I’m officially a tween.

I guess I’m supposed to be rolling my eyes more now? To be honest, being 11 doesn’t feel that different than being 10. I still have the same best friends, favorite foods, and favorite movie. (This is an affront, btw, Rotten Tomatoes.) I don’t go around yelling, “I hate you! I wish I’d never been born!” to my mom* and I’m not embarrassed to hold either parent’s hand.

Of course, some things have changed. Here’s a breakdown, complete with visual aids.

Every year (except for when I was 4 and she was a total hot mess), my mom asks me how great my life is on a scale of 1-10. This year, I’m at a solid 8 3/4, but I guess I’ve had better years. Namely, when I was 7, but then again, I also said farting was the meaning of life at that age. Of course, I’ve also had worse. Let’s not even get into age 5 when life was “so bad” that it only rated a 1-2 by George’s estimates.

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Is it bad to peak at age 7? (chart not too scale)

My taste in music remains eclectic. I wonder how many other playlists include the Mickey Mouse Club and the Misfits?

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I’ve had a lot of career goals over the years. The most consistent ones are dentist and teacher, but I think worm still has real potential. It’d certainly be an easier life than cleaning lady or astronaut.

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Already checked “Big Kid” off the list.

Congrats to Wontons and Tofu & Rice for being 4-peat champions in my favorite foods category. download (3)

Not that much has happened since mom was embarrassingly late with my 10-year old update, unless you count being stranded with my family 24/7 due to COVID-19. (Mom and Dad are doing their best though.)  I’m really bummed about not being to play soccer or have a real birthday party, but other than that, not too much has changed.

I still had a pretty good birthday, all things considering.

Without further ado, here’s me at age 11:

I hope you enjoyed the special guest appearance by the second funniest person in our house.

Yours in tweendom,

Bert (Hazel)

 

*as of press time

8 is Great

Oh, hello. I didn’t see you there. It’s me, George (Duke). I’m 8 now. Yes, you read that correctly. You might remember me from such posts as Life as a 7-year Old (I’m the 7-year old) and Guess Who’s Six (spoiler alert, it was me). You probably can’t imagine, but I was once just a naive little kid.

How do I compare to Hazy when she was 8?

Anyway, here’s a little update on 8-year old me:

If you think I’ve grown out of my cheese addiction, 1) you clearly haven’t met my mother, and 2) you’re wrong. I eat shredder cheddar every day and I have almost made a grown man cry with that “tell me when to stop” game with the parmesan at restaurants.

I still like Titanic. I’m also experiencing a Star Wars renaissance. Attack of the Clones is the best Star Wars movie. Don’t @ me. My mom already tried the whole “the original trilogy is the best” thing and I disagree, mainly because I don’t know what she means by “original” or “trilogy.” The funniest movie I’ve ever seen is Jumangi: Welcome to the Jungle. The second funniest movie I’ve ever seen is Jumangi: The Next Level. Keep in mind, the bar was set by Paul Blart.

I’m super into hockey, soccer, baseball, and Gaga Ball, which has nothing to do with Lady Gaga except that both can get pretty intense. One time, I jammed a finger pretty bad! #badromance

I’m also really into reading. I read the Dog Man books by Dav Pilkey almost every day, and I’m working on reading the Harry Potter books. My mom and I have invented a dog version of Harry Potter (Dogwarts, of course) and we’re open to new character names besides Albus Doggledore and Rubeus Dogrid. I was pretty psyched to find out I’m a Gryffindor, especially with parents from Ravenclaw and Slytherin (you figure out which is which).

I enjoy jokes (especially puns and knock knocks), laughing, and the occasional cry. Mom said it’s okay to cry when you’re sad, which I remind her about all the time, as she and Dad seem to have a different idea of what “sad” means than I do. Sure, the death of a loved one is sad, but so is not being able to have candy when you want it.

I collect quarters from different states. I love my dog, Rosie. I like cheese. Did I mention that already?

Dou-ble Di-gits!

That’s right, peeps, I’m 10. Technically, I’ve been 10 for about 7 months now, but who’s counting? (I AM, MAMA. I AM.) Apparently, my mom’s been too “busy” to edit my annual interview in an even remotely timely manner, so here it is before I’m 20 and applying to dental/space school:

 

I’ve really grown up since the days I wanted to be a lion or a fairy, and thought farts were the funniest thing in the world. Wait, scratch that last part. In the meantime, here’s what’s been going on with me since you last heard from me.

I’ve played two seasons of soccer, one with the Bobcats where we finished first in the league, and one with the Tigers where we came in last-ish. I had a blast both times.

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I think I’m pretty good, or at least I look like I am, thanks to my cousin Ryan, semi-pro photographer.

George and I have been playing hockey every Saturday. We spend most of our time fighting on the ice. I can’t wait until we learn how to check.

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I help him secure his helmet so I can ring his bell guilt-free on the ice.

I got to go to Florida to visit my grandparents, Oma & Oma, and again to visit my adopted grandma, Grammy Lynn. We discovered kids’ rosé in Florida so now I can be just like Mom.

 

We also got to watch my cousin Cassidy graduate from college.

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Does my cousin look like Daenerys Targaryen? Sure, but she’s way more badass, I assure you.

Some lady named Oprah spoke at her graduation ceremony and Mama was all, “OMGGGGGG,” but I’m pretty sure this Oprah chick wasn’t in any of the Descendants movies nor is married to a Jo Bro, so whatever.

And as the pièce de résistance, which I believe is French for “Greek piece of resistance” is that I got to go on my first overseas trip this year when we went to Greece. I tried octopus (didn’t like) and fried cheese (very much like) and learned to say please and thank you in Greek.

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I also went to my very first wedding (not mine, obvi) while in Greece.

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Mom says to always wear a fascinator to a wedding. #lifelessons

While I didn’t spend as much time on ending slavery this year, I did start PEP (the Panda Extinction Project) at my after-school program.

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BTW, we’re ANTI panda extinction, in case there’s any confusion.

I’ve been really into fashion, science, and reading this year. I walked in a runway show (unofficially), made my own robotic grabber hand, and read a ton of books. My favorite authors are Reina Talgameier, JK Rowling, and Rick Riordan.

 

I’ve been really into both cooking and baking. I’ve been feeling pretty confident about my cooking skills ever since I beat my mom in a tofu & rice cook off. (Big thanks to the totally impartial judges, Dad and George.) As for baking, I just like that you get to eat what you make. Activity + built in snack = win/win.

 

I keep trying to get my parents to fund my business, Sweet Tooth Bakery, but so far, it’s a no-go. I helped frost one of my birthday cakes and baked the other one all by myself. (Venture capitalists, please see photos below and contact me with any offers.)

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A Hazel O’Rourke original

 

Overall, life is pretty, pretty, pretty good. An 8 3/4 out of 10 to be exact.

 

Until my next post, when I’m around 11 3/4 years old if my estimates are accurate,

Hazy (Bert)