Staying a step ahead in ‘Toddler Years’

Editor’s note: This column first appeared

in the OBSERVER in October 2003.

Our household has moved into a new era, commonly known as: The Toddler Years. If you aren’t sure that your own child has entered this stage, take the following quiz. Keep track of how many statements you agree with and check the key at the end. Good luck.

You know you are the parent of a toddler when …

Your child tells you that he can do everything you can do, but even better and by himself.

Your child wakes up at 6 on days you can sleep until 9, yet sleeps until 9 on days you wake up at 6.

You can’t remember if no really means no or if no really means yes.

You look in the toy box for measuring cups, ladles and pot tops before checking the kitchen cupboards.

Your toyagraphic memory allows you to close your eyes and maneuver around the living room without stepping on a block or musical device.

When out to dinner and someone asks you if you would like a cocktail, you respond: “No, thank you, juice cocktail only contains 20 percent of actual fruit juice; we only drink 100 percent fruit juice.”

You’ve said and meant the following phrase: “Because I said so.”

A lapse in your toyagraphic memory causes you to step on a block or musical device at the exact time you are trying to be most quiet.

Your child runs faster than an Olympic sprinter to reach a ringing phone.

You can clean an entire room with a baby wipe.

If you didn’t agree with any of these statements, your child is still a long way away from being an official toddler. But for those of you who agreed with at least four, you are nearing that stage.

If you answered “yes” to at least five statements, your child is officially a toddler. Although part of your world will involve temper tantrums, potty chairs and pull-ups, a greater part will include watching your child discover the world, from hopping grasshoppers to shooting stars to tying shoes.

It’s nice that they have decided to take us along for the ride.

Comments can be sent to jdagostino@observertoday.com