I'm looking at Max lying in the bathtub, lying on his belly, his cute little arse cheeks nipped together like an angry muffin.
"Drink water," he says as he takes a gulp and grins, his upper lip sporting a thick bubble-stash.
"Drink water, drink water..."
He repeats it again and again until I warn, "Now Max, you know you're not supposed to drink the bath water. It's dirty."
He looks at me for a long time, his orange eyebrows entwining to form a question mark. One day soon he will ask: But mom, if the water is dirty, why am I in it?
Touché, little dude, touché.
He is growing so fast. He's the full length of the bathtub. He has a moustache for God sake! Holy crap, it must be time to have another baby.
I feel a sudden ache in my uterus and a burning in my loins. Desire? Hells no. That's just the lifelong repercussion of squeezing a human out of my magic muckle. Oh the horror.
So... It's 2012. A new year. Do I spit out a new youngster or not? I am torn. And oh how I wish that was not a play on words.
This calls for one of the things that my husband dreads more than penis-kabobs: A LIST. Don't worry, honey. It's not a honey-do list... unless it concludes with "do me," in which case I'm confident you'll have no problem following orders. It's a list of pros and cons. To breed or not to breed: that is the question.
PRO: Max gets a brother or a sister.
CON: I have to grow said brother or sister inside my body and get it here via the Va-Jay-Jay Express.
PRO: The Bearded Oyster is already a dive, so why not close shop altogether and go home with a nice souvenir?
CON: I am well-healed and back to my pre-prego weight and pretty pleased with it, despite the extra stomach skin that makes me look like an accordion when I sit down. (Crop tops prohibited.) Why mang all that merchandise up again?
PRO: I get an extra human to produce grandchildren for me.
CON: I have to worry that said human will produce grandchildren at age 13. Coming up next on TLC... 13 and Pregnant! Followed at 10:30 by Nanny Nightmares: My Kid is a Little Tramp.
PRO: We get a baby to love and cuddle.
CON: The baby is a demon who keeps me up all night and ruins my shirts with puke and poop.
PRO: If it's a boy, I get to reuse all Max's perfectly unsoiled clothes.
CON: If it's a girl, I have to buy a bunch of pink clothes so our daughter doesn't look like k.d. lang.
PRO: We get to make another living, breathing masterpiece. Max is way too cute to have just one of him. Exhibit A...
CON: Maybe Max used up all the good DNA and this one is doomed to get the leftovers: big nose, big ears, third nipple, and eye of Cyclops.
CON: Every time I do a jumping jack at the gym, I pee a little.
PRO: Once I'm pregnant, I can eat what I want because I'm going to get fat anyways. My pet saying as a prego? "Quarter Pounder with Cheese Combo, six nuggets on the side and an apple pie, si vous NOWWWW."
CON: My ass will resemble the broad side of a barn for at least six to nine months, with the possibility of permanent barnliness; even the barn will mistake me for one of the livestock.
Need proof? This was a full-size Clydesdale...
CON: Bye-bye, MILF T-shirt. Hello, saddle. My career as a swimsuit model is so over.
PRO: Cha-ching! Another kid, another $1,000 from the Newfoundland and Labrador Government.
CON: Cha-shit! The average cost of raising a child in Canada: $14 zillion. And that's just the Goldfish crackers.
PRO: Wayne and Rosena Murphy get grandbaby number 10 for a nice even number. Shirley Combden gets grandkid number four... maybe a girl this time?
CON: Not gonna happen, sister. The walls of my uterus are painted blue. Last Thursday, I pooped a dump truck decal and a handful of gravel.
PRO: I get a year off.
CON: I get a year trapped in a time warp, relying on EI which doesn't cover shit, not even shit catchers. Yesterday, I noticed the price of diapers has gone up: $41.99 for a box of 100. Shooooooot. Today, Max is wearing a dishcloth.
PRO: Andrew could take paternity leave, so I could go on working.
CON: I may be inclined to strangle Andrew with my rope-like boobs.
