Parenting Quiz

Parenting: It's wonderful, isn't it? Don't you love the nurturing and inspiring of young minds?

Don't you hate it when you realise that try as you might, honours university degree, high IQ and all, you can't outsmart your kids?

Here's a couple of conundrums I am working on. Perhaps if we can combine our parenting brain power we can solve one or two of these burning questions:

1. How long must your children not have played with, paid attention to, or remember they possess a certain toy before you can throw it out, give away or resell it without hearing the cry "but that's my favourite?"
Please provide your response as a mathematical formula such as (B*P) + (I*A)=L where B is the number of batteries it takes and P is the percentage of plastic used in the construction; I is how long in days they've ignored it and A is how far off in years they are from the suggested age. L, of course, would be the length of time it needs to be utterly hidden (with batteries removed so it doesn't start acting posessed and calling out from the storage room) before it can be "disposed of."

2. Why is it that from 2:00pm-4:30pm, when Mommy is hitting her energy slump, the children are hitting their energy high? Supply possible reasons and solutions that don't involve duct tape or massive amounts of drugs. Small amounts of drugs are appropriate enough.

3. How can a child pee in the potty or toilet without actually getting pee IN the potty or toilet whilst meanwhile covering the bathroom floor, counters, ceiling and sink? Extra points if you can explain it for a girl.

4. How many outfits must my daughter wear daily and how does she manage to get them dirty in five minutes? If you can tell me how to scotchguard her tights and shirts against stains, I'll give you the Nobel Prize.

5. Where did my "life" go and does anyone remember what it looked like? I don't. I think it may have involved coffee-laden chats with my husband, hobbies, reading, and the occasional night out, but I wonder if that's just one of those created fictionalised memories.

Please feel free to answer using multiple choice, short answer or essay form. I won't dock any points for spelling because I know you're trying to type while nursing with a larger child hauling on your arm or climbing into your lap.


  1. Ok, no 1 is one of the those unsolvable equations that mathematicians have on blackboards for years trying to fathom out.

    No. 2 - vallium or gin, take your pick

    No.3 - boys, because they can. Girls, wow impressed.

    No.4 At least 6, she gets them dirty so she can wear a new outfit.

    No. 5 Don't know, but I bet it's lurking in a dark cupboard somewhere collecting dust, like mine.

  2. #3-- Borax! It cleans everything. Run some warm water in the sink, stop it up, then dump in some borax. I don't know how much, I just turn the box up and stop when a clump or two falls out. Maybe 1/2 a cup, I bet there are probably directions on the box. swish it around to dissolve, then add the clothes. Just a couple pieces at a time. Let sit awhile. Wash like normal, air dry. Check for stains. Repeat if needed. This even works if the stains are set in, mostly. It seems like it won't remove glue or ink, but that's about all.

  3. If I knew the answer to any of these I would be a millionaire touring the world touting my no.1 selling book leaving the nanny to deal with putting it all into practise.

    sadly I have not a clue, I'm too busy picking up discarded clothing and trying not to hit the Gin too early in the day.

  4. This quiz would have had me rolling on the floor and laughing, except our floor is in a questionable state of cleanliness due to numbers 2, 3, and 4, so I just stayed here in my chair with my weakened bladder and soiled myself a little. Okay, a lot. Anyway, this is the funniest post I've read in a long long time because you've absolutely put your finger on pretty much all the basic mysteries that have subsumed my life. You are brilliant, dear Dara. ABsolutely brilliant. Totally tweeting this post. xoxoxox


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