What to do when you don’t know what to do

It is easy to be mad when your child makes a giant mess. Instead of losing your temper, try these four tips instead.

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  • Life is messy. As a parent, that day will come when you walk into a giant mess created by your "angelic" children. When you see the mess, your first reaction is to yell and get upset. But, in many situations your children don't even realize they are doing anything wrong. Whether you have frosting all over the couch or flour all over the floor, you have to do something about the situation at hand. Here are a few ideas of what to do when you don't really know what to do.

  • Grab your phone and record

  • When the messes come, it is important to remember that these times in life don't last forever. In fact, they will be gone before you know it. You must cherish these moments while you can. Instead of getting upset and yelling, pull out your phone or camera and record. Capture these moments. You may not laugh about it now but years down the road you will.

  • Just laugh

  • The best way to handle a giant mess is to just laugh it off. If you sit and dwell, it is easy to become stressed and overwhelmed. I have an energetic and active toddler and I've had my share of scary messes: frosting, nail polish, mud. If I don't allow myself to laugh while in the moment, I'll turn in to a scary, beast mom. Laughter really is the best medicine, especially in the middle of a mess.

  • Join in the fun

  • Sometimes you just have to be a silly parent and forget about the mess. If there is flour all over the floor and your children are having a good time, sit and play with them. Encourage making messes and join in the fun. This is an excellent time to spark creativity and great bonding time. Here are a few ideas to help your child develop his creativity.

  • Use it as a teaching moment

  • Many times your children may not understand they are doing anything wrong. Have you specifically told our children not to play in the sugar or told them the can of rice was off limits? When your children make a mess, use this as a teaching opportunity. Not only to tell them what is off limits but also to teach them how to clean and clean well.

  • Raising children is a privilege and an honor but it can also be a headache. When those tough messes come, show love to your children even more. If anything else, they just gave you a great story to share.

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Courtnie is an editor for FamilyShare.com and has a degree in journalism. She has a slight obsession with running, newspapers and large fuzzy blankets. She currently lives in Idaho with her husband and two sons.

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