What’s your favorite age for kids?

What is your favorite age for kids?
This morning, I asked my toddler, “Do you want to eat blueberries and yogurt breakfast?” to which he promptly responded with a bellowing cry about wanting to sit at his little table instead. Yet despite this unexpected outburst so typical of a two-year-old, I have to admit that I’m loving the toddler age.

His growing independence could be part of the reason. When he can play independently by himself, climb into his own chair and now, even help with dishes, taking care of him has gotten so much easier. He also sleeps much better, and considering that me and sleep-deprivation don’t go well together, I’m able to function with longer hours that he now lets me have. And more importantly, my own growth as a mother has helped me appreciate and enjoy this time so much more than the newborn and infant years.

Other moms may feel differently. I remember talking to one mother who much preferred the newborn and infant days of her now-toddler aged son. Sleep deprivation and baby worries were much preferred to the tantrums and defiance that her son was now exhibiting. Still, other parents could easily prefer even the older ages such as the school years.

I can’t say that toddlerhood is without its struggles though, however small or grand they may be. There’s the typical tantrum frustration of course, but even the little defiance here and there drives me nuts. He’s so much more opinionated (like when he can only take a bath with his blue Lego), and all the more stubborn (it’s so much easier to go home from the park when your child is just five months old).

Every age has its own struggles, and just as you think the ones you currently have are done, new ones emerge as they grow older. We were at the park the other week when I overheard a girl about seven years old scolding her friend for crying: “I’m not going to be your friend if you keep crying,” she threatened the other girl. I immediately thought, “Kids are so mean!” I can’t even imagine the social struggles that older kids and their parents go through, with stories of former friends no longer their BFFs or kids feeling left out of a group.

That said, I try to look at the positive side and imagine the fun things we can do once he’s older: we’ll be able to attend grander events like musicals and baseball games without lugging a huge diaper bag or worrying about cutting into nap times. We’ll probably do a ton more crafts and school-type of activities. And who knows, maybe we’ll even squeeze in a swim or two.

Do you have a favorite age for your kids? What has been the easiest stage? The most difficult?

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15 thoughts on “What’s your favorite age for kids?

  1. I say “thank you” to Mr. Sandwich all the time, but I have never once thought of “delegating.” We both contribute to the household financially and in physical labor. I do more dishes, he does more laundry, etc. I let him know that I appreciate his contributions, and he lets me know that he appreciates mine.

    I’m actually really uncomfortable with the concept of delegating in this situation. You can only delegate responsibilities that are yours, and I don’t think anything about our family is “mine.” It’s ours.

    • Thanks for bringing this up. I hadn’t thought of “delegating” in its true sense when I read the post, although your comment brings up a great discussion and made me think about it more. Like you, my husband and I both contribute financially and physically to the home—we both work full time, have a rotating chore list, and tend to share in the daily chores like dishes and laundry.

      But I also get to see LO a whole lot more than him because of my flexible hours. For instance, if I’ve been with LO all day and my husband is going to feed him a snack, I’ll have to let him know what he’s eaten so far so that he doesn’t give him the same food. So I may say, “You can give him the baked beans since he hasn’t had that yet.”

      I would think that this might be more prevalent for stay-at-home parents. I know a stay-at-home mom with a husband who works insane hours, literally on-call, sometimes not getting home til midnight. He makes good money, and through that they’re able to have her stay-at-home. What that does mean though is that their arrangement means that she takes care of all the kid stuff while he’s at the office, and that’s something they’re comfortable with. So I would assume that when he’s home, she would have to delegate him kid chores since he may not be as familiar with their routine as she is.

  2. I would totally be cliche and say every age has been my favorite, but that wouldn’t be accurate. I really love right now (Eli just turned 2). I enjoyed the newborn and infant phases, but I didn’t LOVE them. I love being able to interact & converse & laugh & really PLAY with my kid!

  3. I’m not a huge fan of the newborn stage so I’ve enjoyed the independence (even if it does come with more defiance) a lot. I’ll have to wait and see which stage ends up being my favorite…

  4. Just found your site (through reading discover and devour) and I love it! I have to say that my son just turned 7 years old earlier this month and I love this age. I wasn’t crazy about teh newborn phase (too many worries) or the early toddler phase (beginning of tantrums and not understanding some of his issues), but I love this young boy stage. He is mature enough that he has his own interests and opinions, but still wants to hold my hand when we walk 🙂

    Come take a look at my site: http://mytwicebakedpotato.com
    I think that you might be interested in our story. It will also explain why the younger years were harder in my house 🙂

    • Hi Kelly—welcome to SSBE! So glad to have you here, and I’m a big fan of Discover and Devour as well.

      I just read through your site, and yes I can definitely see why you had your hands full with your little boy 🙂

  5. I’ve always loved when my babes turned one. They’re still crease-n-dimply cute but also becoming little individuals. They can express their wants more easily and are so animated at this stage (mine were). Always loved it.

  6. As I type this, I have an almost-five-month-old who should be in bed instead draped across my lap. This baby business is not my favorite. ‘Love and I decided we really start enjoying them right around 18 months (steady on their feet, beginning to talk), and we’ve been (mostly) delighted ever since. I’m currently loving the delighted world-observations (and interpretations) and increased independence of the preschool years.

  7. I agree I love this new toddler stage (Josh is almost 2); but am excited for when he is a bit older when we can do more outings to museums, etc and he can express his thoughts more clearly. And hopefully not as many tantrums! 🙂

  8. I’ve been sitting here trying to think what is my favorite stage and I think I would say the Toddler stage as well. I liked the newborn stage with the little tiny baby but those late nights were killers. I liked the crawling phase because it was just such a big milestone. But the Toddler stage has been a blast. 1st birthday parties, learning to walk, truly “playing” and getting to do more activities together. Plus, I love all the talking. Luke says quite a few words and signs some as well. And nothing can beat when he says “Ma” and then runs to give me a hug!

  9. I’m totally digging the 1 year old stage (so far). I’ve never been a fan of newborns. I always felt annoyed when people would bring their babies to work so we could ohh and ahh over them. Not interested!

    I was a little nervous at first because I knew I would have to go through the newborn stage with Oster and I wasn’t sure how I was going to handle it. How did I do it? Three words: Fell In LOVE! The newborn stage went by so fast that I kind of wish it lasted longer.

    Now, when I see newborns I do ohh and ahh over them. It just reminds me of my guy when I see a small one. I can imagine that the 2s and 3s are going to be a blast! I can’t wait.

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