I'm busy. You're busy. We're all busy. But amidst all that activity, we still instinctively know as parents that we're responsible for keeping our little humans well; help them eat, sleep, learn, play, and move. And for most parents (especially those of us keenly attuned to our own wellness or lack thereof), our little creature's wellbeing is at the center of most things we do.
For my two-year-old, I've come to rely on a few wellness staple shortcuts - easy DIYs that require a small time investment with a big payoff.
Squeezy for Smoothies: Since my son started solids at 6 months old, he’s basically eaten what I eat - which is mostly plants and fruits, some meat, nuts, grains, and a little dairy. Luckily, he’s always liked veggies (don't hate me too much, he didn't sleep for more than 4 hours straight until 14 months). Still, he has a smoothie every day - most days in his Squeasy Gear reusable pouch, and I can hide the taste of pretty much anything I want - veggies, vitamins - just name it. (Helpful hint: frozen bananas win when it comes to taste-concealers). Homemade smoothies beat the store-bought pouches because you can control what's in them (fruits, veggies, good fats, protein), plus they’re more cost effective and environmentally-friendly.
Shea Lotion for All: Once you start making your own body lotion, you'll never go back. I make a big tub of it every few weeks and the whole family uses it. Benefits: no additives or preservatives, no ingredients you can't pronounce, and you can experiment with different essential oil scent profiles that suit you - lavender or vanilla for night time slathering, or citrus for morning invigoration. You can also experiment with different “carrier oils” - coconut, olive, almond, avocado, and beyond. I like this video from Urban Bush Babes that shows a simple step-by-step.
Cold Socks: This one was recommended by our pediatrician, who's also a naturopath. Is your munchkin feeling a little under the weather? This home hydrotherapy treatment stimulates the immune system response, making it an easy and natural tool to help the kiddo (or you!) get through stuffy noses, coughs, and colds more quickly. I swear it speeds my son’s recovery by at least 2x. After bath/shower time, rub your child down with your homemade lotion (ok that's not actually part of it), get pajamas on, then saturate the socks in cold water and squeeze out the extra water. After you put those on (your child may squirm and hate it, or, like my son, love it and giggle), put dry wool socks on top. If you don't have toddler-sized wool socks (which I don't), you can use your own and pull them up like knee-highs. My son usually knocks out immediately. When they wake up in the morning, the socks are dry. Repeat as needed over the next few days.
Because parents are hella busy, it doesn’t take much for us to feel proud of ourselves for going above and beyond. So pat yourself on the back, because health doesn’t always have to be hard - even when the little humans are.