Product Placement

There are mornings, usually the ones where nobody has to be anywhere until noon, when Zoe is raring to go at 6:30.

Then there are mornings, usually the ones where I have an 8:30 meeting that I really can’t be late for, when Zoe sleeps late and then moves through her morning routine with the speed of a glacier.

This morning was shaping up to be that second kind.  Zoe woke up around eight; Mike had to leave at 9:15; and the sky was overcast enough to make me want to drive Zoe to daycare instead of walking as I had originally planned.

Miraculously, Zoe and I were out the door by 8:45.

What’s my secret, you ask?  Simple: my secret is product placement.

To convince Zoe not only that she wants to get dressed before breakfast, but also that she wants to wear whatever it is I’m offering, I select her Yo Gabba Gabba concert tee.  It cost (Grandma Marilyn) $25, but that kind of speed and acquiescence  is worth every penny.  (Pro Tip: Her $5 Captain America t-shirt works pretty well, too.)

The shirt in question.

To convince Zoe that she wants to eat breakfast instead of watching Netflix, I offer her Dora the Explorer cereal.  This is straight up product placement: it’s not just Dora on a box of Cheerios, it’s a General Mills cereal that did not exist before Dora came along to put her face on the box.  (Bonus: it’s not terribly unhealthy and it tastes pretty good.)

If you are above the use of children’s television characters to dress and feed your child, I salute you.  If you are looking for ways to speed up your weekday mornings, I recommend product placement.

How do you bend a toddler’s will to your own?  Or, how do you distract her long enough to slip on her jacket and shoes?



Filed under Your Moment of Zoe

11 responses to “Product Placement

  1. Pamela Riebe

    Maggie, I soooo know what yotu mean!!! I have to pull that with BOTH kids. It works more with Joseph than Kathryn, but it still works!!! Today was that kind of day for me as well! Joseph had to be in Grove City to catch the bus at 6:30am for school and he did not want to get up this morning. I had to tell him if he got out of bed and took his meds right away, he could bring an action figure with to the bus stop. If he could get dressed and to the van fast, he could take a cookie with to eat after I pick him up(which is around lunch time). So, he got to bring SuperMan with to the bus stop and there is a yummy chocolate chip cookie in the van waiting for him to get done with school! You aren’t the only momma who has to do it!!


    • Wow! If we had to catch the bus at 6:30 we would be in trouble! You’re doing great, Pamela. And how smart to put the cookie in the van before you forget!


  2. We do a lot of races in the morning. I get Jason dressed, while Laura is dressing herself. First one done wins the race. On the days that I win, Laura generally declares that there was no race. Also, the kids’ daycare provides breakfast, which saves some time in the push to get out the door by 8:00 AM.


    • I like that, Beth! Zoe usually ate breakfast at day care when she was in the baby room, which was nice. They do serve a snack at some point in the morning, so if Zoe just refuses to eat breakfast at least I know she’ll have the chance to eat something before lunch.


  3. SMART! Very smart.


  4. Sue

    Dora cereal looks just like King Vitamin cereal.


    • Well, you may be onto something there. I would be surprised if they actually went to the trouble of inventing an entirely new product just for Dora.


  5. purpleowltree1234

    When my daughter was a toddler, we lived right next door to a park with a playground. So to get her moving I’d tell her she could go on the slide after she got dressed and ate breakfast. She would get off the slide okay if I cheered her and told her okay, one more slide down, then immediately after she reached the bottom, told her we’re getting a treat for her while we’re out. Usually a yoghurt drink. 🙂 Worked well.


    • Ha! That is an elaborate but effective system. Not product placement, but playground placement (couldn’t resist). My new thing is saying, “Okay, five more seconds, and then when I count to five, it’s time to [do whatever]”. It will probably wear off in a week or two, but right now Zoe loves it. Mysterious but nice.


  6. purpleowltree1234

    Yes, I think every age does well with a warning before a change. 😉 With kids, it’s Essential!


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