4 years is apparently quite the milestone. All of a sudden, Karis says she can do all kinds of things that she previously would not do, just because she is 4! For instance, big girls like to eat everything, she tells me. And it must be true, because she has been eating things at which she previously turned up her nose. Except tomatoes. "I'll try those when I am 5!"
4 year olds evidently start calling their "owners" Mom and Dad instead of Mommy and Daddy. (I mean parents, of course, but she calls adults "owners" for some reason. I think it is because everytime we would see a dog, I would remind her to ask its owner if she could pet it.) I'm not quite ready for such mature name and quickly correct her to say Mama instead.
Karis remembers everything and really helps to keep me organized. Mark was buckling her in the van to make a quick trip to VA last weekend and she randomly said, "do we have food for Pup-pup?" That poor dog would have undoubtedly gone hungry if she hadn't reminded us! She also helps me remember things I need at the grocery store. And I better not promise her we can make something together (like granola or pizza dough) and get too busy because she will not let me forget about it!Karis loves being 4 and talks about it all the time. As much as I don't want her to grow up so quickly, I am actually really enjoying this stage. We still have to deal with the occasional whiny-ness, of course, but for the most part, Karis is a wonderful, helping, happy little girl. It is such a joy to be around her!
Karis is really into any kind of craft right now. She learned to cut (and is super excited about it!) and paste and would do it all day if I let her. She also loves stickers and stamps. Karis loves to help me make anything in the kitchen. If she sees me start to do anything, she pulls up a chair and begs to help.
Karis has started to grasp the concept of patience and the reward of saving things for later, which is really hard for her little sister to understand :) For example, yesterday I bought them a special pack of little cheeses for snacks at our upcoming beach trip and explained when we would eat it. Karlie started pleading for some as soon as we got into the car, but I could hear Karis in the back seat animatedly telling her to wait and save it "for the beach!"
Karis has really become quite a helper and a wonderful big sister. She loves to read to Abbi and will tell me to put her down so that she can show her the books. Often when Karlie is fussing to have a toy that Karis is playing with, Karis will just say "here Karlie!" and give it to her. (Not every time, of course, but definitely more than she used to :)
Karis has definite favorite foods right now. If I ask her what she wants for dinner (which I do occasionally in Thursday nights when Mark works late and is not home for dinner), she will inevitably say cereal with raisins and milk. Or granola. She also loves bacon, butter, feta salmon, and steak.
Karis loves her family, friends, and our church family and talks about them all day long. She has cousins that she hasn't seen in almost a year, but she talks about them non-stop as if she just saw them yesterday. She remembers conversations with them that I forgot long ago and daily tells me things she wants to ask them. And if we ever miss a Sunday due to traveling, she mourns the missed opportunity to see everyone quite vocally. She is my social butterfly and wants to be out of the house much more than I do :) Karis loves her soccer and swimming classes and told me recently that she is ready to play basketball with Daddy!
She still loves the color pink, but is branching out a lot more now that she is 4. She will now wear colors like orange or blue because Daddy or Daniel (her favorite little fellow at church) might like it.
Karis is very curious about everything and asks tons of questions and then wants to tell everyone what she knows. I have to be careful of my health-nuttiness so that she doesn't offend others. For instance, she recently asked me if milk was healthy. I told her that our milk was healthy because it was fresh from our farmer's cows, but that the store-bought milk was not as good for you because it doesn't have as many nutrients. She immediately started saying that the next time she went to the store, she was going to tell them that they needed to get fresh milk from a cow! I urged her not to, and she replied indignantly, "But they need to know!" And once, when her cousins had twice as much ice cream in their bowl as she, she told them ever so sweetly and sincerely that she hoped all that sugar did not make them sick!!! Oh, how she makes me laugh :)
Karis loves to read more than anything and will sit still even for stories without pictures now. I wish I did not have so much to do because I would love to just sit and read with her all day long! But Abbi and Karlie do not quite have her attention span :)