Toddlers don’t excite me. Yes, I know they’re very cute and there’s nothing so lovely as those little arms sneaking around your neck for a snuggle. They’re highly entertaining, I’ll grant you that. They’re learning a heap and changing every day. But they don’t excite me.
Mostly I think because they aren’t as reliable as a baby…you know, if you put a baby down 10 minutes later they’re generally where you left them. Once they start crawling it’s a whole different matter and toddling – forget it: the (19 month old) Butterfly has found his way out the gate (*someone* but never *me* left it open) three times in the last month or two – AND across the road. It’s not a mad-busy road but we do get boy-racers fairly often. And, it’s a road.
Of course, him walking across the road with the nine-year-old Hare is fine. Walking across the road with Craig or I is fine, but alone…
Likewise his competent use of a hammer. Call it genetics or call it environment or call it the environment acting on genetics – whatever, Craig is an ex-builder and his family is riddled with engineers and mechanics and builders and other useful people. There is a lot of creative tools around our house and most of Craig’s spare time is spent renovating our house. The Hare and the Owl are always building boats or catapaults or huts or cars of some sort. The Hare uses the battery-drill as well as an adult. The older boys are both a dab hand with saws and screw-drivers. They know not to ask me stuff about building or engineering because their knowledge outstripped mine long ago. (I think I was in my late 20s when I realised there were flat-head and phillips screwdrivers in the world, and they did different jobs! Grief, who knew!) But generally the older boys know what is acceptable to fix with screws or hit with a hammer. Not Mr Butterfly.
In the last week we have had, with a full-sized adult hammer: hammering tables, hammering chairs, hammering the sofa, attempting to hammer Mummy and my favourite…hammering the windows. There is something about hearing a hammer hitting windows which turns me into an Olympic grade sprinter. Call it motivation.
Hammering in itself is not a bad thing. It’s kept plenty of people employed all around the world. Hammer-ers tend to make useful things. Hammering things which aren’t intended for hammering is a whole different matter.
Similiarly, jumping itself is not a bad thing. Kids take it up as an occupation fairly early in life. Trampolines provide hours of fun and we have been known to allow small children to jump on certain beds and somewhat larger children to knee-jump on those same beds. Jumping on Mummy’s tummy at 2.34am is not, however, ideal. Especially when Mummy should have been dreaming of Colin Firth as Mr Darcy leaving that pond in a white shirt. 🙂 hmmmmmmmmm
(Sorry distracted moment there…)
Drinking is also good. Tends to keep people alive, so I assume there must be something in it. Finding a toddler attempting to drink a piping hot cup of coffee that he’s pushed chairs around in order to climb up next to the table on which it was resting well out of his way – again…motivation.
So I think that’s the biggest problem I have with toddlers, and why they don’t excite me. It’s not that they do bad things – it’s just they do the right thing in the wrong place. Often. And when it’s my toddler, it’s my job to get off my bum and gently point the child and hammer in the direction of a slab of wood. Every time. Or hold said child and whisper inane things like, “it’s byes time, Darling. Jumping all gone now,” despite screams. Or quickly provide said child with a flight across the room (in my arms, OK) and an alternative drink before he scalds himself.
So calling all you Mums and Moms and Dads out there – what stories about correct behaviour in the wrong place can you tell?
And if you want to read a classic, especially if you have sons, check out blog buddy faemoms post here.
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