My first born, by a stroke of luck, wasn’t very toddler-y. Don’t get me wrong, she had her own host of issues, but shoving things in her mouth wasn’t one of them. If I am being honest, I did sometimes wonder why people had a hard time keeping dirt out their kid’s mouth and what was with all the baby-proofing.
Well, the universe was obviously listening because my second child is a wide open explorer. I now find myself feeling like I’m “that mom.” I am the mom whose kid has dirt in his mouth, the mom whose kid is inside the cupboard, licking the dog, playing on the ladder … you get the picture. Because of my toddler, I now see how un-toddler friendly our world is.
Here are 10 things that have been the bane of my existence as a mom with small children. Let’s see if you agree…
Small Collectible Toys
I don’t feel the need to call out any specific small toy brand, because they are all guilty. In my daughter’s defense, I would have loved collecting these little things as a 4-year-old. Unfortunately for her, these things are death traps to little brother. Not only are they small (it’s like they made them throat-sized), but the most popular ones are actually shaped like food! These should not exist.
What kid over 3 needs a juice box to stay clean? If they can’t handle a cup, then throw a lid on it. That being said, it stands to reason juice boxes are intended for tinier kids, but as soon as those toddler fists get a hold of that box, a volcano of juice is catapulted everywhere! They squeeze in excitement and suddenly juice drenches them in tears! I just don’t bother with juice boxes. For us, they are more trouble than they are worth.
Beautiful balls in a lovely bowl, pictures with clever sayings, figurines … these are all a no. Have you read about the freedom of purging useless items? Well my son can give you a quick, perhaps emotionally painful, tutorial. My son knows the things not to touch in our house. For my daughter this knowledge translates to other houses. The chance of me relaxing with my son in someone else’s house is about 5%. I think I owe half of Lexington a decorative item, or six. Make decor meaningful, or get it out.
Seriously! Why? On the very first day of a recent vacation my son banged his head into the glass table. He had a black eye the entire trip. At toddler height, the glass top didn’t register. It makes me wonder if glass furniture companies have a deal with emergency rooms. And let’s not even talk about the fingerprints or the ready opportunity to break it into a million pieces altogether!
Furniture? Who needs it? I don’t. Especially not with a toddler who likes to climb. And I mean climb on everything! The ottoman is his favorite, and I don’t blame him. It was designed to look like a fun trampoline. A trampoline that causes head staples, maybe.
Speaking of furniture design … we had our chance society. We had our chance to design toilets to look like their function. But no, we got all sensitive about poo, and decided to make them puddle bowls of flushing fun. One bright morning I had the pleasure of hearing “Mom, there’s weird stuff in the toilet.” Thinking my hubby just hadn’t flushed, I went to take care of it. Nope. There was weird stuff indeed. Toys, clothes, towels … all in the toilet because, why not? The toilet looks like a super fun bowl of wonder.
Everyone keeps the B-list items in the bottom cabinet. The stuff that is only worth bending over for every once in a while. While bottom cabinets aren’t the go-to for adults, these easy to access cabinets quickly become a favorite spot for stashing toddler treasures like cellphones, shoes, and credit cards. Bottom cabinets, I have decided, are a no. I am never buying a house with bottom cabinets again. End of story.
Under the Couch
For REAL; why is under the couch a thing? How much easier would life be if the couch went all the way to the floor? No dust, dog hair, toys, food, or bottles to discover. No weird smells, just an easy to clean area around the couch. In my opinion, under the couch serves zero aesthetic function anyway. Couch designers hold an especially dark place in my mommy heart.
Under the Car Seat
Why does spoiled milk smell like feet? It only makes it harder to find the culprit when your toddler has swamp feet because it’s easy to assume the stink is a stray shoe. Then the day comes; the day you can’t take the smell anymore. So you crawl on the ground and contort yourself enough to see a sippy cup is wedged in that unseeable, and unreachable spot under the car seat. Just no.
Opaque Sippy Cups
This is how I know designers hate me. Why are most sippy cups opaque? Doing dishes is like Russian roulette … “please be water, please be water, please be water.” Sometimes I am kind of lucky and it’s juice, sometimes I am not lucky and all that comes out is a thin trickle of stank fluid because the rest is cheese. If in the very least the bottoms were clear, we would have the courtesy of knowing what lies beneath the lid.