This comes out a little late due to the current circumstances in the world . . . from the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and my job as a home-schooling mom coming to and end (fingers crossed) to the George Floyd riots and protests for #BlackLivesMatter life has been a little wild over the past few weeks. I couldn’t let a year go by without this annual dedication to my kids on their birthdays . . . Liam turned six this year so without further ado, here are just 6 (of the many) things I love about Liam.
1. Liam LOVES being a big brother.
Of course Liam was excited to become a big brother when Kiera was born, but he has taken on the role of being a big brother to a little brother even more seriously. Since our Baby Boo was born, Liam has been very obsessed with him – from wanting to hold him, play with him, and now teach him how to climb stairs. I know – yikes. There are lots of talks right now about how he can’t be alone on the stairs and you have to stand right behind him. Liam is right there every time. (By the way, one of Liam’s nicknames has always been “King Boo” so “Baby Boo” seems very appropriate for our #4.)
2. Liam is very strategic (and great at math).
Liam has always been interested in chess. He jumped at the chance to take it as an extra curricular at school. This quarantine has taken it to a whole new level for both Liam and Landon. Daddy bought them a really nice chess board to play each other, and they’ve also become obsessed with playing their friends (and their dad) online at Chess.com. Liam was very proud to even beat his dad. Because chess is so strategic, we’ve let it be the one place they can spend more screen time.
Moreover, Liam has really excelled at Math this year. His kindergarten teacher emailed me a few months back, “I just wanted to let you know how amazed I am by Liam’s understanding of math concepts. Yesterday, we were playing a game where kids roll two dice and make an equation with the two numbers rolled. Liam asked if he could do multiplication instead of adding or subtracting. He said that Landon is learning that in third grade, but he feels read for it already in kindergarten. At first I thought he has memorized some facts, but I was wrong. After working with him for a few minutes, it became clear that he REALLY understands what multiplication is. Here is one example of what he said when he rolled 5 and 6 ‘It just means that you have the number 5, 6 times and it’s like 5 and 5 and 5 and 5 and 5 and 5, which makes 30.’ And he did that with lots of examples!”
Clearly, I’m a proud Mama. Since we’ve been homes-schooling during the COVID-19 quarantine, I’ve had the chance to observe his talents in person. Math is clearly something that comes easy to him and he loves. As someone who’s not blessed with those skills, I admire this quality in Liam a lot.
3. Liam’s a big snuggler.
I think this has been on the list since I started writing these (see years 2, 3, 4, and 5), and Liam still loves a good snuggle. (In fact, I have to say more often than not, “Liam, I need some space.”) Mostly, I embrace it though because I know the snuggling may not last forever (I’m still crossing my fingers that it’s just part of who he is for the long run.)
4. Liam’s really helpful (and is basically raising himself). 😉
This is a running joke in my husband’s family. My husband is #3 in his family of four kids with two older brothers who were eight and nine years older than him, so he always jokes to his mom that he raised himself since he learned to do a lot of things on his own and was given a lot of freedom. Although that’s not exactly the case with Liam, he is very independent and takes care of a lot of things that I don’t even ask of him. For instance, he comes in to our room first thing in the morning, and without being asked takes a shower and gets himself ready for the day. Because he’s often up before everyone else, he’ll then go downstairs and make breakfast for himself and even sometimes for everyone else.
Sometimes just around dinner time he’ll say to me, “So Mom, what are we making for dinner?” and he’ll set the table or help me cook without being asked. I love the help. I know I wasn’t doing these things at six years old without being asked, so I’m beyond impressed.
5. Liam stands up for himself.
This quality may get him in trouble one day, but Liam has no problem standing up for himself. As the younger brother to a nine-year-old he hangs with the big boys a lot, and he actually prefers it. He LOVES Landon’s friends, and I know they consider Liam to be their buddy too. As you can imagine, though, he’s frequently the one they gang up or run from. Liam takes it all on, has fun with it, and when things get to be too much he has no problem standing up for himself. Sometimes it does get the best of him and resorts to using his fists over his words, but he’ll get there. 😉
6. Liam’s super strong.
As I mentioned, he can hang with the big boys no problem. Part of the reason I don’t worry about him when they do fight is because Liam is really strong. You can probably tell by his muscular little body, but you should see him do pull-ups! For real, he puts me to shame. It’s also why I don’t worry when he picks up his youngest brother and carries him around. I can see the look on other moms’ faces when he’s walking around with him like “Is this okay?” I know Liam’s strength and that he’s got him. Like I said in #1, Liam is a great big brother.
Happy Birthday, Liam! I’m so proud of who you are!