Puzzles: A Lifesaver for Parenting High-Energy Toddlers

happiness mumma life is now unfiltered mumlife Sep 11, 2023
Indie playing with puzzle figure

For those of you who also have high-energy toddlers with a whole lot of sass, you'll understand what I mean when I say that the weekend can sometimes feel like a never-ending circus. This past weekend, Indie, my spirited little one, was experiencing BIG emotions, and her daytime naps were no longer a part of our routine, which she really needed. To say the least, it was a challenging time for both of us.


Spending time outdoors is typically our go-to solution. We often embark on imaginary adventures, hopping from one make-believe island (which are really just rocks in our backyard) to another. We've even been on a bear hunt to escape our furry friend, Kopa, who can transform into a bear or a lion at Indie's whim. Outdoor play, painting, drawing, and even a bit of screen time usually keep us busy and happy.


However, as the afternoon approached, tensions were on the rise. I was running out of ideas to help Indie navigate her emotions. That's when I suggested we head upstairs and put together her "friends" with some puzzles. To be honest, I wasn't sure how she would respond, given her high-strung mood, but to my surprise, she enthusiastically agreed. Her little elephant-like stomps up the stairs led the way.


Changing the scenery, engaging in a mindful activity like puzzles, and interacting with her "friends" proved to be a godsend. It wasn't just because these were our puzzle friends, but because the puzzles themselves were engaging for kids. As I write this blog, I can hear Indie's voice saying, "Me do puzzles," and "I want to do puzzles." Oh, this girl!


We don't have a dedicated kids' playroom, but we make our way into my studio/office, which Indie absolutely adores. She's fascinated by the bright-colored wallpaper and the irresistible urge to empty every drawer, including the confetti drawer – my little secret joy. I don't mind a confetti battle with her either; it's all part of the fun.


Into the studio, we go, Indie closing the door behind us. She arranges her cushions (her cub friends, naturally), I turn on the diffuser and some music, and we both lay on our tummies with our legs crossed behind us, swaying to the rhythm. Indie reaches for the canvas library bag (yes, more cubs, she's been surrounded by them for the last 18 months as we created them). Inside, we have three different tray puzzles: the "I am Brave" bear puzzle, the "I am AWESOME astronaut puzzle," and a puzzle inspired by our third book, "Why do unique cubs help us all?"


Together, we embark on the puzzle-building journey. We take turns placing puzzle pieces onto the tray, guided by the outlines of the shapes. Typically, Indie starts us off by placing either the plane-shaped puzzle piece or the car-shaped one. It's incredible how much she adores puzzles, considering her busy and high-energy nature. But what amazes me even more is how much they help her calm down and find joy.


I know she loves puzzles not only because they are fun but because they create precious bonding moments. So, if you have old puzzles collecting dust in your game cupboard, it might be time to give them a second chance. You might be surprised at how relaxing and FUN it can be for both you and your cub.


And if you're looking for bright and bold affirmation cubs to nurture your own cub and remind them of their AMAZINGness, their ability to be kind to themselves and others, and to embrace the "paws" amidst the chaos, head over to Unlimited NOW store, where your purchase contributes to creating a beautiful ripple effect of positivity. Puzzle time with your little one might just be the sanity-saver you've been looking for!