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Hug the Mess, Diaper Duty!

Diaper duty! It’s a messy situation but somebody’s got to do it. We know it’s not the most enjoyable aspect of parenting, but it’s a necessary one, so why not make the most of it?

The secret to changing diapers quickly and neatly is to have all your supplies on hand. Then consider it a great time to bond with baby!

As a mom of 12, and grandma of 11, Varda Meyers Epstein, a parenting expert and blogger at Kars4Kids, still loves diaper duty. “For one thing, it makes the baby feel so good. They get to wiggle around and get air on those places after being in a diaper. For another thing their little legs and tushies are so cute. My son is always telling my granddaughter, 'Just wait until Grandma sees those pulkes (Yiddish for thighs). She’s gonna eat ‘em up.'

“Some of them are ticklish and it’s fun to nibble them and watch them laugh,” she says, explaining why she’s always a willing volunteer.

Make diaper changes fun for baby, parents say. Hang something interesting to view at least 12 inches above the changing table: a mobile, photo or poster that you can talk about with baby. Count the ducks in the picture or sing along to the mobile’s music. It’s also a great time to introduce the ABC’s and 1,2,3s.

Keep some toys around just for diaper changing and switch them frequently to keep baby occupied while you’re doing your work.

Brittany Arnold, inventor of Catchie Concepts, found a great way to keep her little ones occupied during diaper time. “I have three kiddos and each diaper time we would grab lotion and rub their feet and arms. They loved it,” she says. “It also helped stop those wiggly legs, allowing us to put on a diaper without a struggle.”

For this special time together, get creative. Many parents make up a song that’s only sung at changing time, or put their own spin on a classic.

“My husband made up an enthusiastic song that he'd sing staccato: 'Let's change your diaper -- whee! -- and everything will be o-kay. We'll get you a dry one, and it will be just fiiiine,'" says Tracy Cutchlow, of ZeroToFive.net. “Our baby would try to join in with the cutest little voice. Or she'd be crying and he'd say, ‘I know I always feel better with a clean diaper.’ He always made me laugh.”

Another creative dad, Sean Yokomizo of Daddingly is honest: “Changing diapers was the thing I dreaded most about the prospect of having kids. I mean, cleaning someone else’s poop? Imagine my surprise when I realized that I enjoyed diaper changing time as much as I enjoyed feeding or bath time. It’s one of those few, quiet moments when you’re together with your child and get to know her personality and she gets to know yours. It was a time when we could talk - or at least make noises to each other and play.”

He’d sing a song to the tune of Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer” with the words: “She’s a poopy baby, drives her daddy crazy with all the poopies in her pa-a-a-ants." And he even wrote a Shakespearean sonnet about diaper changing called “Poopy Pentameter.”

“The thing I liked most about diaper changing time was what I learned about myself as a new father,” says Yokomizo. “You know you’re in love when the things that you once used to dread are the things you enjoy the most."

 Image : Getty

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