*Thanks for the picture Uncle Andrew!
4-year old highlights:
- In the last year Henry has done so.much.growing.up! He is such a joy to be around. Seriously, I love my boys, but the thing about both of them is that I like them too. Henry is thoughtful, kind, funny, and conscientious. He has a very tender heart and is bothered when he perceives things to be unfair. I can't wait to see his qualities and characteristics develop as he gets older. It is such a privilege to have a front row seat to his development :)
- Henry is still very interested in sports. I think his favorite sport to play is baseball. He loves to have us pitch to him as he hits ball after ball over the fence. This summer he is playing t-ball for the first time and seems to be enjoying it so far. He is not a fan of hitting the ball off the tee, but he's adjusting to the idea. He loved playing baseball at his birthday party.
- Henry learned how to pump on the swings about a week before his fourth birthday! I was talking to my friend Wendy at church and all of a sudden he started yelling, "Mom, I'm swinging myself, I'm swinging myself!" And he was, and it was awesome! This is such a HUGE accomplishment! I can't believe he doesn't need me to push him anymore!
- Henry still loves to play in his playgarden. He can dig and water and drive his construction vehicles for hours out there. It's so great to watch him play like this! He also still loves to help me garden, which is fun for me too.
- Henry got a bike for his fourth birthday and he LOVES to ride it. Our family walks have turned into family bike rides now, only the boys are the only ones on bikes. Henry is on his bike, and Charlie rides on the hand-me-down tricycle from Elinor that we can push and steer him with. It works out pretty well. We've discovered that the best place for us to do our bike rides is around the park. Lots of straight shots of sidewalk with no driveways to watch out for.
- Henry loves going to church. Since he turned 4 he has graduated from nursery to sitting with us for the first part of the service and then attending children's church during the sermon. He loves that he gets to go to church now. He is very conscientious about going and always remembers to bring his Bible bag. This week he even used some of his own money to put in the offering bag, which he was really proud of. The only thing about this transition that he doesn't like is when the little kids have to join the big kids in children's church. He gets pretty intimidated by the older kids, so I end up having to stay with him.
- On the church subject, I was SO PROUD of Henry at Cubbies this year. He really understood the stories and was able to make lots of connections between the stories he heard at cubbies and the same Bible stories that we read at home. He was also very good at memorizing his verses each week. In fact, Henry could literally memorize his verses after hearing them once or twice. I think memorization is going to come easily to him. The only thing at Cubbies that he said he didn't like were the crafts. (Whose child is he?! ;)
- Henry is a wonderful older brother to Charlie. He gets frustrated and upset with him just like any brother would, but I would say that overall, he is very concerned about him. For example, If Charlie is in the front yard and he is getting somewhat close to the street, Henry will run in front of him and grab him. He is very encouraging of Charlie as well, and often gives him compliments on a job well done. It's very sweet. I often have to remind Henry that when Charlie copies him it is because he loves him, not to annoy him. (As an oldest child I can relate to this concept :)
- Henry's currently loves watching Jake and the Neverland Pirates on netflix. He also loves playing with all of his pirate toys.
- He also loves to swim with his lifejacket on. I'm hoping he'll learn how to swim on his own this summer and won't need the lifejacket anymore, but we will see!
- Henry loves to eat fruit! His favorites are pears, strawberries, and blueberries. He also loves to eat yogurt and granola. I make a lot of granola! The vegetables he likes are raw carrots and cooked red bell pepper (although we still have to prompt him to eat them). He likes most meat, but doesn't like rice or potatoes. He's still a huge fan of his morning smoothies though! He's been going strong with those since the day I weaned him at 14 months old!
- Henry still naps on my bed a few times per week. If he takes a nap he won't be able to fall asleep until after 10:00, although we put him to bed much earlier than this. I suppose some people would cut out naps altogether at this point, but a nap with a later bedtime is sort of working for us at this point, so we'll run with that as long as we can.
- A week or so after Henry turned four I took him to his 4-year old doctor's appointment and we made a date out of it by doing a number of fun things together: going to Barnes and Noble, eating at Moo Creamery, and going to Target to spend some of his birthday money. We had THE BEST time together! Henry tells anyone who will listen about our date and I can tell that he enjoyed the special one-on-one time he had with me. That outing has been a good reminder to me that carving out special time with him is very important. I've been using his yearly well visit appointments as special dates with him since he turned 2 and I will start to do the same with Charlie this year. I need to remember to do it more often though. It's good for both of us!
- Oh there is so much more to say about our Henry. He is a complete joy. Not perfect by any means (who is?) but such a sweet and delightful child. I feel privileged to be his mother. We love him SO MUCH!