Saturday, December 09, 2023

Friday Saturday

 I am enjoying the tradition of visiting Florida each December. It's been cooler this year than the past two, and I forgot to bring my sweatshirt, so I bought  myself a long sleeved cotton T-shirt from Blue Spring State Park. I splurged. For the manatees. 

Late yesterday morning Jim and I took a drive to Daytona where we met my friend Marty for lunch at Jimmy Hula's in Ormond Beach. It was a quick and emotional visit. Mostly I wanted to give him a hug. That desire was fulfilled and I am grateful. His sweet wife Kathy passed into eternity just a little over a week ago. Needless to say, I did not take pictures.

Last night was hot cocoa, Christmas movie and tree decorating night. I enjoyed a cup of peppermint hot chocolate with whipped cream and peppermint sprinkles, took lots of pictures, and took in a little bit of The Polar Express. The house is looking festive.

Today we stayed home. The kids played video games and I went outside to chase lizards. Before dinner Jim and I took Charlie and Jonah for a walk, and after dinner we headed to the zoo for the Asian Lantern Festival. So fun!

Thursday, December 07, 2023

Barbara Manatee!

Barbara was the star manatee in a Veggie Tales song...

I have been to Florida's Blue Spring Park twice before today, but both times, although we had a lovely walk, there were no manatees. It was just too warm. The manatees come into the spring when the water temperature in the St John's River drops. Manatee need warm water to thrive and the spring stays a toasty 72 degrees Fahrenheit making it an idea spot for them to congregate. Getting a clear photo was next to impossible. Ha ha! But I did try.

I've been enjoying my grandchildren. The smallest is an adorable friendly little one who had me sitting on the floor singing songs and looking at a book as soon as I came in the door. Her brothers have followed suit in a slower, but similar manner. The house is full of laughter and tears, running, and squeals of both frustration and delight. I feel right at home. LOL!

Yesterday and today were tired days. I woke up at 3:30 am on Wednesday to catch my 5:45 am flight, and sometimes airplanes affect my ears for a day or so after. Throw in  a change in the coffee consumption routine and it's a recipe for a dull headache and tired eyes. I took a good nap this afternoon and am feeling much better this evening.

Sunday, December 03, 2023

Can You Hold This for Minute?

I've come to The Blog multiple times and stared at it, wanting to write but not knowing what to say... I visited my therapist the night before Thanksgiving. There were a few tears and some moments of laughter.

"Years ago you told me," I said to him, "that things like this take 3 to 5 years to work through..." 

"We're pretty close to that," he answered.

And I laughed and said, "It's been 8 years."

There remains the question, "Have I worked through it?" and the answer comes in layers. 

I'm grateful he didn't say, "It takes 3-5 years to get over things like this," because there is no way to "get over it." We can only learn to live with the awful truth and grow, however long it may take and however painful it may be, and we (I'm talking my family) are all working through this as individuals which means a myriad of different angles and understandings. It's the most complicated thing we have ever had to do, and honestly, in all likelihood we will be processing some aspect of it until our lives here end.

A few nights ago I had a conversation with a beloved family member who was trying to help me sort through some feelings. I don't think either of us was prepared for the feelings that welled up inside of me. "Anger" is a simple term that covers a broad spectrum of emotions from irritation to blind rage and everything in between. It's a safe word. A "weasel word," if you will.

For years I've known I should feel intense anger, but mostly felt only numbness. Rather than look my own indignation, outrage, or lividity in the face, I placed a cap on the bottle and screwed it down tight, It was too painful to let the emotions out, and besides I didn't even know how. All of my life I have been taught to put myself last, to think of others first, to keep secrets, cover sins, and think the best. I have taken on the emotions of others to the detriment of self, but this time it wasn't about just me. I dragged my feet, searched both scripture and soul, sought wise counsel, and eventually did the hardest thing I have ever done. I moved away from the home I loved, the church I attended, and the man I had married. It ripped my heart out, but in all honesty, it had already been torn to shreds.

Today I recognize the anger inside. I feel it tighten my back, neck and shoulder muscles, and creep down my arms and legs. It has shown up in blood pressure readings, fatigue and depression, as well as regret and feelings of hopelessness. It has brought isolation, loneliness, and insurmountable loss. 

