By George, I think she’s (kind of) got (getting) it!

My 4 and a half year old daughter is growing up. Sure, she is growing faster than a weed and has these long gangly legs and arms that are covered with bruises most of the time, but it’s more than that. I have a few reasons to believe that she is, and that my hard work is finally paying off. It’s like pay day. Or at least knowing that you are going to get paid, even if it is months or years away. That knowing that will keep me going…

Exhibit A:
When I place dinner down in front of her, she eats it.
This might now seem like such a big deal, and Daisy hasn’t always been a fussy eater, but there was always an eye roll, a dramatic “YUCK” each and every time a meal was placed in front of her (regardless of whether it was her favourite thing). The last week or so she has eyed it suspiciously, but got stuck in with gusto even saying things like “this is DELICIOUS Mum”. Well der, of course it is. It’s almost like she gets that she’s hungry and she better eat it because there ain’t nothing else coming.

Exhibit B:
She lets me wash AND brush her hair.
My biggest struggle with Daisy (and boy are there a few) is the hair. The brushing of the hair. The washing of the hair. The tying of the hair. The everything of the hair. And again, over the past few weeks, she has started to brush her hair HERSELF. Let me brush it. And last night? The creme de la creme? She said “Can you wash my hair every night? It feels so nice!”. I promptly fainted and made her say it again to Rob just so he heard.

Exhibit C:
She apologised to me unassisted.
Yesterday she had a huge shit fight tantrum (some things don’t change) and I basically ignored her. Which made things worse, sure, but we got there in the end. About 5 minutes later she came and said to me “I’m sorry I yelled at you Mum”. SHE WAS SORRY. Payday MOFO’s, payday.

Exhibit D:
She sleeps in till after 6am sometimes even 6.30am
For a kid who sometimes thought that 4.30am was a reasonable time to start the day, this is a breakthrough. Big time. Sure, there are still mornings when she wakes up like the most pissed off, crankiest human being in the world who needs a good kick up the arse, but 6.30 is like some kind of miracle from the Gods.

Exhibit E:
Manners (to me) have been given without being asked.
Even the baby is catching onto this one! Each and every time I place a meal in front of my kids, or get something off a shelf for them I say “thanks Mum!” more to make myself feel better for the fact that I am an unpaid slave to two small people when I used to be valued in a workplace! With adults! This means that I probably say “Thanks Mum!” 4679 times a day which also adds to my general insanity….BUT…I figured that one day they would say it themselves. And they have! THEY HAVE!

These are but small, uninteresting things to anyone other than a mother, BUT they show some progress. Some hope. Some light at the end of a very long tunnel of raising a baby and a toddler that it does work. It can happen. You too will have a child that will be kind, and thoughtful and rested and with a well rounded palette! That is, until this afternoon when she gets home from Preschool feral and overtired, yelling at me to get her something to eat before gorging on it and then not eating dinner. Sigh…


  1. Well done. All your awesome parenting hard work has paid off 🙂

  2. Uhhh… I think I should bookmark this post for revisitation purposes. I’ve got a loooooong road to travel haha! <3

  3. As soon as it’s out there, there is always a test..but don’t worry the groundwork is there now and you’re doing really well with her..she’s learning!

  4. Some days are diamonds. Then tomorrow you go back to banging your head against the wall.

    Enjoy the good days hopefully they outnumber the bad.

  5. “Can you wash my hair every night…” Wow. Jealous. I’m still waiting for that one.

    Good girl!

  6. This deserves a promotion (to what I’m not sure…). Well done Mum! x

  7. Chloe is exactly the same age ……it’s great when they start showing ‘the real girl!’ ….congratulations! We still have the odd tantrum and I’m certainly getting the ‘I’m almost five’ attitude but now I’m finding she’s really cool to be around! Now I’m starting all again with #2

  8. Sweet <3. Then they stay lovely for a few years, and then become teenagers. Heaven help us.
    At 5-and-a-half we still have hair battles, although not so much now as they have to wear it up for school and she does love to follow school rules.

    Sounds like you’re doing a fab job xx

  9. How wonderful, it’s so nice to see a result from all the hard parenting work 🙂

  10. Isn’t it awesome? My 4 year old has just done that too! Seemingly overnight she’s sprouted manners, is more responsible, makes her own sandwiches etc.

    As for the hair thing? She looooves to brush it and wash it and unfortunately CUT IT. Nice side mullet happening at the moment.

  11. What’s with the hair thing. I have a 2.5 year old who wants nothing but pink, handbags and princess dresses but won’t let me brush and tie her hair?? Whoever saw a princess with birdsnest hair?

    Glad to see there is light at the end of the tunnel!!

  12. You mean there is hope? After I just cleaned up poo from the front landing which I almost walked in, it is nice to think that maybe a day will come when these sort of things happen! Well done.

