Three little girls are sitting on my sofa. They are lounging deep on the soft cushions, each in a pose for maximum comfort. The sisters anchor the cousin, a grown up girl of NINE!!!! The six year old watches every movement as if taking mental notes, trying to emulate her actions. The four year old is just happy so have someone else to play with, unaware of the half answers from the older girls who sometimes get deep in their own world.
This is one of the rare opportunities that make me appreciate my status as an "at-home" mom. My cousin called me this morning and asked if I wouldn't mind watching her daughter, a snow day leaving her stranded for care for the 4th grader. "Sure," was my gravelly-voice reply, my countenance not fully awake after just one latte. My house, now dubbed "Funny Farm II" will be filled to capacity with my girls, my little cousin, and my son. Thank you God that my husband made a snack run last night!
I assumed my position as the lunch-maker and fade-into-the-woodwork observer. The girls had a language all their own. The day lay before them like a blank page. Tori needed to get her bearings of what to expect with a full day with her cousins. My baby girl had just fallen asleep for a morning nap, the six-year-old was also watching the movement to determine what they would do for the day. My son was cocooned beneath a mound of blankets and only made slightly noticeable noise when I asked him if he was hungry.
After the baggage that all little girls carry with them for a day out was put away, I made sure everyone was settled, turned the TV to PBS Kids, and quietly left the room to leave them to navigate their relationship. I could hear their laughter and the click click of computer keys as they ventured to the Build-A-Bear Workshop site. They appropriately, and in unison, uttered the "ewwwwwww" when the cartoon did some gross boy move like green glob oozing out of noses or something equally disgusting to girls. I smiled, this was a perfect snow day, sans snow, just freezing rain that rendered the roads impassable.
The day started quietly until the teenage son woke up and realized he had fresh meat in the house. Almost instantly with his descent downstairs,the squeals and running commenced at lightening speed. There was a blur of purple, blue, and orange as the kids raced by me through the kitchen and up the stairs like a herd of elephants. A house full of kids on a snow day!
They are settled down now, semi-cuddling up on the sofa, again nestled under a warm blanket, thawing out from a few minutes on the icy balcony. They made a game of trying to form snowballs and throw them down on my son who emerged from the house to see if there was any other teenage life on this Friday afternoon with no school. He was the lone being on the street so after a few good pelts from the girls, he decided to come in...except they locked him out! He screamed and begged and promised not to chase them if they would only open the door. In desperation he finally called home and asked mom to intervene. I implored the girls to open the door which they obediently did after coming back inside from the balcony. They did take their time descending the stairs and rounding the corner to the back door. I could hear them squealing and laughing at the shivering and shaking teen. They let him in and took off like an Olympic runner out-of-the-starting block. They ran up the stairs and slammed the bedroom door, jumping in my bed and to safety. Moments later, my son came through the other door charging them with chilling him to the bone. Everyone was laughing and tussling. It was a fun moment.
Three little girls, nuzzled up on the sofa after a full day of play. Snow days are cool, especially when cousins are around for an unexpected play day, and when mom can stay home. Pretty nice.