Monday, October 11, 2010

A little Advice

I'm not dispensing, I'm requesting. Here's my question:

How do I get Claire to play by herself for any time at all without just putting her in front of the TV? She has an inability to entertain herself. She has way too many toys and will only touch them if someone is sitting next to her, engaging with her while she plays. It's ridiculous, and in a few weeks, completely impossible! I have been attempting to make her more independent in preparation for Jude's arrival. But I can't, for the life of me, get her to leave me alone to get anything done. Don't get me wrong, I DO NOT give her my undivided attention all day. But when I'm busy and I ask her to play by herself for a little while, she follows me around whining or deliberately provokes negative attention by getting in trouble. (She's in time out right now for climbing the DVD rack-something I tell her not to do at least twice/day!) I use language like "Claire's special play time" or "Mommy needs a break." I set timers, lock myself in rooms, all to no avail.

I need some mom wisdom. Tricks of the trade. Something. Anything!


  1. Believe it or not, less toys may be the answer! :)

    I just decluttered Bryson's toys and somehow with less toys around, he can focus on the ones he does have.

    Sometimes he just wants me near him, so if we are in the same room he is happy. With my older boys I had a toy kitchen they would play with while I cooked, etc.

    Good luck!

  2. Yes, I agree! Just a few toys at a time might be very helpful.

    Maybe you can be more intentional about "Claire's special play time" and require her to stay in her room for 10 minutes to start with, then 15...20, etc. Like teaching her to stay in bed until the light comes on.

    You might also let her "help" by giving her a cloth and have her dust, or wash the floor or sort laundry.

    It may take few full days of effort to convince her you are serious, but, as you know, this battle needs to be won.