I was thumbing through recipes for gingerbread cookies, pumping milk, cooking sweet potato mash for the baby, and thinking of a dozen other tasks that needed doing, when out on the lawn there arose such a clatter, I dropped my widget on the table, tore open the shutters and threw up the sash. The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow…
Oh, screw it. My new ward was fighting with the goblin twins.
There was no moon. Only blood on the mangled snow along with hats, gloves and boots flung off by three tussling boys.
I sucked in a deep breath to yell at them, and the milk bottles harnessed to my chest by the pumping machine clanged together. I wasn’t dressed for outside eyes. My nursing blouse barely covered me.
I leaned my forehead against the cool window. My head hurt. My boobs hurt. I hadn’t showered in days. Christmas seemed more like work-work-work, than ho-ho-ho this year.
I knew I had only myself to blame, but that didn’t make things easier. I wanted everything to be perfect. Baby’s first Christmas only came once. At six months old, Holly wouldn’t remember it, but I would.
I threw a sweatshirt over myself, harness and all, then flung open the back door.
“Raven! Go get ready for school!” I yelled in my best mom voice. Three startled faces looked up. They were red from the cold. Tums’s nose was bleeding. “Tums, Tad, get cleaned up and find your sister. She’ll expect a good reason for fighting. Again!”
I slammed the door making sleigh bells on the wreath jingle and the bottles hanging from my chest jangle. Oh, what fun it is.