I google the statement “things to do all day with an 18 month old” yesterday morning as the guilt started to creep in that I was letting her play on her own in the living room after breakfast whilst I nursed a gentle hangover that I have achieved whilst drinking too much wine, staying up late to watch Glastonbury on the telly the night before. Now that she’s found her sea legs, she’s quite happy to spend her time bimbling around from room to room, picking things up and putting them in places, making shouty noises and occasionally coming over to check in with her mummy laid on the floor to get a reassuring cuddle.
“Surely I should be enriching her life with education right now”, I thought. It’s a Saturday. I work full time all week and when daddy is away on events I do extra childcare stuff too. I don’t get any lie-ins at the weekend. On my work from home day on Thursday, I have to fit my work in around her which means often working early in the morning and then again in the evenings so that we can spend quality time together. She’s goes to daycare two days a week and spends the other two weekdays with her father. Overall, her days are pretty varied and interesting. She interacts with all sorts of people and children. Not heading out to explore nature or visit the aquarium probably won’t harm her development long term.
So instead we got in the car and went to visit a friend whose cat we are adopting. When we got back and once the cat was settled I had to hoover and dust, so little lady did the same, mimicking me with her little duster that I had given her. We folded laundry on the floor whilst watching Peppa Pig. We ate loads of food and snacks and played (slow) chase from room to room. We both napped at the same time 9and it was two hours thank the lord). We played with the magnets on the front of the dishwasher and then when dinner was near, she helped me make it. It occurred to me by the end of the day that although we hadn’t done any Activities with a capital “A”, we had done plenty together and I guess while they’re this little that’s all you hope for. Precious time spent together just hanging out because she won’t want to do that one day.