Developmental milestones worth recording
Let's face it: baby books are designed to make parents feel inadequate. All they lead to is empty pages and questions like "Mummy, why haven't you pasted my first toe nail clippings here?" and "What date *did* I lose my seventh tooth?"
(And yes, the answer to both these questions is "I was too busy doing the parenting to have time to document the parenting!" followed by a short, sharp "Shuh!")
To be brutally honest, I might have been a bit more enthusiastic about recording milestones that actually made my life easier - unlike the appearance of teeth that only led to biting and the start of crawling that only led to the wanton destruction of property. Indeed, there are many milestones that the (numerous) children in my household have yet to reach that I often find myself daydreaming about.
For example, I look forward to the day the children will:
1. Pour milk from a full 3-litre carton without spilling it.
2. Return DVDs and CDs to their appropriate cover as a matter of course. Also, understand that books shouldn't be thrown on the floor after reading.
3. Exercise some control over vocal volume before 8:00 AM on a weekend.
4. Truly understand that Happy Feet 2 is a really shit movie.
5. Be able to move between rooms in the house without running.
6. Develop the instinct to stop a pen from rolling off a table.
7. Manage to get more breakfast cereal, crackers or rice in their mouth than they do on the floor.
8. Recognise the difference between an actual kids film and a thinly-veiled excuse for a range of McHappy Meal toys and cross-promotional Lego Wii games.
9. Be able to walk past an ice cream van or another child holding an ice cream without instantly wanting one.
10. Do own shoelaces up in a place other than that spot in the hall in front of the front door.
11. Realise that two or more people cannot get through a standard sized doorway at the same time.
12. Not just be able to use the toilet, but be toilet-literate: flush-aware, toilet roll-aware, seat position-aware. Also, be able to adequately wipe bottom with toilet paper and not leave most of the work for the underpants to do.
13. Document their milestones in their own goddamn books.
What milestones do you dream about?
The formerly fashionable NDM had three children and discovered that brown is the new black the hard way. The force behind the critically acclaimed once-was-blog Not Drowning, Mothering, she now very occasionally writes for the sometimes-blog Queen NDM, The Best. In her spare time, she enjoys baking cakes, cyber-hassling advertising executives and collecting digital photos of unusual objects made out of paperclips. She's occasionally on Twitter (@TheNDM) and Facebook as well.