Fall in Colorado is an amazing time of year. The nights cool, but days stay warm. We wrap up our camping season and focus a bit more on local responsibilities. Pumpkins are picked, our freezer is refilled with beef, huge storms blow through, and my kiddo celebrates his birthday.
Little G turned 4 years old this year. To be honest, he does not seem much like a “little” any more. These days he is learning to sound out letters, learning to ride a peddle bike, learning how to draw recognizable shapes, and learning so many other skills that will take him towards independence some day.
Of course it’s not just what he is learning every day, but what Mark and I learn from him as well. When G was a new-born, we had a neighbor who wouldn’t ask about the most recent “baby first,” but rather would ask me what I had learned from the baby lately. It always gave me a moment of pause and reflection, and a lovely change in perspective that left me feeling less hassled and more grateful for the experience of being a parent.
Because I enjoyed the question so much, I began a tradition of writing out the top 10 things I learned from my kiddo each year on his birthday. You can read year one, year two, and year three if you are interested.
A fourth birthday has come to pass, and so here is my list of the top things I learned from Little G in the previous year:
10. We all can do hard things. It helps when somebody reminds us of that fact occasionally.
9. The most fun way to experience the wilderness is with friends.
8. Is it possible to ask too many questions? We are all on a quest to find the ultimate “WHY.”
7. Barefoot is the best!
6. Explore everything. Explore the sandbox, explore the mountains, explore your food. It’s the only way to discover something new!
5. Dirt is awesome. Water is awesome. Rocks are awesome. Everything is awesome! (One of his favorite songs!)
4. Cool is better than pretty. (Controversial, I know, but G was pretty confidant in this fact.)
3. Rules keep us safe and keep us all working together as a team. It is very important to communicate exactly what we expect from each other, and what happens when we mess up. (Corollary just for me: a quiet, stern voice gets the point across better than yelling it.)
2. Give hugs. Give kisses. Rub the owie. Say “I love you.” The most important thing for everybody to know is that they are loved.
1. Smiling and laughing makes the hard times easier, and the easy times perfect.