But for all the negative there are positives to anger as well. I learned to set boundaries and an example as well. In spite of the numbness inside, in spite of the swinging pendulum of emotions, I did what needed to be done in order to lance the abscess and bring much needed relief to not only myself but my children as well. Surgery is painful. Healing is agonizing. Physical therapy is hard and exhausting work. (I speak allegorically.) Today I need not only to loosen the bottle cap, but remove the bottle altogether. The problem is that I don't know how to process anger in a healthy manner. I only know how to shut it down.

Please don't tell me I need to "give it to Jesus" because, although I have heard that all my life, I don't have an inkling what that is supposed to mean. Is it possibly enough to admit to myself and others that I am deeply wounded and profoundly angry not only for my children, but myself as well? I am ready to move on and desperately need to let it all go, I'm just not sure where to set the bag.

With all of that said, I have undergone an incredible transformation the past eight and a half years. Life rarely feels hopeless, I seldom isolate, and my family is healing in ways I once deemed impossible. The mirror reflects more peace and happiness with each passing year and I am incredibly grateful for each and every bit of growth, even if I'm not entirely grateful for how it came about.

(I'm headed to Florida on Wednesday morning. Stay tuned for some great times and photos.)

Sunday, November 19, 2023

A Few Words

I don't feel like I have much to report, although I'm sure a myriad of happenings have transpired since my last post, one of them being my youngest son's 30th birthday last Saturday. We surprised him with a family bowling party. All the local kids and grandkids were there, except for Josh who was working. I missed the opportunity for a group photo. I just wasn't quick enough. They scattered when I wasn't looking and there was no rounding them up again.

I've been doing battle with a bit of underlying depression. It comes with the holidays. One angle of combat is to put up the Christmas tree and decorate for the upcoming holidays... I like to wrap Thanksgiving in Christmas paper and tie it with a ribbon. I also like to be thankful for Christmas and all it entails, so I've decided to mix them altogether and enjoy an extended holiday season... I have a fabulous snowman collection along with a collection of fabric birds dressed in holiday garb.

Last Sunday I took myself out to breakfast and ate "alone" at the counter in a favorite local restaurant. I was alone when I ordered but a few others ended up sitting there too. We did not converse but none of us was completely alone at the same time. In the afternoon my friend Laura and I took a drive out to Hamlin Beach State Park and took a long walk. It was a beautiful day.

This morning I decided to do something different and visited a church by myself. It's here in town, maybe a mile away. It's been there my entire life but I had never been previous to this morning. I saw a few familiar faces, felt very comfortable, and will likely make another visit in the near future.

Friday, November 03, 2023

Too Much and Not Enough Too

Two weeks. It's been two weeks since I last published a blog. Two are in forever draft form (never to be published), but they don't count. And now, because it's late and I'm thoroughly exhausted from chasing children during the day and not sleeping at night, I have little to share and yet much on my mind. Late fall problems...

I've not taken any wonderful, autumn woods walks this year and I am a little sad about that. However, I do have a great stockpile of woods walks from years past and if I close my eyes and hold the picture in my mind, it's almost like being there. I soaked those memories in deep; the sights, the sounds, the smells. All of it. I am so grateful for those years. If I ever slide into dementia (which is a terrifying thought), I'm sure I'll be taking some woods walks in my memories then too. (Which really doesn't sound half bad. LOL!)

It's been an emotional week with a cherished family member being diagnosed with a terminal illness. (I'm keeping the identity private out of respect.) The time and miles between here and there make visiting impossible. There is nothing I can do except to pray. For peace. For pain free days. For God's grace. For those who can to be there. Life, it seems, is all about learning to let go...

Tomorrow is a day with friends. We're going to a craft sale and then out to lunch. This is good. This is what I need.

Saturday, October 21, 2023

Thanks For Joining Me on the Ride

It's been quite the journey so far, a rambling sort of road, crossing sunny fields, through long, dark tunnels and endless forests, and over rocky mountains. Like you, my fellow travelers, I don't know what lies over the next hill or around the curve in the road ahead. More territory has already been covered than I'd ever imagined. There's been expansion along the way, a painful stretching growth. Low lying branches have pulled my hair and scratched my face. My fingers have been bloodied and toes smashed against unseen obstacles. I've tripped over roots, lost a shoe, and ripped my pants, but I can't turn back. Time doesn't allow for restarts. It just keeps tumbling us forward, farther down the road toward the end, wherever that may be.

