July 09, 2007


Try clicking on the word “childproofing” on your search engine and you will receive a kilometric list of links teeming with all sorts of precautionary measures you should take to ensure that your toddler is safe in your home.

Secure your stairs with baby gates to avoid nasty falls! Buy adhesive mount cabinet latches to block access to harmful objects! Use toilet locks to keep your child from touching the germ-filled toilet water! Unplug electrical appliances when not in use!

Indeed, the security recommendations for keeping your place safe for baby are endless and more than sufficient to drive the meek of heart to the brink of parental paranoia.

However, I noticed that what the purported safety experts fail to offer is much-needed advice regarding the opposite side of the coin.

Specifically: what must be done to proof the house from baby?

For, as most desperate folk with a mischievous imp in their midst know only too well, a tiny toddler can wreak huge havoc in any peaceful dwelling. I thus took it upon myself to draw up a list of things that could help protect the familial abode from infant destruction.

Daddies and mommies, follow these practical tips at your own discretion:

o Remove all objects within reach of your octopus baby, the operative word here being all. Keep in mind that anything that can be grabbed will be grabbed and dropped to the ground to test the forces of gravity. (Important note: The higher the cost price of the item on display, the more chances of being singled out for grabbing.)

o Buy a bed with a warranty so you can
replace it when your junior acrobat has worn it down it by jumping on it way too many times. Better yet, save yourself the trouble and buy your family a sleeping bag.

o Do not bother with wallpaper. Instead, have a fresh bucket of paint on hand so you can readily repaint the walls every time your young Picasso doodles wildly on them.

o Wrap your cellular phone in thick foam. Your mobile may not look as chic, but at least you can rest assured it will not crash into smithereens after being hurled across the room by your little Hercules.

o The above also applies to the remote control.

o Stack up on empty boxes and old wrapping paper. Bring them out whenever you need to keep your toddler preoccupied for a few minutes. Forget toys – they don’t work.

o Speaking of toys, save your money and refrain from buying toy tv sets, toy stereos, toy tool kits, toy telephones and the like. They don’t fool anyone. Your wise offspring will still prefer to play with the real things.

o Tape your favorite novels shut. Either that or be prepared to watch your baby Einstein open your precious books and gleefully rip the pages one by one.

o You can now sell your lawnmower. All you need to do is set your kid loose in the garden and you will have patches of grass (and flowers) plucked out by eager diminutive fingers in no time.

o Buy hundreds of rubber placemats and stick them together until they make up one big piece that can cover your entire kitchen. This is the only way to ensure that your kitchen remains immaculately clean after feeding your rowdy baby.

o The above also applies to your bathroom. Simply substitute placemats with towels.

o Stash all medicines in a locked cabinet – except your baby’s medicines. Those you can leave within easy reach because no matter what you do, children just hate, hate, hate taking their medicine.

o Experts warn that we must unplug electrical appliances when not in use. In truth, kids actually unplug all electrical appliances that are in use. So really, you can just leave everything on. Your troublesome tot will automatically switch everything off by eagerly pulling the plugs.

o Never shut the door. There is nothing like a closed door to turn your small angel into a wailing, shrieking, kicking, pounding banshee.

o Learn to stop saying no. The more you say no, the more stubbornness will ensue. For unruly rugrats, “no” easily translates to “Do it some more…fast…before I get caught!” Be smart and improvise accordingly. Try holding your tongue and letting them do whatever they want to do until they get tired of it.

If you have similar tips in mind, do share them. We the hapless have no option but to stick together and learn from each other in order to survive the topsy-turvy planet of parenthood.

Now, please excuse me while I pad our kitchen with placemats. Our two year-old bundle of crazy energy is getting ready for lunch.


FoxxFyrre said...

Ha ha, loved the post. Next year--hide the tools, especially screwdrivers. And if you do need to use the tools yourself take your child and, duct tape, blind fold, bury, lend out to neighbors, find a boarding preschool, hire Mary Poppins--- do anything, just so your little one does not witness the use of a hand tool for the first time. Or, you'll have an entire houseful of "What did this belong to".

Bearette24 said...

Good advice! I've seen kids and boxes in action. Don't they like pots and pans, too?

vk-mahalkaayo said...

hello irene,
nice post, but i would say, graduated na talaga ako nito....lol
noon din, when my kids kapareho ng age ng anak mo...sabi pa, akong kumanta,akong sumayaw at ako rin ang koskos----
thanks for sharing....
nandito na ako, sabi pa page 2 na...lol

Thanks for the visit, Irene, I am very happy for your visit...glad to meet you.

sigi, regards and have a nice weeksday.
pabalik,balik na lang ako dito ha?
thanks again......

ian said...

Funny stuff, Lovely Irene! Thanks for making me laugh.


Irene said...

Frank: I got it.

Tools + Toddlers = Tragedy

Thanks for the invaluable tip, my friend. I'll be sure to remember that.

Now, if only I can get hold of that Mary Poppins...

Bearette: I would recommend pots and pans as great toy substitutes, if only they did not make enough noise to incur the wrath of an entire neighborhood. ;p

Vicki: Congratulations on being a childproofing graduate! You should be the one giving us tips then. =)

Ian the Irresistible Irish: I feel privileged to know I have brought some cheer to the day of a famous writer. ;p

Have a wonderful week ahead!

Peter said...

Hi Irene, thanks for the visit to holtieshouse, call in anytime.
Even my grandkids are beyond this stage now thankfully.

