25 Ways You Know You’re a Parent to a Toddler


two kids sisters play together indoors

1. Someone steps on your breast by mistake.

2. Your slipper is taken off and shoved into your face while you (continue to) have breakfast.

3. There is an email sitting in your inbox titled Head Lice.

4. Things like “I wish I could have a trunk like an elephant” are being said and they don’t seem all that strange.

5. Things like: “you generally shouldn’t put things in your butt. It’s a rule” are also being said.

6. There is something called an Exersaucer in the middle of your living room.

7. There’s an underwear-less 3 year old boy face down in the Exersaucer. He is yelling “help, I’m stuck on a cliff’” while in the background there is relentless hysterical infant crying.

8. Someone is conversing with you while you are sleeping.

9. Someone is conversing with you while you brush your teeth.

10. Someone is conversing with you while you are peeing and expects you to play hide and seek at the same time.

11. You’re in bed with your eyes closed and fought too hard for this that you’re not opening your eyes, even if it means letting someone walk on your rib cage, step on your head, pluck your hair out, block your airways and repeatedly respond to the question “mommy, did it tick yet?”

12. You never get to drink a cup of tea/coffee while it’s still warm.

13. You never get to finish that cup of tea/coffee, ever.

14. There’s a random high heeled shoe, an egg beater a Viking’s helmet, and a swim board on your bathroom floor.

15. You feel strangely nostalgic as you notice the high heeled shoe.

16. You consider a trip to IKEA with your husband to replace a mattress a date.

17. You wear your high heels for the first time in months and a new totally rocking faux fur vest. There’s a big Charlie Brown sticker dangling from the faux fur you’re wearing for the very first time.

18. You wake up at 7:20am. You lucky dawg!

19. You can’t name a song by Florence and the Machine or One Direction but the Excesaucer tunes are looping in your head.

20. Losing a favorite teddy is your worst nightmare. I apologize, bad choice of words. Losing a favorite teddy is a nuclear holocaust.

21. You get excited when you see a garbage truck.

22. You have to stop yourself from saying fighted, eated and breaked.

23. There are no more mid-day sweet tooth indulgences. If it’s a real emergency and you just NEED to eat your chocolate cake right now before something really bad happens, you’ll hide like the criminal that you are, so no child knows you eated it.

24. This is what a phone conversation with a friend sounds like:
Hey friend, (Yes, 3 Year Old, I’m boiling the water for your hot chocolate. Warm chocolate, sorry). Yes, friend, sorry, I’m with you now, go ahead. (Yes, 3 Year Old, I’m still boiling the water for your warm chocolate. 3 Year Old, 3 Year Old, don’t do this, you’re gonna fall!) Sorry, friend. (Oh, wow, awesome!) Sorry, yes, talk to me, I’m listening, I can talk and listen at the same time.

25. You’re at home, headed toward the kitchen. You step on something and it either starts playing music, lights up or says caterpillar power! You pick it up and put it back in its place even though you’re fully aware you’ll be tripping on it again in 10 minutes.


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  1. 1

    Anne Kimball says

    Omg, this was hilarious.
    Or how about when you’re in the middle of making dinner and helping someone plot x on a graph and spelling catastrophe for someone else, and a child whines “where is my bacpack” and you answer “in the bathtub”, and nothing at all seems strange….

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    • 4

      Katia says

      Absolutely everywhere, including your hand bag which you open at work and in addition to crumbs you also find a piece of speedo like toddler underwear with an Elmo. True story.

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    • 7

      Ronnie says

      I’ve passed-on the exersaucer, but still have the crumbs…
      My 2 year old likes to play with the Swiffer-Vac, and somehow, I don’t have a problem with that! Just wished she would figure out how to do the corners and under the couch!

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      • 8

        Scarlet says

        I showed my daughter once how to use the Swiffer and she mopped the entire house while I drank my lukewarm coffee. Yesterday our dog tracked in mud and my daughter had cleaned it up with the Swiffer before I got out of the shower. Best. invention. ever!

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        • 11

          Ronnie says

          Hehehe… I’ve been thinking about getting one, but as is I have too much $hit to take care of (quite literally!). With the 3 kids, the cat and the fish! I guess maybe when the 2 year old is done potty training, it might be a better time!

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  2. 12

    teri says

    Yup there’s an excersaucer here too but there’s a 2 year old girl stuck in it hysterically screaming “out!” While my 8 year old takes video instead of actually getting her out. She’s all “mom how many views will we get on youtube?”

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    • 14

      Amy says

      Oh. my. gawd.

