Continuing with the long run up to my big 3-0 celebrations (previous 30 things), I have complied a list of 30 things you will want to teach your toddler immediately.
I may not have won any patenting awards just yet, but listen, toddlers are grade A tormentors and if you want your life to be as easy as possible, then there a few pivotal things you must teach them…
- Charging. Sorry Jess, the Kindle needs charged – No it doesn’t but if I need to sit beside you, while you, rather aggressively, finger thumb videos on YouTube to watch ‘this one’ I will rip my own eyeballs out and suffocate myself.
- Dad/Daddy/Father/Guardian/Mummy number 2 – whatever it takes so that they shout on your partner and not you first thing in the morning or during the night. It lessens any guilt you may
notfeel for ignoring them when you want to sleep. Or just ignore them.
- Friends and families names – kids have this amazing fondness of picking people to do jobs for them, the more you teach them other names, the less likely they will pick you. For example if Jess needs a poo and she is around her auntie J or cousin C, well, guess who’s going to be selected to wipe her arse. Hint – not me, result!
- No thank you – It makes hearing ‘no’, repeatedly, every day, that little bit nicer on the ears and your sanity. Also, it works well with ‘little lies’ such as when you ask the 2 year old that is gasping at their crotch ‘do you need the potty?’ and they lie with ‘no thank you’ well, that just eases the pain, a tiny bit.
- Batteries – ‘Sorry Jess, it needs new batteries‘ If you hate a toy or fairy lights or even those
fucking annoyingtalking books, then you need to teach you child the importance of batteries and how they are not forever lasting. However, it may also be within your interest to NOT show the child where you keep fresh batteries. Otherwise you are likely to stand trial at toddler court, and no one has ever made it out there with their pride intact…or without changing the batteries in the most annoying toy possible.
- Cooking – ‘Your chicken nuggets are cooking!!‘ It doesn’t lessen the impatience associated moaning and clinging, but at least they say ‘it’s cooking’ and not CHICKENNNNNN NUUUUUUGGGGETS!! forty five times a minute. Learning ‘cooking’ is also valuable in blaming staff in restaurants so that child directs her impatient anger at them and not us.
- That’s Daddy’s – just so you can use:
- That’s mummy’s – and apply it to all and any food items that you do not want to share. Also teaching:
- That’s Jessica’s – while handing over a banana, will lure them off the scent of your Nutella assaulted slices of toast, because ‘that’s mummy’s‘.
- Quiet, shhhh – then make them think the neighbours, the hamster, the moon is sleeping so they must be very quiet.
- The Step – this is my form of punishment
not for much longer it would seem Jess has a rare time to herself while sitting there.As clever as Jess is, she hasn’t figured out, yet, that the step does not come with us where ever we go. I can threaten her with the step while driving and it will stop her kicking the bejesus out of the door. Dafty.
- Each stuffed toy’s name – there is nothing worse than playing guess the toy with a tired toddler and, even more tired, adult at the end of the day. Putting a toddler to bed and then having to guess which stuffed toy they NEED before sleeping is torture, for everyone. So be wise, teach the animal’s name and save yourself a whole lotta hair pulling in the evening, finding ‘Tiger’ is much easier than finding ‘I NEED it!!!’.
- Finished and/or done – ‘Oh, sorry Jess, the film finished’ while you left the room for two minutes. We will watch Zootropolis
for the 1338474 timetomorrow.
- Sore – so you don’t need to turn into bloody Rainman trying to figure out what, exactly it was, that they hurt when they fell from jumping on the sofa!
- I miss you – I’m telling you, there is nothing more heart melting than picking up your devil child and hearing them say ‘I missed you’ while they give you a massive two armed hug. Although, she does drop a ‘I missed you’ when we have been together all day….but I’m taking it anyway.
- Favourite – purely to play ‘mummy is the favourite‘ heh heh. Don’t worry, she’s got me at my own game and quickly changes to ‘daddy is favourite’ and watches my eyes narrow.
- Don’t lie – a recent addition. ‘Do you actually need the potty? You just used the potty, have just put a nappy on and climbed into bed, do you need the potty? Don’t lie’…she was lying, knew it!
