On August 8th, 2016, you turned 4 years 8 months (or 56 months old). You are 47″ tall and weigh 50 pounds 4 ounces. You are still wearing the same sizes as last month: Boys Small for shirts, shorts and pajamas. I just realized you haven’t worn pants for a few months because it’s been so hot lately, so I have no clue what size pants fit you.
Things we did this month…
7/10 – We saw Secret Life of Pets, the movie, at the theater. You enjoyed it so much, that as we were leaving the theater, you were stepping on the lights on the stairs saying, “This will make it play again!”
7/11, week of – You had VBS at MOO Church (Walk This Way theme)
7/12 – We had our annual Dress Like a Cow event at Chick-Fil-A
7/16, weekend – Mountain cabin
7/18, week of – You had VBS at the local Catholic church (Cave Quest theme)
7/23, Irvine Spectrum w/ friends
7/30, stayed home (sick)
Recurring events: Library storytime, Spanish library storytime, Saddleback Kids (Sunday mornings)
Monthly interview of favorite things…
Color: Orange and red.
Song: Jesus loves us this I know, for the Bible tells me so, you like that one?
Movie: Hmmm, let me see. Dino Trucks, I hope that’s coming in my whale.
Snack: Juice and sugar cookies and water.
Dessert: Sugar cookies…oh, uh, cake. Cake, too.
Vegetable: Broccoli and carrots.
Class: Class? I don’t have a class. Oh, oh, the Bible School at Saddleback Church and the Bible School at Mountain View Park
Teacher: The ones at Mountain View Park
Store: My favorite store might be WALMART!
Restaurant: Shacks, do you know what I mean by Shacks? It means Taco Tuesday.
Vacation spot: Big Bear, Michigan, Asia! What part of Asia? Restaurants
Toy: Toy fire trucks. Toy garbage trucks. Toy vets.
Favorite Park: Splash. Splash means the water park.
Theme Park: Disneyland, because we haven’t went there for a long time. Neeah.
Best friend: Bible School!
Favorite Story: Ice Skating Fast
Favorite thing to do with Mommy: Go to Disneyland
Favorite thing to do with Daddy: Go to church
Favorite thing to do with Grandma: Go to the park. Water, water. Splash, splash, splash!
Favorite Shirt: Lightning!
What do you think about being 4? Not good. OK, ok, that’s it. I would be 4. That’s it.
How did you sleep this month…
You’ve slept really well this month. You’ve been falling asleep somewhere around 8:30 PM or 8:45 PM. You’ve been waking up around 6:45 AM. On weekends, you actually sleep until 7:15 AM or so, and I think that would be your “natural” wake time if given the opportunity to wake on your own during the week. You prefer that I wake you before I leave for work, though, so you can say goodbye to us and give us kisses. You enjoy our morning routine.
Things I want to remember about this month…
You were concerned about your father not having a sleeping friend. You have your 2 froggies and your ducky that Grandma H. crocheted for you, I have a bunny rabbit, but your father didn’t have anything. So, one evening I noticed that you had put nursing bear on your father’s side of the bed. You don’t use nursing bear anymore, and you hunted him down and relocated him. Your father was touched by your thoughtfulness.
One Monday after I got home from work and I kissed and hugged you, and I heard about all that you’d done that day, I said jokingly, “You were so busy today, I bet you didn’t even have time to think of me!” You replied in all seriousness, “That’s not true! I thinked of you LOTS today.”
Every night as I snuggle you to sleep, you have a little routine you like to do. Your father turns out the light and you whisper, “One, two, three, DADDY, IT’S BRIGHT IN HERE!” And your father comes back and turns your room light on and says, “It’s not bright in here, THIS is bright!” And you giggle and giggle, and then whisper, “One, two, three… ” You do this four times and you love it so much. You told me one night, “We can do this every night!”
I picked up a bunch of Disney story books on discount at Marshall’s. There’s a Star Wars book, a Disney pets book, a Mickey Mouse book, and you love having one of the stories read to you each night while you’re in your bath. We also read a Bible story, too, and I love this book because the pictures are somewhat realistic and each story has a call out of some historical information about tools used, or clothing or instrument or something, in that time period. Fascinating stuff.
