My little (or not so little) love bug,
What a year this has been! You have tested me and forced me to dig deep within and build patience and have also double the size of my heart. I am so honored and proud to be your mom. You are smart and caring and goofy and affectionate and stubborn and creative and expressive and have a killer memory. Being your mom is by far my biggest accomplishment and brings me so much joy. I look forward to seeing your face light up and you wrap your gangly arms around me when I pick you up from school and that you request to snuggle with me every night before bed. I know these days won’t last forever so I do my best to soak it all in now.
Development at 4: You know all of your ABC’s (lower and uppercase) and almost all of the sounds they make. You’re starting to recognize sight words like mom, dad, dog and cat. You also keep everyone else in check. I was reading a story to you the other day and there was a picture of a gift and I told you it was a present and you corrected me and said, ‘no that starts with a ‘G’. That is a gift. Then, you were at Grandma’s a couple of months ago and there were some bubbles on the bathroom counter and she told you it was soap and you said, ‘No, there is a B on there and Bubbles starts with B’. You memorize short books pretty quickly. We have a a set of princess books that are about 4 pages each and you will sit down with them by yourself and ‘read’ them word for word. There have been several moments where I question if you have a pseudo-photographic memory.
You write your name like a champ (the ‘S’ gave you a run for your money for awhile) and are close to being able to write your last name without any help.
We’re starting to work on Math concepts like 1+1 and 2+2 and I think you kind of get it, but generally speaking you catch on to concepts taught to you in school much quicker than when I try and teach you. Maybe I’m a terrible teacher, but I just don’t think you have a whole lot of interest in doing that kind of stuff at home.
Lexi, you have grown so much over the last year. You love to laugh and be silly (especially with potty talk) and laugh with your brother. You love to give him hugs and genuinely want to be with him. For the first time ever this fall, you choose to stay home and play with William verses running errands with me. Your nurturing and affectionate. If Daddy or I aren’t feeling well, you’ll get blankets and pillows for us and will rub our backs and say ‘Its ok mommy, can i get you a popsicle?’
You are a rule follower and are quick to point out when someone isn’t following a rule and let us know how they are going to be punished. Just the other day, William was wearing his shoes on the carpet while he was waiting to be put into the van before school and you told him that Sparkle Minnie (the elf) was watching him be naughty and he wasn’t going to get any gifts from Santa. You like to play with others, but you also like your alone time. You’re still a little shy but have become much more comfortable in unfamiliar environments and with new people. You started swimming lessons and dance class without us and did awesome. You regularly check in throughout the class and give me a little wave or thumbs up but love both experiences.
With that said, you have developed quite a temper. You become completely irrational when we say no or you don’t get your way. There were several times this summer that I was driving and you were kicking and screaming and thrashing your arms so intensely that I had to pull over to calm you down because I genuinely thought you were going to break a bone. Small things will set you off, like not have any water in the car. Fortunately, those tantrums have dissipated over the past several months. However, it has been replaced with a very whiny voice and fake crying. I think you see William behaving like that and getting attention and you want it to. If he gets hurt and runs to be comforted, you’ll come running needing a hug and a kiss because your finger hurts.
You have started to just want to play with girls and pick up on stereotypical gender elements like girls like pink and boys like blue and the difference between ‘boy toys and girl toys’
Over the past year, you’ve really started to love playing games. We regularly play memory, hungry hungry hippos, hi-ho Cherrio and candy land and you’ll be getting several more for your Birthday and Christmas this year. You seem fairly indifferent to puzzles but LOVE to paint or color or do anything art project related.
You also really love to play with squinkies and legos. Your dad will build you logo houses for your squinkies and you are over the moon. These toys will keep you entertained for over an hour. You’ll just sit at a table and have little conversations with the different characters. Imaginative play in general has really taken off. You’ll have conversations with your stuffed animals or characters in your coloring book, you play house at school, or doctor. The other day, you came out of your bedroom with the stethescope around your neck and a little pad of paper and called ‘Bood? Is there a Bood Sampson here? It’s time for your check up. He continues to play with his toys and says, ‘no’ without any interruption. You also love to push/ride cars in the hallway with William or just chase each other. Swinging is a favorite activity for outside–but have told you, once you turn 4, you need to learn how to pump, no more pushing from Mom and Dad. You also really like to ride on your scooter and have gotten much better at your balance bike but are really too tall for it. Giraffe (or as you like to call him dit-dat) is still number one in your book. He sleeps with you every night and comforts you when you’re upset, but other than that you don’t carry him around everywhere you go anymore.
For most of the year, you continued to take naps everyday for about 3 hours, sometimes you would push 4.5 hours! However, over the last month or so, it is harder and harder to get you to nap. At school you nap for about an hour to an hour and a half. I’m a little worried about this as nap time is the time I usually carve out of the day for myself to relax. However, when you do nap, bedtime gets to be pretty late which is challenging.
I’m guessing you’re somewhere in the 42″ tall range and weigh about 40 lbs. You’re in size 5 clothes for the most part. It is pretty challenging to find you jeans that will fit you in the waist but are long enough. Thankfully, you hate any kind of pant that has buttons so we usually stick with leggings and you wear a size 11 shoe.
Other things about you at age 4, you love to go to the cabin and talk about going to the cabin. You love to play games on the iPad and watch YouTube. You want to watch the most ridiculous things on there like a person opening up Squinky toys, or someone building a lego set. You even watched someone mix paint colors together. I will never understand this but it is something you really like to do. Daddy allows you to do it more than I do, but no more than 1 a day. You also really like to watch movies (Frozen, Little Mermaid, Peter Pan, Inside Out, Finding Nemo, Rudolph, Frosty) and TV shows. Mickey Mouse is your favorite and you love to get up and do the hot dog dance at the end of each show. You’ll also watch Curious George and My Friends Tigger and Pooh.
Lexi, I am so proud of you. You are such a happy little girl and we could not have imagined to be blessed with a daughter as wonderful as you. I have a feeling a lot of changes are in store for our family this next year and am excited to see you grow through them. Happy 4!! Love,