Today my husband came home for lunch and asked me “What’s that on your arm?” I casually replied that it was marmite, not poo, and we quickly proceeded to talk about grown up things (light bulbs and timer lamps to be precise because married life is that sexy).
Marmite up your arms and banana in your hair are just a couple of signs that you live with a toddler so here is ten more:
1. Making home look like it’s been invaded by an entire squad of nursery kids
Whilst we were playing with his toy monkey and reading (more fun than it sounds surprisingly enough) in Dexters room earlier, my 19 month old stopped in his tracks and asked for a banana. So I happily obliged and left the room for an entire minute to go and cut up a banana but in my return I found that in a short amount of time his clothes were suddenly out of the drawers and all over the floor, his crisps were thrown across the floor and his juice had been chucked into the hallway (not to mention the mess that was already made this morning with his toys and books). Books were all over the hallway and our living room could be mistaken for a children’s library too – it’s inevitable yet it gets tidied every single day. You will ALWAYS have something to do with a toddler around.
2. Baby safety at home
Gone are the days where you can just relax and grab a drink without any hassle. Now there are locks on all of the cupboards and guards on the doors in each room! This happens because toddlers decide that it’s really fun to pull plates out of the kitchen cupboards and when you actually let them pull more harmless things out ONE TIME, they will definitely choose that particular time to trap their fingers. So ugly locks are bought which is really annoying at 3 in the morning if you need a drink but it’s easier than a hobbit raiding your kitchen and then dealing with anger issues when you try to intervene. If you go to the kitchen, they’ll go too. Oh and if you need the toilet, be prepared and know that five minutes later you’ll have your kid on your knee whilst reading The Gruffalo for the thousandth time… whilst pooing. You, not them.
3. Cbeebies or children’s movies
Dexter doesn’t really watch much television anymore since he’s found his new love of books but I still find myself sticking kids tv on and when I sing along to “Everything’s Rosie” I am so enthusiastic that I spin round to sing to Dexter… and then remember he went down for a nap 45 minutes ago. I’ve been watching it for no reason.
4. Secret drinks and snacks
I’m not talking about anything special like champagne and cupcakes. I mean I physically sneak into the kitchen, searching each corner with a pocket mirror and cartwheeling to the fridge to have a secret sip of Pepsi before using the same tactics to get back to my normal position as “mum” knowing that I have just accomplished my secret mission without detection.
5. The dishes constantly need doing
Last night’s dishes are usually there because we aren’t that organised most nights. Then there’s breakfast, snacks, lunch, cups, dinner, pudding – and that’s just for the toddler and not including anything that I may use during the day. The only time I tend to have time to do them is when Dexter eats his dinner but I swear he has some kind of attachment issue with me when I have to actually go and do something productive in the household. The tears, the screams, the “I’m going to knock this shitting dinner all over this damn floor for you to clean up and cry over if you don’t come back and keep me company” attitude that toddlers seem to have as soon as you need to do something. So everything waits until he’s in bed and then I realise that I am in fact being emotionally controlled by a 19 month old.
6. Contents of your bag
When I met up with friends recently, I pulled out my purse to pay for drinks and out flew a toy dinosaur, a giraffe teether, an unopened toothbrush and a dummy (it was like that “I went to the shop and bought” game where you have to remember several random objects in the right order). I didn’t know whether to be mortified that the barman looked amused or that I was impressed I was so prepared last time I had used that handbag.
7. Wanting to shout at strangers for staring at you in “that way”
I’m not sure if they’re trying to figure out if the zombie apocalypse has started or if they’re sympathising with the pale and greasy mop that’s wandering around town.
8. Friends come round to visit but there’s no time to properly catch up
You want dinner here? Absolutely but you’re going to have to keep the kid company whilst I (or husband) play host(ess). Before you know it we’ve all eaten and we are waving goodbye to the friend who came round and did nothing but watch Toy Story with a toddler. We are such good friends.
9. You have a stain on your clothes pretty much every day
I just checked after writing that and found 2 (not including the marmite on my arm that I must wash off).
10. You smile every single day
I don’t remember if I used to smile every day but now I’m guaranteed to and not just because Judge Rinder has become my only daily dose of ‘adult’.