1. The 'why' question will be asked 1800 times, every day, forever. You will never have the right answer.
2. Standing on Lego hurts. Every time. And so does standing on Sylvanian Families animals and My Little Ponies. Don't expect sympathy from your toddler though, he will be too worried about how your apparent injury will affect your ability to give him a shoulder ride.
3. There is no logic like toddler logic. Just nod your head. Then let them wear gumboots and their winter coat to the park in summer.
4. Just when you think you've got bedtime and naptime sorted, prepare yourself for pre-sleep shenanigans which will test your patience to its limits. Prepare to read the toddler his three longest books - without skipping any pages. And then read them again. If you were planning to leave his room without waking him, forget about it. You can have the quietest, nimblest exit strategy - but you will still wake him.
5. It doesn't matter how good your cooking is. Your children will make you believe it's rubbish. They hold the power to make you lose confidence in all of your creations. And remember, the same dish gobbled up one day might mean that it is never, ever touched again.
6. Your life will be accompanied by a new soundtrack. Your child will take their pick from Mickey Mouse's Clubhouse, Peppa Pig or Postman Pat. You will still hear the words when you go to bed at night. They are still going round come morning.
7. Don't go out drinking. If you fail at this rule, your children will wake you up at 5am the next day. This is their way of punishing you. They might have even been sick in their beds for you. They will probably want to jump on your bed after you've cleaned up their mattresses too. You won't object - it's 5am.
8. Learn how to fit all the snacks your children love, and those that they hate and never ask for, into your bag. You will come to know the power of these life savers.. A good one will buy you time and peace at the doctor's surgery. A bad one will results in public tantrums. (These are to be avoided at all costs.)
9. Never take a good night's sleep for granted. Never be tempted to be productive when the kids have a miraculously early night. Never entertain the idea of putting away laundry because you've got a whole free evening. JUST GO TO SLEEP.
10. Your kitchen floor will never be crumb-free again and your shoulders will never be drool-free either. You will also always think you can smell wee or poo or sick, but you'll never be completely sure where it is coming from.