Yes, four is a very special age. It’s in-your-face hard and great at inducing mama guilt. But it’s also precious, funny, and so worth remembering.

I’ve had several very earnest thank-yous from Connor since Ethan was born. Many, in fact. He waited a long time for this baby, and he loves his little brother more than I could have anticipated.

“Thank you for laying a baby,” he told me one day. (If only it were that easy.)

“Mama, I love you,” he said on another. “I love you too, buddy,” I said, but he was not to be outdone. “I love you MORE, because you made me a baby.”

What can you do but laugh? And hug him, of course.


He’s not lacking in confidence. Not about most things anyway.

“I know all about babies and you don’t.” (All righty, then.)

“I’m going to keep working on [his LEGO creation] because big boys like me NEVER give up.” (It’s true – he doesn’t.)

He did not get his skill with LEGO from me. He can play with it for HOURS, and he’s putting together things way beyond what he should be able to do at his age. And if you give him the LEGO he wants for Christmas, you’ll be rewarded with this.


Pure joy.

But, oh, he’s a mischief maker too. You can see it in his four-year-old face, can’t you?


If we nail him for something and he doesn’t like it, the admonishment will ring throughout the house: “Bad parenting!” he’ll say, sounding very much like he means it. (Again, we laugh. But not where he can see us.)

His sass comes through in his language and the requests we can’t refuse.

“Can I get a little help here?”

At times he seems much older than he is.

At others, he’s very much a little boy.

“Mama, can I have some time with you?”


These polar bears are a Christmas art installation at a local mall. Except Connor calls them, “snowlar bears.”
I think that makes more sense, don’t you?

And he likes to wear his clothes backwards.


Because he’s four.



  1. He is so smart :) Snowler bears totally makes sense.

  2. I love how much he’s thankful for his baby brother.

  3. Oh god, I love how he thanked you for laying the baby!
    Also, that he wants to be with you. And says I love you.
    See why I can’t wait for my 3 year old to really speak? Oh the words that will come out of his mouth and heart.

  4. He is smart, funny, and absolutely charming. Just like mama.

  5. I love how incredible smart they can be one minute and then remind us how little they still are the next.
    He has incredible eyes!

  6. OMG, looks like you got your hands full – in the best possible way!

    “Thank you for laying a baby” – that just made my day.

  7. You describe this age to a T. They sound like little adults at times until they crawl up in your lap and ask for a hug. “Laying the baby” just cracks me up. My oldest referred to nursing as when I used to “milk” her sister.

  8. You just reminded me of quite a few things of my very own girls when they were four. Oh, how I wish I could pull them out of photos and videos and spend some time with them at those ages again. Of course, I’m enjoying (most) of the moments at almost 11 & 9 years old too. My favorite sass (shhh…don’t tell them) is when they say, “Really?! Are you kidding me?!” They only say it to each other when one isn’t playing whatever make believe the other thinks they should but it totally cracks me up because I say it all the time.

    • I’m already finding that I’d like to go back and see him again as a little baby, so I can imagine how it would feel at 11 and 9 when they’re really not little anymore. And that’s hilarious that they say that.

  9. Funny story… my son (almost 3) likes to wear his clothing backwards too unless it’s one of those days that he doesn’t wear them at all.

  10. Goodness – so much sweetness! Better that he’s thanking you for his baby than insanely jealous!

  11. He is adorable. 4 is a funny (and sassy) age. And the sweetest between brothers? Melts my heart. I love that he thanked you for laying a baby.

  12. How wonderful that he loves his little brother so. And I love ‘snowlar bears’ – that is just precious!

  13. Four is an awesome age! We recently left “four” forever – but yes, I do know how good 4 is for inducing mama guilt but also those wonderful thank you’s. I love the Lego Christmas pic! That certainly is pure joy!

  14. It sounds like he and Noah would be two peas in a pod. Their seems to be a lot of similarities in their personalities. :) He’s such a handsome guy. you’re lucky mama!

  15. Bad parenting! What a character :) So glad he loves his little brother. I have a friend whose 3 year old son once dragged her 3 week old daughter across the family room to the kitchen by the leg and asked if they could send her back now.

  16. Oh man. Kids are hilarious. I love hearing about their individual quirks.

  17. I know four So. Very. Well.

    You’ve captured this age, your guy, perfectly here.

    {I’m laughing with you at the sweetness, and stepping on legos in your and Connor’s honor! Ouch. :)}

  18. Oh my gosh, I LOVE that he thanks you for having a baby! So sweet!

    I love the age of four, mostly because it is NOT three! 😉

  19. So lovely, an amazing tribute to your son. When I brought home a little sister, after one month, I heard a very different reaction: “When are you taking her back to the hospital?”

    So nice to hear just the opposite. Blessings to all of you.

  20. Such a great post to save for your son! He’s adorable! Those “I love you MORE” moments are the best!