It's been quite the journey so far, an ambling sort of walk across sunny fields, through fabulously long tunnels, endless enchanted forests, and majestic rocky mountain climbs. Like you, my fellow travelers, I don't know what adventure lies over the next hill or around the curve in the road ahead. More territory has already been covered than I'd ever imagined! There's been expansion along the way, a wonderful stretching growth. Low lying branches have taught me to pull back my hair and protect my face. My fingers have been bloodied and toes smashed against unseen obstacles but I'm much more aware today. I've hopped over roots, danced without shoes, and laughed at ripped pants. I can't turn back but I don't really want to. Time doesn't allow for restarts. It just keeps encouraging us forward to more adventure further down the road. The excitement never ends!

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

I Don't Write Much Anymore

Writing is cathartic. I know this and yet still find it difficult to carve out the time. It's so much easier to listen to a podcast or do an online jigsaw puzzle. Or both. Usually at the same time. 

Writing takes time and effort. When I have the time, I'm often too tired to put in the effort. Mostly I mull over what could be written when I have no access to the internet or my computer.

It feels like yesterday when I was able to sit down and write a blog post every day. Back then we walked the orchards, baked cakes and pies, and raked leaves into gigantic heaps. Toys were strewn across the living room, laughter filled the house, and the school bus stopped at the end of the driveway almost every day... It felt as though life would go on and on like that forever but slowly, little by little life began to change. Quite honestly, life was always changing. I simply wasn't noticing.

My son Dave turned 40 on Sunday. Where have the years gone? October 15, 2006 So much has happened since he was twenty-three... Three of my grandchildren have birthdays in October. In 2006 I didn't have any grandchildren, my parents were living here in this little house, and I was still in awe of the home God had given us, surrounded by apple orchards, blanketed in star studded skies, and filled with family... 

There are still moments when it feels as though I'm living the wrong life, that mine was mistakenly derailed and I landed on one going an entirely different direction, one with a destination of which I am totally unsure.

Sunday, October 08, 2023


Another week has flown by. We had some summer days last week and today late fall has settled in. It was warmer when I went out to church this morning that it was when I headed out again at noon. Definitely heavy sweater weather this afternoon. I wore a sweatshirt under my jean jacket, and though I saw others with summer foot attire, I chose socks and close toed shoes myself. Perhaps summer will return again by the weekend. 

I'd expected to accomplish great things this weekend and was set back by a sinus/migraine headache Saturday. I'd been slacking off on my decongestant and nasal spray so off I went to find some, along with a nap and an afternoon cup of coffee. It seemed to do the trick and I caught up with most of the activities I'd had in mind, including washing all of my laundry and bedding, along with a few more. I have yet to take a woods walk but there is still time for that.

Oh! I just remembered! I was coming back into work from a lunch break last week when my boss said she had a weird question for me. She showed me a picture on her phone and asked, "Is one of these yours?" There was a photograph of three canvas pencil cases with names on them; Martha, Amber, and Megan. They were Christmas gifts from one of the Tot Spot moms three years ago when I was helping open the infant room and doing breaks. 

"Yes," I told her, still wondering where this was going...

"Do you know who made them," she asked. It felt like a trick question and I was still caught a little off guard by the asking. I took a guess that it was the sister of one of the other moms because she has done gifts in more recent years. "You're looking at her," she said, "Jen P---- asked me to make them back when you were taking care of ----."  Ha ha! I knew she and Jen were friends, I'd learned that during my interview, but how funny that I actually have something made by my current boss when I didn't even know. (Now if only I can find it... It's probably somewhere in the attic.)

Wednesday, October 04, 2023

Not Enough Time in the Days

It been a whirlwind of a week! Last Thursday my son and his band had their first official show when they opened for Glass Cannon at the Iron Smoke Distillery in Fairport, NY. They did a phenomenal job and I am looking forward to more music outings in the not too distant future. 

On Friday morning my friend Gail and I took off for a weekend in New Jersey. She had some deliveries to make and some family to see. In the midst of the visits and errands we had some fun. We went out for breakfast and dinner, walked a couple of beaches, collected a few treasures, and I stuck my feet in the ocean. It was entirely fabulous!

I just do not have enough time in my life to work and do all the playing I would like. Ha ha! Who does?

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

And That's How It's Been Going

*  It's been busy and I have been tired. 

