They’re the essential skills they never taught you in prenatal classes. The secret superhero moves and ninja reflexes every parent needs on a daily basis. From cheeky nappy changes to tactical breastfeeding, driving foot tickles to treacherous car transfers, these are the must-have manoeuvres mums and dads need to learn to conquer this parenting caper.
How many have you unlocked so far? Read on to find out!
1. The sneaky room escape
After plenty of rocking, pats and lullabies, your baby is FINALLY asleep BUT now you need to leave the room without them waking. Eeek! While singing softly, you lighten your hand pressure on their chest, leaving it hovering so they still feels the warmth of it. Then, it’s time to make a break for it… slowly! Singing a little quieter now, you drop to your knees (lest they wake up and SEE you!) and crawl to the door. Success! Talk about skills.
2. The stand-up nappy change dance
Once distraction was all you needed when you laid your baby down to fasten a nappy. Now they’re off and running round the coffee table and they have no time for that! After catching them, you’ll need to do a speedy nappy pit stop. For quick changes, we recommend a pull-up nappy – they’re easy to put on, fit like a glove and they’ll like being able to step into them.
Read more about baby and toddler behaviour:
- Are you accidentally interrupting your baby’s sleep pattern?
- Runaway babe: What to do if your child is a ‘bolter’
- Is ‘cold turkey’ the best way to help your child ditch the dummy?
3. The one-handed cooking technique
Remember when you got to cook dinner with two hands? That was luxury! These days, you can prepare an entire meal with one arm, because you’ve got bub in the other. And that includes opening jars, stirring and serving it up. In fact, you can do anything and everything with one arm.
4. The child vs. supermarket check-out juggle
You’re racing to get all the shopping onto the conveyor belt but your little trolley passenger is fed up. Nap time is inching closer. Quick, peel a banana from the bunch and jiggle those keys as you throw items onto the moving belt at the speed of light.
5. The don’t-fall-asleep-foot-tickle on the drive home
If bub nods off just minutes away from home, that precious day sleep can be in serious jeopardy. Let it happen and you’ll be eating drive-thru Maccas for lunch again as they don’t transfer well. So what to do? Bend that arm around to the back seat and tickle their feet when you stop at a red light to keep them awake until you can pop them into the cot. Sure you might get pins and needles in your hands, but it’s worth it, right?
6. The discreet-breastfeed-in-front-of-your-dad-in-law jiggle
You may be fine feeding your baby in public but there’s some people you just don’t feel comfortable doing it in front of. BUT you also don’t like to be banished to another room. Enter the ‘wrap with a squirmy baby boob-hiding’ dance. It’s all about using your seated weight to hold down the wrap under your bottom and also behind your shoulder. It gets better with practice.
7. The car-to-cot sleeping child transfer
If you brave this one – instead of driving aimlessly for two hours to keep your child asleep in the car – then you are officially the king of parent moves! Unbuckling your little love, lifting them out, shutting the car door (silently!) and then getting them into bed while still asleep is an artform and you are the master. We all bow down to you.
8. The wee-with-a-sleeping-baby-on-you move
If your little one has fallen asleep on you and a cot transfer isn’t on the cards, then it’s only a matter of time before you’ll need to use the loo. This is where your parent moves really shine. Without them even stirring, you’re able to undo your jeans and do your business like a boss. Go you!
9. The wince-worthy public toilet nappy change
It’s every parent’s nightmare. Bub’s bombed their nappy, and the only place to change is the icky public loo. Thankfully, your nappy bag is armed for these situations and your portable change station saves the day. Crisis averted!