Motherhood

How Old Are Your Kids?

Toby and Anton Goddard-Williams

If you have a child or children, how old are they? Mine have me perplexed…

Toby technically just turned 10 and Anton technically just turned 7, but that can’t be right? In my mind and heart, they’re still babies. I wonder if it will always feel that way? I wonder if Marian Shields Robinson still looks at Michelle Obama and sees her toddler face?

Here’s a video of Anton naming the Beatles, when he was two years old.

And their photos from their very first days of life.

Says Maya Angelou: “Most people don’t grow up. Most people age. They find parking spaces, honor their credit cards, get married, have children, and call that maturity. What that is, is aging.”

So, I’m curious, how old are your kids? And how old are they really?

P.S. Slamdunk birthday presents for kids (of all ages) and how many children do you hope to have?

  1. Melanie says...

    My babies are 2 and 6 months. Some days feel eternal (especially during these times) but then I read things like these and realize that time will FLY and so I savor the madness.

  2. Kc says...

    My daughters are 14, 11, & 8 but really they’re 3, 6 , & 9 in my mind and I have no idea why!

  3. Lori says...

    I love this question so much. I think constantly about how I am always behind with them. They grow up and I’m like, wait, what? My son is 14 and it’s no longer possible for me to ignore that fact because TEENAGER. My daughter is 10 but in my heart, she is maybe 4. :)

  4. Valerie says...

    My boys are 2 and 4 and we have a surprise third arriving in January! The boys asked to watch home videos on my phone today and it’s hard to believe how different they were even just 6 months ago. I can’t picture my 2 year old as any other age than what he is now- he’s sharp, sweet and loves garbage trucks. (He was also a very difficult baby so maybe I’ve blocked that out- haha.) I think I will always picture my 4 year old as the age he was the summer before his brother was born (1.5)- I’m a stay at home mom so it was just the two of us out exploring and I will always cherish that time. He’s starting preschool this fall and I can’t believe it.

  5. Tammy says...

    My daughters are 7 and 9 now. I constantly mourn who they were even while I’m excited about who they are becoming. It is the eternal push/pull of parenting. And, like every stage of parenting, the great parts are SO great and the hard parts are SO hard.

  6. Christie says...

    I wonder if we’re all feeling nostalgic as Mothers in lockdown right now. I have an only child, she’s 9. I’ve never thought much about having another baby (not since the many losses we had years ago) but lately I find myself feeling VERY clucky and missing those days it was just her and I, quietly snuggling on the floor.

    I used to catch my own Mum watching me when I was a kid and I’d say “What are you staring at?!” and she’d say “Oh, nothing”.

    Now I catch myself watching my own daughter and I understand how she was feeling.

  7. Rachel says...

    My daughter is 4 and son almost 6 months, which I’m not sure how that is possibly because isn’t he a newborn and I thought she was 2?!

  8. Jacqueline Rios says...

    OH! My baby girl is officially 13 (14 in November) but, really, I swear I still can’t believe I was ever pregnant!! It was a SURPRISE kind of surprise (didn’t know I could get pregnant) but she just made it turn out to be the very best kind!! She’s currently hating every type of affection I attempt to show and is always finding very creative ways to let me know I really do need to leave her alone…

  9. Jen says...

    I love your brother-boys and all these comments! My son has been a 43 year old engineer since he was 2. At almost 16, he is the most mature person in our house. His delightful little sister is on the verge of turning 11, but she depending on the day, she is either 6, 16, or 26. They both constantly blow my mind.

  10. Suzie says...

    3 and 1. I know these baby/toddler years are the wild times, but trying to hold on and soak it all in. It’s going so quickly already!

  11. Lori says...

    My daughters are 25, 21, and 18. When I look at their faces, I can still see them as the babies they were, even as I enjoy the women they have become.
    As the saying goes, “the days pass slowly, but the years fly by”. When autumn arrives, I will have no children living at home for the first time in 25 years (well, I guess that actually depends on the covid/university situation). I am excited for the future – to be able to make some career decisions without taking into account children and also taking over a bathroom to be my own! Yet, at the same time, I am a bit heartbroken that this time in my life comes to an end.
    And having said all that – bless all you mamas who are trying to deal with this virus and small children and jobs and schooling. I know how much hard work that must be.

    • Amy says...

      I just saw your comment, Lori! Same age kids, and you reminded me of one last thing: parents with younger kids, we are rooting for you and know how deeply challenging this time is. Not being able to physically help out with younger friends’ and relatives’ caregiving right now is so frustrating, because everyone needs a break.

  12. Amy says...

    25, 21, and 18 here. I’ve truly loved every age—and like a normal person also thought at some point during every year of parenthood omg what have I done and when will they sleep through the night/make their own breakfast/learn to drive/etc. I love to remember their baby and toddler years with/for them, but I really feel lucky to know these three adults they’ve become. They are just my favorite humans.

    Having these bonus months with my two younger kids here after they had to come back from college due to the pandemic has been, for me, a silver lining. Bittersweet, since I want them to be able to live the lives they were living and loving pre-pandemic, but I have been impressed by their ability to grieve and then figure out what’s next—producing Zoom plays with a campus theater group, learning how to manage online college classes, and on and on. I find myself comparing grocery budget and cooking tips with my oldest as he manages life after his workplace closed. Seeing his resilience in these darker days, his willingness to reach out for the mental health support so many of us need especially right now, and the way all three are teaching their older relatives how to work toward a more equitable world—well, I’m proud of them. Thanks for giving us all space to talk about our children!

    • Lori says...

      Oh my – my kids are the exact same ages!!

  13. Alison says...

    The funny thing is, when my children were little I couldn’t imagine them being anything other than little and yet now that they’re older it’s as if I’ve known them all along as they are now. It feels almost wonderfully supernatural.

  14. Holly says...

    I’m in the rather sleep deprived stage of having threw boys 5,3, and 5 months. I often long for them to get bigger so I can get more sleep but this week my 5 year old got his first loose tooth and I felt so thankful this morning when they ran outside screaming in excitement when the garbage truck arrived. I’ve been reminding myself lately how fast it will all go and trying to embrace all the precious parts of having small children. There really are so many wonderful things.

  15. Jojo says...

    12 going on 5 and 45. 8.

    How I miss those early years now. They were so difficult but also so very much easier than what we happen to be going through right now.

  16. M says...

    My kids are four and nine years old. I would be lying if I said I never had flashbacks to them as toddlers or fantasies about their futures. But mostly, and desperately, I try to stay present and wishfully think, “Brain, please, please, please, never let me forget these views. “

  17. Lara says...

    No Joanna. Anton is 3 !
    End of discussion :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahaha

  18. SG says...

    In corona years or regular years? 😄 In corona years they are 127 and 115, and I am a million years old. In “regular” years, 12 and 9.

  19. Colleen says...

    All of a sudden they aren’t little anymore. Wait til they are taller than you…

  20. Sherrie says...

    I LOVE this! Any excuse to talk about my kiddos. My oldest, a girl, is 24 and she was born 22 years old, I think. Wise beyond every one of her years, a born leader, she has her sh*t together and always has. She teaches me and likely always will. Advising me on hair, makeup, life lessons (how is that possible) and the very best vegetarian recipes. My son is 21 – going on 16? Maybe? Although academically gifted and headed to medical school in 10 days(!), he is absent-minded with a head-in-the-clouds way about him when it comes to day to day and general life happenings and. Having said that, he is also a budding foodie and that makes me so happy!

    • rachel s says...

      my daughter (4.5yrs old) is the SAME! Always an adult… even as a baby she was so wise and seemed like she knew so much!! She mothers me! (reminds me if I forget to signal a turn with my blinker, asks me if I need to go #2 if I let out a toot (HAHHA) and reminds me to bring my reusable shopping bags into the store…) she is so lovely… she can’t wait to be an adult and Mommy </3.

