On my sons second birthday he officially went from baby to toddler. Not just in the grammatical sense of the word but in every other way possible! I swear that someone left him a present that was for his eyes only, one that was invisible to grownups - The Toddler Rule Book..............
1. Never go to sleep in your own bed! You have a little toddler bed or a cot. Why would you sleep there when you can sprawl across mummy and daddy's bed? I recommend a pea on a fork pose or a full on star fish if you are feeling adventurous.
2. You must use the word 'No' at least 20 times a day! Mummy asks you to get dressed, you say 'no'. Daddy asks you to come to put your shoes on, you say 'no'. Mummy asks you to tidy your toys up, you say 'no'. Of course there is an exception to the rule.......Daddy asks you if you would like an ice cream, you say 'Yes, yes, yes!'
3. When told you can't do something it is essential that you throw yourself down on the floor and scream as loud as you possibly can. Now is the time to assert your independence. It is not fair that a grown up tells you what you can and can't do. You may not have as wide a vocabulary as them but you have a great set of lungs on you so use them to your full advantage as and when necessary. Note - grownups hate being in public with a screaming toddler and may well give you crisps or chocolate to bribe you into stopping.
4. When another child tries to 'share' your toy, hold onto it as tight as you possibly can whilst giving them the meanest look possible. Grownups tell you that you must share your toys but do you ever see their friends going into their bedrooms and picking up their toys like their makeup, remote controllers or phones? No! Grownups tell you that it isn't nice not to share but the most you see them sharing is a cup of tea and a biscuit!
5. If you find a crayon lying around feel free to draw a picture on the wall. I'm sure your mum will love your creativity. If not, try again another day with a different colour pen!
6. Forget nap time. You don't need it anymore. If you feel cranky late in the day then let everyone know about it by crying at every little thing that goes wrong.
7. If your big brother annoys you, hit him. He won't hit you back as you are so little so take full advantage now whilst you can get away with it.
8. Always refuse to eat a meal that is put on your high chair. High chair? You are a toddler now, not a baby. You don't need a high chair. It is time to sit at the big boy table on a big boy chair. Scream and shout, refuse to eat and maybe even throw your plate until the grownups give in and put you where you belong. So what if you can't quite reach your plate and you keep knocking your drink over. You have been promoted!
9. Refuse to drink from a cup with a lid. Like I said, you are a big boy or a big girl now. Big boys and girls don't have lids on their cups. If you have a little spillage when you tip your cup after having removed the lid, that's ok. Mum will clear it up!
10. When put on the naughty step find any way possible to escape. How dare your grownup put you on the naughty step again! We must stick together to make parents stop this naughty step nonsense. Complete escape to another room is preferable, but failing this, sit anywhere other than the naughty step to assert your independence.
This is your rule book for toddlers. Keep it out of sight of all grownups. When you have a little brother or sister, pass this down to them on the day of their second birthday so they too can keep the toddler reputation alive. Parents call it the terrible two's. We call it the tried, tested and terrific two's!