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The Best Present

No competition for who won the best birthday present award here.. We all know…

I like to prep my kiddos for the weekend activities on Fridays. Like most kids they always want to know what comes next in our busy schedules. Prepping the kids on Fridays gives me an opportunity to head off the persistent and overwhelming task of shielding countless questions about what we have planned for our weekends. This was an especially busy weekend however...

My oldest child –also known as the cruise director - is notoriously known for helping me put a plan of activities in place, if in fact I have been slacking in my Motherly duties of weekend planning. Now, to be honest – I love not having plans or a scheduled weekend… I think it is actually good for kids to be bored every now and then. With a world that fills up its weekends with STUFF and steals away every quiet moment. My husband and I fight furiously to not be sucked into that void of overscheduled and stressed out.  I fear with four children – it may be an uphill battle…

Anyways, it is Friday. I have picked up the last of my munchkins from school and we are heading homeward. Before the onslaught of questions begin, I start with a rundown of the weekend.  We have the grandparents coming to babysit, we have tutoring and basketball, cookie baking, play dates,  pot luck dinner at the church with tree lighting and carol singing, Sunday school and of course a trip to Weymouth to celebrate my Dad’s birthday – The kids “Popis” as he is known.

I’m not so sure the “prepping” saves my sanity… My kiddos are brutal seekers of information. Apparently I am their top resource... Better than “Google” – I am told…

The chatter begins… the questions arise.

Faith’s eyes immediately fill up and ask why we need Nana and Papa to babysit? Where are Daddy and I going? Can she come too?

Liam wants to know what type of cookies are we baking. Can he request chocolate chip? And how many can he “test”?

Lily – thank the good Lord- (sorry Lil) is at a friend’s house at the time... Therefore I have a few more hours to prepare for her interrogation.

And then there is Colin.  My seven year old. He is looking quietly out the window of the mini-van. He sits way in the back row behind the littles. His face is peaceful and his gorgeous eyes are big and round as he turns to face the front of the van. His eyes meet mine in the rearview mirror.  His facial expression is this one of gratitude. Reverie maybe??

At times, his rambunctious and curious little self surprises me – with his selfless and soulful thoughtfulness – this time was no different.

Colin speaks… for some reason the van fell quiet. He gently says in one full breath, “Hey, Mom. My birthday is soon. I am a December birthday like Pop. Pop and I are a lot alike. Remember how Pop was the only one to calm me down when I cried a lot as a baby? Hey my birthday is in the middle of Nu (also known as my Mom) and Popis's birthdays!! I like Nu and Popis.  Bet I was Pop’s favorite birthday present.”

All other plans fall off the planet. Nothing else matters at that moment as we drive home. The younger two (the littles) look up to the front of the van... sweetly smiling and nodding in agreement with their big brother. No competition for who won the best birthday present award here... We all know…

Yep, Colin-man. You most certainly were…..

Love you.

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