Friday, January 2, 2015

Why We Should Hang Out With Two-year-Olds

I recently returned from spending a week with my oldest daughter and her two-year-old son. I've known for a very long time that our children teach us the most valuable life lessons, but being in the presence of a two-year-old who isn't your own child, can remind you of life joys most of us forget.

The Top Ten Reasons Why We Should Hang Out With Two-Year-Olds:

10. They run everywhere! When it's time to eat, they run to the highchair. When it's time to go outside, they run to the front door. When it's time for a bath, they run to the tub. Maybe if we tried it, we would experience the same exhilaration for the simple things. Time for work, run to your desk. Time to walk the dog, run to get the leash. Time for your spouse to come home, run to the door. I think it could make a difference.

9. They love books! And when they find one they really love, they read it over and over and over! There is joy in reading. Most of us have forgotten that.

8. They dance. If it has a rhythm, they wiggle their little bodies and laugh and smile to the sound. Exercise and endorphins, and they didn't even have to join a gym!

7. They know what they like. Two-year-olds have favorite toys. My grandson's favorite happens to be a set of stacking cups. He stacks and unstacks and sorts and unsorts a million times a day. He doesn't feel guilty about the soccer ball lying idly in the corner or the firetruck half-hidden under the bed. He isn't full of "I should be doing this or that". He likes stacking, so he stacks.

6. They laugh. I read somewhere that the average child laughs 300 to 500 times a day while the average adult laughs only about 15 times a day. Hang out with a two-year-old, and you'll up your average.
5. They nap. Who doesn't like a good nap?

4. They learn new words daily, sometimes hourly. The English language grows almost that fast. Merriam-Webster added 150 new dictionary words just last year. We all should aspire to broaden our linguistic lexicon.

3. They like what they see in the mirror. My grandson spends a lot of time smiling, giggling, talking, and admiring himself in the mirror. Wouldn't it be great to check yourself out and love what you see?

2. They throw tantrums. Come on. Aren't there times when you would like to throw yourself down to the ground, have a good cry, and then be over it? Maybe they have this emotional stability thing figured out more than we do.

1. They kiss and hug for any reason and for no reason. That just feels good.

Here's to channeling your inner two-year-old, or at least finding one to hang with for a while.

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