1. Remove pegs from the clothes horse. Throw them over the balcony. Line them up on the floor of the walk-in pantry. Or, just leave them on the ground with the damp clothing.
  2. Remove any flower or tiny unripe tomato from every plant. ‘Mow’ the parsley with a dustpan and brush. Shred the basil. Repeat. Show your tiny friend how much fun it is to do so and encourage him to do it. Again. Again!
  3. Throw all unwanted food on the floor, or swipe it vigorously across the table. The more eye contact with an adult, the better. Triple score if your baby brother joins in and giggles.
  4. Screech at all problems instead of quietly asking for help.
  5. Throw river stones (the expensive ones) down a drainpipe. Throw more. And again. Do it again.
  6. Throw river stones through the fence, onto the neighbour’s driveway. Do it again. Do it again. Do it after mummy has threatened military school (with no idea of what military school is, but it sounds BAD, OK?).
  7. Walk around proudly shaking your sippy cup. Upside down. With milk in it.
  8. Delve your tiny fists into fresh potting soil and then wipe your snotty nose. Then lick it. Then double over yelling cos something funny’s in your mouth. Then screech as you are rushed into the bathroom to remove ‘deadly organisms’ from under your tiny fingernails.
  9. Figure out how to use Daddy’s electric shaver. Wave it around your new haircut. Wave it at your brother’s head. Amble towards the cat. Learn new swear words.
  10. Poo more than four times in a day. Say ‘poo poo’ when you’re about to poo, but hold onto it when sat on the potty.
  11. Climb into bed at 3am, almost every morning, head butt your mum, then strangle her with your tiny arms. Cough in her face. Ask for water. A tissue. Don’t forget to kick Daddy. (I actually love this).
  12. Repeat, verbatim, threats and scolds you have heard repeatedly “MUMMY! THIS IS NOT OK!” “I WILL NOT LET YOU DO THIS!”

P.S. I’ve been absent. Sorry. Been preparing to deliver a kids’ book manuscript to a competition! Have also been running around like a madwoman trying to stop the riverstones, the pegs, the snot, the the the… See how we go from here. xx.