How to entertain the kids when your sick

Back to it. Dealing with kids when your sick is the worst isn’t it?! I’ve recently suffered with a nasty virus, straight after Albert had it himself so we ended up stuck inside for over 2 weeks. Now I’m not going to patronise you – I’m all for movie days – but after that long it ceases the entertain a 2 year old. I figured I’d make myself useful during my suffering and share some tips I came up with. The idea is to help make it easier for you, yet more entertaining for your little one at the same time!

  1. Self-care. Yes, you heard me. You need to put yourself first. Like I said use the TV and rest when you can – no guilt. Take a hot bath in the middle of the afternoon, put the housework on hold, feed your children fish fingers and waffles out the freezer just try to get some rest!
  2. Toy rotation. Now obviously you won’t have the energy for a full blown rotation but pull out some old toys that he/she hasn’t seen in a while or quickly set up something that looks a little more entertaining than a box drowning in toys (and don’t worry about the clean up).
  3. Fresh air. If you’ve got a garden, fantastic. Make yourself a hot drink and sit outside whilst they run wild. If not, even just a brisk walk to the shop to top up your medicine cabinet will be a pleasing change of scenery for you both.
  4. Explanations. Though my little one is only two I tried to explain to him that Mummy wasn’t feeling well, she was hurting and couldn’t do what she normally could. That I would be better soon and we’d all go for a wonderful family day out. They understand more than you think!
  5. Praise. Who doesn’t love a good pat on the back?! Thank them for helping to look after you and for behaving beautifully whilst you can’t run around like a mad woman/man. If you do have to go out then buy them a biscuit or a small toy to cheer them up.
  6. Keep it simple. Take your time and drag out easy activities. Things like reading, colouring, sticker books, cars – anything that isn’t too strenuous. The days can seem to last a lifetime when you’re not feeling your best so stop watching that clock and pick an activity you’re feeling up to.
  7. Take it to bed. I’m serious. When I was at the worst of it I needed bed rest (ha!). Though that was unrealistic I did manage to go for a lie down now and again. I prepared a quick snack, topped up the juice cup, grabbed a selection of random toys and stuck a movie on the kindle and we both went for a lie down. Even when Albert was bored of the movie he played beautifully in bed or tottered off to his bedroom for more toys.
  8. Make it exciting. I also like to make a movie more exciting by snuggling up with blankets and snacks or getting any relatable toys he can use to interact whilst watching! Say if it’s Nemo we grab all the turtles or Spirit it’s the horses – he really enjoys this.
  9. Pyjama day! Need I say more. If you need all the energy you can get don’t put the effort into getting yourself and your child dressed. Take a day off. Have a ‘picnic’ lunch (snack food not at the table). Leave everything then do a quick clear up when the little ones gone to bed. There’s no point wasting your energy picking up after them when they’re just going to make a mess again!
  10. Ask for help. So this might be a little offside from making it easier for you to entertain them but oh well. If you have a partner and they’re feeling well take all the help you can get. The second they walk through the door throw your kid at them and go for a lie down! Ask them tidy the house, cook tea or wash the pots so you can rest. Or if you have family nearby ask them to take the little one for an hour or so to get them out the house, this will do you both some good.

So there we have it – 10 things I hope will help you next time you get struck by a nasty bug. It’s not easy, but hopefully these ideas will help get you through it! (& if your reading this whilst your feeling unwell, I hope you get better soon).

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