“Mommy, can you come check the temperature? It says 8 6. Well, I know I’m right about the 8,” he poses as he wiggles and tugs for my attention.
I leave my school snack making for a minute to walk with him to our thermostat, which does, in fact display an 8 and a 6.
“You’re right!” I say to a beaming four year old. “The temperature says 6-8. It is 68 degrees in our house. That’s pretty warm. And this part says 2-1. It’s only 21 degrees outside, that’s cold!”
“Aw, man, so I have to wear a jacket?” he bemoans as he stomps away.
“Yes, you have to wear a jacket when it’s cold outside,” I reply as I make my way back to school snack duty.
He grumbles as he slowly lays his jacket out on the floor and does the cool flip it over his head trick his teachers taught him at school.
“Will you zip me, Mommy?”
We fall into our usual routine of packing and zipping and shoe Velcro-ing as we make our way to the door and out into the cold.
These mornings have gotten easier, now that he’s old enough to do part of the getting ready.
As we drive to school he points out the letters on the license plates he sees in front of us.
He asks how fast I’m driving and says “Mommy, I saw the speed limit sign that said 5-4. So don’t drive any faster than 5-4.”
I assure him I won’t, knowing that this must be a translation of 45.
He discovers an 8 and a 0 and a 6 and reads the word STOP to me.
And then he tells me that he sees “many more deciduous trees than evergreen trees but Christmas trees are evergreen trees.”
When did he grow up?
This little one is so big and observant. He likes to make plans and study pictures. He seems to remember everything I say except for the parts about “please clean your room” and “stop chasing the cats.”
We are still working on letters and numbers but he sees and notices them all around him and is beginning to pick out words in our bedtime stories. It won’t be long before he is reading in the slow, focused, and melodic way all children start.
He has a strong sense of humor and loves to feel authoritative. (Sorry, cats.) He is compiling himself and his experiences into his very own version of life.
It’s a conclusion I come to over and over at various stages in his life; my sweet little boy is not so little anymore.