I'm not quite sure what's happened to Time. I have a vague memory of learning a lot about "time" and other things, back when I was studying physics. Anyway, despite my brain losing most of this information, I think that Toddlerhood needs to be defined by its own set of theoretical principles, and that these should be shared in warning to all prospective parents. Such as:
* Think of the free time you used to have at weekends. Remember how much of that you used to spend sleeping. Wonder what you did with all the rest of it besides going to the pub. Take 48 hours and subtract number of hours spent on sleeping/drinking alcohol and divide by 3. This is how much time actually exists in a weekend.
* The speed of light, c, is not a constant when constrained by the vacuum of toddlerhood. You will not see things in the same way as you used to.
* The speed of sound has also altered. Everything tends to take on a higher pitch than previously known. Certain children can actually go supersonic with their squealing. As well as bass, treble, and so forth, a new sound known as "plinky plonky tinky tonky" will have entered your senses and remain on repeat forevermore. My OH has reported many occasion where he's been in a work meeting with some CBeebies theme tune going round his head.
* Time is a varying quantity. On the whole, the amount of time you have to do a task is the amount of time required, divided by 2. However, certain occasions, such as those when attempting to get a toddler dressed and out of the house for a swimming lesson, will ultimately cause time to condense. Thus however quickly you try to change a nappy, force said toddler into clothes and pack a bag ("yes you DO want to go swimming, put down the train set"), you will always leave home late and miss the first 5 minutes of the lesson. Guaranteed. No matter how early you start getting ready.
* It's no longer true that weight = mass x gravity. In fact, your weight = (mass x gravity) + 2 stone, as your child uses you as a climbing frame/people carrier. Do warn your muscles to prepare for this load. Although you will find you gain strength as baby grows initially after birth, their growth is exponential. Your muscles will not keep up.
* There is logic and there is toddler logic. Sometimes toddler logic is hard to follow. For example; "Noooo I can't have a bath because the kitten's in the cave". Other times it makes perfect sense, yet cannot be accepted in the adult world: "I don't want to go to sleep, as it's not dark yet". Sorry E, but while this currently gets you out of naptime (because you gave those up around 1 year old and try as I might, you point blank refuse to nap during the day), that reasoning will NOT work once the clocks change. In summer you will go to bed when it's light. That's what blackout curtain lining was invented for.
So off the top of my head, those are some basic principles to start with.
Speaking of logic, E has come up with a cunning plan to avoid tidying up her toys in the evenings. (Or in fact, anything she is asked to do and doesn't want to do). She has caught on to our way of attempting to punish her. We try to encourage more than punish, but if she's being naughty, we tend to use the threat of losing bedtime stories (from two to one to none), or the use of particular toys. Worst case scenario is a 'time out' but best avoided if possible. It takes ages to get her to stay still long enough to finish 'time out' and go back to whatever it is we were doing. Plus she sometimes thinks it's funny to put herself in 'time out' to try to avoid other things. Anyway, she's slowly realising that we mean what we say, which is good, however it has led to her changing her tune as a result.
A typical scenario goes like this: E is asked to tidy toys away into her toy box in the evening. A reasonable request, she's perfectly able to do it. "No, I'm too tired". Tough. "No, I'm too sad". Nice try. Repeated requests, deliberately being ignored. So we resort to asking her if she wants to lose a story, as that's the path she's on if she carries on, and we get "No, I don't want stories". She damn well does but this makes the arguments more difficult! Similarly she'll say at other times of the day, "I don't want to go to the library/swimming/see my friends/go to the park/......." when you know she does, but she's hoping that by saying she doesn't want it, she doesn't have to do whatever is required of her beforehand! Toddlers can be very intelligent. Little monkey. I do admire her efforts though.
Anyway, this post started out because I was thinking of how half term week flew by, and how the days just slip away. More of that another time. There's so much I could say on the subject but I'll leave it for another day.