Salad Dressing is the Answer laughing at the little things


One of the best things about being a parent is the unexpected hilarity. It comes out of nowhere, in the tiniest of moments, and turns frustration into unbridled laughter. We noticed this as soon as Ellie was born and it has never stopped being true. Now we are seeing these special moments with Lyra, and especially in the chaos that comes with two tiny people.

Take a normal weekday. Lyra has reached textbook “peak fussiness” at six weeks, and has spent the day being disgruntled at her new world. Sometimes Lyra will only be calmed with a boob or a finger in her mouth, so we had reluctantly tried a dummy for the first time the night before, to great success.


Early evening is always the witching hour. Looking after two little ones is a whirlwind, but as long as I don’t need to sit down or drink (hot) coffee, it’s frantic but fun. By 6pm, however, we have two tiny people who are tired and hungry, plus a tired and hungry mummy, just at the point when an extra task is added into the mix – making dinner. One handed.

It is clear that tonight is a moment to embrace the dummy. I’ll just pick it up off the table and…

Hang on, where is it? I KNOW it was here earlier.

All eyes turn to Ellie as suspect number one. Ellie has taken a special interest in dummies since we received one as a free gift. She’s been desperate to give it to Lyra whenever she cries.

“Ellie sweetheart, have you moved Lyra’s dummy?”


“Ummm… yeah, I think so. I did have it. I’m not sure where i had it. Maybe… it’s in the fridge?”

Reader, it was not in the fridge.


Joe finishes work and joins the chaos. The three of us hunt for the dummy, while Lyra loudly bemoans our ineptitude. No joy, so we stick to the tried and tested method – Joe squats holding Lyra. Lyra cries. Ellie brushes her teeth. I wash up. One multi-tasking family.

Wait a minute, what’s this? Last night’s jug of vinaigrette rattles as I pick it up. Inside is the now syrupy missing dummy. Of course. Why didnt we think to look there? Joe and I are in hysterics as Lyra wails in the background. Who knew salad dressing was the natural home for a dummy? Blimmin’ toddlers.


Hope restored, I wash off the slimy oil and start sterilising the dummy in hot water.


It’s coming Lyra! Alexa… five minute timer.

Waaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh. Waaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh. Beep, beep, beep.

It’s ready! But what’s that?


Hic. Hiccup. Hic. Coooooooo.

Before I can approach Lyra with the dummy, I see a baby transformed. She is kicking away merrily on the mat.

Joe and I watch, amazed, as this suddenly happy baby gently closes her eyes. Open. Closed. Open. Closed. 

The sparklingly clean dummy is redundant.

I’m sure these girls are just toying with us.