*  I went to the allergist last Tuesday morning before work. They did needle poke tests on my arms and drew blood for tests as well. So far everything blood test related has come back normal, except for octopus which came back "borderline." Have I ever eaten octopus? I haven't a clue. I have been advised to avoid eating seafood for now. (I have never wanted a good piece of fish so much in my life.)

*  I had a doctor's appointment on Thursday. I got a tetanus booster.

* I am still going to Physical Therapy. My back is much better than it was four months ago, and yet it is not quite where I'd like it to be. Tiny chairs and tables a foot off the floor are tricky to maneuver. 

* This past weekend my cousins and I had a booth at a local festival. So much fun! I sold a few pieces of pottery. Over all we had a successful weekend, and I bought a grape pie.

* My son's friend Dan came to find me at the Grape Festival on Sunday afternoon. He lives in Minnesota but was here with his wife for a family gathering. Seeing them totally made my day! I think I hugged him five times. I was really that excited.

* I am going to New Jersey with my friend Gail this coming weekend. Maybe I'll stick my toes in the ocean one more time before winter.

* I bought an airline ticket for December. I miss my Florida family, the ones who used to be in Minnesota. I asked my boss first. LOL!

Monday, September 18, 2023

We Played Outside

It's Monday, but I don't want this past weekend to get away without tucking it into a history folder. It was a beautiful weekend full of grandchildren. Ten of them.

Today is Hannah and Sergio's eighth wedding anniversary. On Saturday they took some time and spent the day together. I stayed with the boys again like I did last year. We had a great time. I took them to a fabulous playground at Webster Park. We spent a little bit of time down at the lake and then went back to the playground where we were met by my son Nate and his gang of four Littles. I kept it a secret from Idris and he was so excited when he saw them.

We spent five hours playing outside before heading home. A monarch butterfly danced around Idris and Wes and they sat atop a spinning climber. Killian and Lyla had a great time playing in the wood chips. And everyone had a blast climbing on the playground and going up and down the slide. At home I whipped up ten scrambled eggs and a stack of toast to feed the kids while Nathan took a snooze on the garage couch. Just a short nap. Enough time for Lyla to sneak a Cabbage Patch baby unnoticed into his arms. (How could I resist taking a picture?)

On Sunday I went to visit my beautiful Bethany and her family. Beth and I had some good Mom/daughter time, and later in the afternoon Nate and the gang came over for a little camp fire and some toasted marshmallows.

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Bits and Pieces

* I have been cleared to be alone with children. All pieces of my background check have come through. Although it feels frustrating while waiting, I totally understand the process. I believe in it. Quite honestly, every childcare worker should probably undergo periodic background checks even if they are working during the process. It only makes sense.

* The information overload that comes with a new job is starting to dissipate. I still have a ton to learn but it feels less overwhelming than it did a few weeks ago, or even last week for that matter. Keeping children safe is serious business, and apparently takes a lot more work that I ever realized (or I never would have had so many of my own...). And here I thought little kids were a piece of cake. ha ha! (That's #16 in the picture. Isn't she sweet?)

* Allergy testing is set for Tuesday morning before work. I am three day into no antihistamine and feeling itchy. Not quite as itchy as I felt two years ago when I went off Zyrtec cold turkey, but itchy nonetheless. Back then I eventually gave in and went back to taking Claritin. This time I have reduced the dose incrementally but still too fast to eliminate the itching altogether. I'm very curious what this round of testing will reveal.

* I'm looking forward to some fun in the next few weeks. I'm spending Saturday with Idris and Killian with plans to meet up with Nate and four more grandchildren. The next weekend my cousins and I will be manning a booth at the Grape Festival in Naples, NY, and the last weekend of September my friend Gail and I have plans to go to New Jersey. (I found a handful of glass and a perfect heart at the lake tonight and almost missed the sunset.)

* I'm looking forward to some future walks in the woods when the leaves start turning colors.

Saturday, September 02, 2023

Two Weeks In

I have made it through the first two weeks of my new job. Names and faces are getting easier to remember and recognize, and best of all I'm learning the system. My background clearance still hasn't come through but it's expected I should be cleared in the next week. It will allow me to be alone with the children and I will no longer have to hear coworkers say, "Martha can't be alone with the kids." It really the weirdest thing even though I know and appreciate all the reasons. It's a good and needful precaution in a long list of measures intended to keep our children safe from abuse and appreciated more on this side of life than it ever was years ago.

