Saturday, July 28, 2012

Olympic Sports: The Parent Edition

Inspired by this NPR story that discussed "new" summer sports, I began to think about how some days parenting young children feels like an Olympic sport, only no gold medals are handed out, at least not tangible ones (smiles and laughs are as close as we get). So in honor of the 2012 games, I've thought of a few parent-tested, everyday Olympics feats:

1. The Vacuum Baby-Soothing Prance: vacuum floors of house while fussy infant is strapped to chest in baby carrier. A little taxing on the back, but a test of the arm muscles and endurance. My hubby was a gold medalist in this one. Risk: crying may ensue when vacuum noise stops.

2. One-Arm Dinner Eating while Breastfeeding: attempt to use a fork or spoon to eat dinner while holding breastfeeding baby in other arm (often complicated by nursing cover or gawking onlookers). Sorry guys, only ladies field this team. Difficulty increases substantially when using non-favored hand or eating soup. Personally, I ended up avoiding this sport if possible, by eating hand-held foods.

3. The Stroller Lunge: push 40+ pounds of toddler and stroller up a hill or over grass. This one is both a leg strength and endurance test. Extra points are added if it's above 90 degrees outside or toddler is particularly fussy.

4. Grocery Cart Obstacle Course: push ginormous racing car grocery cart (chosen to appease toddler) around store trying not to hit objects or people and get everything on grocery list. This sport is often complicated by antsy/bored toddler who is singing or making obnoxious noises. Extra points granted for participants who make it to parking lot with groceries intact and toddler not having escaped restraining harness.

5. The Baby Bounce: sit on large exercise ball with fussy infant strapped to chest in baby carrier; bounce continuously. This one is a test of endurance mostly, but also some leg and ab strength. Gold medalists will ensure that baby is sound asleep before stopping bouncing.

Well, this is my version of the parenting Olympics. Do you have a parenting feat to add?

Enjoy watching the 2012 Olympics! In the eyes of your child, you're an Olympic athlete everyday.

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