I may be putting his top secret cover at risk but I have to inform you that Noah is a spy. He’s constantly up to some sort of intrigue. And while I don’t mind the adventure of it all I am a bit concerned about how sneaky, secretive and borderline dishonest he can be when he’s on a mission. He’s always lurking about, hiding things, ducking behind objects, writing observations in a notebook and informing me “You can’t see me!”
It may have been the spy in Noah that coerced him to steal a pack of Trident at the grocery store last weekend. He didn’t even realize what it was – just somehow liked the size and shape of it. He said something to me on the way home about having something secret in his pocket but I was too busy driving. When we got home he went right up to his bedroom, which is unusual but I didn’t think too much of it. The next morning when Mark got him out of bed Noah told him to walk ahead because he had a secret he didn’t want seen. When he got to our room he slipped the pack of gum under the pillow and Mark spotted it. He knew what happened instantly since he stole a pack of gum when he was five. What bothered me wasn’t that he stole it but he showed very little remorse. But I guess remorse isn’t a big thing for four year olds. When I took the gum away from him and put it on top of our armoire he cried and said “I just want to hold it. I like how it feels in my hand. It makes me feel lucky.” When I was making breakfast Mark found him up in our room trying to retrieve the gum. He hauled two plastic chairs up the stairs to our room – one to place on each side of the safety gate – and a broom handle to knock the gum down from the armoire. Talk about sneaky and resourceful. Later that afternoon he humbled up and got scared when I took him to the store to return the gum and apologize. I was a tad pissed when the girl behind the customer service counter started going “Awwwwww” when I told her why we were there but with a dirty look and prompting (“What usually happens to people who shoplift?”) I think I got the message across. If he steals something again I’m going to take him to the police department to scare him straight.
The past two weekends I took Noah with me to do some volunteering for the families in the Ronald McDonald House at St. Chistopher’s Hospital. One week made valentines for the kids and on Valentine’s Day we made breakfast for the families at the House. Noah wasn’t a huge asset in accomplishing things but I really want to instill in him both the appreciation for all our good health and good fortune, and also the impulse to help others.
In the last few weeks I’ve noticed a huge change in Noah at school. He’s been at his current preschool program for a year and a half and while he didn’t have much difficulty adjusting, he did go into the program with some friends and he’s always played mostly with them and talked only about them. All of a sudden Noah is coming home talking about several of his classmates and tells me he’s playing with them at school. He’s always taken awhile to warm up in group social situations so it shouldn’t be a surprise but I am very excited for him to finally make new friends on his own.
Have I mentioned that Ray is an artist? He draws. He loves it. He loves markers, crayons, pens, stamps and paint. He’ll start doodling and tell you about the things he is drawing (“Meow” – cat, “Bo Bo” – monkey, “Fra-tee” – snowman) or hand you the pen and ask you to draw something (“Choo choo”). But at the moment his absolute favorite thing is his Magnadoodles. I don’t exaggerate when I tell you that he has spent a solid forty minutes on that thing, that he’s thrown fits when we try to get him to do something else like eat lunch or go to bed, and that he will go to great measures to drag the large one from room to room.
He also is very much into books. Especially when Noah isn’t around. He’ll bring me a book, back into my lap, help me read and then get up and get another. I read him eleven books in a row last Friday afternoon. He loves pointing to the pictures and telling you what they are. Right now “Good Night Moon,” “Curious George Rides,” “Rainbow Fish” and “Danny and the Dinosaur” are in heavy rotation.
Me? I’ve given up wine for a month. I wasn’t drinking too much necessarily, just too often. Almost nightly. And those empty calories are not needed right before bed. It has been taking it’s toll. I also need to stop having the occasional cigarette. I don’t like the taste, the smell or the feeling but still I want one. That’s addiction for ya. But it’s not healthy or fair to my kids and it needs to stop. I need to see my sister Jessica. It’s been a year. She’s gone from a confused little girl to a frustrated young woman. Last time she visited she seemed really bored and inconvenienced. But I guess she is thirteen going on fourteen and they all act that way so I shouldn’t have taken it so personally. Unfortunately any attempts I have made in the last year to keep in touch with her have been totally one way. But I need to make more of an effort. I’m so angry with myself. I also have to send Christmas presents to my sister Elisha and my adorable nephew. I need to go on a diet. I need to get a haircut. I need to get more sleep. I need to get off the damn computer.