"Whaaaaaahhh," Myra bellows from the far end of the house. "Whaaaah." All that red hair sprung up in curls, pink sweater and blue skirt, she bawls over a bowl of oatmeal.
Pulled from bed like velcro unsnapping, I pad down the hallway.
"Her ear hurts," Craig says.
"Oh," I say, "I think I gave the last of that purple medicine to Cerissa." I squint my eyes, raise my eyebrows. "Here let me see if I can find something."
"Whhah," she whimpers.
I rifle through the medicine stash, cypher active ingredients. "Here, let me cut this in half," I say. Serrated knife on tiny red pill, I split it in half. I pinch the crumbs between finger and thumb.
Jane, Jack, and Lu stare at Myra.
"Now open your mouth; this is tiny. I don't want to spill any," I say.
"Ok. Can I have some water?"
"Yeah." She opens. I dispense, just missing quivery red lip. "Here get her some water."
"I think maybe I should leave her," Craig says.
"Do what you have to," I say.
We stare at Myra, full bowl of oatmeal pristine and untouched, the clock nine minutes past when they should've left. She gulps the water, sits up straight.
"I'm all better now," she says. Eyes still red with tears, she blinks. Everyone blinks back at her.
"Oh," I say.
"Oh," Craig laughs. "Well," he pauses. She blink-blinks back at him. "Ok, go get in the car."
She bounds down the hall like a jackrabbit, skitters out the front door, just behind Jane, Jack, and Lu.
Everyone wants to volunteer with Craig. Miraculous recoveries ensue.
5573. I hire Jack to prepare the baby room, and he delivers.
5574. Craig moves the big pieces of furniture with him.
5575. Lucy and I sew pinwheels together. Jane joins us. I start some dresden plates.
5576. Mom and I visit over fabric shopping.
5577. We call in the New Year with cousins and siblings, pinochle and popcorn, laughter and mirth.
5578. We wheedle away days of rest. Down by the fire, audiobook unspooling, projects open and unfolding on every lap, vacation ensconces us.