toddler two year old having fun outside
Motherhood,  Toddler

Daily Routine With a 2 Year Old

The ‘terrible twos’ are upon us.

I guess it doesn’t matter what stage you’re in with your kids, there are going to be challenges. I have to say, even though this stage has its difficulties, it’s also such a fun age.

The older D gets, the more he’s understanding and I’m finding myself overthinking every word I say to him, every action I make around him, because I know how much he’s watching and taking it all in. Please tell me I’m not alone in this!

He amazes me every day with how much he understands. He’s saying more words now, he’s exploring more, and he’s definitely asserting himself more.

He wants so badly to be independent and I try my best to allow it as much as possible.

The most challenging part for me is the emotional rollercoaster that is a toddler – the big emotions that come from such a little body.

I’m doing my best to try and help him learn how to manage those big emotions, in safe and healthy ways. I know it will take time and repetition but it can be easy to feel like your child is going to grow up into a mentally unstable emotional mess and it’ll be all your fault.

I’m still learning myself how to regulate my own emotions most days, particularly now that I have a two year old.

That being said, I have found that there are a lot of things that help keep the tantrums to a minimum. I try and sprinkle them throughout every day.

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SENSORY PLAY

Toddlers (and babies) NEED to have their senses stimulated. Whether that be any sort of body movement, new tastes or feelings, different sights and sounds – it all benefits them.

I find when my son is going a little off the rails all he needs is something like this.

So we dance, we run around, or we do some water play in his sensory bin. I love sensory tables because you can fill them with anything, be it rice, sand, water, cotton balls – literally anything.

You can also get different sensory kits off of Amazon, as well as these beads that D LOVES to play with.

We also love Activity Pack Printables for Toddlers from Salty Mamas! They have so many different ones to choose from, which makes it a great preschool resource too. The Animal Ones have been a hit.

OUTDOOR PLAY

D loves playing outside! It’s the easiest way to derail a tantrum and keep him happy and exploring. There are so many things to see and do, and mom gets a walk in too!

It can be really calming for both of us to just let him walk and explore with me at a safe distance behind him, watching and enjoying the fresh air.

Right now he’s obsessed with lawn mowers so he loves his Bubble Mower!

RISKY PLAY

Risky play is exactly as it sounds – a little bit risky!

It involves letting your child explore their natural instinct to do things that might be a little risky, in a safe and controlled environment.

I’m not saying letting your child juggle knives.

However, my son is a natural climber. He loves to climb on absolutely everything, and for the most part I let him! I’m always within a safe distance to catch him if necessary.

He loves his Pickler Triangle Climber and has gotten so good at climbing it! Activity blocks are also great for giving kids a safe place to climb.

SLEEP

D usually wakes up between 6:00am and 7:00am. He naps in the afternoon for about two hours. Daycare days he usually goes to bed a bit earlier to prevent him from getting overtired (he does NOT do well when he’s overtired).

D has always been pretty particular about staying on a good schedule. Of course there are times where he ends up getting to bed a bit later, or doesn’t nap well. We live our life and adjust as needed.

Grab a printable copy here! You can use it to reference back to or as a copy for babysitters/other possible caregivers!

OUR DAILY ROUTINE

And now, for the part you came for! This our daily routine with D that has worked well for us for a little while now.

6:30am – Wakeup, snuggles, breakfast, usually a bit of screen time while mom drinks her coffee. Our mornings are pretty relaxed.

7:30am – Play time

8:30am – Around now we usually start getting dressed and ready for the day.

9:00am – Snack time – D eats more in the mornings.

9:30am – Now we head outside for a walk, to the park, or to run some errands.

11:30am – Lunch time

12:30pm-2:30pm – Nap time

2:30pm – Wakeup, snack time

3:00pm – Play time

5:30pm – Dinner

6:00pm – Bath time if he’s having one, we don’t have one every night.

6:45pm – Head to room for bedtime routine (books, snuggles, bed)

7:15pm-7:30pm – Asleep

There you have it! Our daily routine. This routine has worked well for us for awhile and we always adjust as needed. If nap doesn’t go well, bedtime is generally earlier. Sometimes he sleeps in a little longer but usually I have him up by 7.

Feel free to grab a copy of the printable to reference for your own little one!

I am a military wife, a university graduate, and a new mama living in Nova Scotia. Follow me on this journey to learn about pregnancy, motherhood, staying healthy, and taking care of you and your family!

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