Tuesday, May 01, 2007

When the Aunts Came to Stay

In a lovely house in Little Rock, Arkansas, there lived 4 children: Danielle, who was almost 8, Alexander, age 6, Zachariah, age 4, and "baby" Nate, the toddling two-year-old. They lived happily with their Daddy, Luke, and Mommy, Michele. Like any other children, they loved their parents very much, and enjoyed having everyone all together.

One fair April, however, their Mommy and Daddy decided to take a special trip - just the two of them - to celebrate their upcoming 9th wedding anniversary. Because the children were too young to be left alone, their parents had to find someone to stay with them. That is when the Aunts came to stay.

They drove up in the late afternoon sunshine of Saturday, April 21st. Quickly unloading themselves from the car, they greeted their enthusiastic niece and nephews, and a said a fond "hello" to their brother and sister-in-law. Soon, their attention was claimed by the children, who showed them each of their favorite toys or completed projects. The afternoon waned, and the promise of pizza soon lured everyone inside for supper. After a delicious meal topped with a superb, home-made mint chocolate ice cream cake, the presents were unloaded from the car, to the delight of the excited children. Each present from the Grandparents was duly exclaimed over, as everyone with a spring birthday celebrated together. As a final present, the children opened a big bundle from the Aunts and Uncle Elijah. Delighted squeals were heard as the children saw what it was: a big, blue tent! Even more exciting was the promise of a camp-out in the front yard sometime while the Aunts were around.

Soon the children were bundled off to bed, while the Aunts and their siblings talked far into the night. After all, they had a lot of news to catch up on! Eventually, they too bedded down, with the promise of a new day on the way.

Three Aunts had come to stay. Aunt Miriam, called Aunt Mimi, was the eldest. At age 27, she was the one left ultimately in charge, and was also one of the funnest Aunts to have around! She always had neat ideas up her sleeve, and never tired of doing cool experiments and playing games with her nephews and niece. Aunt Anna came next; at age 16, she was the assistant "Momma", who never tired of caring for the baby of the family, little Nate. Chief diaper-changer and cook, she also loved every moment spent with the sweet children. Aunt Jubilee, called Aunt Jubi, was the youngest. At age 12, she was closer in age to her niece than to her sisters! She was a fun playmate to all the children, always ready to play games or romp outside.

Sunday dawned bright and clear, and most of the house awoke somewhat early. When called, the children bounded down the stairs, eager to begin the day with their Daddy's yummy strawberry pancakes. The day went quickly, with Sunday school and church, followed by Mommy's delectable chicken dish, left simmering in the crock-pot. Not long after Sunday naps, it was off to church again for small groups.

Monday and Tuesday passed in turn, with the parents still at home. All the relatives enjoyed the time together, laughing, talking, playing games, visiting a museum on Arkansas history, and even seeing the "duck march" at the Peabody Hotel. The Aunts were given great instructions in the care and keep of the house and children, in preparation of the parent's upcoming trip. The children of course enjoyed all the added attention, with someone nearly always on hand to read a story or play with police and army men.

Wednesday arrived, and Mommy and Daddy soon set off, after hugs and kisses all around. Although sad when their parents left, the children didn't have long to reflect before they were hustled into coats and shoes, and hurried out to the van. Bewildered, they soon learned that they were to be a part of a special surprise from Daddy to Mommy. After it was all over, everyone once again bid farewell, and the Aunts and children head back home, as the parents drove off for a vacation in Branson.

The Aunts enjoyed caring for the children during the next four days. Though there were occasions of children missing parents, the Aunts tried their best to keep the children busy and having fun. Chores continued as normal, and the children still had their afternoon rest times, during which the two younger Aunts worked on school work. Usually the three also managed to squeeze in at least one game together before the little ones got up. Though some things were still routine, the days were also packed with special times and surprises.

Much time was spent outside, for the days were beautiful and the weather mild. Skipping rope, riding bikes, blowing bubbles and playing hide-and-seek filled many a happy hour. Almost every day, all took a walk together, often ending up at a nearby park to swing and slide. A special trip to Pinnacle Mountain was taken on Friday morning, where everyone enjoyed a pretty nature trail and large playground. The kites were even brought out, although it took constant running to keep them in the air. There just wasn't enough wind!

