K turns four tomorrow.
It feels like just yesterday I was going to bed after a long day of walking, errands, and a birthday party. It feels like just yesterday I wasn’t sure when she would arrive.
I cannot even remember who I was then or what in the world I did with my time.
K on eve of four is just as stubborn, just as delightful as she has been her entire life. Well, just as delightful anyway – I think the addition of her little brother wore down some of the stubborness about some things some of the time. Maybe. (C might disagree with me.)
She loves glitter and sparkle, animal figures and books, Fro.zen and fairies. She likes the idea of having magical powers, she spends time pretending to be a “baby doggy,” and no matter what she is doing, her brother’s things always seem so much more interesting to her.
She eagerly talks about family and their relationship to her. She understands the difference between immediate and extended family, though not using those words, and she talks about marrying both her cousin and her brother one day. She likes to think about all the people who are connected to her – which reminds C and I of when she would not stop crying as a baby and we would bounce her and sing a made up song about all the people who love her. “It’s okay. It’s okay. Everybody loves you and it’s okay” and then off to the names.
K thinks animals are great. She likes visiting the aquarium and the zoo and routinely asks to visit either – or both. She likes to go on “adventures” and if not adventures, walks, which are never the same thing. She is eager to visit playgrounds and is getting better and better at talking to the other kids, though she still resorts to shy and anxious behaviors from time to time. Her favorite playgrounds are the “water playground,” the “playground by school” and the “inside playground.” She is getting braver and braver with her climbing and jumping around and I try to hold myself back from saying “be careful, be careful” every five seconds. We play hide and seek at the inside playground and she squeals with laughter when I find her. She also vacillates between hiding somewhere easy and obvious and somewhere more tricky – even when she hides somewhere “hard,” she often gives herself away.
Favorite foods right now are any kind of fruit, pancakes, lollipops, hot dogs, red peppers (she LOVES red peppers), smoothies, and juice when she is allowed to have it. On Thursdays – the last day of daycare for her – I usually bring a special treat – she is always hopeful that the treat is chocolate.
Speaking of school, she was in the “3s room” this past school year and she is eagerly anticipating the “4s room” in the fall. She has grown exponentially in her willingness to interact with various types of adults thanks largely to school and has also developed additional skills, like writing the letters of her name. She has made some friends and she and I have a joke where I know the names of all of the kids in the class except for her.
Regarding her brother, K is finally experiencing the highs and lows of having a more mobile, more aware sibling. They play so well together at times and it is clear that J looks up to her. At other times they struggle more and I anticipate the struggle becoming more and more challenging over time. One game they like to play together is a game in which K says different words and tells J to say them too. Another game is when the both get in the fold up tunnel we have and walk around the room like an inch worm. Outside, they both play with balls, the slide, the water table, and the swimming pool.
I am fading fast with all this writing, but I want to add that K likes to dance, she likes to play, she likes to be a part of things. She has made friends with the neighbors and whenever she sees them says hello and, if they are children, asks if she can go play. She likes dresses and skirts, the song Fre.e Fal.ling, and time with her grandparents (especially her grandmom who has watched her every Friday since she was 12 weeks old). She is warm, but can be self-protecting and cool if she isn’t prepared for something or if she has alternate preferences. She makes us laugh in a hundred different ways, gives the best hugs (including one where she hangs around our necks), enjoys all the stuffed animals, and likes looking at old pictures.
She wants to simultaneously grow “bigger and bigger and bigger” and “stay a baby forever.”
I want that too.