Here in the Jones house, we’ve been passing around a cold like the world’s worst game of “hot potato.” It was inevitable that during the busy travel season one of us would catch a virus that latches on to our sinuses with a nose-clogging-death-grip.
As moms, we try to fight it off and power through as much as possible, but that usually ends up with us being extra grumpy, extra rundown, extra exhausted, and extra sick. Throw a toddler into the mix (especially one who’s feeling cruddy themselves) and you have a recipe for a miserable week of prolonged illness. Sometimes you just have to put the world on hold and let yourself take a sick day. It’s not always easy, but here are my favorite tips and must-have items for surviving (and maybe even enjoying) snuggly, sniffly, toddler sick days.
Have the Essentials on Hand
According to the Mayo Clinic, the tried and true way to fight a cold quickly and safely involves staying hydrated and getting plenty of rest as well as easing pain and discomfort. Our basic snuggly sick day supply kit for surviving toddler sick days includes:
- Comfy Socks, Snuggly Blankets, and Giant Pillows
- 32oz Waterbottle (bigger bottle means fewer times getting up to refill!)
- Pediatrician’s Phone Number (just in case)
EAT EAT EAT! DRINK DRINK DRINK!
Eating healthy foods and staying hydrated is SO important to staying healthy – or getting healthy again. I love soups, coconut water, veggies, and healthy granola bars for sick days. …the occasional grilled cheese may make it’s way to our faces, too, if I’m feeling up to it. Have a stock of things you can snack on that don’t require a lot of extra up and about time. If you have frozen soups or comfort meals, rock it out! But if you don’t, don’t stress about having a five-star meal on hand. Keep it simple but don’t reach for the empty calories.
Keep the Tiny Humans Happy
Surviving toddler sick days is all about keeping everyone quiet and occupied. If you’re a house that limits screen time, consider letting that by the wayside – at least until mom is feeling better. We load up with our favorite movies or binge watch Daniel Tiger and Super Why on and enjoy getting our couch cuddles on. If screen time IS a solid “no” for your household, here’s a few other entertainment items that are tried and true in our home.
- This may seem like an obvious choice, but it’s easy to overlook how much quiet time you can pass reading books. Penny has even started “Reading” books to herself and her dolls so they’re great for independent play time as well!
- Coloring Books/Coloring Sheets
- These are great for the kiddos AND for mom! Some of my favorite mom friendly sheets were drawn by Melsa of BlotAndInk, and I’ve posted some free coloring pages that I’ve drawn over at Babyloaf’s Facebook page here.
- Jaq Jaq Bird Chalkboard Books and Melissa and Doug Water Wow books
- These are awesome for reusable quiet coloring. Penny loves both of these products and so do I. We usually use them for travel and out-and-about distractions, but on sick days, anything goes!
- Peg dolls, Dinosaurs, Cars, you name it. These are amazing for independent quiet play.
Don’t do what I did and wait until someone (or you) gets sick before stocking up on supplies. To help stock up, you can take advantage of Walmart’s two-day shipping and snag your Kleenex and other essentials right now without braving the weather outside. Or, if you DO find yourself in a last-minute lurch, order online and pick up the same day in store!
It was so easy to go to the website to place my order. You select in-store pickup and get a discount on the already low priced items you buy and receive an email when it’s ready to be picked up. Our pick up location is right at the front of the store so you can get in, stock up, and be back home quickly. Kleenex is a year-round necessity especially with a toddler in the house; we use them even when we’re all germ-free.
Avoid Getting Sick in the First Place!
I know… this one is a no brainer, but it’s definitely important. During cold and flu season (and all year round) make sure you and the tiny humans wash hands thoroughly and try to keep tiny fingers out of eyes and mouths. That’s definitely easier said than done. So if one of your germ monsters happens to bring home a cold, I love that the active ingredients in the middle layer of Kleenex Anti-Viral tissues disrupt the viruses’ protective coating and kill 99.9% of cold and flu viruses in the tissue within 15 minutes. It definitely makes wiping boogery noses and surviving toddler sick days less gross.