I've stopped at the lake a few times this week and found the tiny strip of pebble beach just barely accessible. My son Nathan found me there on Monday. (I already wrote this but I've been tired and didn't bother to look or remember, LOL!) I'm still collecting bit of glass and other "treasures" from the shoreline, whatever catches my eye. The waves are soothing when I'm stressed and the water is still warm from months of summer sun and temperatures. I got my sneaker toes wet on Thursday evening even though my flip flops were in the car. It was well into sunset and I didn't bother to change my footwear for the ten to fifteen minutes I would be by the water. Needless to say, my shoes spent the night in front of the fan. Flip flops are frowned on at the daycare. LOL!

September arrived yesterday morning and the weather was perfect. Cool morning, bright sunny day, and a warm afternoon. I drove to work early, came home on my break at 11:30 am, left my car and keys for Sergio, and walked back to work. It was too nice for him and the kids to be closed up in the house all day and with Idris still struggling to walk after his broken foot, I though they might appreciate being able to get out. They met Hannah for lunch and went to the park. It was a beautiful walk back to work. The walk home was felt but the pain in my back and leg were due more to bending over to wash little tables at work than the distance home.

After three weeks away, I returned to Potter Night with my cousins and made just under a dozen bud vases. It's our plan to have a booth at the Naples Grape Festival again. I missed a lot of time to make cups and such, but I do have a few to set up. I'm looking forward to spending a weekend with my cousins. They are forever friends.

Monday, August 28, 2023

Little Bites

 * We had a great meeting last night (Sunday) with newfound family members. A previously unknown uncle of my children was discovered about 5 months ago. This past weekend he and his wife came to meet us. It was very cool. 

* I saw my friend Aria again this afternoon. She gave me another hug and introduced me to her sister. They are very close in age, they are not twins, and yes, they are sisters. I knew about the sister, but had never met her previous to today.

* I went to the lake this evening and someone who loves me came looking. It was my son, Nathan. I was picking beach glass from the shore and suddenly there he was, sitting on a rock behind me. I kind of love when my kids come looking for me.

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Exhaustion Takes Over

It's been a long month and especially the last few weeks. The tension and fatigue, along with a ragweed allergy, finally caught up with me. I would have taken a nap on my lunch break yesterday, but my car was getting new tires and, although the break room couch is comfy, I knew I would never fall asleep on it my first week on the job. I walked to work in the mist Friday morning, soldiered through a day of toddlers, and went home with a headache that turned my stomach. I went straight to bed even though I didn't go right to sleep, and I stayed there until late this morning. Fearful of the virus, I took a test but it came back negative. Decongestant, nasal spray, and rest have alleviated most of the symptoms. I think I'll be fine by tomorrow morning, especially if I can get a good night's sleep.

I was surprised when I left the toddler room yesterday to see a small familiar face walking into a nearby classroom. It was Aria, one of my little friends from the other daycare. I was blessed to give her a hug and tell her I love her.

It's been a low key kind of Saturday. Beautiful, sunny skies and mild temperatures. Just the way I like it.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Updates (Kind of like Bits and Pieces)

 * My doctor answered the message I sent and agrees it sounds like I had an allergic reaction while on vacation in Cape Cod. He has referred me to an allergist.

* I am never quite ready to come home from vacations even if it rains, which it did. In spite of the rain, and sometimes ocean mist, we had some fabulous beach days.

Cockle Cove Beach- 8/12

Morris Island Loop Trail- 8/13

Chatham Pier and Fish Market- 8/13

First Encounter Beach- 8/13 (sunset)

Marconi Beach- 8/14

Head of the Meadow Beach- 8/16

Provincetown Pier- 8/16

Nauset Beach- 8/17
Breakwater Beach- 8/18 (sunset)

* My friend Lisa, who lives on Cape Cod, was able to come visit me Friday morning. We shared coffee and a long talk. She moved back to the Cape 19 years ago! I can't believe it's been so long already. 

* I started my new job on Monday. It's been mostly training so far with a little time in a few classrooms. The first child I was asked to sit by was on a cot attempting to take a nap. God really does have a sense of humor. It was the one little girl whose name I happened to know, although I had never met her or her parents. She is the 2 year old cousin of the twins I just left behind at the other daycare.

* I walked to work Monday morning. Today I took my car and came home for lunch. Such a change from what I've been doing the past six years.

