My Mommy/Baby Sickness Battle Plan:
Washing Machine - Because some yucky things just need immediate laundering.
Blankets that are washing machine friendly
Stories/Good Books/Movies (For babies AND you)
Sick-food (Water, Soda Crackers, Apple Juice or Pedialite, Lemons, Ginger, Chicken Soup)
It's easier to deal with sick kids when you aren't sick yourself, but I've only ever escaped from this once in my three-year mom career.
First of all, I try to take care of myself - washing my hands, avoiding as much as possible becoming a walking Kleenex for a runny-nosed toddler, and getting as much sleep, and eating as healthily as I can. Usually when the kids are sick, I go into survival mode and load up on echinacea, Vitamin C, cut out all refined sugars and processed food (which are said by some to lower your immune-system) and go to bed early (pff... yeah right, but read "try" as my disclaimer). This year, it finally happened that I beat those little cold/flu germs back with this routine, and I was so happy that I may have gloated to my sniffly husband a little too much (Sorry dear!)
BUT... when I am sick too, which has been 9 times out of 10 so far, I add "minimalist parenting" to the routine. I park myself on the couch, and when I had an infant it was so easy compared to now!
(You one-baby mamas are ready to kill me right now. Under no circumstances does this mean that you aren't having a hard time, a bad day, and that it isn't difficult to care for an infant when you need to be taken care of yourself! It's hard. It's emotionally taxing. And I think it's only by the grace of God that I didn't just abandon my baby on a doorstep the first time it happened to me.)
Okay, so back to the Sick-Mama-Sick-Baby Battle Plan:
When Patrick and I were sick for the first time, he was not yet crawling (which, at the time, was fantastic) so I parked myself on the couch with diapers, wipes, a puke bucket, a glass of water, saltines, a good book, Patrick's bassinet, toys and books for him, and we just stayed there most of the day.
With older kids, I camp out on one floor of the house, leaving the couch only when necessary. I do a major baby-proof, making sure that absolutely nothing I don't want them to have is in sight or reach, and I put out snacks, their sippy cups, and do a toy-rotate so that they have the toys they haven't played with in awhile and are less likely to get bored. We also over-indulge in Treehouse and the Disney channel, both of which act like radiation on the brain after too long, but it's survival, not every-day practice, so I give myself a little break.
I had a thought yesterday while I was sitting with Carter, who insisted on snuggling for most of the day in his pukey-feverish state. Sometimes, between nose-wiping and other yucky things, it's nice that my boys want to just sit and cuddle - because it's getting to be a rarity now that they're both active toddlers. We made the best of the sick-day and had some pretty relaxing mom and baby time.
What do you do when you and/or your children are sick? Suggestions are welcome!