My boys are 3 years 4 months and 19 months old and this is what I want to remember:
The near constant wrestling. They remind me of puppies.
Dash's sweet, nurturing nature and spontaneously coming to cuddle or hug us and saying, "I love you."
Cedric's big brown eyes and long dark lashes on his little face.
Dash's love of books. Recently we had put him to bed and then he came out to get our bag of library books and went right back to his room. When we check on him before we go to bed we often find him asleep with a book laying open on his chest or beside his pillow.
Bringing Cedric into our bed in the morning if Dash isn't awake yet and snuggling and reading books.
Cedric's exclamations of "Whoa!" when he sees pictures of big trucks or dinosaurs...or anything big.
The wonderful stories Dash tells. "The wild thing was coming closer...and closer...and closer! And so I run up into a tree! And then I get away in a airplane!"
Cedric announcing "Bih truh!"(big truck) to us whenever he sees a truck in the car. Usually he makes sure to get our attention, too: "Mama! Bih truh!"
Cedric checking to see who is in the car when we start to back out of the driveway, "Mama? Daddy?"
The deep pride that I feel when I can see that Dashiell is proud of something he did - like getting dressed all by himself.
The deep declarative voice that Dashiell sometimes uses when he talks. The other night we were at the dinner table and Chris made a banging sound in the kitchen. Dash got up from the table and called to the kitchen in his deep voice, "What is it Cwhis?" Chris and I are still laughing over it.
Cedric's love of I Spy books and the Find It pages in his Hello magazine.
All the audio books we listen to in the car. Cedric's favorite is Duck on a Bike (he asks, "Bike? Bike?") and can mimic some of the sections of the book. Dash's loves Where the Wild Things Are and Peter and the Wolf. When the wolf swallows the duck Dash narrates along with a British accent, "He swallowed her!" (Our favorite books lately)
Cedric alerting us of anything falling on the floor with a very loud "OH NOOOOO!" as if something truly terrible has happened.
Dash telling us he saw a shape in the clouds for the first time (a dinosaur).
Cedric getting my attention in the car one day, "Mama? Mama?" and then "humming" a little song for me.
Dash's excitement to start his first school year of preschool (he starts today!). Even though he's been doing a summer program he'll be moving to a new classroom today and this feels like our first "first day of school" experience and I'm so excited for him.
Hiding our collection of dinosaur figurines while the boys (attempt) to keep their eyes closed in the next room. (I remember playing this game so much with my dad and sister growing up.)
That solo daycare pick up and drop off has (thankfully) become so much more manageable.
Watching Dash's sense of humor emerge and being able to joke with him.
Reading cooking magazines and cookbooks with Dash, a very favorite love of mine that I'm excited to share with my boys for years to come.
The focus and respect Dash shows when I give him cooking tasks.
That the boys are sleeping so much better! Cedric goes to bed so easily and sleeps through the night until 5/5:30. Dash usually goes to bed easily and is up 4:45/5 but will often wait in his room until his clock lights up around 5:30. There are still some too-early mornings with Dash but we are in such a better place than we used to be (hiring a sleep coach made all the difference and we are so thankful!).
The deeply contented "these are the days" feeling I have being with my family, especially on laid back weekend mornings, drinking coffee, playing blocks, reading books and not wanting to be anywhere else but right there.