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Hollow Tree Ventures parenting humor
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My Toddler: Genius or Tyrant?

I know every parent thinks their baby is some sort of genius/musical prodigy/math whiz, with the language skills of a toddler twice her age, more friends than anyone else in her pre-pre-school, and the most beautiful silken curls to ever grace a human head. Ask any mother on the street, and if she doesn't hit you with her diaper bag first (Stranger danger!), she'll probably tell you that her darling angel learned how to solve quadratic equations while potty training herself in the womb, and had all her adult teeth by the time she was two.

I can tell you to shut your pie hole in six languages.

But that said, my little girl really is pretty advanced for her age. Yes, she's super smart, already exhibits the early stages of sarcasm, and dances better than some kind of John Travolta/Baryshnikov hybrid. But the main reason I think she's advanced (Gifted, even?)  is because, at 20 months, she's already bossing me around at almost a 9th-grade level.

When there's a decision to be made, this kid takes the initiative and tells you how things are going to be, before you even realized the issue was up for debate.
Didn't know your skin was dry? Well, it must be, because she's insisting you dispense lotion into every hand in the house. For the fiftieth time.
Thought the house was looking pretty tidy? Nope, she's in the mood to hear the vacuum, and you'd better believe you're going to carry her in one arm while you push the sweeper around with the other.
Tired of hearing her favorite song? Don't be an idiot. What part of, "AGAIN!" don't you understand?
It's hard to keep track of all the daily minutia that falls within her realm of expertise, but this graphic touches on some of the main categories.


It's actually kind of a relief to have someone else dictate my every move, all day long. Otherwise I might have to weigh the pros and cons of ramming a pretzel stick into the roof of my own mouth, or wonder if it's a good idea to lift my shirt for the little old ladies in the Frozen Foods section. With my toddler already showing the qualities of a corporate CEO who was formerly a prison warden with a background in Drill Sergeantry, I can just relax while she takes care of all the big decisions for me.

If you'd like to know the benefits of having a Genius Tyrant Toddler taking over your life, I hate to hog all the fun. Feel free to stop by my house for five minutes. Just be sure to wear a headband. It's required.


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62 comments:

  1. We'll have to keep your baby and my Turbo separated, otherwise they'll take over a third-world country and demand payment in My Little Ponies.

    Turbo has decided she wants to be a pirate when she grows up, so I'm thinking: CEO, Banker, Politician, Dictator. I guess you always have to have one like that, right? They have to keep the rest of the herd on task.

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    1. Hey, I can always use more My Little Ponies! Wait, what am I saying? The baby has brainwashed me.

      Let me know if there's room on Turbo's pirate ship - I think my little marauder would happily join the crew. ;)

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  2. Replies
    1. Ha! Only one that she's interested in, for some reason.

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  3. We should get my baby and your baby together for an awkward Boobapalooza. Oh, and the pretzel stick jab to the mouth is what makes her an evil genius. First, it's stabby, but, then it's salty which is truly adding injury to already sustained injury. She is SUPER cute though.

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    1. I think Boobapalooza is going to be frighteningly popular. Possibly for the wrong reasons. :)

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  4. She is so cute, though! I would let her boss me around! My 19 month old already thinks he's in charge of my phone, who wears shoes and when, and being King of the Kitchen Counter. It's fun (eye roll).

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    1. Oh yeah, I forgot about the phone! It's been scary around here since she learned to unlock mine - which reminds me, if any of you get a gobbledygook text from me, I blame the baby. Or drinking.

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  5. Do our toddlers have secret twitter accounts they use to communicate that we are unaware of? Mine IS always taking my phone.....
    Such a great post! I can totally relate, my 20-month-old is our Little Miss Bossypants too. Her favorite things to control are where you color in the coloring book (wherever you want but she will immediately color over it), where she sits (she prefers the kitchen counter, too) and which shoes she wears (boots. ALWAYS the boots.)

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    1. Of course the boots - the bigger the tripping hazard, the better.