There was always plenty to do indoors with the rain drove them to seek shelter inside. Coloring, crafts, building with legos, and playing with toys kept little ones occupied; many books were also read time and again by willing Aunts with with young ones snuggled around. Yes, the days passed swiftly, with the Alabama Aunts enjoying all the extra time spent with their Arkansas niece and nephews.

Friday night was by far the most exciting, with Aunt Mimi and Aunt Jubi camping out in the big blue tent with Daniele, Alex and Zach. The evening was spent roasting marshmallows and making s'mores, then playing outside until the light began to fade. As soon as it got dark enough, the children received another fun surprise: glo sticks! They throughly enjoyed them, swing them round and around, and tracing glowing patterns in the dark sky. Everyone awoke with the birds the next morning and tromped indoors shivering. However, the children thoroughly enjoyed their first camping experience.

Saturday evening was tinged with excitement, for tonight Mommy and Daddy would get home! While Aunt Jubi and Danielle drew horses at the kitchen table, the three boys and other two Aunts scarcely left the window, keeping watch for the little red car that would signal the return of the beloved parents. Excited cries of "They're here!" rang through the air, and everyone rushed out for a joyous reunion. Aunts were fun, but there was nothing like once again having your parents home!

Sunday morning came, and with it the departure of the Aunts. Despite the children's pleas that they remain living with them, the Aunts had to get back to their Alabama home. After hugs and kisses, the Aunts clasped the sweet young ones in their arms and set off, leaving behind happy memories of when the Aunts came to stay.


Luke said...

I love this!! What a beautiful rendition of your trip. It made me cry! You all were so wonderful to have around and it was such comfort to my heart to know my children were being well taken care of. I can't wait to see you in June!
(the sister-in-law :) )

Ella said...

Anna, I love how you wrote that!!! You have a God-given talent! Anyway, it sounds like you had a great time!

Oh, it you could, please send me the recipe for the mint chocolate ice cream cake. I have been wanting something minty!

I look forward to hearing more in e-mails!

Elijah Lofgren said...


Sounds like you and the children had a great time. :)

See you on Sunday. :)

- Elijah

Anna Naomi said...

Glad you liked it, Michele! It was fun to write, although it took me a while to find time to do it. =) I now can more fully appreciate all the work you do - it took 3 of us Aunts to even attempt to replace you for a few days! I had a great time with the children. Thanks for letting us have the opportunity! I also can't wait to see you in June!

Ella, I decided to write from the third-person that time, since usually all I write is in first-person. It was a fun change.

I've emailed Michele about the recipe, and once I get it will email it to you. =)

Can't wait to see you Elijah!!!

Maria Pauline said...

I really like the writing style you chose! Third person was perfect.

Maria ;D

Anna S said...

Wow, that sounds like SO much fun! Wish I could be an aunt too! :P

Miriam Rebekah said...

I'm glad you had a good time, Anna!
Honestly, I'm glad my niece and nephew live so close. :) It must be hard with them so far away.

Looking forward to tonight!

Ednella said...

Aww, reading your post was delightful! I'm so glad you had a good time!


Hazel said...

Awww sounds like you had an amazing time. xx

Robert said...

I enjoyed the way you wrote about the trip.The special surprise was a nice idea.I can relate to your story as my niece and nephew will be visiting in ten days.

Perennial Pioneer said...

Great Naration! I have to admit, you are a much better writer then I am! I just dink around. I do write short stories, for children, but nothing like this!
It must be nice to have your relatives closeby. My sister who is expecting my first nephew or niece, is living 300 miles away from me.:( I don't think that is very fair, but of course I will see it ever Christmas, right? I would dearly love to babysit it, for a day! I have five little siblings who love to live with me, and I with them. Of course they cannot do without their parents!
Looking forward to being an aunty!
Perennial Pioneer


How fun! You write with such color. :) It must be so fun being an aunt!