Okay I’ll admit, as a mom I wasn’t as crazy about the baby years and toddler years as some moms are. Maybe because I had a toddler and two babies at the same time. Or maybe it’s just because having two kids the same age makes everything harder. Whatever the reason, those first few years just weren’t for me…they were HARD. This whole 4 year old time has been my favorite so far.
I remember when Ethan became a four year old, and then again when the twins turned four. Everything just got, well, a little easier. And more fun. And less stressful.
When my kids turned four, they became more independent…more curious…more inquisitive…more opiniated. I got a real sense of their personalities and senses of humor.
To sum it up, they became more like little people than big babies. They start saying and doing things that surprise you and make you laugh. Sometimes you’re mortified by what they say or do, but it’s still memorable. For me, 4 year olds just rock.
And I’m excited about doing so many things now that they are little girls and not “babies” anymore. We can go places without (too many) fears of tantrums and flip outs. We don’t have to lug around huge diaper bags and coolers anymore – if they need to go potty we go. If they’re hungry we find something to feed them. Going out and about – whether for a few hours or a few days – isn’t hard anymore!
For example: we’ve taken the kids on vacations before. They’ve been camping in the Sequoias and boating on the river. We have done mini-vacation weekend trips and have even considered our first “big” family trip. Fun? Yes. Work. TOTALLY. But this summer we’ll be spending a trip in Palm Desert, and I’m really looking forward to it.
Why would I be looking forward to staying at a hotel for 7 days in 100+ degree heat? Because the kids love being in the pool. They’d love nothing more than spending entire days around the pool, playing and eating snacks (we are staying at a resort and there are a million other things to do, too.)
And when they’re done, they’ll ask to go back to the room to watch TV. Or if they get tired, they’ll ask for a rest. They can tell me if they want to read or play a game or play on the iPad. They can tell me when they are hungry or tired. I don’t have to try to guess or figure it out. It’s kinda cool.
And they are actively helping around the house with things that interest them. They all love to help Daddy and he’s very patient and good about letting them help.
Mia loves to help make meals and clean up the kitchen afterwards. Lila loves helping in the garden. Both girls love to clean. I score!
They are starting to venture out to do things without me…
I love when they say sweet things…like this one from Ethan (okay, he’s not four, but they all say sweet stuff like this!):
Sometimes they say or do not so sweet things too…
They also say some really funny things. Like this one over the weekend from Mia that I tweeted about:
Walking down the hotel hallway &as we pass a woman dressed to go to the pool, Mia proclaims “Mom! She has really big boobs!” #KidsAreAwesome
— Natalie H (@NatalieHoage) May 17, 2014
Or this one from Ethan:
I’m really loving all of their ages right now, and can’t believe that the girls are going to be five in just a few months. Those baby years I’m not missing. But I am already missing Year #4.