Motherhood

Conversations With a Three-Year-Old

Conversations With a Three-Year-Old

Three years old is a magic age for funny conversations. Kids are old enough to have lots to say, but young enough for it to not make complete sense. Anton has been on fire recently, and I wish I could freeze him at this age! Here are a few things we’ve chatted about…

Me: “Would you like to take a fun class this summer?”
Anton: “Yes. Soccer, skateboarding or banana throwing.”

The other night, he wanted me to keep cuddling him at bedtime. “Do you want me to get your piggy or bear instead?” I asked. “No!” he said, “I need someone ALIVE.”

Anton has gotten really into figuring out what’s “cool.” His new game, which we play almost every night, is where he puts on my old sunglasses and walks down the hallway (albeit usually on tiptoe). Then he instructs me: “Pretend we’ve never met and you think I’m cool.” So, I’ll say, “Wow! That guy looks cool! What a cool guy. I wonder if he’ll hang out with us. I hope so. Wow, he’s very, very cool.”

Anton is obsessed with all things knights these days (especially this book). The other day, I was putting him to bed, and he got all loving and cuddly and he grabbed my cheeks with his hands and exclaimed, “Mama, you’re so knight-y!”

Me: “What present should I get Daddy? Do you have any ideas?”
Anton: “Lightbulbs.”
Me: “Oh, yeah, totally, but what about something that’s just for fun?”
Anton: “Lightbulbs are fun for Daddy! And keys, too! Oh, I know — a drawer full of coffee! I want Daddy to have fun coffee.”

Toby used to have an imaginary wife and two kids, and Anton is now following suit. He was talking about his imaginary wife the other day, and I asked what her name was. He looked around the room and said, “Um, um… Chair-y!” Since then, they’ve had two children: Window-y and Table-y.

Meanwhile, six-year-old Toby has been talking non-stop about babies. He has even launched a heartfelt campaign for us to have a third. He asks Alex and me all the time, writes lists of baby names, and has been studying The Baby Tree book to figure out exactly how we can make this happen. I guess he has been chatting about it a lot, because I’ve gotten multiple emails from his teachers congratulating us on expecting a baby girl this spring!

Conversations With a Three-Year-Old

What funny things have your kids come up with lately? I would love to hear… :)

P.S. Kids in conversation, and going on a date.

(Photos from Instagram.)

  1. Hilarious! Kids are the best :)

  2. Gmama says...

    I picked up my 4 yr. old gbaby from daycare today:

    Me: So how was your day?
    Gbaby: Good. [**heavy sigh**] I’m over it.
    Me: I totally get it.

  3. Anna says...

    This is so funny! We ask our 3 year old son a question a day and record his answers in a notebook (they are gold). We are expecting another boy this summer, so I am really enjoying your parenting posts about being mom to 2 boys!

    • I do that too with my 5 year old daughter. We began a 3 year journal this year :)

  4. These are my favorite posts!!! I’m LOLing as we speak! Love love love.

  5. When my Son was 3 he used to have co-workers that he named De Gootson (day goot son) and Bob Janey. I have no idea where those names came from but we still mention them from time to time. At 6 he gets shy about it now and tells us to stop!

  6. cooper says...

    The little boy I used to nanny had two imaginary sons, “Toto” and “Cake.” Funnily enough, Toto was white and Cake was black :) So sweet!

  7. Geraldine Conway says...

    I absolutely loved this post and I read every single hilarious comment too. I have 2 children. A boy of 17 and a girl who’s 12. I have so many funny things that my boy has said over the years. They still make me laugh and he still loves to hear them all. I have written down many but reading through all these comments have reminded me of so many.

    My daughter has special needs. She has both physical and learning disabilities. I have read some comments that touched on special needs and have read comments that have encouraged the writer that things may get better and who have given examples of other kids who caught up.