You really enjoy your teeth brushing routine. You lift your little hand and help guide me where the toothbrush needs to go next. I’ve found that letting you hold my hand while I brush helps you feel like you’re in control (you’re not) and it helps you not gag when I get to your molars. I switch it up with you, some nights I let you “guide” my hand, other nights I ask you to point to where the toothbrush should go next. We have about five minutes of flossing to go with it, both before and after you brush.
We attended Chick-Fil-A’s Dress Like a Cow Event and you really enjoyed playing with the other kids in the play structure. After we had eaten our food, you went back in and then came back out and told us, “Someone told me to find the purple bird and that is very hard to find.” You placed your hand on the table and said, “So, can you get a milkshake for dessert? Thank you.” And you turned and left for the playground.
One of the days at your VBS was “crazy hair day” and we bought some temporary hair color, one can of red and one can of blue. You thought it was pretty cool and everywhere you went that day, you proudly showed how we had colored your hair for crazy hair day.
Grandma dropped you off at your third VBS and she texted me this note, “Dropped the little one off. He’s got this figured out now about going to different churches and comparing the toys. Ha”
You were very excited about going up to our mountain cabin, and so I tasked you with packing some food for yourself in the ice chest that we bring up for the weekend. You said, “OK!” I came back a few minutes later and you had 12 hot chocolate packets on the counter and 8 straws.
When I came to your VBS finale, your Grandma hadn’t told you I would be coming. You spotted me and were so surprised to see me, you wrapped your arms around my neck and said, “I’ve missed you SO much!” Then you looked around and asked, “Where’s my daddy?” I told you that daddy couldn’t make it, but wished that he could, oh, so much! You accepted that answer, and then as we walked to the sanctuary together, you proudly introduced me to everyone, “This is my mommy, but my daddy couldn’t make it. He wanted to, though.”
When we were driving to the mountains, your father asked you, “Do you know what time it is?” You replied, “Uhhhh, it’s past my bed time.” I looked at the clock reading 8:40 PM and I said, “You’re right about that!”
You are very much into making lists. I have no idea where you get that from. I make grocery lists and, as I always do, I leave them on the counter or table to add to them as I think of things. Nowadays, I come back and it has scribbles from you at the bottom. When I ask you about them, you tell me, “That’s my list. See here, it says cookies and toys.” While we were in the mountains, we told you we needed to go to breakfast and you said, “Well, on MY list of things to do is to go to the candy shop…. that’s on William’s list.”
While in the mountains, you said, “This is the best day ever, isn’t it?” Your father replied, “Sure, are you happy?” You replied, “Kind of.” Surprised, you father asked, “Why ‘kind of’?” You replied, “Actually, I am completely happy.”
Photo: Caramel apple from candy store
On your list of things to do in the mountains was to go fishing in the lake, hike Castle Rock, watch movies, eat salmon, and smoosh bugs.
For your first time fishing, we had quite the adventure. It was kind of special that it was in a lake that we frequently visit. Your father bought you a fishing pole, had to get a fishing license, and then he blew up an inflatable boat and put you in it and pushed you out until he was knee deep. At one point, he decided it might be a good idea to get in the boat with you, but it turned out to be an ill-planned idea, because he got in the front of the boat and you were in the back and that meant in order not to squish you, he had to do a perpetual sit-up. He got quite the ab work out! You told me, “So, if I see a cute fish I’m not gonna cook him.”
Picture of first time fishing…
Picture of “I’m giving the fish sea weed!”
The next morning you woke up, startled, you cried out, “MOMMY!!” I flopped my hand on your back and you said, “Oh, you were right there all along!” I asked you what you wanted to do that day and you replied, “Hike Castle Rock!” I started laughing and said, “Your daddy was thinking you would forget about that.” You replied, “But I didn’t. HA HA!”
Picture of “Logs”
While hiking you said, “I saw on the map that it was not a very long walk, but it lied. It is a very long walk.”
Picture: Tree mailbox… there’s a mailbox in the tree and the mail is 1 BC.
You still like to wedge yourself between us when we hug, and so we try to sneak hugs in and while in the mountains you said, “I’m on my way!” and ran and wedged yourself between us.
After our day on the lake, since you didn’t catch any fish, you said you wanted to eat some salmon. So we went to Denny’s and you ordered your salmon. I suppose it’s noteworthy that it was your first meal that wasn’t on the child’s menu.