  21. Amy says...

    My daughter is 11 (excuses me, 11 and a half!) and in the past few months her transition to being a teen has really accelerated. We are now “mom” and “dad” not “mommy” and “daddy”, she spends more time alone in her room listening to music and drawing, the legos and American Girl Dolls are seldom played with, on every outing her first question is, “can I bring a friend?”, eyerolls are a typical response to any request, and more than once I have been told that I am totally embarrassing! In my mind I know this is all normal and exactly where she should be in her development. But in my heart it’s really hard to see her pull away. She is such an awesome kid and I truly have enjoyed each age she has been. She is who she is now because of who she has been; all the ages and stages define her – the good, the bad, and the eyerolls! She’ll always be my “pookie” even if I only get to whisper it quietly to myself.

    • Colleen says...

      I know. I miss my girl.

  22. My daughter is 9 months old. I very often flip through photos on the phone and wonder how small she was 1-2-3 months ago :)

  23. Beth says...

    Our sons are 29 (in two days) and 22. I will always see them as little boys. Our oldest is back home for now, helping out all over the house, replacing light fixtures, tilling up the garden, and I still see his little boy stance in his adult body. Our youngest, the talkiest, still calls home to tell us about every little thing and when he does this I think of the little one who didn’t say much until he was two and then didn’t stop talking, ever. Their baby years are much more vivid to me than their high school years. I remember their toddler clothes and the things they liked to eat and the books we read and the cartoons they loved….

  24. Neela says...

    Oops, I thought Toby had a broken arm in that pic for a sec! Ours are just-turned 4 and 15 months. It’s a wild ride! Our 4 year-old had an extremely challenging 3rd year, and we’re hoping for a bit less volatility this year. He’s intellectually streets ahead of his age, also tall and slim and mature-looking, and it’s hard to remember how small he is except that his emotional maturity is more like 2.5, haha! Yesterday as we were walking through the forest I mused, ‘maybe you’ll be an author when you grow up, you have such a fantastic way with words’ and he said ‘no I won’t, and I’ll take all the books away and everyone will have to go straight to bed!’ Bwahahahaa!
    The 1-yr-old is textbook timelined, and a sunny sweetheart who says ‘allo!’ to every person she sees.

  25. Jennifer says...

    My kids are 20, 18, 7, 5, soon-to-be 3 in August. I’m also expecting our 6th baby in 3 weeks! People are always shocked when I tell them how many kids I have and how old my older two children are.

    • Grace says...

      I grew up with two full sisters who were 17 and 12 years older than me. It worked out just fine!

  26. Paola says...

    Mine are 10 and 4, they will turn 11 and 5 at the end of the year. The oldest is a girl and she is already developing physically but still acts like a child, which I love and try to hold to. The other is still the baby of the house and throws tantrums as if he were 2. Of course, I see their faces and see babies that were just born yesterday.

  27. Martha says...

    My twins are 15. Some days that seems about right (my daughter got her learner’s permit and drove my car for the first time today, while her brother stayed home to edit videos), and other days that just can’t be true!

  28. Jojo says...

    I have a 10 week old boy! <3
    I can't help but be impatient for him to get older so:
    — I can see who he looks like
    — Hear his voice
    — Read him stories
    — Be his mommy (rather than the scary person who changes his diapers!) …but of course, trying to enjoy this precious, fleeting time!

  29. Kristin says...

    I was listening to Brene Brown interview Celeste Ng when she described seeing children in 3D – as babies/their current age/their future self. I loved that image.

    She says, “To a parent, your child wasn’t just a person: your child was a place, a kind of Narnia, a vast eternal place where the present you were living and the past you remembered and the future you longed for all at the same time. You could see it every time you looked at her: layered in her face was the baby she’d been and the child she’d become and the adult she would grow up to be, and you saw them all simultaneously, like a 3-D image. It made your head spin. It was a place you could take refuge, if you knew how to get in. And each time you left it, each time your child passed out of your sight, you feared you might never be able to return to that place again.“

    • Jessica says...

      I remember reading these lines in Little Fires Everywhere – it made me weep because it is so true

  30. Megan says...

    Mine are 13 and 11 (today!). The hard part is that so often I see them as all their ages at once. For example, one had the sweetest 3-year-old cherub face, and I cannot unsee that even when he’s feeling the 13-year-old anger or lovingly entertaining a friend’s toddlers. Sometimes I think of my other son as the extremely difficult toddler he was, instead of seeing him as the helpful, polite, and witty kid he is now. The memories just layer themselves on top of each other.

    • Mollie Whalen says...

      I am not a parent but I believe this quote speaks exactly to what you’re saying.

      “To a parent, your child wasn’t just a person: your child was a place, a kind of Narnia, a vast eternal place where the present you were living and the past you remembered and the future you longed for existed all at the same time. You could see it every time you looked at her: layered in her face was the baby she’d been and the child she’d become and the adult she would grow up to be, and you saw them all simultaneously, like a 3-D image. It made your head spin. It was a place you could take refuge, if you knew how to get in. And each time you left it, each time your child passed out of your sight, you feared you might never be able to return to that place again.”
      ― Celeste Ng, Little Fires Everywhere

    • Olivia says...

      Mollie. The quote you supplied totally rocked me when reading that book. I cry every time I read it and dog eared the page. My daughter is only one, but yes, this is how it is.

  31. Karen says...

    ANTON IS 7?! That can’t be right. Last time I checked, Anton was definitely 2. Have I really been following cupofjo for 5 years? incredible.

    Toby always seemed to have the soul of a teenger-grandfather-mix from day one of following here, no matter what age : )

  32. Sequoia says...

    Do you guys remember the Subaru commercial where this kid (like 5 or 6) is packing things into the car, books and boxes and then they cut to him actually being an adult and packing the car to drive himself to college? I saw it when I was pregnant with my son and boo-hoo cried. Thats exactly how this feels and I can’t imagine packing up his car!!!

    He’s 19 months but according to our pediatrician he’s loser to 3 emotionally and 4 developmentally. He has an extensive vocabulary and verbal reasoning skills. And his memory is off the charts! For example he can name and identify all the planets, sun, and moon. “I live earth California” he says. Just this morning I told him we were out of graham crackers, he says “Let’s go buy some.” Hands me the car keys and says “go Target.” Like seriously who even are you??? It’s blessing to have such an intelligent child but he was NEVER a baby. He was always trying to understand and decode. But the more he learns the less I can protect him from the world and there are too TOO many things I’m not ready to “share” with him.

    Hold the babies close and tell them you love them because we are gifting them with a world that might make them think otherwise.

  33. Erin says...

    We have 11, 8, and 5.

    My husband and I were amazed when our oldest turned 11. We’ve been parents for ELEVEN years! Crazy!

  34. Lisa says...

    I have a four year old and a two year old (though she always says “I five” when asked how old she is). It feels like they were born 2 minutes ago. I’ve had conversations with my 4 year old about “when he was a baby” and it feels so surreal. He’s still my baby!

  35. RBC says...

    Mine are 9, 7, 4, and 2 (35 months). I can’t stop thinking about how when the 3 older kids were the “baby” ‘s age, I’d already had another baby! I’m happy to be moving on from the baby stage (no more diapers! No more [regular] naps to plan our days around! almost done with strollers!) but I’m afraid that from here on out, time’ s just going to keep accelerating like a train down a mountain. There are times when each one seems much older than their calendar age, and times (when they’re sleeping, or sick, or upset/hurt and needing their mom) that they still feel like the little babies they once were. I think that’s going to continue to be true for some time.

  36. Ceridwen says...

    My 11 year old knocked her head and I tried to see if everything was ok, if there was a cut or a bump, but I could see the top of her head. Even on tip toes! How can that be? She was just a baby crawling around with her happy crawl, her head swinging from side to side, a moment ago.

  37. Jillian L. says...

    My baby is six months old this week and I cannot believe it. I swear we just brought him home from the hospital. I find myself thinking, “I can’t wait until he to sleeps through the night,” or “If only he could sit on his own,” or “I can’t wait until he’s old enough to… (insert some milestone that will make my life easier),” and I have to remind myself how fleeting these moments are with him. He’s only going to be this tender, this fun, or this curious once and I am trying to soak up those moments instead of wishing them away. Oh man, just typing this makes me tear up a bit.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      congratulations, jillian!

