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3 small kids, how do you do it??

I'm just freaking out. We have a soon to be 4 year old, a one year old, and a surprise baby due in September. As it is, I can't keep up with the laundry, dishes, etc. I'm so stressed out in a dirty house, so I find myself constantly taking care of the kids or cleaning up after them. I hardly have time for myself, even with my husband's help. How am I going to take care of a newborn, 1 year old and 4 yr. old? I'm so scared and stressed out! I love my kids but I just can't wait until they're old enough to do things for themselves so I can have a break. Any advice?

Answer Question

Asked by pixiestix21 at 6:53 AM on Jun. 14, 2011 in General Parenting

Level 11 (585 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • Your 4 yo is old enough to start picking up after themselves...make it fun sing a song with them while they pick up...I taught my 5yo how to wash included at 4 so i don't have to worry about batheing her anymore. She can also get her own drinks and snacks....she loves to make peanut butter and has been a big help teaching her to do things on her own. GL!

    Answer by happymama02 at 7:01 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • I raised 4 small children at one time. My first 2 sons were only 18 months apart, the 3rd son is about 2 years apart from the 2nd one, and my 4th and last child, my only daughter, is about 3 years apart from her youngest brother. I'm 56 years old and my own daughter-in-law who has 2 small children often asks me the same thing. She also can't keep up with the house and gets very frustrated and stressed out at times. I had an enormous playpen where my 1st two occupied themselves and each other while I took care of other things. When I had my 3rd son I converted an extra room into a playroom and gated them in to play. I did this also when my daughter was able to join them. The room wasn't very large, but they loved it. I also had 2 very close friends who each had 2 children. Their husbands worked 2nd shift. Mine was very understanding and we hung out almost every day together. I didn't drive. (cont'd)

    Answer by rosiemendo at 7:07 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • One had an old car that had a whole in the floor which we covered with a car mat. We would take turns at each other's houses, shopping together, cleaning together, and cooking together. Our kids took baths together. We had each other for company and we helped each other out with our different strengths as parents. Our kids grew up happy and healthy. At the time, I only had 2 children. It became more difficult when I had 2 more. Today's children need to be encouraged to play by themselves or with other children. Too many parents think they have to constantly entertain their children. Here are some tips to consider. When your children nap, do as much as you can. If you have an extra room, turn it into a safe playroom and gate it! Get the little ones involved in cleaning and picking up after themselves. If you have a close friend nearby, pool your resources. Stop stressing yourself out; (cont'd again)

    Answer by rosiemendo at 7:19 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • Accept the things you cannot change and change the things you can. Be creative and look forward to your newest addition. After all, not only are you a mother, but you are a woman. And, as women, we can tackle anything! (Sorry for going on and on, but I do hope I can help a little.) Good luck!

    Answer by rosiemendo at 7:21 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • Take a deep breath and relax. It can be hard at times even with you husbands help. I know for me I needed to take a step back and not stress if the house wasn't spotless or if all the laundry wasn't done. As far as picking up toys and that sort of thing get your older one involved. I know I had a 4 year old, a 2 year old and a new born and it was hard at first. I was lucky to have some friends that didn't work and I would spend time with them or with my brother because he was still at home. My DD was born in November so to get out of the house I would take the kids to mall..people would look at me like I had six heads because I was at the mall with 3 small children although I didn't care. Once the oldest started school it got easier. Maybe you could look into putting the oldest in preschool to give you a little break.

    Good Luck and don't stress to much it will get better!

    Answer by cornflakegirl3 at 7:35 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • Breath and pace yourself

    Answer by rinamomof2 at 8:16 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • All my kids are right at 2 years apart, so it was a little different. 2 year olds LOVE to get into things, and that can be absolute HAVOC while you're trying to nurse, or getting baby down for a nap. Add a 4 year old to the mix that loves to tease said 2 year old.... I am not quite sure how I survived, especially with 4. lol

    Answer by lovingmy4babies at 9:53 AM on Jun. 14, 2011

  • I am not perfect. Not even close. And mine were almost-2 and 3 1/2 when my 3rd was born.

    It was hard. I was lucky the 2 older children played with each other. I am not supermom. I am not that organised. I am not a superior housekeeper, nor do I have endless energy. My back hurts. I get impatient and I can't do 96 things while nursing a 22 pound 4 month old. I tried many of these things, but I can tell you the truth.

    We ate simple meals. The house was messy. I talked to the kids a lot when I was nursing. We watched more TV than I wanted. When she was little, I took her in a stroller/car seat to the park and they played- it would have been much easier if we had a swing set in the back like we do now, because of naps and stuff. Nap time was quality time with little ones time, cleaning time...

    I won't lie- it was hard for me and I'm just now recovering, now that she's 2 and finally listening. But they're great kids, worth it!

    Answer by Tracys2 at 3:39 PM on Jun. 14, 2011

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