breastfeed on demand.
p.s. i made the pacifier clip above using cotton string and wooden beads! it was super easy to make, i really should share a how-to!
aromatherapy. it’s true! back during my pregnancy with adam, i had a seriously rough case of morning sickness that lasted well after the first 12 weeks. my mom is super into holistic medicine, so she gave me a tiny bottle of grapefruit essential oil to help. the first time i took a little whiff of that stuff, i was sold. aromatherapy really works and i’ve totally turned into one of those crunchy granola moms with an arsenal of different essential oils and herbs to cure what ails you. this includes infusing a bit of lavender or chamomile in an evening bath (assuming baby doesn’t have allergies!), and placing fragrant herbs around the house to help calm the senses.
you can find the munchkin latch pacifier in-store or online at target.