  38. Amber says...

    4.5 and 10 weeks. My “big” boy will always be 10 months old to me. For some reason, I didn’t quite feel like a mom until then? Like I was going through the motions, keeping the thing alive but I think it took him saying “mama” for me to really feel it.

  39. My son is 23 years old but feels about 20 years old to me. He is a July baby so graduated high school at 17 years old. He always seemed a bit younger. He graduated college December 2019 after graduating high school May 2015. He lives with us at home and has a full, part-time job (works 40 to 50 hours a week). So, he’s doing the adult thing. Saving, buying his own gas, paying his phone bill, but he still feels young.
    Our twin girls are 11-years-old. They feel stuck at 10 years old to me. One, because of the stay at home during this time, it felt like they didn’t finish fifth grade. Two, they still play with their Barbies and American Girl dolls. They haven’t experienced or learned to grow up because they only have their selves to make decisions from.

  40. Christina says...

    18, 15 and 12. But my oldest has ADHD, and in certain ways she is about 4…. The others are their age. So strange, where did time go? I can still carry the two youngest though :-). Keep doing it and you grow stronger as they grow! (Though yes, they are both skinny).

    (One thing that feels weird is having colleagues the same age as my nephews. Of course my brilliant colleague is an adult, obviously, she is 30 – but surely she can’t be the same age as my nephew, the kid? He is 6!)

    • NH observer says...

      That’s great about carrying your kids! My six-year-old weighs almost sixty pounds, so I’m already bemoaning the day I won’t be lugging him around anymore. Any advice for exercises?;)

    • Grace says...

      My daughter has ADHD too, not the funny she-gets-Bs-instead-of-As kind but the real kind, the crippling kind, the kind where she can’t make a friend to save her life, the kind where she started getting Fs on her report cards as soon as they gave letter grades, end of 3rd grade.

      So when you say your 18 year old is a 4 year old in certain ways, I feel that to the core. You are not alone.

      Actually, CupofJo, you should do a piece on children with real ADHD, not the children who fall into the “over-diagnosed” category.

    • Christina says...

      Grace, thank you. Sometimes it feels really lonely, it’s great to know I am not alone. My daughter hasn’t got any friends either and it makes her so sad. I worry a lot about how she will manage adult life; working, taking care of herself…… It is really hard.

      And NH – sorry, no real advice. I don’t do exercise except going for walks. Unless grocery shopping counts, the bags easily weigh 10 kgs each, filled with milk and potatoes :-) !

  41. D says...

    I have a 4 yr old who loves telling “jokes”, a 6 yr old who draws every animal and person with sparkly eyes, and an 8 yr old who starts every sentence with, “Mommy, did you know…[insert obscure astronomy fact]…?” Quarantining with kids is not easy, but it does give me more time to just observe them and see them more individually and not just as “the kids”. They are fascinating creatures.

  42. E says...

    My baby boy just turned one over the weekend! We are expecting another in October, and while I’m thrilled for him to have a sibling, I know I’m going to miss the days of just the two of us!

  43. Angela says...

    I have a 6.5 year old son, a 4 year old daughter, and an almost-3 year old son. My youngest still retains some true babyness, but increasingly people comment on how much he’s grown and how much more he talks now. My daughter is in a precious in-between toddlerhood and girlhood, but occasionally gives us some sass looks that will not be quite as cute or funny on a 13 year old. Lol And I was leaving a camp program with my eldest last Friday and was struck by his bigness. He is tall and articulate. I was awash in feelings of pride and love for how he is growing and simultaneously blanched at where my sweet bald-headed first born baby went. (Positives: We still don’t correct him when he calls popsicles “popstickles” or says he wants to tell us a “segret.” It helps. 😉)

  44. Lauren says...

    My babies are 6 and 3 now. I took them both to their well checks today and it was the first year that we all set quietly on the exam table waiting without having to do a tap dance to keep everyone entertained. I feel like we are entering new territory as a family. No more cribs, diapers or strollers. Our oldest has learned to ride a bike and lost her first tooth during the last few weeks and our youngest is suddenly getting long legs that look more like a kid than toddler. It’s the best, but does feel a little achey in my heart. We decided our family is complete so that truly feels like we are watching the chapter end on our baby years. Which feels more peaceful than I expected. I spent the first years of both girls lives doing mental math on age gaps and when to do it again. I no longer even entertain those thoughts and that feels..very right. Though, I will miss naming more babies. I LOVE names. We are getting a puppy in the fall, so all my energy will go towards naming him or her. Haha. If anyone wants lists of baby names, I’m your girl. It’s a favorite past time🥰 Sending love to you and your family, Joanna.

    • Mollie Whalen says...

      I love old-fasioned names (see: Frances, Beatrice, etc.). If you are into those, please recommend away!

    • Lia says...

      I have a Frances! She goes by Frankie :)

    • I have Eleanor, Phoebe, Juliet, and Ralph, and am due in December. I think we already have names picked, but I’d love to hear your ideas!

  45. Stephanie says...

    My kids are two (27 months) and three weeks old. I have to remind myself that the best is yet to come, because I love them so much at every age and sometimes don’t want them to get older! And I never thought of myself as a baby/toddler person before having them.

  46. Cath says...

    my darling son is 18 ( his right age I think) and my firecracker of a daughter is 15 (8 in my heart)!!
    They are very mature for some things, and not so much for others… Hard to give an example, but I l find myself constantly looking at pictures of them when they were little or even better, watching videos… My son will be in college this fall…

  47. Emily says...

    My daughter is 16, my son is 13 1/2, and my other son is 11. I miss their little years so much and I tell them I’d pay anything to be able to shrink them to when they were 1 for a day. I felt like I was competent when they were little. Now I feel like I’m in over my head. My kids are healthy, super smart, and really good kids, but I still struggle with parenting and knowing what to do. My daughter is going to start her Sr yr of high school in the fall, and I’m having a hard time with that. Time has flown by. As soon as my kids started K, the years just took off. My husband is great at parenting teens. I feel like I don’t know what I’m doing and my strongest years were the little years. Sigh. It’s fun to see them learn and grow and figure stuff out and become themselves. I just miss rocking them, and footie jammies, and carrying them around.

    • Emiley says...

      My babies are little, but I find this so relatable. Teenagers intimidate me and I try to tell myself that I’ll cross that bridge when I get there, I’ll grow with them etc. but I still find myself anxious thinking about having teens. I don’t doubt that my husband, too, will handle those years with aplomb. Comforting to know that partners can step in when we struggle. Like I said, this is some time off for me still (my oldest is almost 7), but your comment just resonated with me. Thank you for sharing!

  48. Mine are 10, 12, 17 & 19 years old and I can’t believe how old they are technically and to be honest it is really hard for me that they are not my little ones anymore.

  49. Hilary says...

    I feel like my 3.5 year old is a little time jumper. When she’s asleep, she looks so much like her baby self that it takes my breath away. And other times I catch her reading alone or concentrating on something and I swear I see a flash forward of her doing calc homework or memorizing a script for her school play.

    Parenthood, man. It’s a TRIP.

  50. Jocelyn says...

    My son is turning 14 in two weeks! I’m not sure if we ever get to the point where our children aren’t our babies though, or kid-like anyway. I’ll be 40 in two weeks also and my dad still calls to remind me to get the oil changed on my car and make sure the inspection/registration doesn’t expire. Been driving for about 25 yrs but I just say “thanks for the reminder pops”. :)

  51. Kirsten says...

    I remember my grandmother saying to me that when she looked at my grandfather, she always saw him as he looked when he was 25. That even in old age, she never actually saw an old man when she looked at him, she saw him as he was when they first met. Now that I’m married I wonder how I’ll see my own spouse in 20 or 30 years, and I hope that it’s in that same beautiful and nostalgic way.

