Cracker crumbs, jelly smears, sticky fingers… When you have kids, messes are just part of daily life. Multiply those messes by five, and you’ll have a small window into our world.
Each morning is a new adventure in chaos at our house. Thankfully the kids have started to help each other with just about everything, but this can be good and bad. Especially since they have access to the baby before we wake up.
The 5-year-old specifically has always been super helpful with the 1-year-old; she has that motherly instinct and knows when he needs something. Usually in the morning she brings his water to him when he wakes up, and lets us know when he's needing a fresh diaper. It's great, but has also been encouraging the others to be more… Ahem… "Helpful." Including the 2-year-old.
A couple mornings ago, we woke up to the sound of lots of little feet running back and forth, and giggling. Usually not the first thing you want to hear pre-coffee… We knew mischief must be afoot.
Sure enough, our suspicions were confirmed. ALL of the children had decided baby needed food, snacks, and water. They were on the fourth squeeze pouch of baby food (thankfully most of the others weren’t completely empty), and cracker crumbs coated and were smushed into most of the bottom of his bed. They were very resourceful and even had a kitchen stool out so they could reach the good crackers.
This was 6am.
Thankfully, this kid is smart, and he knows when to stop eating. Plus he's got 8 teeth now, so crunching animal crackers is a complete non-issue. We've also trained the others what areas of the kitchen are off-limits, and we turn the breakers off for the stove and oven at night, so they couldn't have burned themselves on anything if they wanted to.
But we let them help each other. We WANT them to help each other.
Ah, the conflicts of being a parent.
So, after dumping what crumbs we could in the trash, we threw the bedding in the wash with some Tide, salvaged what was left of the squeeze pouch baby food, scrubbed spots and stains with Dawn Advanced Platinum and Mr. Clean Magic Erasers (our FAV), brushed off a full, happy baby, and started the coffee.
Thank God for P&G cleaning products, without which we would have a very grimy set of kidlets (and home).
Moral of the story: teach your kids to be helpful. But also keep good cleaning products on hand. And just keep swimming.
You can find all of our favorite P&G cleaning products en masse at your neighborhood Costco. If your family is anything like ours, buying in bulk is the only way to make sure you have it when you need it. Because messes. And children.