Friday, August 18, 2023

Cape Cod

It's been a beautiful week at the Cape. We visited at least seven beaches (Cocle Cove Beach, First Encounter Beach, Morris Island Loop Trail at the Monomy Wildlife Refuge, Marconi Beach, Head of the Meadow Beach, and Nauset Beach), stopped at the Chatham Pier and Fish Market, and walked down Commercial St. in Provincetown. We bought pie at Marion's Pie Shop and had ice cream at the Brewster Scoop in Brewster, Sundae School in Chatham, and the Ice Cream Cafe in Orleans. 

Our first night we bought clam chowder from Mac's Fish Market. On Sunday we ate at the pier. I got fish (haddock) and chips. On Monday, after our day at the beach, we went to Arnold's Lobster and Cam Bar where Laura and I split a Seafood Platter (whole belly clams, calamari, shrimp, scallops & codfish). When we went to bed four hours later, I was feeling itchy. I had some hives in random places, which is not totally unusual for me. I read my book before we turned out the light. It was when I settled down to sleep that my throat first felt a little scratchy. It got scratchier as time went on and my tongue slowly began to feel thick and stiff. By the time I woke Laura's friend Dorrie, who was sharing a room with me, I couldn't talk above a whisper. (I'd already swallowed an extra Claritin.) Dorrie woke Laura and they called 911 but by the time the EMTs arrived my tongue was starting to feel a little better and my voice was beginning to come back. The head EMT said he didn't think I was having an allergic reaction (at least not anaphylactic) but I didn't eat any more seafood after that. I will admit it has been hard to watch them eat it and go without. I would have loved to have another round of Fish and Chips but I couldn't chance it. I'll be talking with my doctor when I return home.

(I started this while still at the Cape but never had a chance to finish.)

Friday, August 11, 2023

Friday. My Last One

It's over and done. There was only one baby today, my newest. A sweet, little girl named Maddie. I could have gone home once the other baby teacher came in, but I decided to give others the option. I stayed for two and a half "lunch" breaks for others and left at noon. I sat on the floor with four year olds, stroked the head of a sleepy 18 month old, hugged the cook whose not-yet-born grandson will be at my new daycare and left. I almost went out the door without saying goodbye to the director. but was stopped by our assistant director who said, "Don't you leave without saying goodbye!" It was a bizarre day. 

I came home to cry and pack my bags for vacation. I didn't plan for it to fall into my schedule between jobs, but it feels perfect.

Thursday, August 10, 2023


(Pictures sent from Florida by my daughter.)

More goodbyes were said today and there are more to come tomorrow. I am ready to start my new job the Monday after my return from Cape Cod. All the paperwork has been filled out the PPD test read. All the background checks and fingerprint requirements are computerized. Everyone so far seems cheerful and friendly. I am looking forward to working in my hometown.

In other news, my oldest daughter has been in Florida this week and had the pleasure of visiting my eldest son and his family. It makes my heart smile to see the pictures, and Lord knows I needed to smile this week! What a great bunch of grandkids I have!

That's Josh in the white T shirt, Jake with the cowboy hat and Henry on his lap. Parker is squeezed in between Henry and Jonah and Jill is stretching her mouth into a silly face. Austin has long, curly hair and Charlotte is dancing in front. Those are grandchild numbers 1, 5, 6, 8, 11, 13, 14, and 17. Eight of my seventeen.

Wednesday, August 09, 2023


My last day with the twins, the only two who stayed with me for the entire year. Such sweet and naughty little things! They were just five months old when I met them last September and now they are pushing 17 months. They learned to sit up, crawl, stand, walk and climb. They're starting to talk too. Julia calls me "mommy."

Today was Wednesday and I had four babies. Three were my regulars, the other was the new baby who still isn't sure he likes the daycare. (Actually, he doesn't like it at all.) Poor little guy... It will probably take him a couple of weeks to adjust. I was so hoping I would be left with my three little girls and no constantly crying baby, but we got through the day and he is a sweet little guy.

Today we read books, blew bubbles, and sang songs. I fed them breakfast, lunch, and snack, they took naps, and there was lots of floor sitting and snuggles. There was a bit of mischief and naughtiness, some crying and more than a few giggles, and of course lots of hugs, kisses and ear snuffling.

On Monday I stayed until Mom came to retrieve them. Today Danielle was there to relieve me at 3:30 pm, and offered to take a few pictures. I decided to give them a last hug and kiss and tell them goodbye which made me suddenly emotional. What will they think next Monday?