  13. Enjoy it.
    Until she turns 7. Argh, 7. Such a ‘delightful’ age……

    Great job, Mum! It’s so good to suddenly see, wow!, my babies all grown up! X

  14. I really love my big girl being 4. Four is by far my favourite age. But 16 months? Shithouse. Please hurry up and become 4, Little Guy…

  15. I think Ive brainwashed my almost 7 year old son. If his 22 year old older sister gets sassy (also known as telling me exactly what she thinks if Ive done something to well lets say PISS HER OFF!) He says to her, Soph, thats not a very nice thing to say to Mummy! YES! Payback via the youngest! He’s going to be a lawyer when he grows up!?

    Ive got video footage of him as a baby 14 months or so saying thank you everytime he was handed something lol he’d nod his head at the same time as NOT taking his eyes of the electronic babysitter (aka Wiggles DVD). Makes me smile very much!

  16. Keep up the hard yards Beth, it does pay-off. My eldest are now 20 and 22 and my gut-wrenching slog of the early years with them has paid off big time. Its such a shame we have to wait such a long time for the work to pay its dividends! But what dividends they are! I wouldnt change it for the world…except to maybe suggest they bring out a new model kid with an off switch hehehe…

  17. Oh congrats! Been stalking your blog for a while – loving it – thank you! I thought I’d say hey and thank you for giving me light at the end of the tunnel. I’m still working on a lot of the things you mention! (I have a one year old and a two year old) My little girl’s first wild curls have just appeared and I foresee trouble… And do you mind if I pinch your ‘thanks mum’?

  18. yay yay yay.

    love the hair brushing. I pity my poor parents – I’m sure I was sent to school with unbrushed hair on more than one occasion.

    My 2 year old makes a cursory attempt to put toys away now. Particularly when I say the cleaners are coming. I like it!

  19. Yes, my third wakes at 4.30am routinely. I was just asking myself this morning how long this will last – about another two years you say?
    As for feral tantrums and saying sorry, how many times do we throw tantrums at our children and say sorry? I am guilty of a tantrum this week and yet when I cooled down, I still remembered to apologise to everyone. I had to email miss 12 her apology as she left for school with her Dad, mid tantrum. I guess wo sometimes expect more from our children than ourselves.

  20. Oh, Beth. I *get* this post. On so many levels. And am exceedingly happy for you, my friend. I can’t imagine that happening on Planet Baby with the 3 pixies for a while yet. I live in hope…J x

  21. You have given me hope lady. Real. hope. I have been in a world of hurt this week… who am I kidding, most weeks… and I pray that the fourth year is a pleasant surprise. We’ll see. Might be time for another there my friend ;o) xo

  22. Like Permanently 23 I also have a 16 month and a 4 year old. The four year old is growing up way too fast and also is easier at eating dinner (all his dinner including veges), easier at having his hair wash, easier at listening to me and understanding me and doing as I say. It really is so much easier with a four year old. He still gets tired though and cries when things are not going his way but overall it is a breeze. But the 16 month old she is sure hard work. At least she SLEEPS THROUGH THE NIGHT, wakes up at 7.30am, she eats well and is not picky like her brother AND now is having her afternoon sleep and mama can surf the web check out blogs, and make dinner. Have a nice night. enjoy! Love your blog!

  23. I love this post! There is a light at the end of the tunnel. I’ve recently started to suspect that L thinks I’m thanking him when I say Ta Mummy! He says “s’okay mummy”! Um no that’s not the response I was after!

  24. Ah I love it when they seem to grow overnight into grown up kids. Our 4 yr old got it around 3 thank heavens. The bby still thinks I am thanking hm. One step at a time hey? : )

  25. Well done! I was thinking just the same thing about my 4 year old the other day. At last some sanity and reason is beginning to develop! It is a great thing – enjoy!

  26. I can only imagine the sigh of… “yes, I have done it”. How my little one will be so big soon enough…

    Lots of love from your newest follower


  27. wait until you get to half way through kindy, where their teacher is GOD and everything THEY say is better than you.

    and then the talking back starts with a VENGEANCE!!!!

    Thankfully I am able to circumvent this slightly because I happen to work at the same school, so if she is a little shit and wants to say “Ms G said…” I come back with “Well I will tell Ms G that you are talking back and being rude”

    I also find videoing tantrums and talking back to show sainted teacher what a shit they are at home also helps. God bless camera phones.

    vengeance thy name is MUM!

  28. There are moments of grace like these throughout their growing years which are wonderful. Enjoy them because someyhing strange happens when they hit puberty. Proud is not a word I would always use to describe their behaviour. BUT sometimes you’ve just got to laugh!!

  29. Just tonight I sat here trying to get a brush through my daughters hair but she wasn’t having a bar of it. So I waited till she fell asleep and brushed it with it on her pillow – wonder where she gets her determination from??
    Oh and can I just say that I think you are an ACE mum!

  30. Awesomeness! Saying sorry unprompted is particuarly awesomeness. Some people never learn that in their whole life. x

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