CON: Yes, breastfeeding deflated my boobs and now I have to wear a super-duper push-up bra just to keep the suckers out of my pockets. This can only get worse.
PRO: I get to go to mommy and baby movies at Empire Theatres on Thursday mornings.
CON: No I don't, because I have another kid at home ruining my life.
PRO: I can get one of those kickass double strollers.
CON: I need one of these damn double strollers. Can I borrow 20 bucks? How much can I get for this MILF T-shirt?
PRO: Max can use the baby as a pillow in the stroller. Bonus.
CON: Andrew and I will be so busy being parents, we'll forget about being a couple.
PRO: We'll be so busy being parents, we'll forget about our relationship problems.
CON: I set my career back a notch or two. Come on people, you know it's true. One of the reasons there'll never be a female president: We're breeders.
CON: I'll never find the time to write a book. *POUT*
CON: Andrew is not the doting type. So when I start getting fat and uncomfortable, I can look forward to NOT getting my feet massaged.
CON: My dad was sick when I was pregnant. He died when Max was nine months old. So I associate pregnancy with impending doom. Textbook psychiatry. I can diagnose myself because I am a doctor part-time.
CON: First trimester nausea. Once, on my way to work, I threw up in my hat.
CON: Second trimester semi-chubbiness when people aren't sure if you are having a baby or if you just had a big lunch. Awkward.
CON: Third trimester bulbousness when people mistake you for the Penguin from Batman, followed by the awesome sensation of carrying a bowling ball in your underwear.
CON: Vagination Ruination: the Sequel.
CON: The Meat Curtain Massacre, Part Deux.
CON: Hotdogs in Hallways: The Final Poke.
CON: Wow, that's a lot of cons. To top it off, maybe one of my kids will be a con. Max is already terrible at sharing, and goes ape-shit for toys at the store. Just steps away from kleptomania, I reckon.
PRO: Kids keep us young as they see the magic of the world and discover it for the first time. My boobs may sag, but my spirit will soar.
CON: "Whatever, Trevor!" Yours truly, Broken Twat.
PRO: Max will have someone to help pick out my casket.
PRO: Max won't be the only one humiliated by his mother's maniacal musings.
Also on HuffPost: Cutest Baby And Kid Viral Videos Of 2011
This little guy has a promising career as a motivational speaker, as long as he continues to BELIEVE IN HIMSELF.
While a baby replicating the universal Monday-morning struggle is adorable, parents with babies who won't sleep (aka ALL BABIES) were wondering how something as cute as this ever came to be.
It's rare to actually witness the making of a diabolical genius. Even rarer to find one so precocious that they've perfected their evil cackle before they're potty-trained.
Because nothing can be accepted without cynicism, there were questions about the authenticity of little Lily Clem's birthday breakdown. But then she went on Fox News, did her happy dance and convinced us that even in the age of the Internet, old-fashioned wonder and gratitude can make us smile.
Don't even think about proposing to this 5-year-old. She's not going to marry you until she has a job, okay? Okay.
Elliott's exhilarated hoot at the 00:46 mark is worth watching on repeat. If only all first kisses were this delightful.
From a rendition of Super Bass in her home in the UK to multiple appearances on The Ellen Show, Sophia Grace Brownlee might just be the biggest breakout Internet star of 2011. Last we heard, she and cuz Rosie were Ellen's correspondents on the red carpet at the AMAs. It's only a matter of time before this powerhouse mini-diva gets a record deal -- and her own junior league of admirers.
The original video that started the 'trick-your-kids-for-15-seconds-of-fame' trend. Not sure we approve...that is, until we find ourselves watching the brothers at 3:44 for the bazillionth time.
Someone blowing their nose: scary or hysterical? Sometimes, it's both. Finding out that your baby thinks so and that it will be an excellent way to distract him until the next nap... joyful.
Paper! More funny than sneezing! This laugh is so delicious, it almost came in at most popular.
With 55 million views, it's the babbling twins. "Dadadafadatada" has never been more compelling.
Follow Vicki Murphy on Twitter: www.twitter.com/motherbloggery