    But it’s really important to disabuse ourselves of this notion that everyone will catch up and the ‘don’t worry just you wait and see’ responses. A lot of kids won’t catch up, they will never over their disabilities and will live their whole lives outside the social norms. And that’s okay too. We all need to remember this. It can be hurtful to hear these responses because you end up feeling that you aren’t being heard. That we are somehow negative and are putting limits on our children when we should be dreaming big and aiming high. I’m aiming high, I put so much work in, I do everything humanly possible to help my daughter reach her potential. But that doesn’t mean that I’m willing her to catch up to her peers, no it just means I’m trying to help her progress on her own path. It’s okay to have your own path, it’s okay to be different. It’s okay that your kid has special needs and will always have them.

    • LS says...

      Thank you so much for this response. I have a 12 year old daughter with SN as well. Every word rings true.

    • SM says...

      Thank you for this comment. I too have an 8 year old daughter with special needs and sometimes it feels sad not being able to share her funny stories and milestones like with my 6 year old “typical” daughter. Its just that nobody except my husband would really “get” it and find it amazing and funny.

  8. Jones says...

    That’s so funny about the cool guy stuff. When my sister and I were kids we played a game we called, “Cool Dudes.” Basically we both wore long tshirts to bed, the kind that were free bc my dad was in sales. We’d wrap a belt around our waist so the shirts looked like dresses. Then say to each other, “I’m a cool dude.” Yep that’s how the game went. Why? I have no idea. Definitely made it in to her wedding speech, thought.

  9. Niki says...

    A great bedtime book is “goodnight knight”.

  10. Jessica says...

    My 7 year old said “Mommy, when I have kids, NOW will be the olden days!”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that’s so astute!

  11. Jennifer says...

    I love these posts! You’re boys are adorable and so happy. Well done mama!

  12. Elle says...

    Me: I Love you

    My 3yr old: I know mummy, you’ve already told me!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Awwwww!!! I told Anton I loved him the other day, and he said, “You ALWAYS say that!!!” :)

  13. I love this! A petition for a third. Smart boy!

  14. f says...

    Wow, Toby is 6 already?! My son is 3.5 and saying hilarious things as well… We’ve been writing it all down in a little notebook which I keep next to the dining room table as dinner conversations are good material. His best one yet: “I miss Broccoli Obama!” LOL! And he was also trying to convince me just this morning that our family really needs to be 5 people (he has a little sister who is 5 months) and is requesting a little baby brother now. These kids!

  15. Sally says...

    I came downstairs the other day, wearing a sweater with flowers on it (in an attempt to try and defeat the snow on the ground!)
    My 5-year old Lilly looked up at me and said “Oh! What a lovely… Summer lady you look!”

  16. Hi Joanna,

    I love these hilarious posts about conversations with Toby and Anton!

    I have a 16 month old daughter (Rosie) and, after reading this, my husband and I were laughing at the thought of what crazy comments she might come up with over the coming years. Banana throwing is priceless.

    We’re in Bali at the moment, and she has recently started saying dada when waving good bye…. which I found strange because she knows dada is her dad, not goodbye. Then I discovered that “dadah” is actually the informal Indonesian word for goodbye!! The clever cookie has picked up more local lingo than her Mom and Dad :-)

    Thanks for sharing your motherhood insights and experiences. I find them heartwarming, funny, and also so helpful – especially when our babies seem to grow up so fast. X

    http://www.thislifeisbelle.com

  17. Sara S says...

    When my sister & I were 11 & 8 years old, we became obsessed with the idea of our parents having a baby for us to play with. We too came up with the names list & brought it up regularly. After about a year of this, it planted some kind of idea because my parents ended up pregnant! My brother is 13 years younger than me!

    (My mom says her only regret is not having another after him to be his buddy.)

  18. My girls are 11, 13 and (about to be) 16; every conversation is a riot.

    Lately, my oldest has taken to calling my husband and I ‘rents’, short for parents. Ever since she was three or so, she’s alternated between adding new endings to mommy and daddy such as ‘mommo’ and daddo’ or ‘mommoque and dadoque’, and flat out calling us ‘the parentals’. Where she gets it, I have no idea. But I absolutely love it!

    And btw, Joanna, my oldest is the one who told us we were pregnant with our third. So here’s to an early congratulations!

