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17 Other Uses for Children

We procreate to see ourselves live on in others, to understand just how much love our hearts can accommodate without exploding. Our offspring show us how the world is, not how it should be.

Oh, and we have kids, too, because society tells us if we're uncorking a bottle of red wine at 2:47 p.m., there must be some semblance of an excuse.

Here are 17 additional uses for children other than, you know, all the love stuff:

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1. Alarm clock

If coffee doesn't wake you up when your baby does at 5 a.m., the smell of their dirty diaper will do the trick.

2. Cancellation Excuse

So sorry I couldn't make it to the PTA fundraiser/skin care happy hour presentation/homeowners' association meeting regarding lawn furniture. My child needed me.

3. Late pass

My apologies for being late. Darn kids!

4. House mess

Oh, I'm not the slob. *Points to tiny humans.*

5. Three words: MAC AND CHEESE.

It's not for me. It's for the children.

6. Dirty hair? Don't care.

I am responsible for keeping others alive. Being clean is the least of my concerns. (Same goes for the yoga pants and the pajama top I've been wearing since last Wednesday.)

7. Handbag hoarder

Because I'm selfless like that.

The selection of handbags in my closet is not because I have an unhealthy need to be in possession of a variety of purses to match my shoes; it's because I require different styles and sizes of sacks depending on what I need to tote around for my offspring. Because I'm selfless like that.

8. 'Inside Out'

No, you see Oscar-winning animated features for yourself. I see them for the sake of my babies.

9. Beer-getter

When a child is finally old enough to understand what you mean when you instruct them to fetch your alcohol from the fridge, and they can bring it to you without dropping it? Priceless.

10. Ditto for your iPhone

They can spend an hour attempting to locate their own shoes when they're already on their feet, but you know they can find your iPhone in under 42 seconds when it goes missing.

11. IT support

Your 5-year-old may not be able to operate a non-electric toothbrush without an instruction manual and major hand-holding. Yet when you can't figure out how to program a remote control/download a new app/work the DVR, that same kid somehow knows just as much, if not more, than a Genius in the Apple store.

12. Snack police

Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar? Ask the Preschool Detective who resides one bedroom over. If they didn't eat it, they'll know who did. Trust.

I would tonight, honey. But, you know, the kids.

13. Sextus Interruptus

I would tonight, honey. But, you know, the kids.

14. Pooch predicament

Oh, this flab of fat hanging off my abdomen? My tummy used to resemble a washboard. A very thin and attractive washboard, in fact. However, you-know-who went and got born and—poof!—there goes my Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover.

15. Messenger

Don't feel like having a conversation by yelling at someone on the other side of the house? Don't feel like going to the other side of the house to talk? That's what kids are for.

16. Keep you honest-er

Need a reminder that a sleeve of Thin Mints at 7:04 a.m. isn't the best way to start your day AND remain on your diet? Keep in mind that if you open them now, you'll have to share them.

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17. It's whine o'clock somewhere

If you need an excuse to drink mid morning—other than a fourth-straight episode of "Dora" and preparing the ninth snack since breakfast—oh, wait. You're a parent. That's your excuse. Cheers!

Photograph by: Twenty20

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