    My kids are 2 and 6 months, and even at this young age I’m happy to see them grow up but also it’s going too fast! My favorite thing is when I can see glimpses of my 2 year old’s baby face expressions at certain moments and I wonder if I’ll be able to still see them when my kids are totally grown.

    • rachel s says...

      ok that is SO sweet! SWOON

  52. Jan says...

    Our three boys are 20, 18 and 5. We have two in university and one in kindergarten, so we flip flop between two different parenting worlds. It’s odd at times, but mostly just a ton of fun. The little one was obviously a surprise, but he’s pretty much the best thing that happened to our family. We’re all smitten with him.

  53. Kara says...

    My oldest daughter will be 13 next week and my other daughter will be 3 in August. We are also expecting a new babe in January. Time flies! I savored the newborn/baby days so much more the second time!

  54. Sara B says...

    I have three boys who are 1, 3 and 5. My oldest starts kindergarten in about 5 weeks! Sometimes I think about traveling and look at flights to plan a pretend vacation (it’s my mental escape) and then I remember that no, we couldn’t go anywhere in the middle of October because school. It’s mind blowing. Even my 4 year old is slimming down and I miss those chubby little rolls!

    • Sara B says...

      3 year old, not 4 year old

  55. Karen says...

    My son is 6. During the day when he is rising to the occasion and helping me out or rolling his eyes at me, he is 10-16, but at night want he snuggles up while we read or when he sleeps in bed with me, he is still my baby. So far this is my favorite age, although I say that every year (except for when he was 3 – that year was rough).

  56. 13/11/9/6 — I don’t think I’ve ever NOT gone to bed promising myself to cherish this time more the next day! Because days are often exhausting!

  57. ClaireinDC says...

    Im 37, have no kids, and no boyfriend/partner/husband, etc. I adopted a very adorable puppy, and he fills my days with joy, but I cant scratch that feeling that the pandemic (beyond the global calamity it has caused) will also prevent me from meeting anyone new for the foreseeable future. This makes me deeply sad. Once we emerge from this, I may opt to have a child on my own.

    • Jill says...

      Follow your heart Claire in DC. I’m with u all the way. ;))

    • M says...

      Claire, I’m 31 and have a 3yo kid and a 5yo dog. They are both very adorable and they bring me different and overlapping joys. In January, I began the process of splitting from my kid’s dad. One of the main reasons we weren’t working out was because I want more kids and the dad is done at one. Fair enough, but a very surprising change of tune from the pre-kid days, when he wanted three or four! So…becoming a single mother during a pandemic means not much dating on the horizon. Long story short, I’ll be looking in to having a second child on my own. It’s a very real option! This is just to say, single mothers by choice are here!

  58. m says...

    I started reading your blog when you were pregnant with Toby. It boggles my mind that he is now 10.

    • maria says...

      I started following right before then – crazy how time flies! also – i think toby looks so much like alex and anton so much like joanna, so bizarre how you can see and think so many things for people that truly, you don’t “know” haha.

    • M says...

      Maria, that’s so funny, I always think Toby looks just like Joanna and Anton looks like a blonde Alex!

  59. Annie says...

    2 and 5! I do particularly wonder if my 2-year old will always and forever seem like my baby. There are also times when I look at my 5-year old and see him as a teenager – which makes me both sentimental and full of wonder!

  60. Talia says...

    My girls are 31 and 29 — how did this happen?! I can say, I’ve loved every single age. They are smart, kind, talented, beautiful young women who I love with my whole heart. I couldn’t be prouder to be their Mom.

  61. Ellen says...

    My son just turned 18 months. I can get quite nostalgic, so I expected as a parent to be sad as the baby years fall into the past, but what I didn’t fully understand was the simultaneous joy at seeing your baby learn and grow and develop. I know I will miss his chubby thighs and cuddling his little body, but now I think I get what people mean when they say “they’re always your baby.”

  62. Emily says...

    My children are 5 and 2 and I have the opposite feeling – I look at things they do now and can’t help but imagine them as older ages. When she’s pouring her focus into cutting something, little feet tucked underneath her – I can picture that focused face studying or finishing a book (what books will she love?). And when he questions and protests with his toddler reasoning – I imagine him in his twenties with a growing worldview, a thoughtful contrarian (will he stay as firm and passionate about the world around him?) I can almost see it. It’s not so much about projecting the things i want onto their young selves. Its more about seeing these parts of them that are like small clues (is this part of the fabric of who they really are?), and thinking how great it will be to see what’s revealed of this mystery. Its not about my hopes for their future as much as my happiness at getting to witness how it will unfold.

  63. MG says...

    I don’t have kids yet, but it’s funny how sometime our parents still treat us like kids!

  64. J says...

    I have a lovely son who’s a junior in college. He’s 20 going on 18. And and wonderful daughter who’s a senior in high school. She’s 17 going on 22. Boys and girls are sooo different in maturity. And to answer your question, your mind is always a little bit worried hoping they make the right decisions and take care of themselves. I don’t think that ever goes away. But each year, you give them a little more length on the leash. Moving them to college is unbelievably hard. So much harder than I ever anticipated. I hope it will be easier with my daughter but who am I kidding.

  65. EW says...

    My youngest turned 5 two weeks ago. Ever since, he’s been telling us proudly, “I am this big” while holding up his five fingers. It strikes us as a very ‘talk to the hand’ sort of gesture. His pride is real. He’s completely ready to start kinder at ‘big school’ this fall. He has always been his age.

    My older child will turn 9 in September. His default setting is decidedly less than happy and he was an angsty, angry baby and toddler. We spent the first 100 days of the pandemic and accompanying quarantine living his very high highs and depressingly low lows on an hourly basis. In June he started going to occupational therapy and all of a sudden my red light/green light kid is doing things in the yellow zone. These things are so small, so incremental but they mean the world to us. It means that maybe he can develop some contentment for himself and (fingers crossed) won’t go seeking it in achievement or outside approval or drugs or alcohol or online porn or sex or any of the other ways people use to soothe themselves. I’ve always thought of him as a year or two behind his actual age in terms of maturity but he might be catching up. Nine is going to be a big year for him.

    • Rebekka S says...

      EW – my one mom friend and I often talk about how our similarly aged kids have been exactly as they are since birth, and total opposites of each other. Your comment about your nine year old reminded me of that nature vs. nurture conversation. With my daughters moods, I often find myself pacifying myself with “this is how she is and has always been”, and feeling a bit powerless. Thank you for reminding me that the consistent trying and encouraging and looking for resources is what parenting is all about. And that ultimately, it’s about giving them the best chance for themselves, not just making our loads feel a bit lighter. Sending you love and hope for the year ahead!

  66. My first kid is 22 weeks and 6 days old exactly- well that’s the gestational age, anyways. I know this because I keep checking my pregnancy app hoping the number has magically gone up and it’s time to meet our little one. I’m sure I’ll wish the opposite- that time slows or stops- when I get to your stage of parenting, Joanna. :)

    PS shout out to all the parents working through Covid-19 right now without your regular support systems and childcare. I cannot imagine how challenging it must be. Sending you all love.

    • Elodie says...

      I am also 22 weeks, 6 days but with my second! Thinking of you as you navigate your pregnancy in these uncertain times.

    • Awww thank you Elodie! Will be sending good thoughts your way as well for a safe and healthy pregnancy and delivery <3 this is why CoJ blog community is absolutely the best.

  67. Christine says...

    My eldest will be 39 in October, the middle boy will be 35 in September and the baby girl will be 32 in December. Who are these children? Where is the boy who hated his little brother and sister? And that chubby middle one who could always make us giggle (and still does)? The baby? She still throws temper tantrums to this day (once a month…wink wink…) so she hasn’t gone far. Wait…what? I’m 60?? Does my mother know that? Where has the time gone?

  68. Robin says...

    Aging for me is remember when you posted your pregnancy announcement for Toby. Like. How. Is. That. Possible???

  69. karen says...

    7 and 4. And they’re 7 and 4. I grow with my boys. Being sentimental, I am not. I do often wonder why I am this way when so many other parents (mothers especially) are sad as their children age. Is it a defect of mine, or is it a strength?

