Even a Toddler Can Be Taught Good Table Manners
Food is an amazing toy for toddlers. Much of what you serve them is squeezed, dropped, and flicked all over the place, in turn it hardens and dries into the high chair’s seams, behind cushions and between straps. It gets super messy fast! Keeping a high chair clean has its challenges, but it can be done.
Reason with your child
Nothing works on a nine-month-old better than logic. Explain to them that they should be careful when they eat, because you don’t have time to constantly clean the chair, floor and nearby walls. This usually nips messes in the bud.
Teach them table manners
Early instruction is key. Explain to your seven-month-old about utensils – what they’re for and how to hold them. Show her that they are designed for delivering food into the mouth. Explain calmly and directly that utensils are not food-launching devices that make lunchtime more fun, nor are they fun projectiles.
Use a napkin!
Infants are people, right? So give them a napkin, or two. You’ll be amazed at how well they can adapt to this helpful tool.
If these three fail-safe approaches inexplicably prove inadequate, there are still a couple of Plan B approaches:
- Try a bib with a deep pocket to catch falling food. These actually exist and parents report they’re super helpful.
- Buy a simpler high chair. If the high chair you use now has lots of tiny crooks and spaces that become food traps and make cleaning a protracted, industrial effort, then consider starting over with a model with fewer seams.
- Soak or hose it down. Some mess in the high chair zone is unavoidable. So, instead of slaving over it for a half hour or 40 minutes every other weekend with a washcloth and a hammer and chisel, why not let the water do the work for you? Spray or even soak it in the shower or, if the weather permits, take it out in the backyard for a good ol’ fashioned hose-down. It will clean faster and better with less overall effort.
- Looking for a little help? Molly Maid is here with professional home cleaning services. Even if we can’t keep infants from making messes of their high chairs, we can make your home spotless, according to your own custom cleaning plan.
Photo by Harry Grout on Unsplash