Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Entertainment While Sick

Six days ago, the boys started coming down with a cold. Just as they started feeling better, I got it! So we've been stuck at home trying to avoid boredom. Here are a few activities to make sick people (toddlers and mommy alike) smile.

Play doctor
  • We used a Dixie cup to play, "Does your ___ hurt?" Placing the Dixie stethoscope on big brother's knee, I'd ask, "Does your knee hurt?" Move it to his shoulder. "Does your shoulder hurt?" He thought it was hillarious. I played this with little brother to reinforce the names of body parts. What was really funny was when I was sick a few days later and suddenly felt a toy cup on my head and heard big bro ask, "Does your hair hurt?"

Love on the doggies
  • The boys usually don't do much loving on the doggies. They chase them, roll on them, and "brush" them, but just sitting and petting them... it doesn't happen. When the boys were cold and sick, they developed quite the symbiotic relationship. When sitting together on the couch, the boys could steal warmth from the dogs, and the dogs could steal the boys' snacks (not that the boys were very interested in snacks, being sick and all!) There's been a lot more hugging and loving going on since.

Rub 'em down
  • Nothing puts a smile on a child's face like a good tickle. But when a child is sick, they don't want to roll on the floor and laugh until they cry, so a more subtle form of touch is useful. I pulled out the Vicks Baby Rub, and made a little game of rubbing it on their chests and feet. They liked the smooth touch, and the soothing smell (much nicer than regular Vicks!), but they especially liked the special attention they got as I massaged it into their skin. It tickled enough for a few giggles and smiles, but not enough to annoy them.

Blanket Buddies
  • The boys love each other so much, but it seems that when one is in a hugging mood, the other is in a "don't touch me" mood. When they were both at the height of their cold, both were in a "don't touch me" mood, but they both had fevers, too. I put them on the couch side-by-side and covered them up with a big, fluffy blanket. They sat there cuddled together for at least 30 minutes, heads resting on each other.

Pull out the Essential Oils
  • I keep a few EOs on hand for cleaning and to use in a diffuser. I pulled out the rosemary, eucalyptus, lavender, peppermint, and orange, all good scents for sickness. Both boys enjoyed getting to smell them, and it certainly helped the overall mood of the room to have the diffuser going.

Pull out something new
  • Pull out a new DVD, book, game, or toy. I always try to have a few things put back (items secretly removed from the overflowing Christmas or birthday present pile) for an "emergency." Another option would be to send someone (DH, a good friend) to the library to check out a book or DVD. My boys loved the Baby Einstein DVDs that they hadn't seen in forever!

Cool-mist Humidifier "sprinkler"
  • Pull out the cool-mist humidifier, aim the mist out into the middle of the room, and watch them go! It was like a sprinkler or bubbles in the house. They were running through it, trying to catch it, and just having a blast. It was a positive side to while trying to help them breate better!

What other ideas do you have for making sickness less miserable?

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