Ok, this is going to be very stream of consciousness but there's a lot going on and I never seem to have time to write. So, here it is:
He's doing great in school but really looking forward to summer vacation. He asks me every few days how many days until summer vacation? Without weekends? With weekends? How many days until we go to Grandma's? Without weekends? You get it. He wants to go swimming every chance he gets. He has become so confident in the water that he can now hang with the older boys and I don't freak out. Don't worry, I still keep my eyes on him. He laid in bed last night and read "One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish" all by himself without any help from me. When he gets tired, he puts his book down and goes to sleep. Everywhere we go he sounds out words and more often than not, gets them right. It's amazing and thrilling and he makes me beam with pride. He's still super competitive but we're working on that by playing games just for fun, not keeping score. He can be extremely stubborn but I'm discovering that if you give him some love instead of anger, his anger just deflates. He will get himself up on a Saturday morning, close our bedroom door so we won't hear him, put on the television, make himself cereal or a peanut butter and honey sandwich, pour the milk or the juice without spilling a drop, and make breakfast for Dean, too. I have fallen in love with him all over again.
My artist, my imagineer, my sweet and salty boy. Still full of contradictions but now there are fewer dramatics. He now sleeps so soundly that I check to make sure he's breathing. He is struggling with reading but is trying his best and is keeping his frustration in check. He is a social butterfly at school and everyone loves him. Even his teacher, though she'd really like it if he'd just do his work before socializing. He loves to play and hates to work. He tumbles into every show, every character he sees on TV and can quote lines from those shows with perfect timing, perfect pitch. He has wild hair with a wild spirit to match. He is also excited for summer vacation and can't wait to hang out with his friends James and Frank. He loves swimming but doesn't like getting his head wet so he just dog paddles around, his little face turned up to the sky. He has suddenly declared that he's big now and doesn't need us to lay down with him at night. This is a new development as of Sunday night and it is bittersweet. It's nice to have the time back but I'll miss the way he manages to squeeze his legs in between mine and bury his head in my shoulder and the way he will occasionally start talking in his sleep, his words crisp and clear but what he's saying is absolute, utter nonsense. And yes, I've fallen in love with him all over again.
What can I say about this man that I haven't already said? He continues to surprise me, he works his tail off, constantly strives to make our lives better, richer, always offers to take the boys so I can have time to myself, has infinite patience, gives everyone the benefit of the doubt. He surprises us (me and the boys) by recording new shows that he thinks we'll like or he'll find a movie that he thinks we'll like. One night at the Sullivan's we did Karaoke and I sang "All That Jazz". Weeks later, I discovered that he had recorded "All That Jazz" and "Chicago" for me. Just because he thought I'd like it. He is always thinking about places to take the boys, ways to fix up our house, ways to make more money - he never stops. And he supports me every step of the way. I fall in love with him more each day.
I'm still a work in progress but I'm having a lot of fun figuring it out. I still get the crap beat out of me on a regular basis but I'm tough and I refuse to back down. I just tested for green belt last Saturday and it was awesome. I am now "halfway" to black. The techniques get harder so I'm sure the progress will slow a bit but I'm having a blast so if it takes twice as long to get through the next six belts, well that's ok. Yesterday Master D brought out the nunchucks and we just played with those for a half hour. It was so fun I bought a set for myself today! Tom thinks I'm crazy. He just shakes his head at me. I went to my friend and training partner's Black belt test today. It was inspiring. After the boys went to bed tonight I worked on my new form and hand techniques. Speaking of the boys - after dinner tonight we all ended up on the floor in the living room just cuddling and tickling with the boys and Jack asked Tom if he wanted a massage. Naturally, Tom said yes. Jack got to work pounding on his back with knife hands, rubbing underneath his shirt, scratching his back. Of course Dean wanted in on the act too so he offered to give one to me. He went to town! Rubbing my back, doing the knife hands, scratching my back - everything. Then he worked on my neck and my shoulders, my upper arms and my calves. They were so earnest and excited to be doing something for us. It was really nice. So we took them out for ice cream.
I know this post is sort of haphazard and messy. I actually started it 5 days ago but couldn't finish it so it's been sitting in my drafts folder all this time. It all still applies, though. The boys are really fun right now and we're enjoying ourselves.
Tomorrow we're going to the movies to see Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. I have to video Dean saying the title because he adds a syllable to Smithsonian but I can't remember what it is. I know it's cute, though.