Parents of toddlers can use all the help they can get. Even with a co-parent and a babysitter around, toddlers still find ways to get into trouble. After all, they don’t call it the terrible two’s for nothing! They’re seeking mischief 24/7 and it’s hard to keep up.
Luckily, a few smart home devices can make keeping these adorable troublemakers out of trouble a little easier.
You can’t be by your toddler’s side every minute. Sometimes, you’ll need to tend to something in the kitchen while your child plays in the living room. A wifi-enabled camera lets you watch your child from your phone, wherever you are. Just log onto the live stream and watch your child from the other room while you cook or work on your computer. Some smart cameras also let you speak through them. Just talk into your phone’s compatible app and your voice will come out of the camera. This way, you can tell your toddler to put down the candlestick or take that toy out of his mouth. You can even sing him to sleep from another room.
Having a few extra set of hands as a toddler parent sure would be helpful. If that isn’t an option, the Amazon Echo (aka Alexa) can help. When you want to turn off the cartoons your child is watching to encourage him or her to get in bed, but your hands are busy washing dishes, just ask Alexa to do it. Alexa can even read a bedtime story to your kids, or play their favorite music on command. With impatient toddlers, there is no time to get to your computer and scroll through iTunes to play the music they want. By that time, they could already be getting into mischief. Alexa can also set regular reminders for you, like when it’s snacktime or naptime.
As soon as your toddler can stand up, they can probably reach a doorknob. With enough time, a toddler can learn how to open a lock if it’s built into a handle. Furthermore, you may simply forget to lock a door. This can give toddlers access to pantries full of food they’re not supposed to eat, sharp tools or toxic paint. Installing smart locks can solve this issue. There are several types on the market, but some require you to put a small cover over your pre-existing lock. Your phone will then act like a fob, and when it’s near the smart lock, it will engage with it, locking or unlocking it. Only those with smart phones connected to the smart lock can open it, so it’s toddler proof. If you have a home automated system, you can also schedule your locks for certain times of the day. Smart locks are also helpful for letting babysitters in. If you’re busy in your den when the babysitter arrives, you can simply let them in by pushing a button on your cell phone.
Naptime is one of the only times toddler parents get a little break. Using your home automated system, you can schedule the lights in your toddler’s room to dim at naptime to encourage him or her to get sleepy. Certain smart bulb systems let you customize the colors of your bulbs, too. And a colorful light show is certainly one way to entice a toddler away from his toys and into naptime.
It’s hard to imagine how anyone raised a kid before these devices existed. If you can’t be by your child’s side at every moment, or can’t watch them while you’re busy, these devices are the next best thing to a babysitter.