Now that Kenzie has had her fourth birthday, I thought it would be an appropriate time to review a few of the milestones the toddlers have reached over the last year or so as they exit Toddlerhood to become Pre-Schoolers and Kindergarteners.
Kenzie has become a left-handed, whistling, finger-snapping, jaw-popper. Of course, these are all traits and talents that I have proudly passed on to her.
But because he gets to blow a whistle!
Kaleb’s Pre-K class is putting on an end-of-school play in a couple of weeks. For his part in the play, he dresses up like a coach, says a few lines from a poem the teacher wrote about being a coach, and then he gets to blow his whistle.
The problem is, he wants to keep rehearsing the whistle-blowing part of the script for his part in the play. All he wants to do is blow that whistle!
You might wonder how he got the whistle in the first place. Here’s what happens:
He talks me into buying him a whistle. I reluctantly and stupidly purchase a whistle. Then he blows the whistle until it drives me crazy. Then he loses or breaks the whistle or I hide it. Then we have a few days of peace and quiet. And then he talks me into buying him another whistle!
The toddlers have learned to chew gum. In fact, it’s all about the gum around our house. So, I always keep a pack of bubble gum with me to give to them (or not give to them).
You know why? Gum has these amazing powers. It can change the behavior of children! It can transform disobedient, argumentative, unruly toddlers into obedient, respectful children!
They will do anything for a piece of gum. Even mind Poppy and behave!
Kenzie has learned how to push the pedals on her bicycle backwards to apply the brakes and stop the bike. So, this new skill has empowered her to be more “freewheeling” on the bicycle.
Consequently, she likes to get the bike going down a hill at a break-neck speed that frightens Poppy. Then when the sound of my panicked screaming has reached its highest pitch, she applies the brakes and locks up the rear wheel and stops the bike!
And she does it with style and flair, one foot on the brake pedal and the other lifted high into the air and extended behind her!
Kaleb has started taking his role as big brother quite seriously. He thinks it’s his duty to “spank her rumpus” if little sister misbehaves.
But she’s not a submissive little sister and his attempts at disciplining her are not always well received. Sometimes, he falls victim to four-year-old justice, an unexpected and swiftly administered bite or pinch!
He ends up crying and telling on her and before I can intervene, she has run off to hide and wait and hope for it all to be forgotten!
So, in spite of their unfortunate circumstances in life compounded by my questionable parenting techniques, the toddlers have managed to maintain their happy dispositions and energetic smiles!
It just goes to show the buoyancy of the human spirit!
And these small milestones they have attained as they progress from toddlers to young children may not impact their future well-being or success in life to any great extent.
But, in spite of my parental shortcomings, I hope the love I have poured into their toddler hearts will be enough to carry them through this phase of their lives and lay a foundation for what’s yet to come!