Touching Other People’s Babies…

On numerous occasions, I’ve told the girl next door to NOT bring her son over when he’s sick…at least not while Mason is so small. She did just that last week, assuring me he was no longer contagious. Yeah, right. That boy was sniffing and coughing up a storm. Now, both Max and Mason are sick so we’ve had a couple of almost-sleepless nights with the two little boys snorting and coughing. I’m sure they’ll be better by Christmas. Frank was hospitalized with pneumonia when he was four months old and I’ve been terrified when each of the children has been sick as babies ever since. And I probably, admittedly, go way overboard in protecting them from catching something. Once they’re about a year old and can cough effectively, I’m fine. But, until then, I’m a mama lion.

And that brings up a huge pet peeve of mine. Most people would never touch a baby if they were sick, but some people are ill and don’t yet know it. I would never, ever touch another person’s baby without first being invited to do so (and without first washing my hands). Strangers approach Mason in public all the time and touch him without asking. And, it seems they always touch his hands, which then immediately, of course, go into his mouth. So, I’ve had to teach all the children what to do if someone tries to touch Mason when they’re holding him. You watch their body language and, if it appears they’re moving in for the touch, you have to grab the part of Mason they’re about to touch. That sends a subtle signal to them – “please don’t touch.”

Last week, I told you we were planning to attend the Santaland Diaries at the Penobscot theatre. Unfortunately, we learned from an article in the paper that the play is for adults only. I wish the lady had told me that on the phone! So, we had to forego our holiday theatre trip this year. We’re certainly not leaving the children at home for something we all do together each year. So, we’re having a get-together here at the house on Friday instead. Each year, the friends invite their friends over for a huge gingerbread making event. This year, we’ll make a party out of it.

Matt and Aubri are home and Zach and Sarah are out of school so it now truly feels like the holiday are upon us. We’re serving dinner buffet-style each night now. Those formal dinners around the table at a set time each night are hard to do every night of the week when there are this many people, plus a baby to take care of, AND a business to run. Last night it was mini-hot ham sandwiches. Tonight it’ll be a huge crockpot of chicken noodle soup.

Aubri and I are making a grocery shopping trip today and she’ll be helping me keep everybody fed and happy throughout the holiday week next week.

Sarah has finished wrapping most of the presents (bless her heart) and the annual Christmas card photo of the children had to be doctored by our artist friend, Corey LaFlamme. We still don’t have snow so she Photoshopped the children onto an iceberg surrounded by penguins. It’s precious! She did a marvelous job and some of the people I’ve showed it to had to look twice, thinking it was real. Ha ha!! A huge thanks to Corey LaFlamme for giving us snow for the annual Christmas photo!!

We’d like to wish all of you a Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Happy Kwanzaa and happy holidays, no matter what you’re celebrating this time of the year. May you and your family and friends be filled with love, warmth and merriment!

This week’s Maxism:

Today, Max was reading a children’s science book on skeletons that we purchased for him awhile ago. He paused in his reading to say, “Mommy, when you die and go up to heaven, I want God to give me your skull. Cause I’m gonna play with it.”

Big holiday hugs!
Angie, Richard, Zach, Matt and Julie

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