"Mom," Jack calls from the kitchen table, "me and Jane are just waiting for ya to teach us."
I snap the faucet off, shift a jug-of-a-water-glass, slurp the last of my coffee, and join children and salt maps at the big black table.
Myra humps up armloads of clean laundry next to the couch. She crankles jeans into trapezoid approximations of folded laundry. "I'm a big help, Mommy," she announces from behind my left shoulder.
Salt maps and laundry orbit the afternoon. I quaff down the whole flasket of water. The children emblazon their maps in paint. Myra wads laundry into quadrilaterals that defy mathematics.
The day weaves itself, and we hold on, each moment another strand.
After prayers I pause, Jane's arms linked around my waist, face upturned. There in the hall light the night unravels. Like the seam at the top of a flour sack tugged loose, we smile and peer into each other eyes.
"Your face looks pretty," she finally says, "especially in this light." And we breathe it in. The rest of the night just breathes right in. We memorize it, the perfect, effortless, long, long sigh. A good night.
4038. "Is it break time?" Jack wants to know mid Monday morning. "I should go into battle," he says.
4039. "Would you rather be a rock or a gun?" Jack banters at dinner. "I would rather be a huge, enormous rock poking into the ground of heaven," Lucy says.
4040. "I'm just gonna squeak by there," Craig negotiates a game of Uno sprawled across the living room rug. "Daddy can probably squeak louder than all of us," Lucy responds.
4041. I live through another migraine.
4042. The kids take an afternoon sledding at Cerissa's. Everyone comes home blissed and rosy cheeked.
4043. Craig and I take and afternoon on the farm.
4044. Jack invents a new game. "How 'bout everyone has to tell me all their Gobblet tricks," he says. "Nooooo," Jane groans. "This game is just going more northward every minute," she splutters.
4045. We set up school around the big blue jar full of seashells and beach drift.
4046. A gray skirt.
4047. A pink ruffle scarf.
4048. "My checklist says: SNUGGLE WITH YOU," Lucy nuzzles my arm.
4049. Jane edges bedtime later and later until I finally say, "I love to talk with you, but this time belongs to Daddy." She pauses, nods. "I don't want to steal from him. I'll go to bed." And off she goes.
4050. "What do you think it was like when they threw Daniel in the Lion's den?" Lucy wants to know.
4051. "Mom, Mom, my weg feel better today!" Myra exclaims. "My weg feel better today." I grin into her eyes and pause for words. "You're welcome," she blinks, "Dat's fun."
4052. White dishes. Glorious white dishes. Don't you just love white dishes?
4053. We eat pizza on the farm and sled the afternoon away, the sky sharpest blue.
4054. "The microwave looks clean," Jane comments, "or something looks different -- and better."
4055. "Don't stare, Lucy," Jack offers, "That means you're tired."
4056. "I've never seen you lose this many times and not cry," Jane cheers Lucy in the middle of Crazy 8s.
4057. "Who told you what rebuke means," Craig asks Jane. "Momma told us this morning," she says, "I already knew, but I pretended like I didn't so she would have the fun of telling us."
4058. The children devise to get up at six this week so they can start school earlier.
4059. A dear friend and gifted interpreter offers to mentor the children in sining -- jubilee.
4060. We re-acclimate to life with a dishwasher. I run it twice in one day.
4061. The Lord reminds me again the power of His word. I meditate on His scriptures, repeat them again and again, and again, the words a whirling hatchet.
4062. Lucy tells me her nightmares, and we pray for Jesus's protection.