Thursday, November 15, 2007

I will survive.

First off, my apologies for being such a poor poster this week. The hubby was out of town for two nights, and parenting the bub solo, even for a couple of days, can be exhausting. In addition, I'm currently facing a self-imposed but still panic-inducing dissertation deadline. Writing my third chapter has almost killed me, but fortunately my draft is now only a few tweaks away from being on my advisor's plate instead of my own. Once this third chapter is finally "done" (or done enough to be read by someone besides me), I will be past the halfway point (there are five chapters total). NTB. I am writing and publishing the following mantra because I've read enough self-help books, watched enough Oprah episodes, and taken enough writing workshops to know that when one writes something down, it is more likely to happen: I will graduate in 2008. NTB. You're all invited to the party.

For now though, I'll take a break from exploring female friendship and democracy in nineteenth-century America to write from the toddler's perspective. Here's the bub's official and updated guide for toddlers wishing to drive their parents crazy. Read it aloud to the toddlers in your life at your own risk.

1. Think outside the gym. If your mom takes you to gymnastics class, don't be satisfied with a gym full of kids and equipment. Don't even be satisfied with exiting the gym to visit the drinking fountain. See what else your local park district building has to offer. Hover in the doorway of a janitor's closet where bottles of bleach and other dangerous solutions are easily accessible. Head into the bathroom--men's or women's, your mom will be forced to follow you into either--and demand "wash, wash." Better yet, go to the dirty fountain in the lobby. Lean over it and say, "Fish. Fish." For good measure, stick your hands into the murky water that gives off a smell that makes your mom want to check your diaper.

2. Recognize that small appliances can be toys. Does your mom have a small vacuum that she uses for quick jobs? Does she ever mistakenly leave said vacuum out after sweeping up a pile of crushed goldfish crackers? Here's what to do. Take the vacuum and drag it around. Then, develop an up-and-down motion with it. You'll find that as you bring the vacuum down with a little force, all the crumbs and such inside of it will start to litter your floor. Better yet? Do this the day after the cleaning lady has visited. Even moms whose cleaning standards are fairly low (like the bub's) can really get frustrated with that kind of debris.

3. Be a problem-solver. Do you enjoy playing with your mom's makeup and hair products? Does the idea of a pump full of lotion seem like heaven? One thing you can do is pull out the bottom drawer of your mom's dresser. Then, climb on top of her t-shirts and voila, you can access all of her perfume, makeup, hairspray, and that awesome lotion pump! When you get bored with that, head into the bathroom. Find a Dove soap multi-pack. Proceed to open each box of soap. Your mom will enjoy finding unwrapped bars of soap around the house.

4. Don't let the battle of the chair end.
Keep pushing the chair around when you need to investigate a "no touch" item in the kitchen. So what if the chair leaves scrapes on the hardwood.

5. Turn up the heat. Actually, turn it off. You heard me. The next time you're in the laundry room with your mom (if your laundry room is a hole in the basement that also houses your furnace), explore what you can while she's transferring clothes from the washer to the dryer. While she's occupied, flip the little light switch on the side of the heater. Your mom won't realize you've turned off the heat (again) until she starts shivering while watching The Biggest Loser.

If you really want to drive your mom or dad crazy, do all of these things in one 24 hour period when he/she is already tired and a bit stressed out. When the bub and I say his prayers at night, I say, "Thank you God for my bubby and all his good qualities. He's curious, lively, persistent, problem-solving. . . " The list goes on, NTB, but you get the point.

3 comments:

LAP said...

You forgot to mention to throw a picture frame at your mom, piercing her skin and drawing blood, if she is on the phone and you want her to get off. (Your scream freaked me out a little bit yesterday...glad you called back to report everyone was alive.)

E... said...

Additional advice from the toddler at Small World:

Drive your dump truck around the downstairs at top speeds, running into every possible piece of furniture. Be especially loud on the vinyl floor when your sister is sleeping in her swing. Better yet, wait until Mommy is nursing your sister, and then pin the dog up against all the walls. If Mommy puts the dump truck in the garage, use your fire truck instead. Repeat, until all vehicles are filling the space where Daddy's car is supposed to go.

M said...

Your extremely trying days made for quite enjoyable reading,NTB.

 
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