For anyone who doesn't know, young children (in the 4 to 5 range) have highly objective judgment (OJ). Simply put, they make decisions and speak their opinions based almost entirely on fact. They usually don't know how to weave in any emotion at that age. Let me give you two embarrassing examples from the last couple weeks.
1) My son and I were standing in line at Taco Bueno a few weeks back, waiting to order. The man in front of us was a pretty big guy... cankles big. I noticed, but didn't think much of him (I mean this is America, and we were at a fast food restaurant...). Well, my son noticed too... And decided to let me know in his usual, outside voice:
He pointed, "Hey, Daddy, he's fat!"
I'm thinking to myself, um..... 'Yeah, I know'... but obviously I can't say that. And every response I could think of was unflattering: 'I see that.' 'Wow.' 'Oh my!' The best plan I could think of was not to respond, maybe change the subject. Too late...
"See?" He pointed again.
Oh jeez. And then the guy turns around. Of course I apologize at that point to the large man and then he grunts at me with a dirty look and lurches away. And with that, I wished I could take back my apology. Now i'm thinking 'Dude, don't scowl at my kid. He's just calling it how he sees it. Now go sit not-at-a-booth and cram your five burritos and diet coke.'
After we ate, we had a little talk about using certain adjectives in public.
2) Just a couple days ago, we were in the checkout line at Ace Hardware and my daughter had her baby dolls laying in the cart (they were sleeping, lol). The lady in front of us turned and commented on how cute it was. Well, this lady was a chronic smoker and slightly disheveled, which made her look about two decades older than she probably is... And her hair was a piece of work! And our daughter, at the tender age of three, took notice. When the lady turned around, she blurted, "that lady has crazy hair!"
They all do it once or twice, right?
Not only were we trying not to laugh, the cashier heard, too, and was having trouble not chuckling. (I mean, the hair was indeed messy!) Luckily, I don't crazylocks heard her. It was still embarrassing, though, especially since she was so nice to us.
We had the same adjectives talk with her later on.
Monday, January 28, 2013
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
So the reason I haven't posted much in the last several months is very simple: we had a brand new baby. (And boy is he cute!) Well, now that we've got a newborn, a 3-year old, and a 4-year old, I realize just how easy babies are. How easy?
Well, they sleep, poop, eat, sleep, eat, sleep, poop, pee?, sleep, sleep, eat, sleep, and so on. In other words, they sleep a lot! (Our 3 and 4 year olds? Not so much...) I find myself wishing our older ones could be infants again. Anyone who is considering having a baby should know this, babies aren't the ones you need to be worried about, it's the toddlers. Here's a helpful chart, based on my experience:
Newborn (1-12 months) = Easy. Messy, but easy.
1-year old (13-24 months) = Also easy. Kids seem to gravitate towards anything dangerous, so it's stressful, but still not too bad.
2-year old = Terrible? Not as bad as you think. They're just louder and defiant. 2 just requires a little bit of patience and a glass or three of wine.
3-year old = WHAT DID I DO TO DESERVE THIS?!?! Keep the exorcist on speed dial, because they get craaaaazy! Tantrums, back sassing, know it all, head rolling, wall climbing, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, but nothing agreeable to say! Aaaahhhh! Be afaid.
4-year old = Do you want to know why they don't have a word to go with 4-year-olds? Because they're normal human beings finally. They know cause and effect. You can finally reason with them. (They should call them the finally fours.)
As for the 5 and ups, I guess we'll see. That's the next few chapters of our lives. I'll keep you updated. (And I'll try to write a few more blog posts in the meantime.)
Posted by Cole Garrett at 8:57 PM