My Kids Suck at Not Spilling

I love my kids. They’re good at a lot of things, relatively speaking of course. For example, my son is good at math for his age. He’s not really GOOD at math yet.

A glass after spilling

Just another victim

That said, one of the things that they are not good at (in fact they suck) is NOT spilling drinks. Forget a relative measure, they’re just terrible. I suppose you could flip it around and say that they are incredibly talented at spilling, but that would have to be in an alternative universe where getting up in the middle of the night or refusing to learn how to wipe are considered virtues. We do not live in that world as far as I know.

Maybe your kids suck at not spilling too. If so, you also probably spend each meal on defense…not quite a nervous wreck, but definitely on edge. My wife and I constantly watch their glass placement, racing to adjust, as they invariably choose to put it on the cusp or bottom corner of their placemat. It’s incredibly relaxing.

My wife and I constantly watch their glass placement, racing to adjust, as they invariably choose to put it on the cusp or bottom corner of their place mat. It’s incredibly relaxing.

Chubbs, who is probably good at spilling

Hi Chubbs!

My oldest daughter (8) recently broke her arm, and has a cast that goes beyond her elbow. We’ve started calling her “Chubbs”, in reference to the Happy Gilmore character with the disproportioned wooden arm (it’s a good visual). Already sucking big time at not spilling, she has now moved on to an epic level of sucking as she takes out not just her glass but also any other glass or item that finds the misfortune of being in her cast’s way.

Sippy cups prevent spilling, but they suck to clean

The Devil

You’re probably thinking, “Hey, moron. Try using sippy cups. Problem solved.” One problem solved, another one created kemosabe. Plastic sippy cups are incredibly dangerous, as toxic materials leach off of them into your child’s beverage. Just kidding. Well, maybe not, but I’m pretty sure they’ll survive the leaching. We all used to chew on lead pencils and we turned out perfectly. My issue with sippy cups is that I hate nothing more than having to clean them at the end of the night. They always seem to appear out of nowhere. I’m finally ready to shut it down, and then BAM, I see a rotting sippy cup that requires my cursory cleaning skills. The worst ones have the stupid rubber flow stoppers. Ugh. Hence, cleaning a sippy cup sucks more to me than cleaning up the mess created by a spill.

Another suggestion would be to only fill their cups half way. If you haven’t noticed, we are raising the most hydrated generation ever. These goofballs can’t go anywhere without a water bottle. They plow through beverages like Cookie Monster devours cookies, thus the “half fill” approach means that you have to get up several times during the meal in an attempt to quench their unquenchable thirst…which means that you aren’t on spill defense…resulting in more spilling.

If you haven’t noticed, we are raising the most hydrated generation ever.

Of course, I sucked at not spilling as a kid too. My father used to explode at us, claiming that we “needed to start paying attention” (that was a massively edited version of what we were actually told). Sadly, some of my favorite moments in childhood occurred the few times that HE spilled. We couldn’t say anything, but there was a deliciously awkward silence amongst the minions as he yelled at himself and made some half-baked excuse for his misstep. As a result, I keep my temper in check the best I can with my own brood as they continue with their unplanned “cleansing” of any dining space in which they reside.

I suppose things will get better with time, although given that my youngest is three, I’m forecasting heavy flooding for the foreseeable future. Thankfully, one of our podcast guests shared an oddly relevant piece of parenting advice that I’m doing my best to employ – “EMBRACE THE SUCK!”