These tips will hopefully save you many frustrating parenting moments.
I think this heartwarming picture of our son marks the moment he realised that he was our first baby:
He was like, "Put me back! Put me back! They don't know what they're doing!"
He was right. But our first baby just turned 8 and his little sister is 3. These are some of the things we have learned along the way:
1. We are amazingly creative if our sleep depends upon it. I have created, with my own two hands, a working Monster Catcher out of just twigs and rocks. I have also weaved detailed princess stories at 3 a.m. after a nightmare. I can also tell elaborate lies as to why the Tooth Fairy was absent or where their very important art project went (definitely not in the recycling bin).
2. We now know that our parenting well of patience is completely dependent on satisfying the first tier of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. Mostly the breathing, sleeping, eating parts.
3. Bribes and threats work surprisingly well. Before children, I may have thought that I would limit my use of bribes and threats, but nope, that's pretty much all I've got.
4. We will act like circus performers just to hear them laugh. These are just some of the ridiculous things that we have done with just the smallest amount of encouragement: unsuccessfully juggled eggs right before bedtime, burped "I love you" until I almost threw up and read stories to them standing on a ladder while they sat on the roof of our house.
5. We are slowly becoming our parents, whether we like it or not. Recently, I was transported right back to a scene in 1980 with my own mother after I said, "If you tie that around your finger, you won't have a finger anymore."