  70. Nicole says...

    13 years old, period and everything. She still likes to hold my hand when we are out and cuddle during movies but I am often scorned for telling her anything because SHE KNOWS. She also raids my closet and is starting to appreciate all the vintage items I have saved for her. What an incredible journey, the years have flown by – young mother to middle-aged in a flash. Even though she is growing into a beautiful young woman she has always been the same expressive, funny, intelligent & thoughtful person since birth and will always be my sweet baby!

  71. Eli says...

    I am not a mother, but I have two younger sisters that are significantly younger than me. They are now 22 (23 next month!!) and 21. In my mind, every time I think of them – they are still 13 and 12 and in middle school. They are adults?! No way! They are still worried about swim team and English class, right?
    I can’t imagine what that must feel like for the mother’s here!

    Most of my friends are younger than me, some as much as 13-15 years and a lot of them call me “Mom” in an endearing way. I like to tell them “Have fun, be safe, make good choices!” Everyone laughs but a few of my college freshmen say they appreciate me. :)

    Maybe one day I will be a Mom. Maybe not.

    • AJ says...

      ❤️

  72. Ruth says...

    My little ladies are 4 1/2 and 15 months old (today!). I swear I just BLINKED and my first was born. I am always simultaneously looking forward to seeing what people they are going to become and also wishing they were still a few months old, sleeping on my chest. Longest, shortest time for sure. <3

  73. Amy says...

    My little boy turned 2 in May, and I am constantly surprised by the moments that jump between babyhood and boyhood. The other night on a walk after dinner, he walked over a mile by himself, and I even noticed the faint outline of a calf muscle starting to develop as I pushed the stroller behind him, watching his baby curls bounce with his steps.

  74. Chris Stone says...

    I’m constantly apologizing to my 16 year old for treating him like he’s 5. He will forever be 5.

  75. Claire says...

    My baby has just somehow turned 19 years old, and is scheduled to leave for his first year of college in about a month, although we can’t see yet if that will actually happen, all virus things considered. He’s always been kind of an old soul, who showed up with an inner wisdom. Although he is grown now, all of the years I have had with him are still shimmering around us and between us. Today there is so much hope and promise that is part of his being so I try not to dwell too much on the bittersweet, missing the little boy he used to be. I tease him that he is just a “starter adult” and he shouldn’t get uppity, but in truth he has everything he needs to move forward into this new chapter and soar. People say to treasure the young years as they go by so fast and that is good advice, alhtough sometimes a lot of pressure on the parents, but it’s also true that each new phase has brought new gifts.

    • karen says...

      Congratulations on your “starter adult” and his tools you have given him!

    • Ellen says...

      Your comment is so beautifully worded and poignant. As a mother to a 6 year old boy (and 3 year old girl), this line especially moved me: “Although he is grown now, all the years I have had with him are still shimmering around us and between us.” ❤️

  76. EmilyS says...

    Phew, this post pulled on my heartstrings big time today. My son is 2 and my daughter 5 months. I find it hard to enjoy my daughters baby phase as much as I did with my son (everything was so amazing and new) and I carry a lot of guilt around that. I don’t want to rush time, but I’m ready for her to be his age. 2 is such a mind-blowing age – seeing him learn to speak and learn so much every day. It has its tough times for sure, but I just can’t get over how smart and capable they are at such a small age. I just hope its as fascinating the second time around. My experience with the first vs second has just been so different.

  77. GAIL says...

    My sister and I (2 of eight kids) happened to schedule day surgery on the same day. We are 11 months apart and were in our 40’s. My dad offered to drive us and my Mom said as he walked out the door “make sure you walk them in”. My babies are 42, 40 and 34 now. I get it!! I can hear myself say the same thing to my husband!

  78. sheila says...

    My boys are 26 and 23 . . . my did that go by so fast! In my mind they are about 6 and 9. It blows my mind that they were in middle and high school when I first started reading CoJ. I have the privilege of having my 23 year old home this weekend, and it’s such a joy just being in his presence xoxo

  79. lillian says...

    my daughter turned 11 in may. some days she is a little kid with lopsided pigtails who insists on snuggles, some days she is a teenager who is painfully embarrassed when I sing or dance in public, and some days she is a grown up who always tells me to “have as much fun as you can while staying safe” when I leave for my essential job.

    in my mind, she is still a very determined, creative, sometimes exasperating kindergartner .

  80. WMon says...

    My boys are 11, 9 and 6. I still think of my 6 year old as a baby / toddler and I think he gets away with a lot because of that…. My 11 year old is older and wiser than me most days, but he does have a devious side that gets his brothers in trouble and my 9 year old is a sensitive, fragile maniac who likes the finer things in life and a strict routine. They are so different, but all wonderful. I often marvel at the fact that my body created these boys, especially because I was an older mom who had her first baby at 37 and last at 41. Nature is magic!

  81. Darby says...

    My son is 17 and my daughter is 13. I love getting Facebook memories from when they were little<3 Parenting teens is so different from when they were little- Instead of always trying to protect them, I have to constantly remind myself to step back and let them make their own decisions and take some risks.

  82. Connie says...

    My daughter just turned 9, and my son will turn 8 in September. They came to us as a foster placement when they were 4 and 3. So, we never had that “You’ll always be a baby to me” kind of mindset-because they never were. But I do have moments where I look over at my son and he has this soft and mature focused expression as he’s reading a (chapter!!) book, or my daughter will step in to help me and she’s so tall and…capable. Lots of people are “baby” parents, who think of that time dreamily, but I am CRAZY about Big Kids. Our household is really starting to hit its stride- Big Kids rock. What fun to get to know the People they are becoming. Gimme that any day of the week. (except for the stinky-ness. Yikes, guys. I could do without the new scents all over this house. Pre-tween sweat is no joke!). :)

  83. maywyn says...

    Over 40 plus brilliant and compassionate young men. I, the mother, however, will always be on the ageless MomBrainWave. I experienced a stronger reaction seeing their hair gray than my own. The thought of their aging worries me more than my own end of days because I know I won’t be around to help them.

  84. Kristine says...

    My daughter is 2 years old and I can so vividly see her at different ages based on her mannerisms or facial expressions. Not only as an infant or younger toddler, but glimpses of a little girl or preteen. It’s exciting and heartbreaking all at once.

  85. Mary says...

    It’s like in “Father of the Bride” when Annie tells her dad (Steve Martin) she’s getting married and he makes her repeat it and they sub in a child actor to say the line because that’s how he still see’s his daughter… “I met a man in Rome, and he’s wonderful and brilliant, and we’re getting married.”

    • Katie H says...

      YES! This scene exactly.

  86. ANDREA says...

    This photo of Toby and Anton looks like they are in their 20s!!

  87. Scarlett says...

    My boys are 1.5 (as of a couple of days ago) and 30 weeks baked :) I was definitely unprepared to have another baby when we found out I was pregnant… I cried thinking “how will we do this??” and I still think that almost every day, haha. But you learn to embrace the chaos. My older son is a wild child– climbing, running, adventuring nonstop. He is so spirited and it is so fun to watch. He is really starting to enter peak toddlerhood-tantrums, screaming, the whole lot. He’s just pure BOY. Some days I just count down the minutes to bedtime, but I also want to slow down time and bottle up all of the little cuddles, kisses, and hugs that I can get with him. I just love kissing his soft, still-chubby cheeks :) and I hope that our new baby will be able to adjust to the chaos as well!

    • Kay says...

      It’s like you read my inner thoughts! My son is 15 months and my daughter is 3 weeks old. I’m still wondering how I’m doing this- as I’m doing this. My son is a handful- curious, adventurous, fearless and sometimes it makes me sad that I can’t give my daughter as much attention because I have to stop my son from climbing into the cat’s litter box or pulling on wires. Bedtime is a break for me but like you, I find myself missing him when he sleeps, but that’s my time to snuggle with my delicious newborn. Congratulations on your pregnancy!