      My kids on Twitter = my worst nightmare *shudder*

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  6. Lifting my shirt in the frozen food section is how I landed a husband. Joke.
    At our house, headbands are often worn as belts.
    Not a joke.

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    1. We sometimes use the string from an old cat toy as a belt, because we're hobo-y like that. :)

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  7. I don't want to brag but both of my kids knew how to use a drink coaster by the time they were two. It's like living in Downton Abbey.

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    1. That's high class. I'm assuming they drink from their sippy cups pinkie up, too. Impressive!

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  8. I started listing all the things she does that amaze me, but the list quickly got to the point where it was insufferable as well as borderline unbelievable. So I deleted it, but... suffice it to say that I spelled the beginning of "vitamin" yesterday and she knew what I was talking about. And then she demanded one.

    Brag brag brag.

    The list was funny as hell, Babe, and (for a change) 100% accurate.

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    1. I know, it's tough to hold back the bragging, but you and I know she's a g-e-e-n-e-e-u-s.

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  9. Oh my gosh she is adorable and my son, at 3, is still holding onto this same power.

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    1. Thanks - but I could've done without the reminder that I have at least another year (or 16) under her reign. ;)

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  10. Wow...are we raising the same two year old? I could have made this list. My favorite dictator move is when I say something like "ok, mommy is going to wash your face" or something similar and she replies "mom, wash my face!!" Even though I already said it, her order just feels...wrong.

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    1. Ha! The "even if it was your idea, it was my idea" routine. Awesome - I'm going to try that with my husband. This is gonna be fun. :)

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    2. Hahahaha... ummm, hey babe, fancy meeting you here! I, uh, I was just kidding. Obviously.

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  11. I would just be super-relieved to have someone else keeping track of all this stuff for me. Does she contract out her tyrant services? I really could use some help around here...

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    1. Seriously! I would love to outsource my tyrannical monitoring of my family's doings. Send her over.

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    2. She's available, but unfortunately untrainable. So unless she happens to be dictating exactly what you need her to, she actually might do more harm than good. But, if you need someone to insist so strongly on everyone wearing headbands that your husband ends up wearing one into a convenience store, much to your amusement, then she's the baby for you!

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  12. LOL!! (The real kind, not just the typed on the computer because I'm supposed to kind.)
    Seriously, so funny. You have exactly captured toddlers here. And she's obviously a genius. A bossy little genius.

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    1. Yay, I LOVE a real lol! Thanks so much - the bossy little genius says thanks, too. :)

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  13. Wow, that's one adorable tyrant (or genius) Haha. Although when you think about it, you may be pissed off sometimes, but you’ll just love them more because of that. ;) <3

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    1. I can't complain - she's opened my eyes to the wonderful world of hair accessories, so even if she grows up to drain my bank account, live endlessly in my basement, and drink all my Diet Coke, at least we'll always have headbands. ;)

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  14. I feel like your only mistake in this post was to not put the glasses on her in the headband picture. She would have resembled one "Kim" that is not so feminine (or alive anymore, to be more specific).
    And I really wish that if toddlers are going to choose what to eat, they should do it for every day of the week, in advance, say, on a Monday. It would make my shopping trip and planning SOOOO much easier.

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    1. Wouldn't it? For now, the only thing I know for sure to stock up on are pretzel sticks and gummy vitamins. If she loves something one week and I buy a ton of it the next week, she won't want it for sure, especially if it's perishable (strawberries, I'm looking at you). Other than that, I'm at a loss.

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  15. #9 -- it's sad really, all the Playboy revenue I've probably been cheated out of because all 3 of my babies were masters of the freebie-boobie reveal.
    they owe me like....1 million dollars.

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    1. Gah, I never even thought of the lost income! I should start charging from now on.

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  16. I had forgotten all about the pretzel jammed into the roof of the mouth. My mouth roof is cringing now.

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    1. Why do I keep getting pretzel sticks??? Only soft, round food from now on. P.S. Love the mouth-roof cringe. It takes the memory of a very special sensation to make an immovable part of your body recoil.

