I've been griping that my son (in particular, though my daughter is not immune) has been acting toddler-esque lately. And he has. But he's 10, and there are definitely some perks that come with having older kids. Without further ado...
Things I am grateful my kids have outgrown:
1. Diapers. There's nothing more to say about that.
2. Car seats. I don't have to worry if they're installed right. I don't have to worry about the food underneath them. I don't have to lift them out.
2a. They can buckle themselves in. And open and close the doors.
2b. They can haul their own crap in and out of the house and help me empty grocery carts.
3c. They can clean the vehicle if they spill something.
3. Sippy cups. Those lids are impossible to keep clean without having them develop leaks. And they leave them EVERYWHERE. At least with upright cups, even ones with lids and straws, they are normally found on a flat surface where they're visible to others.
4. Me cutting up their food. It's very nice to be able to sit down, fill plates, and eat without watching mine go cold while I mince up someone else's dinner.
4a. Me fixing breakfast.
4b. Me fixing lunch.
4c. Me fixing snacks. Do we see a theme here? I fix enough breakfasts on weekends (or sometimes overnight in the crockpot) for them to find their own meals each morning, and they enjoy scrounging for leftovers or making sandwiches for lunch. I make one meal a day. I love to cook *meals,* but the other feedings I can take or leave. And I generally prefer 'leave.' My mother I am not.
5. The "helping" phase. Don't get me wrong. M2 loves to help. But almost-8-year-old help is far more useful than 2-year-old 'help.' Standing around watching a toddler splash water around in a toilet is far more cringeworthy than handing your elementary-age child a brush, some paper towels, and a bottle of homemade cleaner and telling her to go clean the bathroom.
7. Mall play areas. They always looked like giant germ playgrounds. I took my kids once in a while, don't get me wrong. But it wasn't my favorite way to spend a morning.
8. Nursery rhymes. Again, it's cute for a while. And they're fun to reminisce about. And yes, they have a purpose. But I find them inherently nauseating, and I'm grateful my kids no longer beg for 'Farmer in the Dell' and 'Little Bunny FooFoo.' I love that they ask for The Rolling Stones or Johnny Cash or Tchaikovsky. Or Green Day. *cough*
8a. Preschool TV shows. M1 adored Teletubbies. That is all.
9. Bathtime. OK, this one I'm almost sentimental about. There's something adorable about wrapping a tiny child up in a towel and cuddling them dry. Still, my knees are grateful I'm not bending over a bathtub every night any more.
10. Teaching them to read. This sounds insane, but as much as I adore reading and I'm so grateful my kids adore reading, too, I hated teaching them to read. I am just not patient like that, and I hated watching them struggle. Also, one can only watch the Leapfrog videos so many times before CVC words and 'blends' become anathema. See 8a.
There are probably more, and of course there are a million things I miss about the kids when they were tiny (like the way I used to be able to snuggle them both on my lap comfortably for ages and ages [M1 tried to sit on my lap today while we talked about the March on Washington led by MLK Jr. and my legs almost instantly went numb]), but it's good to remember why I like the kids the age they are now, too. And I'm not nostalgic, anyway... I much prefer the here and now.
What do you miss or NOT miss most about your kids when they were young(er)?