…is never done, it seems.
After a full day of work (8.45 hours) I return home in time to kiss my wife goodbye… just as she leaves for her evening shift at “Das Kaffeehaus” leaving our three “cranky” children with me. The children are tired from a day of playing with the children of the Nash family and (as they have not eaten since Luncheon) they are also rather hungry.
Candace left a crock-pot meal going full-tilt, so Gaelynn and Israel tidy up the Living Room as I finish the preparations for Supper – before I do, however, baby Sophia is indicating to me that her most recent meal has run its course, and that she is ready for me to change her garments.
Having set out the children`s place-settings, I bid Gaelynn dish out the meal – while I attend to the youngest. I get Sophia cleaned up and give her a bottle while the older children finish eating and wash their plates in the kitchen sink.
The children head to their room to straighten things up and Sophia, with her tiny belly full of mother`s milk, falls asleep smiling. I lay her down in her bed for her early evening nap, and return to the Dining Room to eat my dinner standing up.
After eating, I sit at my desk to rattle off a few harried correspondences and read some letters I have received from far-away friends and relations.
During this time, the children finish their work in the bedroom and venture out – Gaelynn to the plush sofa in the Living Room with a book, and Israel following sprawling out on the rug with his little toy cars. Soon I hear a very wet burp coming from the direction of the bedroom…
Sophia spit up. Not a tremendous amount, but enough to require a cleanup and a change of clothes. To keep her spirits up, I sing to her throughout the process. Her tastes seems to run towards songs with either extended vocalizations (which cause her to regard the singer with a small crooked smile and wide eyes) or stilted delivery and alternating tones (which typically evoke either a giggly laugh or a scared wail).
Now it is cuddling time. I hold Sophia on the couch as Gaelynn reads to us. Sophia enjoys the story so much, she makes a gigantic bowel movement – requiring another comprehensive clean-up, with Gaelynn offering assistance in the form of moral support and an extra hand. After cleaning up the “lion`s share” of the mess, I leave the rest of it to Gaelynn to finish whilst I tidy up the remnant of the Dinner mess. Time permitting, I will try to get the dishes washed this evening.
`Tis starting to get dark outside, so we all go out and sit on the porch for a little while… we watch the Sunset fade into deeper and deeper shades of blue before softening into darker purples. Increasing cloud cover tells me that we may get rain overnight.
Gaelynn thinks she sees a firefly, so she and Israel give chase. They prowl the grounds for a little while before giving up. `Tis getting late, and I see their encroaching weariness tug at the edges of their eyelashes.
We adjourn indoors for a light snack of milk and cookies.
Pajamas. Teeth brushed. Last-minute toiletries. Hugs and kisses. Prayers and wishes of “sweet dreams” beckon my children into their night`s rest. They sleep. They dream.
I remain, now alone, in the calm quiet of an ordered home. The only thing that remains, is for my beloved to return.
Home. To my side. Where she belongs.