The Winged Acrophobic said...

If your amplifier or radio or TV has a volume knob or lever within reach of the octopus, always check its position before turning on the contraption. Switching any of these on with the volume at max sounds like an explosion. Enough for a fright, even if the speakers survive. This came from personal from experience...

twilite said...

Hi Irene! Great tips...had a good laugh! Childproof?! Thanks.

jase said...


love your cookie monster !!!

Irene said...

Peter: Kudos to you for surpassing the childproofing stage!

My folks say the joy of being a grandparent makes up for the hardships of parenthood. I hope this is true in your case. =)

The Winged Acrophobic: That is indeed a vital tip. How could I have forgotten to include it? ;p

Twilite: Glad you had a bit of fun. Catch you again soon!

Jase: He really is our cookie monster...wreaking havoc wherever he goes yet managing to remain lovable all the while. :p

Paolo... said...

Very very funny...A good laugh it has given me!ü though, it gave me some second thoughts on having a kid in the future...

Mom said...

The best kitchen design for a family with babies: cover the entire kitchen, walls,floor and ceiling, with porcelain tile. Put a drain in the middle of the floor. After feeding baby you can hose the entire room down and wash the mess down the drain.

homo escapeons said...

That was a fantastic,scary reminder of days gone by. I remmeber thinking how it seems that this STAGE will never end!!

The greatest truth is the empty box..you can buy a $400 toy and that damn box that it came in will easily grab and hold their attention.

In a couple of years you will get YOUR house back so hang in there.
Sorry I am trying not to laugh but it suddenly feels so rewarding to have survived four kids..how did I do that?

SQT said...

And wine. Lots of wine for the mom. ;)

Joan said...

Hi and thanks for stopping by my blog. Wow...your post is perfect. I'm going to print it out and take it with us when we go to visit my husband's goddaughter and her family in a few weeks to celebrate the first birthday of their son. I'm sure they'll love your list!

Irene said...

Paolo: Be afraid. Be very afraid.


Don't let my post intimidate you too much, dahling. Kids are still worth every crazy moment...trust me. ;p

Mom: Your parental experience is evident. Yours in an excellent kitchen design innovation indeed! Must get on it right away. =)

Homo Escapeons: FOUR kids?? And you have survived to tell your tale??

Amazing! You lend me much hope, my friend. ;p

SQT: (Popping a bottle open...) Cheers, my fellow loony mommy!

Joan: That's so great! I'm flattered you thought of printing and sharing my list. =)

Thanks a lot for visiting my site. I'll be sure to check in with you often. Take care!

carlota said...

haaaaaayyyyyyy childproofing. yep gotta hide everything. good post. sa akin naman iba na ang babantayan ko. hehehe. Thanks nga pala sa visit mo sa blogspot ko. Hope we can exchange link.

Take care.

Irene said...

Carlota: You're another childproofing graduate, I see. Buti ka pa! ;p

It's good to see you here. I hope you visit often. Catch you again soon!

AnnieElf said...

Hi Irene and welcome back to my blog anytime. I'm laughing here in California. I remember when so well. I may be ready for two year olds again by the time my kids make me a grannie.

Irene said...

AnnieElf: Glad to have given you a bit of cheer and some material for fond reminiscing. Thanks for dropping by and see you again! ;p

Shelby said...

kids and boxes!!! Oh my .. I remember being a kid and playing with boxes - great fun!!

-Princess Shin- said...

Haha.. your little boy has really grown! So adorable! How old is he now anyway?

I like the part where you mention the boxes! I remember how much I love playing with boxes when I was younger! The opportunity to create things are just endless! It can be your home, your school, your little jungle! Haha..

Transformers is great isnt it! Absolutely fantastic! The best show in the world!!! =)

samrina said...

Nice post :)

Thanks for your words at my blog and your smiles :)

Hope you are fine.

Take care

Kris said...

I love the advice for protecting the house from the baby..All too true!

Nikon said...

Very funny - & a lot of work to compile all of that info :)

KatieBelle said...

Haha ;)

I'll remember this when I have little ones of my own.

Irene said...

Shelby: Not only is playing with boxes fun...it is also a great cost-saver in the toys department. Haha! ;p

Pretty Princess Shin: My son is now 2 years and 3 months old. He is really a handful...but adorable just the same. =)

Oh, just having you mention Transformers makes me want to watch it again!

Smiling Samrina: Thank you for visiting my blog! You're always welcome here, sweetie. =)

Kris: Glad you enjoyed. Keep the list for when you have your own little ones running around. :)

Nikon: I admit it took some time putting my list together but I throughly enjoyed it every step of the way. :p

Katiebelle: Great! Be sure to let me know if any of the tips helped. ;p

Gina said...

Great list!

I agree, people put up too much stuff to keep their house the same, when they just need to totally alter the house! After all, the child is a fairly permanent resident!

Irene said...

Gina: Exactly. :p

Have a good weekend!

wolfbaby said...

you forgot to say water proof those cell phones and remote controls.. not just for when your troublesome tot climbs onto the closed and locked tolit and turns on the bathroom sink but for also the one still teething that will shuve anything in his her mouth....

ahh the joys of toddler hood

Irene said...

Wolfbaby: By golly, you're right! I can't recall how many times our impish boy has attempted to sneak into the bathroom in an attempt to flush an assortment of things down the toilet! ;p

jenny said...

Thanks for the great tips about childproofing you home.