Stop and Smell the Playdough: How to Enjoy the Big and Little Things with Your Kid

by KidSnips

There are so many moments to enjoy with your little one…. while they’re still little. Including things like bringing them into KidSnips for a super fun, special experience together. And this month, we’re offering $3 off weekday haircuts for kids under 3, to make things even more enjoyable for you.

Sometimes it feels like there’s so much to worry about when you’re raising a toddler. If you’re like a lot of parents, you probably spend your (very few) quiet moments wondering, “Am I giving them the right food? Are they getting enough sleep? Am I raising them to be kind? Will they get into Harvard?”

While we could certainly spend this blog post laying out what we think is the healthiest toddler diet and the most effective potty training method, we think it’s more important to remind you: your toddler doesn’t need to be perfect—in fact, no matter what parenting techniques you use, they won’t be perfect. And your little one will only be little for a few years. So rather than stressing all the time about creating the best little human out there — sometimes you just need to stop and smell the playdough. Enjoy each big and little moments with your toddler while they’re still a toddler. And we’ve got a few ideas to help you be more present with them.

1. Keep a gratitude journal.

A gratitude journal is a great way for you to record details about your kid’s childhood that you can look back on. Plus, spending some time every day writing down a sentence or two about what you’re grateful for can rewire your brain so that you learn to feel gratitude when those little moments are happening—like when your child presents you with the picture they colored for you in preschool.

Check out this quick, 13-minute episode from The Science of Happiness podcast. It’s a great look into how writing down what you’re thankful for can help you appreciate the little things. They even have a short how-to guide that explains how to start a gratefulness journal and why it’s good for you.

2. Put your phone away.

We’ve all heard it over and over: cell phones are changing the way we experience things. While phones do have some benefits—like allowing you to take those super cute photos of your child with ice cream all over their face—they can also distract you from the present moment. To eliminate the distraction, turn your phone off occasionally when spending time with your toddler. You can still keep it with you in case of an emergency, but getting rid of the opportunity to check Twitter or post all those adorable pictures on Instagram will help you be more present with your kid.

3. Let go of control.

We’ve said it once, and we’ll say it again—your toddler does NOT need to be perfect. And that means you don’t have to be the perfect parent either. So every once in awhile, break character and eat ice cream for dinner or go outside and run around in the rain. Let them get muddy and messy. You should still set boundaries and have rules—but breaking those rules (with your permission) every once in awhile will make for special, silly, fun, memorable moments.

4. Take care of yourself, too.

When you’re completely exhausted and jittery with caffeine, it can be difficult—if not impossible—to enjoy moments with your toddler. Being a good parent doesn’t just mean taking care of your toddler—it means taking good care of you, too. It’s important that you do what you need to in order to relax and get some rest, whether that be meditating, reading, or just getting more sleep. This month, our #KidSnipsShoutout goes to Purple and their guide to establishing healthy sleep habits for toddlers and finding some time for self-care.

5. Commemorate the moment.

There are tons of ways to commemorate big and little memories with your kids. Make a memory book, print out a photo collage… or bring them into KidSnips and save a lock of hair to pair with a picture of them sporting their new haircut. And this month, KidSnips is offering $3 off weekday toddler haircuts for kids under 3. So you can bring them in for a haircut and make a great memory together.

Note: $3 off toddler haircuts for children under 3. Weekday appointments only. Offer valid September 1–30, 2019. Not valid with any other offers.