      I just had a vision of my girls (big sis 6 years; baby sis 6 weeks) doing this in two years’ time. My 6-year-old loves (and has always loved) operating cameras and video recording devices.

      Also, this article is hilarious. I’m totally the criminal who eated the chocolate cake.

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  3. 15

    Jenny Isenman AKA Jenny From the Blog at The Suburban Jungle says

    Oh, the good ol days!!! Trust me it gets better! Now, I have conversations when I pee, when I’m on the phone, when I sleep, kids scream random things, get stuck places, walk on my ribcage, trip over air… wait, nothing’s really changes, shit, never mind!

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  4. 17

    Mama Melch says

    I DREAM of waking up at 7:20! I’m so happy everyone else has had to utter ridiculous phrases like “please stop licking things” and “generally, the butt is exit only.” Hilarious post!

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    • 19

      Scarlet says

      Reminds me of video on the local news about a traveling intestines/colon exhibit (REALLY slow news day) and at one end of the gigantic colon (large enough for a kid to crawl through) was a sign that read “Exit Only”. My husband and I were giggling like 12-year-olds when suddenly the camera zoomed in to block the “Exit Only” sign out of the shot. We erupted in uncontrollable laughter.

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    • 26

      Katia says

      Yes, I am totally with you. I bet if they step on our rib cage, head or breast in the middle of the night and wake us up, we’ll be able to sing all of them without ever hesitating.

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    • 27

      lisa says

      You mean the Fisher Price dog that randomly starts talking at 2:30 am from the toy box at the foot of your bed? It took 5 bleary minutes for me to figure out how to turn it off.

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    • 28

      Anne says

      You mean the “Creepy Puppy” that on the way home from the store in the back of my Tucson with nothing touching it suddenly said, “Peek-a-boo! I see you!” Like some kind of fucking Chucky doll? That one?

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      • 29

        Jennie says

        We have one of those and we call it “creepy dog”. Best is when nobody is anywhere near it and it says, “you’re wonderful!” It makes me think that it wants to add, “…to eat!” after that phrase. Creepy-ass dog!

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  5. 31

    Amelora says

    Mine would be – Mondays start to look great because they go back to school, office drama has nothing on a Sunday afternoon “there’s nothing to dooooooo” melt down.

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    • 36

      Katia says

      This is inspiring, 8 is my new mantra. :-) I know what you mean, my older one is only 3.5 but I can already tell this whole growing up thing is happening too fast. And I am curious about how your boys made you feel really old. Gonna have to bookmark that for later.

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      • 41

        Sili says

        Yeah so…I didn’t say that. Mine get squished and somehow she thinks it’s funny. Of course, we’ve now started asking things like: mami what’s that circle? That she sees protruding through my jammies. And yeah, she tries to touch. Then she looks at herself while changing and asks me what the circles on her “boobs” are. She’ll be the only 3 year old in her class who will say she has areolas. I might as well teach her since she’s asking.

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  6. 43

    Elizabeth says

    This really hits home for me! I am a SAHM to a toddler and a baby (both boys), and well, this post is my day in a nutshell. I can only hope that what we consider a “date” improves as they get older! This was the laugh I needed this morning (and the reassurance that I am not the only one singing B-I-N-G-O and Jack-N-Jill as soon as I wake up)!

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    • 44

      Katia says

      Elizabeth, let me reassure you further. Not only do I sing B-I-N-G-O (my bingo is actually “this old man, he played one”) but I also catch myself talking baby talk to food that I am making. Ok, this looks much worse in writing.

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  7. 47

    Starla says

    Too funny and oh so true!
    My days are filled with…
    ‘Don’t eat that, it’s nasty.’ followed a short time later by, ‘eat your (brkfst, lunch, dinner).’
    ‘Get out of the toilet.’
    ‘You can talk to me when you’re FINISHED brushing your teeth’
    or when the older ones are trying to yell homework questions at you from another room. SERIOUSLY? I have no idea what you just said to me.
    Singing and dancing to the peepee (or poopoo) song 300 times a day every day with the potty training 2 yr old.
    And just the other day my 8 yr old was yelling at me from outside thr locked bathroom door while mommy was trying to potty in peace.
    Finally, answering the question, ‘can i (or we) go here or do this’ 6 million times a week per any child over 3 in the house.
    I am a mother of 4 and I wear my stained T-shirt, flimsy shorts, worn out slip on shoes and ratty bun on my head PROUDLY…bc who has time to change more than twice a week??? And what’s a brush????

