It is really quite remarkable how often I get asked for advice. I have to assume it is because I write here or because of the amount of children that I have.
Let’s face it, I clearly have no idea what I am doing in the parenting arena.
With the quantity of requests I receive, though, I thought I would compile a few of my favorite parenting tips. Consider them lessons learned along the way.
● If you plan on playfully throwing your small child above you, be cognizant of ceiling fans.
● Guard your Mountain Dew… to a toddler, that much sugar and caffeine is like speed.
● When taking your family to a nice restaurant, one or more of your children will discuss the frequency of their bowel movements with the other patrons. This is OK because when they request to be moved you’ll have room to spread out.
● Family members will think it is funny to get your children loud toys as gifts. Repay the favor by sending their teenager a subscription to Hustler.
● The number on the front of the diaper is not only the size but a pretty good indicator of how many pints it will hold before you have to change them.
● Law of motion: a fully-packed, vacation-bound vehicle will make children have to go to the bathroom on vastly different and frequent schedules.
● No matter how sheltered you think your kids are, pop culture will find its way in. My kids play Angry Birds rather than dodge ball in the backyard. To further prove my point, the son who was throwing yelled, “Squeal like a pig,” at his brother.
● Wet paint and wet concrete have a gravitational pull; they just need to be touched.
● Puddles also have a gravitational pull.
● Your children will clog the toilet, almost always during a pastoral visit.
● Chances are if you are visiting someone in the hospital they will clog their toilet as well.
● Try to raise people you like. After you surpass a certain number of kids, no one else is going to want to hang out with you anyway.
All in all, this list is just the tip of the iceberg. In the last eight years, I have made mistakes, learned from them, and tried my best to raise good people who I enjoy being around.
After all, with four kids who are celebrated poopers, we get an awful lot of family bonding time.
Chris Donnelly is a working dad with four children. You can read him every Thursday on momaha.com
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