Yes, my two boys are still less than two years apart (officially a “baby bunch“) but today is a special day in my family. Today, Milo is the age that Holden was when we had him (Milo). 21 1/2 months exactly. Our bunch is growing up. We’re moving on from 2 in diapers to 2 whining for more TV.
The other day — when I knew this day was coming soon — I asked Alec to use a spreadsheet or “write a Python script” to calculate it so it wouldn’t go unnoticed. Thanks geeky husband!
Linda from BabyBunching.com sent us some tips for wrangling your Baby Bunch during the first year.
Getting a baby and a toddler into the car is no small feat. And even once you’ve survived loading your brood into the car, taking any kind of outing—whether it’s a stroll in the park or a quick grocery errand—seems like nothing short of a major military operation. For a successful trip you need strategy, gear, bribes, an exit plan and a way to keep the troops (including mom) engaged and positive.
When deciding on an outing for your Baby Bunch (aka children less than two years apart), there are a few things to keep in mind to increase your chances that everyone will come home happy, or at least not miserable. There are three main things to consider when planning where to take your bunch. These include:
- A place that’s easy to keep a watchful eye on everyone—This can mean everyone is corralled in one place or a wide open space big enough where you see everyone at the same time (the triangulation method). Chuck E. Cheese is NOT one of these places. Keep in mind that the corral set-up is definitely preferable if you expect there will be crowds. Corral with an armed guard at the door.
- A place with an easy exit strategy—By exit we mean you can quickly make a mad dash back to the car to take everyone home in the event someone melts down. Another key component to “easy exit” is free or low cost – this way it doesn’t matter if the trip is a bust and you have to bail 10 minutes into it. You’ll be much more likely to cut your losses if the time/money investment was low.
- A place that is safe—There are tons of places that are safe for toddlers or safe for babies. But it may not be fun or safe for the other one. A playground with mulch may keep your two-year old busy for hours, but may not be the best idea for your 10-month old who now puts everything in his mouth. And while sitting in the shopping cart at Target could be great stimulation for your 10-month old, watching your toddler try to climb out of the cart yet again, will scare you to pieces.
I’ll post again soon with some safe destinations for the little ones. For more activities and tips, see BabyBunching.com. Linda Kerr writes at Baby Bunching and Monkey Business. She and her fellow Baby Bunching friend Cara Fox are writing a book on this topic.