Then, while Everett was actually being baptized, David pointed and yelled, "hahaha! yook! day put water on his head and make his hair all WET! Das so funny! hahaha!"
Everett slept the entire time until the water washed over his little noggin...then just looked up and grinned.
That. Those moments. The running, the sweet interruptions, the spontaneous grins when everyone, including me, would expect a wince or whine...perfect displays of what I adore about these precious babies. They surprise in the most delightful ways and make me shrug my shoulders and just let life happen when I need to lighten up the most...once more - I'm not sure who's being raised and reared here...but whatever is happening, it's wonderful and it's being done with the purest of hearts and greatest of loves.
We traveled East to St. Francisville and Zachary on Monday. We were able to tag along on Brent's rounds so that we could visit family and a few very good friends in that area for a night. Though we'd had a busy weekend, the trip was well worth it.
My oldest friend (next to Nanny Pan), McCall, (you can "meet" her anytime on her wonderful blog: http://leemeandthegirls.blogspot.com/ and hear stories of her Africa travels and amazing mission work - yeah - she's kind of a big deal) was going to be in town having a little soiree at her cousin's house. I couldn't let her be within spitting distance and not make the trip...and honestly, it didn't take much arm twisting as the excuse to drop in on my Uncle Charles and Aunt Millie and Amanda's mom Ms. Debbie just iced the already delectable cake.
Driving through the town of St. Francisville is the emotional equivalent of having a glass of wine for me. The hills roll gently under wheel. The mossy oak branches creep over head - carved by traffic and wind so that they shape gracefully and perfectly over the cars whizzing by...or crawling...the speed limit matches the pace of life there...
I love it - but was a little nervous about the reaction of the kids. We've had tons going on - including illness - and it's thrown our routine for a loop lately. So I knew I was pushing it by doing this - but again, sometimes I just have to let go and gamble - and this was one situation I knew I had that luxury.
We arrived at Uncle Charles and Aunt Millie's house just after noon. Miss Lucy - their boarder collie - came to meet us and Mary Louise and David immediately fell in love. They threw Lucy's ball countless times, ran around outside and in, played with Aunt Millie's crochet string and spools - made telescopes and pretended to go fishing, cleaned out the bird bath...with the hose and explored Uncle Charles' workshop.
Oh - and that workshop? It looks like a big red barn...which led Mary Louise to ask, "Where da horses for dat barn?" (seems like an obvious question right?) The horses for this particular barn...are...a little different than those she's used to, however:
They come in the 1967 GTO form...and Uncle Charles insisted I drive him to the store...I declined about 12 times before sheepishly saying, "uh. ok."
Life changing. Driving that car was life changing.
Now, I think Aunt Millie said it best when I remarked, "I've never seen David so relaxed, so entertained, so...happy" - he rarely, if ever takes to a person the way he did with Uncle Charles. Aunt Millie replied coyly, "Well Heather, you know your dear uncle never really grew up - and kids like to follow other kids - no matter the packaging."
If ever there was an adult who could literally keep up step for step with my big kids, it's Uncle Charles. He was one step ahead of them at all times - they never had even an instant to get bored as he moved on to his next idea before they'd even settled into doing the first thing. We spent 4 hours there and the only times David got upset were:1. when I pulled out of the drive way to take Uncle Charles to the store, and 2. when we left. This, my friends, is unheard of.
So, about that trip to the store...
Uncle Charles wanted me to get the "full effect" of his beloved car. So, he told me to go faster (of course)...and I did. But, driving 80mph through little St. Francisville is not really the best idea, ever. So I wasn't all that surprised when we pulled into the parking lot and I saw a police officer walking up to the car. I was, however, taken aback when my sweet uncle quickly jumped out, meeting the officer half way, yelling, "now don't you come over bothering me!"
The officer's reply? "I was going to come an bother her for her poor taste in men...but then again, she obviously has good taste in cars so I suppose I'll let it slide."
He was the son of a high school classmate of Uncle Charles. Welcome to St. Francisville. And thank you for the hot rod experience.
When we got back, Brent drove the kids just down the road and back:
and Everett? Yeah - he did just fine:
A mother never looses her touch:
We left and drove the 20 minutes to Zachary to settle the kids in with Brent at a hotel before Everett and I left to meet McCall and friends for their Noonday party. (If you've never looked at Noonday products, they are quite amazing - fair trade, great stories, and the quality and craftsman ship is top notch: http://www.mccallaldridge.noondaycollection.com/).
Part 2 to come!