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Noah has become master reader of the universe. On Thanksgiving, and again tonight, Dan and I played Trivial Pursuit with family members, and both nights Noah was our official question reader. It blows my mind how in such a short amount of time he went from sounding out short, simple words to being able to read anything with little thought. The kid’s smart. Very smart.

The kid’s also a smart ass and a mini-teenager, but oh god how that smart assed mini-teenager amuses me. And today he made all of my child-related dreams come true by wanting to wear his hair in a mohawk. I couldn’t agree fast enough.

Noah as Eddie Munster (not that he has any clue who Eddie Munster is):

Enough biology. Look at pictures of The Boy at Lake Superior.

Chicago is such a beautiful city! I love the mixture of old and new architecture and the crowds and the noise and the bustle and the lake and everything.

I still love Minneapolis and St. Paul, but in comparison everything here seems so tiny and separated.

We took Noah to the Shedd Aquarium, which was a lot of fun (if not incredibly noisy; I don’t think I’m wrong in wishing to feed a few of the other visitors-especially school groups-to the sharks). This is a sculpture in front of the museum. I’m not entirely sure what’s going on in the sculpture, but it strikes me as being rather…unnatural.

Here is Noah at the aquarium. I had to give a few little kids my evilest of evil looks to make them go away and not jump in the picture. It totally worked.

Awesome light dealie at the Shedd Aquarium. It’s such a pretty building and a great aquarium, when you get past the hoards of screaming children.

I have many more pictures, but oh my god I’m so tired! It’s going to take a while longer to recover from this trip, I’m afraid. So tired.

In dress news: Finally gathered the courage to try it on last night and, shockingly, the damn thing fit! It was a bit tight, which I’m going to (try to) take care of pre-wedding. With a diet or something. Also shocking was that the dress was made for someone with a 38DDD chest. I’m hardly flat chested, but I’m no 38DDD. So the dress will have to be altered. Damn. And yes, mustn’t forget shoes.

In baby shower news: What? I didn’t mention I was throwing a baby shower for Marcoda, who occasionally pushes little people out of her hoo-hoo? Well, I am, on Sunday. And herein sets the panic. I have scattered scraps of paper with notes written on them, I have bags of random things, I have some carefully created stuff. But do I have a plan? No. Methinks I may be too disorganized to throw a baby shower. This could be…interesting. (There’s my Minnesota Nice showing through.)

Boy news: Noah turns eight tomorrow!!! The kid is growing like a…fast growing thing of some sort.

Five-year-old Noah. Look how tiny he was!

Nearly eight-year-old Noah. Crazy, isn’t it? He seems to think so…

 

Sometimes it takes a bit of contortion to get the perfect shot…

My step-youngin’ is officially a graduate of the first grade! I suddenly feel like listening to Simon and Garfunkel, but that might be a bit…inappropriate. But, my goodness, the kid is growing up.

I recently realized how much being a step-parent is like being an unglorified, unpaid nanny. I do all the mommy duties, part time, but have very, very little say in his actual upbringing. Frustrating doesn’t come close to describing the situation. My opinions and thoughts concerning Noah often (or, constantly) get back-burnered by family members because I haven’t been there since Noah was born (which would have been odd since Dan was with Noah’s mom, hence Noah). I feel like an impostor around “real parents” because I’m only a part time parent; I actually get to sleep in every other weekend. But man, there is nothing more empty feeling than being in full-out mommy mode for a couple days, then…nothing. And Dan wonders why I baby the cats so much (hint: it’s not only because they’re so darn lovable and fluffy and always alert me when there’s a bug crawling across the floor).

I admittedly don’t do well with powerlessness. I’m not one to sit back and accept things for what they are. But there just isn’t anything I can do about this, and the entire situation is exacerbated by other circumstances, which I will get into in another post.

Oh, I’m not really as bitter as I sound. Or maybe I am. The situation is what it is,  I suppose, and I deal as best I can. And there is a lot of good in the mix, too, like the fact that Noah is an awesome, wonderful kid, and I do get to sleep in every other weekend. God, I love to sleep. Plus, seeing as I spent NO time baby-sitting when I was younger, and I have no younger siblings, I’ve definitely learned a lot about parenting and kids from having Noah in my life, things that it will be nice to know when Dan and I have kids. For example, if you keep a kid up past his bedtime, he won’t sleep in the next morning to make up for it. He will wake up at the same time and will be very cranky all day. Good to know.

And now, photos! Surprise!

The boys:

 

Me n’ the kid:

Finally, finally, it was warm outside. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, the bat was swinging and the camera was clicking. It was a typical summer day (after the world’s longest winter ever).  

 baseball

I was starting to believe that this day would never arrive, that we would spend all summer curled up on the couch, huddling under blankets and watching Scrubs like we did all winter. I was wrong; what a relief! I’m starting to think it might not snow again until next winter! Awesome!

 Grinnin'

Since it was warm out, we decided it was baseball time! Well, they decided it was baseball time; I decided it was camera time. Surprise, surprise, I know.

batting practice

While Dan was passing on his endless baseball knowledge to the next generation, I was noticing that someone put his shirt on backward this morning. Oh well, Noah’s going to be a famous professional baseball player someday. He’s probably trying to start a new trend.

 backward shirt

In fifteen years or so all the young baseball player wannabes will be wearing backward clothes to pay hommage to their favorite new baseball player, Noah The Great (if fifteen years everyone will replace their last name with modifiers like “The Short” or “The Hungry” or “The Amicable”. Just you wait and see.)

Bat

 

All any battle-ready seven-year-old needs to wage war is a tennis ball and a water gun. Just imagine how much better the world would be if all wars were fought this way.

 War

Of course he knows he’s not supposed to “play war” or “play kill people with guns” at our house (I have no clue where the watergun came from). We’re more the “if your seven-year-old little boy brain must blow something up, use imaginary love and beauty bombs” type folks. (Not to mention water guns filled with kaluah, but Dan doesn’t need to know about that part.)

  • He can do an amazing English accent. One of his favorite movies is the Parent Trap (the most recent version starring a young Lindsey Lohan). One of the twins has an English accent in the movie, and not only has Noah memorized all of her lines, but he does them with a much better accent than Lindsey did…
  • He’s a health food freak. He loves his fruits and veggies! When we eat out and he orders something from the kid’s menu, he always chooses the most healthy side option (veggies or apple sauce) and specifies white milk.
  • He suddenly learned how to read, over night, and now he’s a hardcore reader. He can read anything and it blows my mind. He loves to read!
  • He’s a sporty, active, crazy, typical little boy, but he has this incredibly sensitive, artistic side that’s just as big as his sporty side. He LOVES crafts. He loves to draw and create and make gifts for other people.
  • On the mornings that I’ve woken him up before he woke up on his own, he will wake up babbling about whatever dream he was having as if it were still happening. This has led to many a confusing morning on my part, but he’s never seen anything odd about this.
  • He shares my obsession and attention span with movies. He will take his favorite movie, and rewind and fast forward to watch his favorite scenes over and over.  Noah has mad skills when it comes to the remote control.
  • He’s nearing eight, but he still likes to cuddle when he’s tired.
  • He’s suddenly turned into such a smart ass! Hard core! He’s a sixteen-year-old! When he was younger he, as normal kids do, would cry or whine when he was upset. Now he retorts with well thought out, smart-assed, teenage remarks. Outwardly I am “upset” by this, but inwardly I’m so dang proud!

Excuse me, I twitted.

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