  88. Great question :)) I think Toby shares a bday with my daughter who is also 10! She is an old soul…I know bc she’s so much calmer than I am🤣 My son is 13 but still sneaks in our room to sleep on the floor if he can’t fall asleep. And the baby is 18 months old. We have quite the gap. I feel like raising the first 2 kids during their years before double digits is a hundred years ago! And now we’re this completely different( but the same) family after adding baby Ophelia. Crazy, right?
    Anyway, I still love watching your babes grow, Joanna❤️

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that is so cool, Lindsay! and I love the name Ophelia.

    • E says...

      Ditto to Joanna – I love the name Ophelia!! Lindsay, my fiancé’s family has a similar age breakdown. He was 10 and his brother was 8 when their younger sister was born. Now she is about to start her first year of college at the same school both of her older brothers attended. I don’t know another family like theirs, but they have the most incredibly special sibling bond. While the two brothers are best friends (who share a group of friends from college, and now from a life together in San Francisco), they also both have uniquely close relationships with their younger sister. They are all different and also three of the best humans I’ve ever met – the youngest is incredibly bright and kind, and she is also the most humble and mature young woman I have ever been around (and I think she has benefited from a mix of life as the “baby” of the family, an adolescence as an “only child” while her brothers were in college, and then learning as a teenager from close friendships with her two older young adult brothers). We talk often about how much this family structure has benefited each of them – including the parents who have basically raised children in two separate generations. I wish you all the best with your newest little one, and I hope that your three children have the same unique closeness that my fiance’s family has <3

  89. Jill says...

    My daughter is 15 1/2, I adopted her at age 11 mos from China, so for me, her face will always be that almost 1 year old. I love the toddler years, (I am a special needs toddler teacher) and every year after age 3 I would tell her, “I told you that you cannot get older than 3, so stop.” She thought it was hysterical. Then when she turned 6 I told her “I said stop getting older than 3!”. That time she looked at me very seriously and said “If I don’t get older I won’t have a life.” And I never said it again! Some days she is 30 years old, reminding me to put on my mask before I enter a store. Other days she wants 100 hugs and to be my best friend like when she was 5. And sometimes she is 15 and mad at me for no reason and everything I do annoys her. lol

  90. Kim says...

    4 1/2 and 6! They’ve been troopers through this upheaval. They still let me hold them and rock them and tell them they’ll always be my babies. They indulge me!

  91. Randi says...

    My little dude just turned 9 (he has the same July 5th birthday as Anton)! Most of the time I think of him as a big guy, but once in awhile I get a glimpse that he is still just a little boy. He got hit in the nose at his baseball game over the weekend. I waited a couple minutes before going to the dugout to check on him as he was showing his “bros” the forthcoming lump, but as soon as he saw me coming he raced out of the dugout and threw himself into my arms for a hug. I hope he never stops wanting Mom in those moments.

  92. Our baby girl was born 2 days ago! Soaking it all up knowing she won’t be this little for long.

    • Sarah says...

      Congratulations on your beautiful baby! You’ll be a great mom.

  93. Jen says...

    My mom moved in with us 3 years ago and my husband and I went out one night and she called me around 10pm asking where we were and what time we were coming home. I’m 46 years old now.

    • Kristina says...

      hahah, My MIL did this to us last summer too. We got a house with them, and hubs is 47. Granted they also weren’t sure if they should feed the dog, but that was already mentioned at 7 pm, when we told them we’ll be late. The 10:30 text really sent us for a loop!

    • karen says...

      Ha! Love that. My mom stayed with my husband and I few months ago and watched our kids while we went out. We stayed out later than expected and when we got home, my mom was standing in the kitchen waiting for us. We felt like teens in trouble!

  94. 6, 4, 2, and 6 months!

    But also, 6 going on 30, 4 going on 2, 2 going on 14, and 6 months going on 2 months, my lovely last, and therefore forever, baby.

  95. Holly K says...

    My boys are 9 and 7. My 9 year old seems like a typical 9 year old for the most part, but he loves history and reading books all day like an old professor. My 7 year old is a rebel and loves experimenting and often reminds me of a teenager.

  96. Cheryl says...

    My girls are 28 and 32! I miss the preschool years, ages 2-5, so much change in their cognitive development during that time. I enjoy them now as well and thankfully they still enjoy spending time with me and my husband. Watching them mature and navigate the adult world is exciting. I’m proud of the adults they have become and curious about their futures.

  97. Courtney says...

    My kids are 10 and 7, too! But I also have an almost-2 year old so we’re reliving the baby/toddler phases (which I love). It’s funny to see how the kids’ personalities when they were babies are still their personalities now. I do miss those sweet chubby-cheeked babies–and on stressful days I go back and watch videos of them and their squeaky voices. But self-sufficient, curious older kids are fun, too.

  98. Katha says...

    My girls are 10 (27th of May), 7 (February) and 4 (April).

    Preteen moods and sibling rivalry. They are so very different but equally amazing. The youngest plays in a league of her own because of her genetic disorder (Rett-Syndrom).

  99. Jeannie says...

    My daughter is 5, and we’re expecting baby girl #2 in January! Looking back, the baby days were really stressful for me, and I found parenting much easier from the age of 1 on. I know next year is going to be tough, but since this will probably be our last baby, I’m determined to savor it, if not enjoy it.

    • Bets says...

      Completely agree. We are just coming out of the baby phase with our youngest. She was very challenging from 1-3 (biting, hitting, the lot). I think parenting will also have its own unique challenges but for now, we feel sane enough to try for another!

    • Sarah says...

      It is so much easier the second time! You will do great! And I bet reflecting on how #1 felt and how #2 feels five years later you will be shocked at how much better you have gotten at everything you are responsible for. Good luck!

  100. Jenny says...

    My kids are 2 and 5. I learn about human nature and myself and their little selves every day. I’ve come to believe we have the perfect amount of time with them at each stage whenever I want to squeeze too tight ( when things are wonderful!) or speed up time ( when things are challenging). Always grateful to read about parenthood, as well as take a break from the topic here on the blog!!

  101. CP says...

    I’m 28 weeks pregnant with our first baby. As my husband (who is going to be the best dad ever) and I anxiously await our daughter’s arrival, the only thing I’m nervous for is time going by too quickly. I’ve always dreamed of have a baby, and the thought of her being a toddler, little girl, teenager and adult(!!) one day makes my eyes water and my heart ache. But these sweet moments you share of your guys remind me that there’s plenty of good in all of that growth that is to come.

    • Love this. Currently 22 weeks pregnant with my first. I find myself wanting the opposite- for time to fly by so we can meet our little one ASAP :)

  102. My son is 8 and my daughter is 5. Sometimes it feels like they are 40 and other times, they’re babies who just want a cuddle with their mama.

  103. My son is 8 and my daughter is 5. Sometimes it feels like they are 40 and other times, they’re babies who just want a cuddle with their mama.

  104. Emily says...

    My son turned 2 today actually, July 13th! I wasn’t as sentimental about his first birthday because he still seemed like such a baby but two feels like such a milestone. It is such a pleasure and privilege to watch him grow and be his mom. <3

  105. Emiley says...

    My babies are 6 (almost 7), 4 and 13 months and, yes, they will always feel like my babies. Your Maya Angelou quote made me think of another I loved, from ‘Beloved’ by Toni Morrison.
    “Grown don’t mean nothing to a mother. A child is a child. They get bigger, older, but grown? What’s that’s suppose to mean? In my heart it don’t mean a thing.”
    Whenever I see – and feel them – getting older, doing new, big, brave things, I’m so proud. But my mother heart pangs and I think: grown don’t mean nothing to a mother.

    • Wink says...

      Thanks for sharing this quote, Emiley. Beloved is one of my favorites and you’ve inspired me to revisit it. I haven’t read it since becoming a mother myself (nearly 9 years ago!!)?Time flies! But so true—grown don’t mean nothing to a mother.

