"We've got a lot of dishes." I balance a stack of white soup bowls, spoons protruding. I wobble them into the sink around mugs and silverware.
"Why? Why have we got a lot of dishes?" Jack retrieves another bowl from the table, slides around my elbow, sets it down. "Why, Mom?"
"'Cause we do," I say. I blast split pea soup off the bowls one at a time, little boy a pendulum around my elbow.
"Why?" He sloshes two green glasses next to the bowl. Between a staccato of whys, I slide each bowl into dishwasher. "Why, Mom?"
"Because the Lord has blessed us," I say, "with a lot of children."
He pauses, butter dish in hand. "Yeah," he says, "and 'cause you and Daddy laid together in that special way quite a bit."
"Yep," I chuckle. He thumps another plastic cup onto the counter and skips out to gather the last of the silverware. So around dinner dishes, we frame in another important idea in the world.
3123. I set the timer for 5 minutes then let the children run WILD through the house. They jump off the hearth and ottomans, the kitchen bench. When I ask Jack how he liked it all he can do is HUG me.
3124. Craig points out the veins in his hand and Lucy chuckles, "Oh. Brains."
3125. Myra runs through the house with a sticky note stuck in her hair.
3126. Lucy gets Pop Rocks for her birthday and keeps calling them Pop Drops.
3127. Jack and Lucy help each other with their Spanish.
3128. I make the economy version of split pea soup, and Jack exclaims, "That smells TOO GOOD, Momma. YOU are a good cook."
3129. Jane's assessment, "I seem to get stung every year. I get stung more than anyone. I don't know, maybe it's because I'm not very aware."
3130. Jack confesses to turning the heat up to 83 degrees Fahrenheit.
3131. He tries to enlighten Myra, "Myra, what are farts?"
3132. Lucy examines the baby's ears, "Why do you think the baby has clean ears? Mine are dirty."
3133. She trots in from out back, "Mom, can I have a wet wipe to make sure all the poop is off my feet?"
3134. Then she watches Jack and Jane get paid for their jobs. "Sometimes I don't bring my wallet," she says, "because I don't have any money. One time I tried to make some paper money with white paper."
3135. Joe SMILES on purpose at me when I clap his hands together.
3136. Our friends invite us to see their newborn horse, not even a day old. Lucy and Myra enthusiastically pet their chihuahua/daschund and exclaim, "I petted a baby horse!"
3137. We have planting day at our house and get the first third of the vegetable garden planted.
3138. A dear neighbor gives us a bag of shoes for Myra.
3139. All the neighborhood kids ride bikes, make figure eights through the driveways, while the grown-ups talk and laugh and night falls.
3140. Uncle Dan helps Jack learn to ride his bike with no training wheels.
3141. Homemade chocolate sauce made with browned butter.
3142. More sleep at night.
3143. Less impatience all day.