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Family Matters

10 Things You Can Definitely Say to Kids at 3am

Because in the middle of the night, all bets are off

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It's one thing to have a little baby crying out to be fed in the middle of the night, parental instinct kicks in and you find the energy. Then there's the other kind of midnight wakings, the ones from walking, talking bigger kids that sometimes require a bit more than just love. Here, ten things that officially don't count as bad parenting if you say them in the middle of the night. 

1. Oh, hello. No, I didn't notice that you'd been standing there poking me with your untrimmed fingernail for two whole minutes.

2. That's what pullups are for, Honey.

3. I have absolutely no idea why there's sand in your sheets. It's January. You know who might know? Daddy. Hey, hey, Daddy?

4. Of course you can have more dinner. At breakfast.

5. Yes, the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, and the Tooth Fairy are cousins. (Not sure if I can prove it.)

6. Oh, here's the issue! You were just sleeping on the wrong side of the pillow, you silly goose. Let's flip it over, and... see you in four more hours!

7. Ah, those are acorns hitting the roof. You know, in some parts of the world, children wish for noisy acorns because they are good luck and mean you will grow five inches this year. Wowee!

8. I'm sorry your white noise machine sounds more like rainbow noise. But rainbow noise is the best! 

9. So: This is just a dream. You are having a dream about Mummy standing in the kitchen eating your leftover birthday cake. It's only a dream. In real life Mummy definitely didn't just eat the dried-out fondant solar system.

10. Okay, new plan: Here's the phone. Just press the speed dial button for Grandma if you wake up again. See? G, for Grandma. She's probably up worrying about us all anyway.

Lauren Smith Brody is a writer, consultant, and founder of The Fifth Trimester. She is also the author of the upcoming book The Fifth Trimester: The Working Mom's Guide to Style, Sanity, and Big Success After Baby (Doubleday, April 2017).