• Toddlers are a lot of fun. So much fun in fact, that on occasion (at least once a day) I need them to slow down for a few minutes. You know, long enough for me to take a shower, or use the restroom, or maybe even cook dinner. It is a lot to ask, I know. To accomplish this seemingly impossible task I have begun to rely on busy bags. Busy bags are just what they sound like, bags filled with things that keep a toddler busy. If you want a busy bag to be successful, you cannot use them often (or have a few that you can switch out). A good busy bag will challenge your toddler in a new task, like stringing beads, or engage their senses and thus keeping their attention.

    One of our current favorite bags requires my son to sort pipe cleaners by colors and be able to put them into a cup. I know, that sounds easy. You need those disposable lidded cups made specifically for kids. Take a single hole puncher and make some holes in the lid. These will be the holes that your toddler puts the pipe cleaners though. Challenges their motor skills and their ability to sort things. This bag lasts us a good thirty minutes or so.
    Enough for a good shower and then some.

    Another favorite right now works for more than one child. Balloon ping pong! Appetizer sized paper plates glued to craft sticks make fantastic paddles. A balloon obviously, for the ball. This is a perfect game for my kids to play while I prepare dinner.

    For another good stand by, stringing beads or pasta on to string is always a big hit. Even my six year old loves participating in this one.

    It may seem like a lot of work to come up with a bunch of bags, and it is. That’s why I try to set up a busy bag swap with some of my local mom friends.

    If you have five friends you each make one type of bag five times. Then when you swap you will have five separate bags. Makes the manufacture of them easier, and you only have to come up with one idea.