One of your favorite things in the mountains is the ice cream truck. After we got back from our hike, you waited patiently out front of our cabin for the ice cream truck. He didn’t come that day and you were very sad.
On the 20th, you came down with a slight fever, we weren’t sure what was causing it. You weren’t complaining of pain, you just seemed tired. We thought maybe it was related to not drinking enough water, so we asked the your VBS teacher to be sure and remind you to drink water. The next morning, when your grandma came to pick you up, the teacher told her that you had mentioned you were a dragon, so she told you dragons drink lots of water. Seemed to be the encouragement you needed for that day, anyway.
That night, you went upstairs for your bath, under your own motivation, at 6:23 pm. You were in your pajamas and in bed by 7:10pm, although you had a bit of trouble falling asleep. It was delayed because you heard kids riding their bikes under your window and they were hooting and hollering while they did so. In their defense, it was still light outside and it was kind of early for you to be in bed. You were so curious about who they were. Then, a couple days later, you saw our neighbor and her two boys riding their bikes and you assumed it had been them, and you stood in your window and yelled at them that they needed to go home, eat dinner and go to bed. That you were tired and just wanted to sleep. Thank goodness the mom of those two boys adores you and thinks you are sweet and funny.
The evening before, I had fallen asleep with you while I was snuggling you to sleep. I love those times that I do that, although, I usually find myself awake at 1 AM and transfer myself to my own bed. But the following morning, you sweetly asked me, “Mommy? Did you sleep with me last night?” I told you that I had fallen asleep with you and how much I loved that. 🙂
Sometimes you get unexpected lessons in nature about the cycle of life. One morning, getting in the car for VBS you and your grandma saw a coyote with someone’s pet cat going across the street in the community. My immediate question was, “Have you seen all of OUR cats this morning?” She replied, “Yes.” And then I asked what color that kitty was, she said, “Black and white.” I hope it wasn’t, but am afraid it was the kitty we reunited with his owners a couple weeks ago. That thought made me sad, because that was a really sweet kitty, but I know that by the grace of God, our very own Tug was saved from the jaws of a coyote about 6 years ago, so it’s totally possible.
One Saturday as we pulled in the Spectrum for an outing with friends, you said, “I’m smart!” I said, “Yep, you are.” You said, “How about smarty pants? Am I a smarty pants?”
After we had lunch at the Spectrum, we went out and walked around, rode on the ferris wheel and then we stopped at a fountain (which apparently was a Pokemon stop, based on all the people who were walking around with their phones out and poking at them). You started a waterfight with me and, well, it was a hot day and it seemed like a good idea. So we ended up drenched and it was very fun.
One afternoon, you went out to the back yard and picked some aloe vera and came back inside and told me that you were going to heal daddy’s wound on his back with the helpful plants. You informed me that you had already healed the chair’s wound with it.
The next day, your grandma texted me that you guys had witnessed a fender bender on the way to the library. So, I guess in that instance you were able to see how accidents happen so quickly and how noisy they are.
Sometimes on Monday mornings I like to be extra silly to help with the tough separations that we all feel after a fun weekend together. So, one Monday, I hitched you up on my hip and proceeded to just walk right out the front door with you. You were perplexed and surprised and asked where we were going. I told you I was going to walk to work with you. You knew I was kidding, but were still a little sad when I turned around to go back into the house. But we had some special moments looking at the half moon that was still in the morning sky and the hibiscus flowers that hadn’t yet opened their blooms for the day.
A few days later, I came down sick, so apparently your fever wasn’t related to dehydration. Your father got called into work on an emergency situation (the A/C in the server room went down) and so it was just you and me for the day. We had been planning to go to Legoland that day, but my car’s engine was in pieces in the garage and I felt that your father needed his car so he could come and go as need be, instead of calling Uber. So, I canceled our plans and we had a movie day instead. We managed to watch Shrek, The Princess and the Frog, and some Scooby Doo episodes. It was so funny, because some of the language in the Shrek movie is questionable for your age, I turned the volume to the lowest setting. When your father came home that afternoon, he was supposed to start working on my car and, instead, he sat down and started watching your movies with you and complained about the volume being too low. I reminded him that he was supposed to be working on my car. haha
You had left one of your toys on the couch, a light saber. I accidentally sat on it, and pulled it out. You instantly asked, “Did it feel good?” I asked you, “Did what feel good?” You replied, “Sitting on the light saber?”