  106. Lauren says...

    My son will be 14 months old tomorrow and I am struck by the fact that he has changed SO much in the past year and moving forward, the annual change will be much less drastic. It is truly insane how much babies develop in their first year! I mean he TRIPLED in weight over twelve months – I doubt that will ever happen again! He went from a cute little blob to a sweet toddler who is running all over the house, babbling up a storm, and cheesy grinning with his six teeth :) It is wild and humbling to watch this transformation!

  107. Annie says...

    My son is 3.5 months old and, though I didn’t anticipate enjoying the early months much at all (so stressful!), I already find myself mourning every little change that makes him look less like his newborn self, and the changes are coming so much faster than I expected! It’s so exciting to watch him learn and grow, but I feel like I wake up to a new baby every morning. I know it’ll slow down as he gets older but these first few months have been a crash course in the emotional rollercoaster and time warp that is parenthood – I tell all of my friends without children that the best and worst part of it (so far) is that they grow out of every phase so fast.

  108. Amanda G says...

    Our son is 21 months old and is the sweetest, friendliest boy ever.
    So, the other day I gasped at an image. He was riding his trike up the drive and waving and saying bye bye mama and I flashed to his early 20s. Someday he will really say bye bye mama for real! 😭 I hope his chubby thighs and all his sweetness are burned into my memory!

  109. Emily says...

    Mine are 7 (girl) and 9 (boy). I love that I have both, and they’re pretty different! I can’t believe how quickly the time is passing.

  110. Janey says...

    My boys are 19, 15 and 13. One of the things we’ve been doing in lockdown is watching all the old videos of when they were little! So many laughs and adorable memories. I miss their snuggly little bodies and chubby little dimpled hands in mine. And reading picture books aloud to them at bedtime. I enjoy watching movies and series I actually want to watch too, playing games which are actually fun, chatting and laughing with them, travel and days out minus any nap/mealtime/bedtime limitations. Although I am now the shortest person in the family with the smallest feet they will always be my babies :)

  111. Rachel Knight says...

    3.5 yo and 8 months old. It has been very difficult trying to work and take care of them during a pandemic, but I try to stay positive and remember that these strange times won’t last forever. They also bring me so much joy–seeing the little things through their eyes.

  112. Ana Maria Monteiro Ramos says...

    I have two girls, 15 and 11, and I ask them often if I can put them back in my belly…

  113. Melisa says...

    My daughter is 21 months and my second, a boy, is due any day now. I’ve been loving the last year of parenthood so much (since she started sleeping, basically), and as we’re awaiting a second baby I’ve been feeling sad that I didn’t really enjoy the newborn or infant stages with her because I was so overwhelmed, exhausted and anxious (I was so worried about getting postpartum depression, it didn’t even occur to me that I would get postpartum anxiety). It feels like I lost that time with her, and the older she gets the more precious every second feels. But then I remind myself that I was doing my best, and she is obviously happy and loved in the millions of photos and videos we took of her as a baby. Now the adventure continues!

  114. Morgan says...

    My daughters are 10 and 12. I don’t necessarily think of them as a different age (this is actually my favorite phase so far), but I reflect back a lot and notice how their current personalities showed up so strongly in those early days. I find myself often thinking, “Oh, it makes perfect sense you were x, y, z or preferred a, b, c when you were little because now I understand you so much better.” If only kids came with a crystal ball – the baby years would be so much easier!

  115. Lorraine says...

    My son is 7 and my daughter is almost 4.

    Caveat – the 7-year-old is going on 50; his main interests are golf and cartography! :) No beyblades or pokemon here. I sometimes feel like we are missing out, but I do love that he’s passionate about these unique interests. When he was 2 months old and I rocked him at a new moms’ meetup, another mom there looked at his face, tilted her head and said that he looked like an old soul.

    • Sanja says...

      I love this! I’d rather learn about cartography than pretend to care about pokemon. Does this make me a bad mom?

  116. Diana says...

    My kids are 2.5 and 2 months. Need to stop time and also have it speed up considerably, thanks. Trying to take as many “boring” videos as I can because I know how often I love looking at the baby videos of my first one even if they are just like, him kicking in his crib or chewing on his fist. Also, he doesn’t believe he was ever a baby like his sister so it’s good to have hard evidence.

  117. Elizabeth says...

    When I’m having a bad day, I’m planning to return to Anton’s Beatles video!! It’s the most precious thing! Who’s the drummer? A boy! :)

  118. Madhura says...

    I turned 36(!!!) this past Friday. During a call with my parents that day they mentioned they still think of me as their 9-10 (dad)/ 13 (mum) year old and that bought a tear to my eye- no matter how old we grow, we will always be our parents lil ones! (hugging my 2.5 yr old a bit tighter these past couple days!)

  119. Gabriele says...

    My children are 21 and 19. My 19 year old has surprisingly good communication and negotiation skills. Better than some 50 year olds I know. I’d say his age is 40 ish…haha. My daughter is very serious, also due to recent illness and overcoming it, so I’d say she is closer to 28 or 29.

  120. Julie T says...

    I’m pregnant and, while I can picture the baby stage, I am totally unable to picture having a “kid.” Like a 6 year old. I love your posts about the boys because they help me imagine my little soon to be baby as a full on human. The umbrella post the other day REALLY got me <3

  121. Ivy says...

    Exciting news: I’m seven weeks pregnant! We just told my husband’s family this weekend and look forward to telling my parents in the coming weeks. I can safely say that I didn’t feel the least bit pregnant until last Monday when nausea started hitting me in waves. Today’s breakfast was a bowl of tater tots and ketchup because that’s all I can stomach. I just keep telling myself that the kid sure is making themself known early on by making me feel sick. Can we call that a strong personality this soon?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      congratulations, ivy!!!!!!

    • Melissa says...

      Congratulations! For my first son I ate tater tots and a smoothie for breakfast every morning until he was born. We joke he was made of tater tots!

    • b says...

      Congratulations! Tater tots are a perfectly fine breakfast, pregnant or not.

    • Congrats Ivy! I[m 22 weeks :) Now I’m craving tater tots. Power of suggestion, haha.

  122. Elle says...

    Mine are 10 and 15! I still can’t believe my precious baby girl is a high schooler who plays lead guitar in an all girls rock band and that my fearful, pudgy baby boy is a rail thin, fearless, dread headed, soccer playing 10 year old. Nothing can prepare you for this experience.

    • Abbe says...

      Elle, your children sound SO COOL!

  123. Sarah says...

    Our daughter is 3 but when asked her age recently she sneakily replied, “… twenty.” Three can be fun but tricky- you want them to learn “big kid” things like using the potty but they’re still so little.
    Joanna thank you for the little window in Toby and Anton as they grow! It’s fun but also unbelieveable to see them change and grow as years pass.

  124. Illana says...

    My kids are 11 and 15. Honestly they have the maturity of a 60- and 70-year-old. It’s remarkable. They are more attuned, compassionate, and conscious than nearly every adult I know. And YES it’s all so weird when I can remember the feeling of them sleeping on my chest at age 1-week as if it were a few hours ago.

  125. Erika says...

    As my son’s 9th birthday is approaching I was just thinking how funny it is that I can remember a day, a moment, a feeling so vividly that it seems like just yesterday yet here we are almost 9 years later. He is all of his age but I hold on to the times he slips into a cuddly little guy and shares his stories with me. His sister is 4 – and as a total opposite can definitely act like she’s 14 and I can only wish she’d act like her age :)

  126. Abby says...

    I have a 4 year old and a 1.5 year old. I cannot believe how fast time is going by! They are both so precious in their own unique ways and I am desperate to hold them as much as possible while they’ll still let me.

    There are days when I look at my 4 year old and I can so clearly see her as an adult and then other days when I look at her and she seems so little and almost toddlerish though I know she’s out of the toddler realm now. What an amazing roller coast ride this parenting thing is! :)

  127. Ann says...

    My daughter turned 4 in April. I’m not a really a “baby person,” and when I look back at videos of her from earlier years, a part of me misses that tiny human, but I don’t wish for those days again. I love that she’s old enough to play independently and express herself clearly, but still young enough that she brings me fistfuls of dandelions and is untouched by sarcasm or cynicism. I think this may be an age that I look back on wistfully, so I’m trying to soak it up (even the over-the-top giddiness and stubborn moods).

