Category Archives: Eleanor Stories

Happy Fourth Birthday Eleanor!

Posted by: Maggie

My Dearest Eleanor,

Today you turned four! I can’t believe how quickly this year has gone by and how much you’ve grown!

You are as brave, stubborn, and independent as ever. Although you still want Mommy and Daddy to do things for you and you often say that you don’t want to get older. I suspect this has to do with the little brother growing inside of me. Lately, you tell us that you want to be a baby still and once argued with me in tears that it was better to be a baby than a big girl. But at other times you tell us very matter-of-factly that one day you will be a grown up and have your own family. And of course, you explain, that this means that you will need a bigger bed and will have to move to a new house with your family. And when I protest, telling you that I want you to live with me forever, you tell me, “Don’t worry Mama, I’ll come visit you sometimes.”

You like to talk a lot about what will happen when you grow up–you will get married, be a Mommy with your own babies, live in your own house, drink coffee, drive a car, make your own rules, do whatever you want. You like to talk about what job you will have, and always what outfit will go with that job. Some days you want to be a Mommy, “just like you Mama! But I think I will need a purple dress for that!” Other days you want to work with Daddy, “but I think I will need to get some work pants like Daddy.”

You tell elaborate stories about things we have done in the past. They often involve you being present at different times in my or your Daddy’s childhood. “When you were a baby Mama, I helped GoGo change your diapers!” Or even more outlandish ones, “When we were little kittens you were a baby kitten and I was your Mama kitten, and I would lick your fur to give you a bath.” Or, “Daddy when you were little you didn’t know how to drive, and your Mama didn’t know either, so I taught you both how to drive!” You are constantly talking and always making us laugh.

You are so smart with a huge vocabulary. Your teachers are always impressed by how many words you know and concepts you understand compared to the other kids in your class. And you know you are smart too. In fact, you think you know everything, and after we explain something new to you, you often respond, “I know, I know, I told you that!”

You are still making things tough for me and your Daddy sometimes. You aren’t always a good listener, and aren’t always so patient. But you have gotten so much better over the last year! You still get angry and throw the occasional tantrum, but it’s much less frequent than it used to be. You are maturing every day, and we are so proud of you.

You make my life difficult, but so wonderful. I can’t imagine a life without you in it. I love spending each day with you!

Happy birthday my sweet and crazy girl! I love you with all of my heart!


You can see more of Eleanor’s Four Year Old Portraits over at Maggie Keegan Gross Photography

Eleanor’s Fall Hair

Posted by: Maggie

She’s been growing her hair all summer, but finally decided she wanted a change. So we went with our favorite bob that she got last year.

Ignore that she’s wearing her pajamas.

I think she looks adorably stylish. And Josh and I are very happy with having much less hair to brush through!

Preschool Troubles

Posted by: Maggie

First of all, look at this girl:

Would you kick this sweet, adorable child out of school?

Okay, I’m exaggerating a bit. She didn’t get kicked out of school, but she did get kicked out of nap time at school.

It all started over the summer, when she stopped napping. Everyday I would pick her up from school at 3pm and most days I’d get the same report (from a frustrated teacher) that she had once again not napped. AND not only did she not nap, but she would not sit and play quietly. She was getting up and running around and thought it was funny that the teachers wanted her to stop. Yup, my kid is a trouble maker.

She had stopped napping at home on the weekends as well. We always attempt a nap and give her a period of time that she needs to stay in her room before she could come out. And occasionally during that time she would fall asleep, but more and more often she just played for a while and we let her get up.

When the fall semester started, they decided that they weren’t going to put up with her anymore.  I explained to them that I didn’t understand why they were having such a problem with her,  she behaves for us at home. But, then again, we don’t ever expect her to sit quietly for 2 hours! Honestly, I don’t know how that would even be possible or why they think it should be. Does anyone know any three or four year old who can sit quietly for 20 minutes much less two hours?

I recognize their frustration. Every other Pre-K kid is napping. And while they are, she wants to run around and make noise. So, what are they supposed to do? Have one teacher watch her while she plays in another room? I have no idea. So, they’ve asked me to switch her to a half day schedule. I had already switched from full day to 3pm at the start of the year. Now they’d like for me to pick her up at noon. Which, cuts my 6 hour workday to just 3 hours. Work is not crazy busy right now, so I’m managing, but I’m not thrilled about the arrangement.

Has anyone else out there had this problem? What did you or your kid’s school do with your preschooler who refused to nap?

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