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  17. HILARIOUS! I saw this on Pinterest and said, omg, we have the same baby. I hope you don't mind, I used your list image on my blog, and linked it back to you. PS. AGAIN, is my toddler's go to word. Again to her favorite song. Followed by: Don't sing, mommy. Ha.

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    1. I loved your post! Since we do seem to have the same baby, maybe we could trade off mommying days? It sounds like we could both use a break. :)

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  18. Stop, I almost died laughing. EVERYONE WEARS A HEADBAND. My niece is like that. I have a son, so probably no headband, although you never know, I suppose. :)

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    1. Seriously, with the headbands! We're all so used to it now that even my husband and sons walk around with them on. A lot of times, my husband doesn't even bother taking them off when he leaves the house. :)

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  19. aw how cute and I have to admit my son will be 13 soon and he still retains all power

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    1. Yeah, teens have their own special powers, don't they? ;) Thanks for reading and commenting!

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  20. Count your blessings that the pretzel went in your mouth, and not up your nose. The nasal cavity isn't a pleasant place to plant a pretzel.

    And, you know how a baby flying squirrel just knows, when the time is right, just knows how to fly, instinctively?

    I just think your kid is exhibiting all the great girlfriend/wife/life partner traits any of us truly want.

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    1. Thanks so much for the encouragement! She's going to require a special person, indeed, for my husband not to chase him off out doorstep with a heavy frying pan. ;)

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  21. This sounds like my little guy.

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    1. Glad you could relate - thanks for being here!

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  22. So cute! Thanks for sharing! I have two two year old girls so I can very much relate!

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    1. Well, you're having twice the fun, aren't you!?! I shudder to think what happens when they give you conflicting orders. ;)

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  23. Ha! And it doesn't end as they get older. But I remember a lot of these when my babies were babies. :-) Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thank you for being here! We have them from 21 months to 21 years, so we know what we have coming - still not sure if that's good or bad. :)

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  24. Love it! Just when you think you have the baby thing licked, they turn into a toddler and it's a whole new ballgame. I'm about to do it again, and I can't wait to see how they differ! So unpredictable...

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    1. They sure are! It's fun to see the differences, and the similarities, and it's fun to see their selective memory when they tease their younger sibling for doing the exact same things they used to do. ;)

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  25. So NO ONE is allowed to wear socks in your house? What does she have against socks? And I, too, enjoy having the kids around to help with some of the difficult decision making like which snacks to buy at the food store or potato tots or fries w/ dinner.

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    1. She used to wear three or four pairs of socks at a time; maybe she used up her lifetime of sock tolerance, to the point where she can't even stand to see other people wear them. I just wish she'd gone through this phase in the summer.

      I always appreciate help on the tots vs fries debate, mostly so they feel obligated to eat whatever they picked. ;)

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  26. Genius, definitely. (Or is it evil genius?) I see a future student council president, anyhow. Gotta love a kid who knows what she wants and how to get it.

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    1. Good spin - there certainly is a future in bossiness! I should take a few lessons myself. ;)

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  27. This is so awesome. I have a sixteen month old and a six year old, and it's been so long since I've had a toddler you'd think it was my first time. Every time she does some crazy new thing, I'm like, did her sister do this? Is this normal? I think she's really advanced for her age! My current favorite is her simultaneously signing and shouting the word "NO!" in everyone's face. Tyrant, for sure.

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    1. I had a long time between my schoolagers and my baby, too, and it is pretty much like starting all over. Signing AND shouting "no," though, does sound really advanced - you have a Level 2 Tyrant on your hands!

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  28. At 11 months, Meyer is just starting to figure out that he can muster some power around here if he wants to. When he doesn't get what he wants, he screams relentlessly in a voice so high-pitched, that all the dogs within 4 miles show up on our porch and lick me until I get out of the fetal position and do something about it. He is an evil genius and there is a LOT of toddlerhood left. Sigh.
    (Loved this and just shared on my fb page...XOXO)

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    1. ^^^ Looove that visual image! They are bossy, aren't they? That's why I prefer not to think about how many years of toddlerhood are left...

      Thank you so much for the share, T&T - and here I thought I couldn't love you more. ;)

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