Thanksgiving is done, and December is around the corner. In “normal” years, I’d be thinking Christmas. Gifts, cards, food, decorating, tree, travel…all the trimmings. This year I’m thinking baby. Little Jack is just a few weeks out, and I’m ramping up to get work projects done and make sure the home fires stay burning while I’m on baby duty. Not that I mind. It’s a treat to look forward to, and whether I’m caring for little Riley, precocious two-year-old, or snuggling newborn Jack, I’m excited to experience the miracle of life again, courtesy of Stephanie.
Riley was five weeks early. Jack may stay tucked until his due date, mid-January. But if he’s an early bird too, Christmas could bring a little extra excitement this year. Of course healthy is the goal, and no one is rushing him. But the clock is definitely ticking. Good thing Seattle is only a short flight away!
Being with Riley this last week reminded me again that children are vessels of wonder. They’re work, and expense, and a never-ending draw on energy. But beyond the effort, there’s effortless charm. She turns it on, and I’m hooked…this little girl melts my heart, and she isn’t even trying.
I thought I was having a great time with one little one. Now, for a few brief months, I’ll have the best of both worlds when we visit: a cuddly baby, and a busy little girl who is a sponge, picking up language and making it her own. She’s a funny little commenter on her world, and you never quite know how she’s going to interpret the moment.
This year, I’m streamlining tradition. There’ll be other years for decking the halls, and rolling out the red carpet. This year, I’m just packing a bag and getting prepared. When babies come, you go. Thankfully there are many helping hands, so I’ll wait here until I get the call. Then, whatever the date, my Christmas present will be here, right on time…Jack time.