Dear Holly: The Hamster Didn’t Get the Toy Blocks After All

3 years, 8 months.

Dear Holly,

Last week, my coworker Lori was able to get some free cardboard blocks from her community’s “buy, sell, trade” Facebook page. The simple concept was that these blocks would be perfect for our family’s pet hamster.

He loves to chew cardboard and make beds out of small boxes. So it was a perfect idea.

However, the blocks never made it upstairs to the hamster’s aquarium.

That’s because you and your brother have been making up games all week using them. Castles have been built. Escape rooms have been constructed. Towers have been set up.

Imagine- that kids would actually get to play with toys intended for kids, as opposed to a hamster!

Love,

Daddy

Dear Holly: You Got to Take Home Snoopy Last Weekend

3 years, 8 months.

Dear Holly,

As I picked you up from school last Friday, I learned that it was your turn to take home the class pet, Snoopy, for the weekend. You were so excited!

You took the stuffed animal everywhere- as we ran errands, as we went out for dinner, to church…

Then on Sunday afternoon, you proactively arranged for Jack to find our Peanuts DVD (which I didn’t realize we still owned) and spent an hour or so watching Snoopy on TV.

This just so happened to be during the time slot I was going to make you take a nap.

Snoopy saves the day!

Love,

Daddy

Dear Holly: Can You Just Stay 3 Years Old Forever?

3 years, 7 months.

Dear Holly,

Here recently, I’ve been hearing Mommy ask you, “Holly, can you just stay 3 years old forever?”

She’s got a good point.

This is definitely an enjoyable age for me as your Daddy. You’re potty trained. You can clearly communicate what you want. And you do a great job of entertaining yourself during times Mommy and I are getting household chores down.

In fact, you’ve even begun helping with some of those chores, including help me clean the toilets and the hamster’s aquarium.

What I love best is how adorable you are these days. You are basically a stuffed animal kitten that came to life and can talk now.

I’m sure 4 will be great too.

But as for right now, I’m in no rush for you to stop being 3 years old!

Love,

Daddy

Dear Jack: Your New Converse All Star Shoes, with Flames

9 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

You’re at the age where you are constantly wearing out your shoes, as well as outgrowing them.

For your “2nd half of 3rd grade” shoes, you decided it was time for a new pair of Chuck Taylors; like I have.

However, when we went to Kohl’s, we learned that Chuck Taylors are not made is size 4 for boys.

Instead, we had to buy you the slightly more cushioned upgrade:

Converse All Stars.

You got some really cool black ones with flames on the bottom.

And, they aren’t designed to lace up all the way, so they look extra cool!

Love,

Daddy

Dear Jack: Your Hamster’s New Aquarium

9 years.

Dear Jack,

It turns out, cages sold for hamsters aren’t truly intended for the type of hamster you have. A teddy bear hamster, or Syrian Hamster, is much happier in an aquarium; as opposed to a cage.

So last week, on a random school night, I took you to the pet store to help me pick out a 20 gallon aquarium for Alpha.

Not only is he clearly much happier in the open space, but it is undeniable that you are much more excited to have a pet hamster now!

You are actively involved and excited each evening when we get him out to play.

Plus, it is much easier to clean his home that he predictably pees in the same corner now! Out with the cage, in with the aquarium.

Love,

Daddy

Dear Holly: Making Blankets and Diapers from Kleenex

3 years, 7 months.

Dear Holly,

With Christmas coming up in just a few weeks, I have a feeling you’re going to be all about the baby dolls.

This past weekend when we returned from our Thanksgiving trip to Alabama, Mommy and I noticed you quietly entertaining yourself on the far side of the living room.

You discretely discovered a travel pack of Kleenex from one of the suitcases and decided that a few of the tissues would make the perfect sized blanket for one of your small baby dolls.

Then you determined that it was time to change the baby’s diapers, so you made her a new diaper with a few more of the tissues.

I know you are going to love any new baby dolls you get this year for Christmas!

Love,

Daddy

Dear Holly: Looking Back Over 3 Years Ago Since You Met Your Friend Hanna

3 years, 6 months.

Dear Holly,

Your friend Hanna came to visit us last Saturday morning for breakfast. The two of you love playing together.

Hanna’s daddy took a picture of you playing in your mermaid blanket. It reminded me of when the two of you both met for the first time; back when you were only 6 months old.

We had joked that you were Elsa and Hanna was Jasmine.

So I suppose from now on, every time we take an updated version of you both, we’ll compare it back to that picture of when you two met each other!

Love,

Daddy