Nora is at an age where she likes to "help" with everything. I have the word help in quotation marks because even though she thinks she's helping, it's really not much help, and in fact, can be quite the opposite :). She wants to help dress herself which ends up taking half an hour, she wants to help brush her teeth and then we have toothpaste all over the counter, she wants to help me make green smoothies in the morning by adding in the peeled banana and then pushing the 'smoothie' button on my full Blendtec when I'm not looking and the lid is not on. She likes to 'help' me grocery shop by adding random things in the store to my cart. Nora likes to help us fold laundry, which makes the kids particularly frustrated because they many times are the ones to fold the laundry and Nora will take clothing items from their already folded piles, unfold what they've done and try and fold it back up and put it on their stack of clothes which sometimes makes their entire pile fall over. But, that being said, Nora is learning and growing and we're doing our best to teach her the correct way to do things in a patient and loving way, which is easier said than done :). Here is Nora helping dad cook. This is one of her absolute favorite things to do and whenever I'm in the kitchen she walks up to where I'm standing, lifts her arms up high and says, "Up-a-me", which I know to mean, pick me up, and when I do, she always likes to sit on the counter or on my hip and help me with whatever I'm cooking.
When we were visiting Maren and Brian last week, I loved that Maren had a snack shelf for the kids that they could reach. I decided to make one when we got home. I had kept a bunch of my cashew containers that I got from Costco (they are pictured here with red lids) so I put snacks in them that I know my kids like and that I'm fine with them eating, and put them all on one shelf(they were in several spots before) in our pantry that even Nora can reach. The kids generally go here after school if I didn't make muffins or protein balls/bars already, and I'll also have out some fruit and veggies, usually apple slices and carrots with ranch. In these containers I have air popped popcorn I made that day, peanuts, cashews, raisins, granola, and dried apple slices. I like that Nora comes to the shelf whenever she's hungry and helps herself; this time she really is being helpful, unless she makes a mess with it, but her messes are fewer than what they used to be.