What I've learned in the past decade (in no particular order of experience):
1.) You can break your own nose after delivering a baby. (Yes. See other parent-related epiphanies below.)
2.) When people show you who they are, believe them.
3.) If your parents were even remotely effective raising you, you'll hear them long after they've gone.
4.) Street food in Peru, green light. In Mexico, yellow light. In India, RED LIGHT.
5.) You can also break your toe whilst skinny-dipping. So be careful!
6.) Macs are just better.
7.) Drive-thrus for coffee are great, but I prefer sipping a cappuccino. For an hour. In Italy.
8.) Teaching is really effing hard if you want to be good at it. Twelve years in, I still have a LOT to learn.
9.) To have a quiet place of refuge, outside of your home, is an imperative.
10.) All you need is love, sure, and it doesn't hurt to have some income.
10.) Your best friend is the person you can try on really tight jeans (or fill in your own blank) in front of. Your soulmate is the person who knows you better than you know yourself. (Thank you, soulmate, for putting up with me. I love you.)
10.) The Open Road awaits You! Seize your days with passion and humor.
What we've learned so far about having two kids under two, so far:
1.) No one sleeps in. Nor ever will. Until the kids are in high school, and only then if they opt not to do anything extracurricular that involves "practice" or "drills" at 8 a.m. on weekends.
2.) The kids do not like to nap simultaneously unless there is a rare alignment of stars. On such occasions, it is imperative to ignore what has to get done, and pull up a frozen chocolate bar and a couch.
3.) Change one diaper, might as well change another.
4.) Give one kid some vitamin D, might as well give the other one some too.
5.) One person in the house gets a cold, we'll all have it within 15 minutes.
6.) Dinner with a two-year-old can drive one to laughter and madness. (See video below.)
7.) We need to begin to get ready to leave the house about two hours beforehand (at least by thinking about leaving the house).
8.) Never underestimate the value of having good music in the car.
8a.) Mexican music is hilarious to a toddler.
8b.) The folk music CD's at the library are great driving music: the original hippies had
kids, too. Very good option when you've Raffi'd your guts out.
8c.) The international Sesame Street CD is terrific if you hope your toddler learns
"Rubber Duckie" in CHINESE, tonality for indecipherable tonality.
9.) Sesame Street is a gift from the media gods. Thank you, PBS. (Wonder Pets are a close second.) Now Devi can add these words to her budding vocab: "incognito," "reporter," "octagon," "two-point-OH!" "costume," "investigate," and "hip hop."
10.) We are so, so, so lucky.
Happy 2011, everybody!