The naughty corner: twins edition

Discipline twins is not as straight forward as it might sound. What if twin A starts something naughty and twin B just follow him? Is it right to punish both of them? At 18 months can they really recognise when it’s wise not to follow a bad example? I don’t pretend to have an answer to this, but I’ll tell you what happened when T and B got both into trouble.

It was a nice Friday afternoon and it was time for a snack. Mummy prepared something really tasty, so the twins started to eat ferociously. For some unknown reason, T decided to pick up a piece and throw it on the floor. Nothing new there, he is a toddler after all. Before I could react, B thought it was a great idea to follow his brother, but being B he wanted to exceed the previous result and proceeded to throw half of his food on nonna (grandma). They immediately got sent to the naughty corner(s).

Now, if you have one child, you need one naughty corner (or step), but if you have two? Well, send them to sit down together and have time to plot the next mischief doesn’t sound worthwhile; so T was sent to the left and B to the right corner of the dining room. T spent his minute there in silence, then mummy went to explain why was he put there and off he went. B on the other hand…

If a naughty step is a way of punishing children, surely it must be a way to stretch their creativity as well. B tried to leave the corner in so many ways I lost count. If only he could fly he would have tried that as well, I bet. He started by walking away. First to the left, then to the right. Mummy brought him back. Then he thought he could crawl. First to the left, then to the right. Mummy brought him back. So he thought he could stretch by keeping one arm in the naughty corner. Stretching to the left, then to B the right. Mummy brought him back. So he trew himself on the floor and start sliding on his belly. Mummy dragged him back. He also tried to walk backwards and sideways and hide behind a chair and dragged that along with him as a shield. It was getting very funny by this point, but mummy brought him back… EVERY TIME.

The best part, the one that supernanny will not tell you about, is the fact that you can even leave the room if you would like: if B moves a special alarm goes off! It’s his twin who will point a finger and sound surprised and ashamed that his brother could even think of leaving the corner. T’s expression of indignation made it very difficult to keep a straight face in this process, but it made me feel less stressed about having to keep on bringing B back to the naughty corner. Sometimes it’s really fun to have twins!

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Dear couple without children…

This is an open letter to all couples without children (yet) who come and visit the other half of the world. Us. The couple WITH children.

Dear couples without children, we are really sorry that all we can talk about is our perfect little people, but please try to understand. While you can wake up on a lazy Sunday morning to the sound of the birds outside, we wake up to the terrifying sound of a toddler trying to remove the bars from his crib. It’s still dark outside but there’s no going back. The children are awake now and bedtime is 12 hours away.

Yes, it is true, we have jobs. Some of us even work full time, but it’s just an excuse to survive each day. We found much easier to come to work, read some emails, go for a tea break and have a sandwich without screaming kids trying to eat your lunch (even if it is the same food). After dinner time, bath time and bedtime, we barely remember that we actually went to work during the day. Actually wanted to talk about seems a bit too much for us.

Yes, we used to talk about eating out and the latest Jamie’s recipe we wanted to cook, but now we love fish fingers. We are sorry, but we are too tired and busy to buy more than two ingredients, so it’s fish fingers and ketchup tonight… again.

Yes, we would love to let you know what was the last movie we went to see at the cinema, but it was at the end of last century so you may be too young to remember it. After all you don’t have children yet, you must be young! You can tell us about what you watched lately, but the plot need to be short because one of the twins is about to throw himself off the couch…

So we are sorry if all we talk about are our children, but that is all we can think of. Day and night. That we are awake or asleep, hungry or thirsty, happy or sad… that’s what we are thinking of. They changed our lives, they made us become new people and you have no idea how much, but you will… soon.

First words

Despite the fact that body language says more than words, despite the fact that you can clearly understand your child without words and despite the fact that there is not need for a philosophical discussion at 18 months, all parents want their children to start talking as soon as possible. I was the same and maybe I still am, but am I prepared for it? When the twins will start talking they will feel so grown up. Will I feel sad rather than glad?

Why am I thinking about it tonight? Well, after 17 months and 29 days, finally T called me “mamma” for the first time.

It was a bittersweet moment. On one hand I was exploding with joy and all I wanted to do was hug him and kiss him, on the other hand I looked at my little baby and saw a toddler, a child, a teenager, an adult… I panicked! He talks, he is so old. I could see him about to go to his first interview and use his brilliant communication skills to land his dream job!

Ok, maybe I am exaggerating a little bit, but it is really strange when you are used to random sounds to finally hear a real word. If that word is MUM it’s even stranger. One thing is certain, I am now asking “who am I?” to T every 3 minutes… I wouldn’t want him to forget, would I?