A few weekends ago, I did something I hadn’t done in years. I put on the Salsa Music channel on our television (an all music channel) and turned up the volume. I got up and started twirling around the living room. Seconds later, the pitter-patter of four little feet came running in to see what was going on. And then we danced and danced and danced. The light from one candle mixed with the streaming white Christmas lights that hung on one of our decorative trees lighting the room. It felt like a disco!

We must have gone through four songs. I danced with one child at a time, including the 11 month old, Karina. It had been so long since I just put music on to dance like that. And as I danced, I could see those innocent big smiles running and dancing, copying mommy’s moves, and tickled to see mommy having so much fun. I loved the moment and try to have many more of those often in here.

I’ve learned that when you have toddlers, sometimes you just have to tap into your inner kid. I mean, really just go back to the time when you were a kid and act the way you did back then.

Sometimes when I play with Kerissa and her dolls, I remember the sweet times I played with my younger sister. We both had lots of Barbie dolls, Cabbage Patch dolls, and Rainbow Bright. We accessorized and glamorized ourselves and our dolls. It was so much fun. Now, my two year old loves mommy’s lipgloss and dressing up her babies. And although I’m always sure to share with her the true meaning of beauty– that she’s naturally beautiful without the glitz and glam of fashion– still, we have a ball getting dolled up and playing pretend.

With my son, I never mind getting on the floor going on an adventure with his toys Buzz Lightyear, Ironman, or Spiderman. My son loves action heroes so you can bet you hear “To Infinity and Beyond” in our house a few times a week. It’s the best ever!

When I was a child, my brother, sister and I had a lot of fun in our house. Although we lived in a very small house and my brother, sister and I shared a room for ten years, we still made the most of it and had a ball with each other. We danced, played fun games in the house and outside. But there is one thing I remember making it all so much more fun–and that’s seeing my mom get on the floor and act silly right along with us. She was actively involved in our fun. She danced with us, sang with us. When I tell you my parents are very animated, trust me, they still are to this day. My mom was probably as tired and exhausted as I feel most days, but she still made sure to have fun with us.

As I was reflecting on how much fun I used to have as a little girl, I realized how important it is to me to make sure I have that much fun with my own children. I was reminded that toddlers don’t really understand when mommy is tired, stressed, and not really in the mood for dancing. Sometimes, it’s just a good idea to stop, shake ourselves out of the funk and have fun. Take some time out of your day to be a child again. Play with the baby dolls with your children. Jump rope with them. Bounce around on the trampoline. Toddlers love to be entertained, especially by their moms. It’s something about mommy getting on the floor and engaging with them. It makes playtime much more fun and exciting!