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Finn McCarthy (43 years), Nicole McCarthy (43 years), Zilla McCarthy (10 years), Elias McCarthy (10 years), Julius McCarthy (10 years), Lily-Mae McCarthy (4 years)
narrated by: Nicole
Zoe-Gen is doing really well, it’s become known for more than just bridal-wear, but also the place to find that coveted black dress. I still prefer to spend my time with the newly engaged, and those that are hopeless romantics. One of Oliver’s dorm mates is hoping that her boyfriend, Isaiah will propose soon, and comes in to see what new dresses we have each season.
Oliver doesn’t think there’s a chance of that too soon, but I think it’s just because he can’t imagine settling down while still in college.
I miss that first love feeling, things were rough for a few years with Finn, but I’m hopeful they are on the mend now. Things are comfortable between us, and we have a good routine going with the kids. I think if we didn’t have such a large family, at some point we would have gotten out of that exhausted-parenting mode. As it is, we have been parenting for twenty-six years straight, with many more years to come.
The kids are always around, even little good-bye kisses in the morning get a response from Elias. Sometimes Zilla will be nice to Lily, but they aren’t close like Emma and Grace ever were. I’m sure it’s the large gap in their ages, they just don’t have as much in common.
Zilla is a bit of a handful, she doesn’t always play nice, and doesn’t have any friends at school. We’ve tried speaking with her, and working with her teachers, but no progress has been made.
She’s friends with her brothers, but even they are intimidated by her. She has a mean throw, and even though she’s a lean girl, she’s quite the little toughie.
I forget sometimes that she’s still a little girl, and can sometimes be loving, even though in secret. I caught her snuggling with Lily’s teddy bear that I had made her. I think I’ll make Zilla one, but leave it on her bed so she doesn’t get uncomfortable trying to graciously accept a “baby” gift.
Ever since Emma had Chaz, and Chris was the one to tell us about it, I’ve been feeling regret. Having Grace at seventeen, then Emma at eighteen, I just wasn’t prepared for being a Mom, and didn’t do the best I could have done. It seems from the beginning, me and Finn got in a rut. I’ve been wanting to reconcile a relationship with her, but it’s not going well.
Lily and I visit Oliver a few times a month, I stop by with some coffee and usually stay for a visit.
Lily is enamored by him, and I’m positive he will make a wonderful grade school teacher in a few years. Him and Grace are both forgiving of us and our flaws, which is such a blessing, more than they probably know.
I wish that some of it would rub off on Emma. While I’m in South Port, I always try to come by and visit her, and see their apartment, but she’s never available. She won’t answer my phone calls, instead Chris does, and gives me some weak excuse about her being gone or about ready to leave. I’m trying, but not sure when something is a lost cause.
I’m grateful for Oliver, and that he humors my visits with a good nature. He seems to genuinely enjoy visiting with Lily, and filling me in on what he has been up to lately.
The weather has been chilly than warm, that both myself and Finn got persistent colds. It’s not easy pushing myself to stay awake til two in the morning sewing custom bridal gowns when my eyes are on fire.
Or when all my crops in the garden are ready to be harvested. If I don’t do it, they’ll rot, and come winter we will be in sore need of these tomatoes for soups and stews.
Finn took a day off of work to try and recover, and spent the entire time doing yard work. Neither of us know when to stop, there is just too much that needs to be done, and no one that will take over if we don’t do it.
When Mandy came over and began making homemade orange juice for us, we were beyond grateful. We aren’t always the most appreciative, but I’m trying to change that.
She came a few days in a row, and helped with the kids, which is always the biggest project that needs attention. She made sure they did their homework, and made dinner.
The kids really adore their Grandma, and she does a great job at making herself available for them. I’d really like Finn to make amends with his father, I don’t like the rifts we have with George and Emma.
It’s not happening anytime soon though, he says that I don’t understand how controlling his father is, and how father always thinks he is right. Honestly, the apple didn’t fall far from the tree, but he doesn’t see that.
While mending relationships is something I’d like to accomplish, I also don’t have loads of free time to devote to it, or spend nagging Finn to work on. I joined the PTA to be more involved with the kids’ schooling, this is the last year for the big kids at the Grammar school, they’re all in fifth grade now. But Lily is just starting her grade school time, and I’d like to have more involvement with it.
I really think we could become close friends, something I don’t have at all. I never realized until I heard from Grace how she hangs out with Rebecca at the local park. I never had that. Finn doesn’t have guy friends ether, he’s not even friends with his sister’s husband, Jude, which seems like that should be an obvious friendship.
We’ve invested all our time into raising our family, providing a roof over their heads, pinching pennies with having a garden, that our own personal lives don’t even exist.
It doesn’t seem like we are about to have any more sudden time, Lily is still quite young. She may be in school, but she’s always in need of urging. She would spend her entire morning in her pajamas, snuggling with her teddy bear, and not even eat breakfast before school.
Then you add Finn’s career. He’s been doing Botany research for Eastborough for several years now, and he was hopeful to move up in his career very soon, and leave the university research behind. All his research was coming to a close, and they were to begin presenting it to the board after the holidays. It all fell through, in the final moment, an undergraduate saw that Finn had overlooked a very common, well-known scientific link, and thus, all the research, for all these years was found not credible. The board moved to have Finn fired, and it was done without so much of a notice.
Now we are struggling to find what he should do for a career. We briefly talked of having him work with me at Zoe-Gen, but I’d feel awful to lay off Marta. Besides, what I pay her is nothing compared to Finn’s old income, it wouldn’t really be enough in the end. He can no longer go for his dream of being an Ecological Consultant. He had this notion that consulting would be his perfect career as his age advanced, and now all of these plans are gone. He doesn’t think he can even be in this field anymore, no one would hire him for research, he’s lost all credibility.
We keep talking, and talking, but no great ideas or doors have opened. I have no idea what we are going to do, and Christmas is just around the corner.
Notes: Nicole’s want panel is full of family wants. Be friends with Emma, Call Emma, Cuddle with Ainsley (they were sick so didn’t get to), and other good Mom wants. Finn even rolled a want for Ainsley. Chaz was no where in their wants panel though, which was sad to me.
I was pre-occupied and just randomly selected an answer for Finn’s pop up, thinking it was a hobby one. Nope, it was a career one, and he got fired. His LTW is to be the top of the Natural Scientist Career, but his chance card says he’s lost all credibility. So it’s not going to happen.
Zoe-Gen makes $4,000 a day roughly, which is good money, I think they will be okay for a little while. Not sure what to do for Finn’s career though, I wasn’t planning on him getting fired, I was trying to get him promoted. He finally rolled the darn want to gain that last skill point to move up a level.
Nicole’s “other” career is Laura’s parenting one I believe, it’s PTA job level anyhow. And she brought home Leah, and they are becoming fast friends, which is a first for Nicole.
Zilla has 0 nice, and 0 playful points. Her only friends is her own family, no wonder on the why.
This was the last update for this round!
Thanks for reading!