Eva loves joining us in the kitchen. She is not the biggest help just yet, especially not when we’re in a hurry, but I’ve found another way for her to join us when we’re cooking that will keep her happy and entertained without her getting in the way. I’ve dedicated a bottom drawer and two shelves in our cabinet just for her and filled it with the most amazing things (at least if your one year old). And she loves them! She still gets to help us in the kitchen when time is not of an essens. Right now for example, the dishwasher is a big hit, but sometimes we just need to get the cooking done as fast as possible.
As soon as Eva was capable of pulling herself up and standing on her own, she started getting in our kitchen drawers. The first few times I tried to stop her, but I soon realized how useless my efforts were. So instead of getting annoyed I embraced it, and wow, I’m I happy I did! She LOVES pulling everything out and playing with it. She doesn’t need our help which gives us time and room to cook while she is happily playing with all the amazing items she has seen us use.
It didn’t take her long to figure out how to get in the drawer after she’d figured out how to stand.
Since we didn’t have a free drawer or a shelf to dedicate specifically to her, I just filled one of our bottom drawers with a bunch of the kitchen utilities that we already had and used ourselves. I just made sure that the things I put there wouldn’t not break when dropped on the floor or could in any way be dangerous for her. And she loves it! Only downside is the fact that we have to clean the things in that drawer more frequently, but that’s fine by me as long a she can be entertained in the kitchen for more than a hour at a time while I cook!
Recently she also figured out how to open the cabinet and instead of putting a lock on it, I decided to make it interesting for her. I’ve given her a basket with her own plates and cups (and in time her spoons, forks and knives will find they way into the basket as well) and stuffed it with boxes of pasta, cans and other food items that can’t easily be opened. And it’s a big hit!
Oh joy! A basket full of plates!
If you want to give this idea a go, then here’s a list of ideas on what to put in a toddler friendly drawer or cabinet:
- Plastic containers
- Metal strainer
- Plastic and melanin bowls
- Salad spinner
- Muffin shapes
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Toddler’s own plates, cups and utensils
- Cans and unopened boxes and bags of food that can not easily be opened
- Any other items you can think of
If you don’t already have a drawer or shelf dedicated to your toddler, go ahead a make one next time your toddler is sleeping. It is so worth it!
You don’t have to fill your cupboards and drawers with toys. Just stuff it with everything you can think off that won’t break or pose any other danger to your baby or toddler, and you’re set to go.
Eva’s basket with some of her plates and bowls. Sometimes a rubber duck or drum sticks will find their way into the basket, but not today.