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    • 48

      Katia says

      :-)) I don’t know how you do it, Starla. More power to you.
      I guess when they are older and yell to you from the other room about their homework you can’t just give them the ol’ “yeaaaah! That’s awesome!!!” that I give 3 Year Old.

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      • 49

        Starla says

        We somehow manage not to kill each other. Hahaha. And by the time Dad gets home from work, he’s a celebrity!
        The oldest is 11 and already, Mom and Dad know nothing. It’s a wonder we’ve made it so long in this cruel world without poisoning ourselves by eating super glue and drooling all day.
        What I wouldn’t give to be the kid who knows everything there is to know about anything! Haha.
        Excuse me kid, did you just ask me to help you with your homework and then tell me ‘thats not how you do it’? ‘Damn wish i hadn’t wasted all that time and money on college, I could have waited and let you teach me everything’

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        • 51

          Jenna says

          Oh, I hear you on this one. I have an 11 year old going on 35! The attitude after she asks for help, but I don’t give her the answer she wants!

          I love Monday mornings, I work from home. But according to the 8 year old, I just sleep all day and do nothing but play on the computer. Oh the joys!

          My favorite night time thing is the youngest that stands by the side of my bed and just stares. She won’t talk, she just stares until you wake up with that startle that someone is there. Nothing like that to get your heart racing at 3am.

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        • 53

          Expat Mom says

          My 7 year old is already like this. I homeschool and the other day, I said, “Did you know that some molds are used in medicine?”
          He said, “Yeah, I knew that.”
          Me: “Really? Where did you learn it?”
          7 year old: “I figured it out.” Riiiiight, smarty pants.
          I frequently find myself telling him, “How long have you been alive? 7 years? You REALLY think that you have learned more in that amount of time than I’ve learned in 33 years?”
          His response, “Well, duh.”

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        • 56

          Brandi says

          My parents had a sign on the fridge that read “teenagers! Move out and pay your own bills while you still know everything!” Then my mom laid the curse on me…”One day I hope you have a child just. like. YOU” and I did.

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        • 57

          Kris says

          Eleven is fun, you’ll realize you know even less by their standards when they turn 15. We have a 15 year old girl, 7 year old boy and four month old girl….the spread is exhausting.

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  8. 58

    Scott says

    Oh yeah, you nailed it…

    You see a first-time expectant couple and a maniacal laugh wells up in your throat. You want to say something nice but “Get all the sleep you can now” is all you can muster.

    You pride yourself on all your newly acquired home style remedies for problems you never expected to have to resolve like “Toothpicks are great for getting vomit out of the gaps in hardwood floors”.

    Including the person who invented the Diaper Genie in your evening prayer just seems like the right thing to do.

    In the battle between “Nature vs. Nurture”, you finally realize Nature wins every time.

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  9. 70

    LynnZMbH says

    This is perfect. Try having a 12 year old daughter and a 4 month old infant at the same time. Dinner conversation consists of me asking “Do you want pepperoni on your pizza or just cheese?” 12 year old hysterically responds “You don’t know anything about me!!” While my 4 month old throws up in my hair.

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    • 72

      BJ says

      Lynn, my 12 yr old was complemented by and 8, 4, and 1-yr old, girl, boy, boy, girl. While the oldest was looking at colleges, the next was anticipating high school, the next was approaching “senior year” in elementary school, and the youngest somehow didn’t realize she was the youngest. It gets progressively crazier.

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  10. 74

    Natalie says

    OMG Love it!
    Uv just described my day totally apart from the exersaucer we got rid now. I got the whole 3 yr old boy running round naked, but u forgot to say the ” leave it alone itll drop off” sayin that is a regular in my house with sed 3 yr old. and an 8 yr old girl who does the “mummy look what his doin, can we take a picture thing n add to facebook” mean while sed 3 yr old doin something he sooo should not be doin. lol i dont have the dating issue tho cause the only dates i have are with a nice warm cuppa coffee at about 9 oclock once they both proper soundo – usually the only coffee in the day i actually get to drink. Uh that reminds me i boiled the kettle earlier – thats as far as my coffee got! lol

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    • 75

      Katia says

      Yes, I hear you Natalie, boiling the same kettle over and over again. Walking up to it, realizing it’s hot, going – oh, yes, that’s right, whatever happened to that tea I was going to have 4 hours ago?… I should have added that to the list.

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  11. 76

    Keelye says

    Also on that rare occasion you decide to go out for dinner “as a family” and you catch yourself saying things like “we don’t do that in public” and “please don’t announce that” and you feel bad for the person cleaning the floor of crumbs from your messy eater so you ask if you can do it…

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