Ok, Ok, so parenting is totally NOT a competition, and I know we really shouldn’t compare how we do ‘parenty’ things with how our partner does them. But…
… I have come to realise that there are some things we do with my daughter that – hands up – my partner just totally wins at.
1. Being a human climbing frame
We both get treated like one fairly regularly. I’ll get little hands around my neck as I’m going upstairs and find myself buckling under the weight and telling her to get off pronto or I’ll fall.
But my husband?
I think he relishes the challenge of being climbed all over and seeing how far he can move with a 3-year-old in tow, on his head, attached to his leg or swinging from an arm.
2. Make and do
Now, I’m actually not exaggerating when I say my husband is as close to Mister Maker as you can get in real life. He spent years as a kids TV presenter in Ireland on make-and-do shows.
I can’t say this is the sole reason I married him but it certainly helps to know that on a rainy day he knows exactly how to help our daughter Bodhi Rae build a replica Tracy Island with some loo rolls, a cereal box and some sticky-backed plastic.
I can usually just about help with a pretty basic sock puppet, so kudos to him on this one.
3. Highly adventurous cooking
I may well have done the odd mug cake with her but the last time Bodhi Rae and Daddy cooked together it was a spinach and feta puff with a homemade hummus. Totally impressive. And the kitchen wasn’t a mess at all…
4. The bedtime story (sort of)
If the object of the bedtime story is to get your child to sleep by a sensible time, my husband loses on this one – by miles.
If the object, however, is to use as many comedy voices as possible, do jump-around actions for every sentence, make shadow puppets and leave our daughter generally way more wide awake at 9pm than she was at 7pm, he wins hands down.
Perhaps it’s an extension of his love for Game of Thrones but my husband is always up for bit of make-believe and can play ‘princesses in the castle’ for hours.
I kind of wish I could, too, but, after 20 minutes, I find I’ve run out of ideas and am in serious need of the real world. Kind of jealous of him for being so good at this one.
6. Finding an ice-cream van in the middle of winter
If there’s ice-cream, Daddy will find it. Middle of January? No problem; just follow the music. I’ve yet to hone my ice-cream van detector skills to anything like his standards.
Totally well played on this one. (Mine’s a 99, please.)