  19. Tracy says...

    these posts are my favorite! amazing

  20. Diana says...

    I miss hanging out with little guys. Thanks for the vicarious experience. :)

  21. I read all the 267 comments, and I loved them. My son has a severe speech delay and is still not saying a single word at 3 years and 4 months. It is heartbreaking BUT these comments made me laugh and feel like every child spoken about here is mine. Thank you, ladies :)

    • Em says...

      My niece has Apraxia, and speech therapy has changed her world. She is talking so much more know. Sending you lots of love!

    • Geraldine Conway says...

      That sucks big time. I know how you feel, my daughter is nearing 12 without speech. Don’t get me wrong she can make herself understood and she can say some words but we will never have a mother daughter conversation proper. Have you explored hand signs? like sign language but it’s a simpler form of it. Using it doesn’t delay spoken speech but it does allow your child to communicate and eases some of their frustration. My daughter caught on to it really quickly, from about age 3. ~Best regards x

    • Thanks Em and Geraldine for your kind words.

      He communicates his wants perfectly, is potty trained, doing alright at nursery, has good eye contact and reasonably average social skills, so doctors are finding it hard to diagnose him for anything except a speech delay. We know its not apraxia, so we’re pretty confused about what it can be. I know in the US things are so much better with state-run programs and all, but here in Dubai there are very few doctors who specialise in delays. Took us 7 months to get an appointment with one!

  22. Karin says...

    Adorable! I love the “snuggle” shirt too. When my son was 3 he had to fill out a Mother’s Day questionnaire at preschool about his mom. He stated that I spend most of my time “in a hammock”, my favorite food was bananas and my favorite holiday was Hanukkah (I’m not even Jewish). I had to explain to his teacher that I was gainfully employed and did not lounge in a hammock all day!

  23. My 4 y.o. asked me “where is my imagination? Everyone says ‘use your imagination’ but I can’t find it!”

  24. Midge says...

    When my daughter was that age, she said, “Mommy, let’s play spa and put pickles on our eyes.”

  25. Kay says...

    No kids of my own, but I’m a teacher,and I recently used a made-up student named Eddie in an example. Eddie now had a life of his own:he is invisible, lives at school, and has a twin sister named Jessica.

  26. Lisa Chavez says...

    For those of us who love the pants but are much larger than a size 12…can you suggest an alternative site for that item? Wide Leg Pants…

  27. JA says...

    My 2 year old daughter this morning heard me praising her friend for being potty trained. I asked her if she wanted to learn like her friend. The response, “I don’t hear you!”.

    • J.London says...

      hahaha – that is brilliant! :)

    • Kari says...

      My daughter is nearly 2 also, we’ve been trying to get her interested in going on the potty. The other day I noticed she was sitting in the corner going poo (in her diaper), I asked her “do you want to poo in the potty?”. Her reply, “NO, I poo on the ground!”
      Love these posts.

  28. Katie says...

    My son has a letter themed show/tell every week. This week was the letter P. He wanted to bring in his “thinking puddy” (a current fad his older sister’s introduced to him). I said, “remember to just call it ‘puddy’ when you’re sharing because it’s for the /p/ sound.” He responded “Yes, I know, besides F show and tell already happened.” Of course, the word “thinking” starts with an F in the mind of a 4 year old!

  29. A couple mornings ago, my five-year-old came stumbling into our room with tears streaming down his face. “I want a baby!” he wailed. He’s an only child, so of course this demand immediately broke my heart. But before I could alert my husband and stop taking birth control, he continued…

    “I want a baby!”
    “I want a baby brother!”
    “I want a baby brother with chew toys!”

    Um. Say what? After a lengthly conversation, it was determined that while he doesn’t in fact want a human brother, he desperately “needs” a puppy in his life. Looks like I better buy some chew toys!

    • Val says...

      My daughter too. She told someone at a restaurant that she has two dogs at home – Clifford and Snoopy. Time to get a dog I guess.

    • steph o says...

      This is hilarious!!!

