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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

April 30, 2014

Last day of April, a brisk 42 degrees out on BackPorch, and drizzling—not exactly a high-energy, pull-on-your-boots-and-get-the-garden-rake kind of day. More like a stay-in-and-read, or clean-a-junk-drawer kind. On a more positive note though, I noticed, on the way home from work, that yellow is a common color for spring flowers, have you ever thought about that? Daffodils and forsythia, monkey-faced pansies, and tulips—in varying colors, but the yellow ones really seem to pop. The daffies remind me of little kindergarten art-class suns atop green stems this morning… bright, cheerful and astoundingly yellow!
Here, where we live, things are slower to progress at this higher elevation. So a mere ten miles away in neighboring towns, the pinks and fuchsias, purples and whites of flowering trees are already showing. We’re still in the yellow phase, but hey… I’ll take all the sunshine I can get right about now, real or the suns-on-green-stems kind.
At MouseHouse, things have been buzzing—well, maybe squeaking is more apt—with the infant twins, the older triplets, a boarder and a husband to look after, you can bet Fivelina has her hands full.
Tatiana and Trieste are growing nicely, their fine baby-fur has come in, their eyes are fully open, their ears seem to be the biggest part of them at present, and adorableness increases daily. Sir Fivel is totally smitten with his two little princesses, and bounces them on his knees nightly. He’s already begun telling them bedtime stories, and because Bic, Ben and Bitsy remember those stories from their own baby days, they too sit on the floor, near the rocking chair, listening raptly.
Fivelina is adamant about chores being done before story-time though, and as usual, the boys are a bit of a challenge in the cooperation vein, but overall, they are good helpers albeit with an occasional reminder. Any hesitation or complaint and Mama has only to say softly, “Papa…?” When Papa sees the situation, there is again, just that quiet, pointed look. For the most part, that’s all it takes.
Bitsy, still worried for her Mama’s well-being, is still apt to take on too much, exhausting her wee self, and has to be reminded that it’s time to rest now, or time to sit and learn some new needlework stitches. So, when story time begins, she and Mama sit side-by-side on the sofa, working on their latest projects, and listen to Papa’s age-old story telling. Somehow with his intonations and sound effects, the stories never grow boring, and there is laughter, gasps of anticipation and claps of glee. The babies watch and listen too, clapping their little hands and gurgling happily, chortling right along with brothers and sister.
Speaking of yellow flowers… Bic and Ben brought home a whole basket of dandelions for Mama, just yesterday. Now, mind you, they don’t stay bright and sunshiny for long once picked, but after all, it’s the thought that counts. Fivelina will dry the petals and use some of them for tea, the fresher ones, for garnishing stews and rice.
Olaf has a lady-friend now, so he is rarely home in the evenings, slipping in late, after everyone else has turned in for the night, to grab a little sleep before rising early again for work. He is courteous and considerate though, careful to be extra quiet as he lets himself in and settles in his bunk, but Fivel suspects that he is thinking of settling down in his own place soon. Of course the family can use the space, not that they haven’t enjoyed his stay, and appreciated his help with the new addition and all, but you know how it is—a growing family needs a lot of room!
Bret and Betina are doing well in their little nest, both of them working hard each day, Bret at the furniture shop and Betina at the schoolhouse, helping Miss Winklesnout with the children. She has progressed from merely being a helper to having her own small group of first-graders—little ones just getting used to the school routine. She’s had her share of childhood drama what with skinned knees or noses, belly-aches and missing-momma tears, but Miss Winklesnout is always kindly there as back-up when Betina doesn’t know what to do. It’s good preparation for Betina’s own family-to-be one day, Miss Winklesnout decides, and so far, all seems to be working out well.
Ah well… back in here at Hare Hollow, and the sound of rain pattering on the roof. It’s time for another cuppa, and let’s see, maybe some yellow flowers to arrange?

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