I have a couple of issues as a father who is in need for advice. First of all, let me introduce myself. I am 26 yrs old, married to an amazing wife, with two kids, and a dog. We stay in a 2 bedroom apartment. Now let's get to the issue.(the kids) They are both boys; one is 2 years old and the other one is 1. They are sweet at times, but are very frustrating to me when it comes down to keeping the apartment clean. They trash this apartment like it's a trash bin. I constantly cleans up to the point that I feels like a janitor. I puts all my pride into cleaning up because I love breathing cleanness of a house. Me and my wife tries to keep it clean, but them two as a team is a nightmare. We even made the 2nd bedroom out of a play pin for them by putting toys in there and a TV with cartoon on it, but instead, they drag the toys into the living room. That's not all, they love to stay up late to where me and my wife doesn't have any alone or quality time together. The attention between me and her are blocked by those two rascals. And they wakes up so late like around 11am-12:30 pm at the most.( My 2 year old son's bed is next to our bed and our 1 year old sleeps in the bed with us. The 2 bedroom is across the other side of the apartment, but my wife does not like them that far from our bedroom due to safety reasons of fearing that someone would sneak in and take our kids. Also, it's hard to teach my 2 year old to brush his teeth...all he wants to do is suck the tooth pasted off and bite down onto the tooth brush. Another issue is getting my 2 year old off pacifies. When we takes his away, he cries like some one is dying or he looses his, he steals his little brother's. Even when he goes without a pacifier, the moment he sees that we gave his brother a paci, he cries for his, especially at bed time. Another issue is that all my 2 year old wants to eat is junk food (chips, candy, cake,etc.) I really need your advice. I am dad who wants to change a few things around the house professionally. Thanks in advice.
First, I would like to apologize for the delay in getting back to you. The day you sent this to me, I had just given birth to my 6th child. I just got released from the hospital yesterday.
As for your question. ..
Kids are going to be frustrating. Just learn to smile through it. Your situation can be refocused, but it's going to take time, patience and persistence to accomplish. The boys are going to need a little more structure and routine, as well as you and mom finding ways to include them in cleaning. Even my 1 year old helps clean up by throwing out his dirty diapers, other garbage handed to him and gets told to put his toys back, while being shown the toy box. Teaching them to pick up and put away their toys is essential at this early age. They are old enough to play with it, so are old enough to put it away. They (especially the 2 year old) is old enough to take toys from the living room back to the play room. Although I would recommend turning it back into a bedroom and getting a monitor for mom's sake, if she feels she may not hear them at that distance. Separate the toys so half remain in the bedroom toy box and half can go in a living room toy box. Establish a bedtime routine with hyper play (dancing, tickle time, running around to clean up fast), then a brief bath (a long one can rejuvenate their energy), brush teeth, short story and bed. This nightly routine will become habit and teach them it's time to lay down. My kids go to bed at 8:30 pm, and are usually asleep by 9.
Turn brushing teeth into a game. Maybe talk to the dentist about the tooth tablets. They are designed to be chewed, and color teeth until the color is brushed away.
As for the paci...it's going to involve taking both of them off it. Yes, it will be hard, and involves a lot of crying initially, but will be worth it. I don't let my kids get started on them, but have broken others of it. First, allow it only at bedtime. At breakfast, they vanish to a cabinet only you know they are in. Don't let the boys see you put them ip. When they ask for them, say "I don't know where they are! " sounding confused and surprised, but don't offer to look for them. Letting them cry a little bit without it won't hurt them. It will also help their teeth as they get older. Food wise, don't buy the junk and offer them healthy options. If they like chips, consider vegetable chips. Instead of candy, apple pieces. They taste sweet, but are healthy. Bananas with peanut butter (provided they're not allergic). By not putting the junk in the house, but providing options, you're teaching them to eat healthy. My kids get junk on birthdays, holidays and once a week on movie night.
Stay consistent. Stick with routine. If they get too hyper at any point, direct them in a quiet activity like sitting at the table coloring. Then let them resume playing after they've settled down. And now and then, even if it is once a month or once a pay period, have someone watch them so you and mom can go do something together, giving you time to talk, especially about things other than the kids so you can reconnect.