  30. elizabeth r says...

    I don’t yet have kids; but my nephews are pretty adorable and hilarious. They are too young to talk much-though I can’t wait-but lately, when you ask for them to give you a hug, they just lean into you. It is the best and most adorable. Your kids are so great and cute. They seem so smart and creative.
    I totally get the privacy with the learning differences. I had some as a kid, and I turned out fine (I like to think). Even if your kid’s are lifelong, I know he will turn out great. Both kids are lucky to have you and Alex as parents. I know you likely have the financial resources to help, but, more importantly, you all seem to have boundless love. You four are a great family. Keep on keeping on. :)

  31. Melissa says...

    OMG my three year old does the same thing with naming her stuffed animals! She will look around the room and come up with names like “Ruggy” or “Couchy”

  32. June2 says...

    my friends’ 3 yr old is very into being “the cool guy” , lol. He runs around asking his mom if he’s a cool guy when he does certain things, I think because when he’s done something out-of-line, she tends to say, “that’s not cool”…

  33. Alison Briggs says...

    Our three year old, when asked how was school today? Will say, “Good, I did my work stuff.” and shrug his shoulders. If we ask for specifics he will say “Sorry momma, I can’t tell you. Just work stuff.” So funny! And he is so serious about it!

    • Jay says...

      SO sweet :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      the seriousness is the best part. your son sounds so adorable!

  34. Ciara says...

    Has Anton tried King Arthur’s Very Great Grandson? Such a sweet knight story!

  35. Amanda says...

    Oh man, age three is my absolute favorite so far! My 3.5 year old is trying to figure out what “being cool” is all about, too. He’ll say or do something, then ask me “Is that so cool?” He’s also had some friends and family members sick with a stomach bug recently and informed me this weekend that “Diarrhea is the quickest reindeer!” Ha!

  36. Tessa says...

    This is hilarious and adorable. Thanks for always sharing these conversations with Toby and Anton. One of the things that my three year old said a few months ago that made me laugh:

    Me: You’re getting to be such a big girl. Do you think you might want to try to stop sucking your thumb soon?

    Her: (nods yes while sucking her thumb)

    And then

    Her: No! Just kidding! I’m going to suck my thumb forever!

  37. Lisa says...

    I love the funny things kids come up with. last night my daughter (5) told me she wanted to be a mama when she grows up and she wants 2 boys, twins and will name them cole and cole. (That’s her older brother’s name).

  38. Beth says...

    This post is so sweet! My LO is not quite two yet, so he hasn’t really started talking in full swing. I’m excited to see what sorts of weird things he says when that time comes though!

  39. Carly says...

    Love these! :) A recent quote from my almost 3 year old boy:

    “Mommy you don’t have a penis. You pee straight out of your butt”.

    • Amanda says...

      Oh my goodness, my 3.5 year old said this exact same thing to me last week: “You don’t have a penis, Mama. You pee from your butt!!” while cracking up… oh boys!

  40. Jamie says...

    On inauguration day my 5 year-old nephew came home from school and said in a whisper “Trump moved into the white house today.” He hears so many negative thing about Trump that he thinks it’s a bad word.

    • Geraldine Conway says...

      He’s right!

  41. Elizabeth says...

    When my brother was about that age, he also had imaginary friends: Couch-couch and Pillow-pillow. :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      omg so cute!!!!

  42. liz says...

    this reminds me, has Toby gone on any dates recently? If so, would he care to share?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      yes! he has a “girlfriend” at school (basically, a platonic friend who happens to be a girl:) and they have gone to chuck e cheese, out for ice cream, to dinner, and to a tae kwon do class. it is SO cute and they’re really giggly and adorable.

    • liz says...

      Aw, she’s a lucky girl!

  43. Karen says...

    I babysat a 4yr old that was obsessed with the word penis. One day I was walking down the stairs where he was waiting for me on the end, and I stopped mid way because he said in a serious tone: “Miss Karen, there is a penis party upstairs and you’re invited *tiny finger pointing at me*”

    oh dear, LOL