  128. Lisa says...

    My daughter is 3. She is hilarious and stubborn. I absolutely love this age though. We are thinking of expanding our family through surrogacy and I am giddy with excitement over doing this all over again.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      3 and 4 are my favorite ages! so many nutty things coming out of their mouths :)

  129. Helga Thomsen says...

    They are technically (almost) 25 and 22. Somedays they seem like they’re 75 and 35. Somedays 12 and 15. And they’re always my babies. I remember exactly what it felt like when they’d tap my arm during storytime because they had a question or how they’re chubby little hands would squeeze my fingers if they heard a loud car.

  130. Claire G says...

    Oh my god! Yes! For years my brother and I have had a running joke about how Dad doesn’t know how old we are- like, he can get within the ballpark, but if you ask him out of the blue he’ll usually be off by at least a few years. I just realized- this is why! He must still think of us as his little kids! (Aaaaaawwwwww! Daaaaaaaaaaadddddd!)

  131. Katherine says...

    I don’t have any children but the fact that your children are so grown already makes me realize how long I’ve been following A Cup of Jo! :)))

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      <3 <3 <3

  132. Kim says...

    My daughter is 15 but in my mind she will always be 3 or 4. I really enjoyed that age. I feel like I was a much better baby and toddler mom than I am a teen mom. The baby/toddler years/little kid years felt intuitive, like I was born for it. Parenting a teenager feels much harder. The stakes feel very high. I don’t feel cut out for it. We were out practicing driving this weekend and we ran into some neighbors whose child just stared riding without training wheels. We stopped and said hi. I told them my daughter was that age yesterday. That’s how it feels. Yeah, I’m becoming that person that warns younger parents to “enjoy it while it lasts.” Lord.

    • Lina says...

      As a mom of a 17 and a 16 year old, this resonates! The stakes feel so much higher, I don’t have the answers and feel like I’m winging it more than ever – it definitely feels much harder at this age.

    • Mallory says...

      So funny, I feel the exact opposite. I love my girls at all ages of course, but I think I’m much more suited to parent in the older kid/teen years than I am the baby years. Baby and toddler activities can be so mind-numbingly boring, but I love the deeper conversations we’re having as they get older.

      I’m sure you’re a wonderful mother even in the years that feel less suited to your natural skills!

  133. Lisa says...

    My oldest is just 15 months, and we’re expecting our second in a month! We hope to have another one or two in quick succession. I’m in my late thirties and this has been the best year of my life. I want these days with my little ones to last forever.

  134. Jill Kelly says...

    My daughter is 4 (and is both the most delightful and frustrating person of all time) and my son is 1.5. Someone told me yesterday that you only get sons until they are 12, and then they are gone to you forever. Is this true? Please tell me it’s not! My son is my cuddly bunny!

    • D says...

      My son is 4 and I already cry thinking about when he’s all grown and doesn’t need me anymore. :(

    • Joan says...

      Not true, at least not in my case. My sweet seventeen year old son still gives great hugs and is a tall lanky but still very cuddly bunny.

  135. Carolyn says...

    Have you seen the movie About Time??? I don’t want to ruin it for those who have not seen it *yet*, so I will just say there is a scene that captures this particular emotion that we feel as parents so perfectly. I could cry just thinking of it! Gah!

  136. Mimi says...

    3, 6, and 9!
    My dad turned 75 recently, and I asked him if that milestone made him feel old. He said it’s not being 75 that makes him feel old, it’s having a child who is 43. :)

    • b says...

      My grandma, who will be 93 in December, says this at every birthday. She doesn’t feel old, but her kids and grandkids aging makes her feel old. My brother and I are 34 and almost 38, respectively, and the only grandchildren.

  137. Cat says...

    My stepchildren are girls 14 and almost 13. Our son, their baby brother, is due in November. It has proven a difficult thing for the teenage girls to process. I wish I could openly express the joy I feel about the baby but I feel I can’t around them.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that sounds really tricky, cat. I’m sorry. and congratulations on your exciting baby news:)

      PS here’s a post on step-parenting if it’s helpful at all:
      https://cupofjo.com/2019/03/on-being-a-stepmom/

  138. Barbara says...

    22 and 20! I feel bittersweet nostalgia in that we won’t get back the young days and reflect on the mantra the days are long the years are short! The one upside of the coronavirus is that it’s like a bonus round with them which I have loved.

  139. Kelly Simmons says...

    My three daughters are in their twenties but it’s easy to remember them as little ones — because they often act like five year olds :) hahahaha

    • Sadie says...

      lol. My brother’s girlfriend told me that he and I start to act like children when we enter my parents house.

  140. Kay says...

    I have a 1 year old and a 3 week old. On tough days, I remind myself that in a few years, I’m going to long for them to be this age again, so I embrace all the joys and challenges.

  141. Andrea says...

    11 & 13. And my mom used to always say to me and my twin sister (we are now 42), “I wish I could make you little again”…until her grandchildren came along. But, boy I now understand that sentiment!

  142. Marie says...

    Our son is officially three months old on Thursday.

    I can’t imagine what 7 or 12 looks like. I’m going to enjoy his chubby little face for now. 💛

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      so little!

  143. Megan Flowers says...

    My son turned 11 in May. He still has such a sweet baby face, especially while he sleeps. I can definitely feel the preteen vibes coming from him. He still really likes me and I hope it stays that way.

  144. Gillian says...

    My oldest is turning 13 in a month! How can I possibly be the mother of a teenager??? He’s also taller than me and has man sized feet. I often wonder where my little boy went…My others are 9.5, 7 and 4.5. the last 5 years have just gone by in a flash. Suddenly I am not the mother of babies but of big kids.

  145. Ohmygosh, toddler Anton. Who played the drums? “Um, a boy.” Dying. I just love those sweet toddler voices. Our son is a little over 2 (isn’t it weird to go from months to years all of a sudden? After 2 it’s weird to say “he’s 2.25 years old”). I”m pregnant with our second which will be another boy! He’s due in early December. I think since we are still in the thick of the super demanding days, our son (whose name is Paul) seems 2 but it is weird to look back on baby photos or videos from a year ago. They grow and change so fast! I am sure once he is 5 I will be saying, “how are you 5?” When I read that Toby is 10 I thought – HOW??? I’ve been reading your blog since your Smitten days so I feel like it’s not possible you have a 10yo when I can so vividly remember Alex proposing to you on a boat! Is is creepy I remember the details of your life so well? Eeks!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      “I feel like it’s not possible you have a 10yo when I can so vividly remember Alex proposing to you on a boat!” = haha I love that! not creepy at all, I am flattered :)

  146. Louisa says...

    I said something just yesterday about wishing I could hold my baby just for a minute. Really an hour, but I would take a minute if that’s all I could have. My 6-year-old looked crestfallen – “you wish I was a baby?” No. I wish I had all of you all the time.

  147. Emilie says...

    Ahhh Toby looks like a pensive 21 year old college grad having a casual drink in that top photo! I can’t believe it! I remember his baby days <3 your boys are so wonderful Jo, thanks for this lovely Monday morning post :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahaha he does!

  148. Lisa says...

    My daughter turns 9 tomorrow and my son turns 7 in October. In my mind, my son will always be 3. And I simply can’t wrap my mind around the fact that my daughter is in her final year of single digits. It is such a pleasure to watch them age, but I want to freeze them and stretch the time out.

    I often wonder how it feels to my parents to have the last of their 4 children about to be 40.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      my dad said it was way weirder for my sister and me to turn 40 than it was for him to turn 60.

  149. Courtney says...

    My kid is brand new :). She’s almost 4 months old!!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      awww, how exciting!!! :)

  150. Katie says...

    I don’t have any kids, but my sister and I joke that our father still thinks we’re 2 and 4. We are 45 and 44.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      I love that :)