- Poo and pee – so you can mentally prepare yourself
- I love you – it’s the sweetest thing, and dampens all the annoying toddler crap they do. But be careful, they will try to use this to thier advantage! Throwing a little ‘I love you’ after hurtling cereal across the room in a rage, is a complex mix of emotions for parents, and those pesky kids know it! Stay strong, do not hug that monster.
- Sorry – They must repent and learn the error in their ways. Again, like ‘love’, they will quickly cotton on that ‘sorry’ is a get out of jail free card. And again, you must be strong, saying sorry before they even have their arse on ‘the step’ will not cut it. Little smart ass.
- X button – teach a child to fish and they will feed themselves. Teach a child the x button on the PlayStation and they can watch their own bloody Disney while you finish your poo in peace!
- Auch men! (and an eye roll) – how else are we meant to teach the next generation of women that men are inferior and beneath us!! I kid, obviously, it’s just for some giggles. Don’t worry, I was raised to do the same and I’m still as oppressed by society as the next woman.
- Disney – arguably the best caliber of entertainment out there. If I’m going to watch something on repeat for the next 10 years, it had better be something I can enjoy, at least for a while. I do have my limits, Zootropolis everyday, 3 times a day is plenty. It’s still more than I could endure if it was of a lesser caliber film…dare I say..than of Over The Hedge.
- Bedtime – a non-negotiable – Paha ha ha ha ooh ha! Oh man, crack myself up, non-negotiable, by who? Me? Jess? Ha! She get’s back out of bed more often that I raid the snack cupboard! – time in which they must brush their teeth, collect whatever army of stuffed toys is it this evening and go to bed. To be fair, Jess is a big fan of going to bed, she’s also a big fan of faking potty calls and needing a ‘drink of water’ before bed.
- Pick it up – I know, I’m naive, but I’m trying my best to enforce and thus create a self sufficient ‘not leaving stuff at my arse‘ human. Rules include – ‘food doesn’t go on the floor, milk doesn’t go on the floor, put your rubbish in the bin, pick you jacket off the floor, pick your pants off the floor, pick your top off the floor’. I’d say its effective…20% of the time.
- Wow! That was great, would you like a hand to finish? – You need to know your audience for this one. Try going in all arms flapping to brush a toddlers teeth and you are likely to be met with a stubborn and stamping child either saying NO!! Or ‘I do it’. Same applies to feeding child anything (yet she will ask for her auntie and cousins to feed her….interesting). Let them think they are in control, let them bite the bejesus out yet another toothbrush this month, tell them ‘Wow! Great job! Just let me help with the top/bottom teeth‘..telling you, they are so busy wowing at their amazing teeth brushing skills and ‘sparkly’ teeth to notice you are in there frantically trying to scrub off peanut butter and Haribo.
- Treat – used purely as leverage. Won’t stop jumping on sofa – ‘are you wanting a treat after dinner?! I suggest you stop jumping then‘ Doing your head in – ‘you want a treat after dinner?! Then I suggest you stop going on about Zootropolis and pick another Disney‘. Suddenly acquired a distaste for corn on the cob even though they ate it last week – ‘you want a treat after dinner? Then I suggest you eat that dinner‘. Again, effective approximately 20% of the time, but at least you get peace while they are preoccupied
(with winning the stand off yet again)with their treat.
- Sharing – so you can take a bite of their tasty looking treat and not look like an greedy Gruffalo. Also, sharing is important with toys. If a child asks me to play with them then they better bloody well let me use the crayons and wrap taking them off me because ‘I do it!!’ – Naw! You ‘do it’ when I’m finished ‘doing it’.
- Snuggles – We are getting there with Jess, she is becoming a little more snugly in her old age. She knows and will initiate snuggling, yet she will get up 0.002 seconds later and then come back to ‘snuggle’ and then get up, then snuggle and get up and oohhhh man, just go play with your toys and leave me be! You anti-snuggle beast! Maybe we should change it to ‘sustained snuggling’ or does that sound creepy??
I hope these help someone, I feel for all you parents out there, I really do. It’s a tough game, we need to stick together if we are ever to make it until they fly the nest. Any more hints and tricks you can provide in the comments below would be greatly appreciated…we are heading into ‘toddler becomes self aware and answers back’ phase. Did you know that I am, in fact, the cheeky one and that I should go to the step and that I am wrong ‘NO!’ to tell Jessica to remove the tiny toy from her mouth, and the not so tiny pencils, from her mouth…
Please. Help me. Please.