There is only one way to avoid a bath time battle, writes Emily Jade.

Gerard and I are having a fight. I’d called to him to assist me bathing Millie and he didn’t hear me from wherever he was hiding in the house. Bath time has become a battle in our home; I need all soldiers in the trenches.

I have a poster by the artist Sark who describes herself as a transformer who speaks through words and spirit. Arty speak for she writes cool sentences in different colours and has made a motza. In one of her musings titled ‘How to really love a child’ she says “if they are crabby put them in water”. I used to think that was the loveliest thing, but what happens when putting them in the water is the cause of the crabbiness, which in turn turns me crabby and then the whole house is crabby because, hygiene.

I’ve tried most things to lure her into the shallows of the tub.

I’ve jumped in with her so she has a playmate, doing my best not to scare her with what’s to come for her future figure after my grandchildren are born.

I’ve raided the pantry and used food dye to make different coloured bubbly water. It worked until the grout in the tiles turned pink.

Every kitchen utensil has ended up in the bathroom for bath time cooking, but after a while I couldn’t look dinner guests in the eye knowing the salad servers they were using had just sat in water that she had probably pee’d in.

Then came Water Crayons so she could draw on the bath. Silly me thought she would contain the drawings to the ceramic canvas of the tub. It only succeeded in making my ENTIRE bathroom look like the ancient aboriginal rock drawings from the Pilbara.

Still on the search for the secret to soaking my little sweetheart I almost considered that new Slime Baff that’s been advertised on the TV. “Pop a bit of powder into the bath and it magically transforms into slime-tastic, gooey, water!” The pied piper of advertising cooed to its young captive audience “And Mum’s it magically softens and cleans as they play”. Despite it’s inability to spell bath properly, I honestly thought, “That could work!” But then I worried. I have a daughter, would the gunky green slime get into, you know, private places? I turned to the all-knowing Google to find an answer. What came up was “Slime Baff is AWESOME, it looks like dinosaur snot!” I’m sorry, but isn’t a bath meant to clean the slime and snot off the slimy little snots? I don’t fancy my daughter looking like she has been sneezed on by something out of Jurassic Park.

The only answer was right in front of me. Wine.

No, I’m kidding.

Daddy. Daddy’s are way more fun, or so she tells me. This particular night, convinced he was ignoring the call of duty, I stomped around the house to find him in his office. The toilet. After yelling at each other about important matters like when was the last time either of us went to the loo in peace (approximately 3.5 years ago) we turned to see a little girl standing at the door. “Mummy” Millie said with concern “will you stop yelling at Daddy if I give you five dollars? Then you can go and buy three things. That will make you happy!” The dunny debate ended immediately, it’s hard to argue when you are laughing, but it gave me an idea. “Millie, if I give you five dollars, will you get in the bath for Mummy?”

Money talks my friends. You are welcome.