Picture: I’m the curb painter!
I ordered toilet paper from Amazon.com, and when it came, you absconded with the box and the toilet paper and said, “This is my little house!” I wasn’t thrilled to have this in the middle of the living room, but I knew it would be funny to me later, so I took a picture of you in your little house.
Playdoh continues to be one of your favorite things to occupy yourself. You could create things for hours on end, especially if it’s food related. You love to cook, pretend or otherwise. You also really enjoy sharing all your creations (and toys) with your cat, Tug. You treat him like a sibling and it really is the sweetest thing.
One afternoon, you came inside bearing an aloe vera plant cutting. You declared, “This is the helpful plant. It will help daddy’s owie on his back heal.”
A conversation while you were in the bath tub:
What is this?” I asked.
No, no, I want to keep it. You replied.
But what is it? I asked again.
It’s just something I want to keep, you said.
But what is it? I asked, yet again.
It used to be a paintbrush. You answered.
You tossed your froggy in the air and it landed in the shutters. We laughed and laughed over that one. You kept saying, “Look at my froggy!!”
You love music and you always surprise me by hearing the beat or subtle sounds that normally don’t get noticed by themselves. It’s interesting, because if you don’t like a song, you just sit down and refuse to participate. Like the “head and shoulders, knees and toes” song, that is an instant turn off to you. So, when your Grandma D. texted me this, it made me smile, ” Song: “driving in my car”. Cute song with actions & sounds…steering wheel, wipers, no muffler so have motor sound, wave”hi” to friend, horn. Wm got into that song!”
Mazda created the 1,000,000th Miata and it’s presently on tour. It had a stop at the Mazda headquarters in Irvine. I stopped and saw it on the way to work one morning, the same day that your Grandma D. brought you over to my work for a family lunch at the deli. I suggested that she take you by to see the Miata. That it was special to me since I’ve driven a Miata for 25 years now. I was tickled when she later texted me this picture of you. Although, she said you enjoyed the long fountain that is in the breezeway there more than the Miata.
When we were at Legoland, there was a little girl in the playground that you hit it off with right away. Pretty soon, you two were running around together. You got on the motorcycle together and then, hilariously, you both got off the motorcyle and, holding hands, ran to the store where you proclaimed, “OK, here’s the restaurant. What would you like to eat?” It sounded like you were really on a date!
You have some markers that stick together, bottom to top. You had about 8 of them all stuck together in a long line. You looked at me, holding that long stick of stuck together markers and said, “I heard in Korea Legos look like this.”
Your father barbequed some skewers for dinner. When he brought them inside, you looked at them and said, You eat off of a chopstick? I guess skewers do kind of look like chopsticks. ha
This is the time in your life when you are learning the foundations of navigating social situations which, I think most adults would even agree, can be very complex. Children, especially if they have younger siblings, tend to be on the bossy side, and you were encountering that in some instances while you were at VBS. One day in particular comes to mind, when I called at lunch time to see what you were up to, I could hear you crying. I asked your grandma D. why you were sad and she said the other kids had knocked your tower of blocks down. I asked why they had done that, as I wasn’t sure if you were playing a game with them or something else. She said it was because it was time for you to go. I asked if there was a rush that she needed to be somewhere on time, she said she didn’t know it had happened before she had arrived. So, I asked to speak to you, I got your side of it and I commiserated with you, validated your feelings and told you what they had done wasn’t right. And I told you if that ever happened again, to tell the kids to stop it, and since there wasn’t any deadline from your grandma’s point of view, to be sure and put the toys away when the teacher instructs you to do so, but finish what you were doing. I find myself giving you words to use, encouraging you to have courage and to always remember to be kind, so that hopefully the behavior you don’t like is something you realize isn’t OK and so you won’t imitate in YOUR future social interactions. In other words, don’t be afraid to stand up for something that is the right thing. It is never OK for people to treat you (or anyone) poorly.
This month’s picture of you isn’t all that great in terms of photography, but I feel like it represents YOU. You are all about jokes, laughter, and full of vibrant, beautiful LIFE. And, yes, when you fall asleep at night, I still lay my hand over your heart to feel it beating.
More pictures from this month can be found here: LINK