Jack turns 4

Howdy, friends.

I can’t believe we’ve gone from this:

Jack was born at 7:44 p.m., Sept. 1, 2008.

to this:

Happy 4th Birthday, buddy.

It’s so cliched, the passing of time. I feel silly even talking about it. But my gosh, we’re here already. When I got married, I caught my dad watching me out of the corner of his eye, and he was starting to cry. When I asked him why, he choked out, “When did you grow up?”

I feel that way already sometimes, and we’re barely out of babyhood.

Being a parent is honestly the best thing I’ve ever done. Maybe it’s because I have a wonderful husband to share this with. Or two pretty fun kids to experiment on. Whatever it is, I love it.

And even though we are full of wondering about Jack right now, we’re also full of laughter and sweetness. He seems to have made huge leaps the past month, and is all of a sudden much more grown-up.

Right now, Jack is loving the giant excavator he got for his birthday. So much so that he insisted on sleeping with it in his bed the past two nights. And today he made me sing “Happy Birthday” to it, and then apparently the excavator went to dig up some cake. (We also sang to the mini-excavator he has. No excavator goes uncelebrated in our house.)

Jack is cracking me up trying to coordinate himself into jumping jacks, which he is learning to do in his gymnastics class.

He still loves any and all jigsaw puzzles. And he still loves all things musical. He can pick up a song and lyrics very quickly and loves to sing to himself or to the radio. And he is in a Spanish-immersion preschool and is thriving with the extra challenge, the extra attention and his own pure joy at going to preschool. (And, bonus, bedtimes are actually awesome now!) The other day, he counted all his blueberries in Spanish. (And then refused to eat them.)

Even better, he’s been playing a ton with Viv, and watching them make up — and play — games together is pretty awesome.

Playing in the Missouri River on his very first camping trip this summer.

I’m proud of Jack. I’m proud that he has become very good at saying please and thank you. That he always asks “May I be excused, please!” before getting up from the table. That he brings Viv her blankie when she leaves it somewhere in his room. That he is creative and is a good problem-solver (as witnessed this weekend when I saw a stool pushed to the baby gate at the stairs — which he had to scale to make it to the bathroom while I was busy). I’m always proud when he says (or yells) to Viv, “Can it be my turn when you are done? HUH, VIV? MY TURN?” It’s a start, right?

And I love that he is so funny, without even meaning to be. “Hey, Mom, are these hot cars?” No, bud, they’re hot wheels. Totally different. Ask your Grandpa Jack about hot cars. He knows more about that.

He’s also really into picking his own clothes out lately, which has led to some absurd outfits. But as long as they are seasonally appropriate, I don’t care. (No, you can’t wear that red sweatshirt in July. But yes, you can wear your underpants backwards if you really want to.)

Jack still loves to read, and he can recognize about 40 sight words now. He also knows a bunch of animals, trucks and insects from some flashcards we got him. He can memorize just about anything.

More than anything, though, I love that he’s easygoing, kind and loving. He still loves to cuddle. And when I asked where my kiss was the other day, he told me it was still on his mouth, and he brought it over.

The other day he pulled me into the living room and said, “Hi, Mom. Let’s sit on the couch and talk about our day.”

Oh, buddy, I’d love to. I would really, really love to.



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2 Responses to Jack turns 4

  1. Miranda Gargasz says:

    Aww, he sounds like such a sweetie!

  2. Laurel says:

    That last pic is the cutest! I love him. Happy birthday, Jack!

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