narrated by: Eva
I’d had my concerns on having another baby this late in life, but Gideon has been wonderful with Dahlia, and it hasn’t been as hard on me to go back to a newborn schedule as I feared. I’m on maternity leave now, and there’s something magical about rocking a newborn with a snowstorm raging outside.
Sometimes the late night feedings take their toll on me, and Linnea winds up finding me sleeping in the nursery after she gets home from school.
I had feared how Linnea would handle having a new baby in the family, and while she isn’t as bad as I had imagined, she’s still having a difficult time adjusting. She accuses me of ignoring her in favor of spoiling Dahlia. She got in a few fights in grade school, and the adjustment to the high school has not been an easy one for her. She doesn’t have any friends, and all of my advice is apparently way off base, because I haven’t been in high school in nearly thirty years.
I invited Paloma over to talk with her, under the guise of dinner. Whenever her sister visits, Linnea instantly perks up. She keeps begging to spend the summer with her after school lets out, but Gideon and I haven’t made any firm decisions on that yet.
It warms my heart to have all my girls around the table, and it makes me look to the future with anticipation when Dahlia is able to sit with us and contribute to the conversation. I’m hoping that Linnea will take her under her wing when she’s a bit older, just as Paloma has done to her.
Paloma is all over Dahlia whenever she has the chance. She likes to joke that I’m too old to be having babies, and it’s lucky for me that she hasn’t settled down yet and started her own family. She is tickled by the idea of having a baby that’s older than it’s Aunt Dahlia. I just laugh along with her, knowing that she’s still hurt from her break up with Oliver.
I tell her that twenty-two is too young to be having babies, and she goes along with it. I’m certain that she’d be dragging Oliver down the aisle already if he’d stuck around. I look forward to the day that she has a new love interest, and I can show her how it’s all worked out for the best.
In the meantime, nothing wards off baby fever like some spit up on the face. I learned from when Paloma was a baby, that you don’t hold them over your head unless you want to tempt fate.
It was nice spending time with Paloma, and not being guilted for holding the baby at the same time. Gideon and I were off to bed, and I sent her off to talk with her sister, do some bonding hopefully.
I fell asleep with my oldest girls giggling downstairs, and I felt very content. Paloma told me later that they stayed up until three in the morning talking, and had a good time. She tried to give Linnea some tips on making amends with the people she fought with, and making friends with some of the other kids.
Paloma had to be back in the city for the morning shift at Planet Java, so it was back to just us again. The talk seemed to work, Linnea spent some time playing with Dahlia and without anyone asking her.
My boss, Mary from Mini Sprout came by to bring a meal, and say congratulations. She lives just a few houses down the road, and didn’t think to call first. She rambled on about herself, and how the store needs me back as soon as possible. She had the nerve to ask if I’d skip my six week maternity, and come back after only four weeks. I declined, and whenever I started discussing Dahlia, she would interrupt and share her own stories of raising three boys.
Gideon couldn’t wait for her to leave, and didn’t mind telling me that he found her unflavorable. I tried to stick up for her and say she was just rough on the edges, but she really is rather awful. Gideon thinks she’s jealous of all my daughters, when all she’s had is sons. He may be on to something, there’s gossip in the hood, that if the Millett girl’s baby had been a girl, she would have accepted it as her grandchild.
Gideon made a joke that I should quit, but the thought stuck to me all through the night. I brought it up for serious discussion, the possibility of me not working, just for a short period of time. I never got to stay home with the girls, with Nicholas passing away so suddenly, there was no doubt that me and my Mom would have to work to put a roof over our heads.
Gideon was surprisingly very supportive of my decision, and I wasted no time phoning Mary to let her know I wouldn’t be returning.
I joked to Gideon that we may need to find a new place to buy Dahlia’s clothes and supplies, because Mary was fuming on the phone. I know he’ll go there anyway though, he really likes spoiling her.
Without the dread of returning to work, and finding a nanny, I was able to focus on other things around the house. It shouldn’t have come as such a surprise that Pirate was getting older, but it did. I noticed that when I called, he’d just lay on the concrete instead of coming. Then I realized that he wasn’t using his petbed that was upstairs.
Pirate has been around longer than Linnea, and she’s always been close to him, but after my Mom passed away they really bonded together.
Gideon suggested that we head off the grief by getting a second dog now, he said it works better than trying to get a new one after Pirate passes. His logic made sense, and Linnea could learn to love the new puppy now before she’s had another loss.
We tried the pet store out here in Millwood, and they only had a geriatric dog. I don’t know why they would even attempt to sell one here, a no-kill shelter would be a better place for an elder dog.
Linnea got distracted by the fish, and made me chuckle at her faces. Sometimes she reminds me that she’s still my little girl.
There was no reward for our efforts, but Linnea wasn’t deterred, that is after I told her no on the aquarium ten times. She started looking online at local pet ads. For a short period she wanted an adult dog that had already been housetrained, but when she saw this little Golden Retriever-Chocolate Labrador mixed puppy.
We went to get the new puppy, leaving Gideon and Dahlia at home to bond. I laid down the law that she would have to be the one to potty train the puppy when she was home, and she seemed eager for the responsibility. As soon as we got him home, she promptly named him Captain, sticking with the sea-faring names that my Mom had used with Pirate, and our childhood dog Hook.
Pirate even warmed right up to the little fella, which according to Gideon, he’ll be a good trainer to Captain, and teach him how to act around other dogs and people.
Linnea complains that house training will be easier in the spring when it’s not freezing out, but that’s been her only complaint.
I feel that I’ve done all I can for Linnea in regards to preparing her for the loss of Pirate, and I’m grateful that Gideon joked I should quit my job. I know I wouldn’t be up to having a newborn and a puppy and going back to work in a few weeks. Especially with Gideon’s recent promotion, now he is Project Leader at the Eastborough Science Facility, and while the work hours are over at 5:00 technically, he invests late nights to get all the work done.
His team only consists of one guy, who is a senior at the university, and only mildly interested in hiring on in the summer. He feels like the kid doesn’t listen or even comprehend what he is saying half of the time.
Which is why he was especially put out when the kids’ ideas for genetic changes in the plants was successful, and his was not.
He was staying late for a bit just to figure out how the kids’ had been successful and his had failed so miserably. He joked that he wanted to claim the kids’ work as his own, but I know he wouldn’t do that. Plus I reminded him as Project Leader, it all goes to his glory anyway.
There’s no doubt that I miss him when he stays late, and on those nights, I don’t mind when Dahlia wakes up. He tends to get up with both of us just so he can spend time with ‘his girls’, as he likes to say.
The only pang in my heart these days is that my Mom isn’t here to see Dahlia, our new home, and the girls, so grown. She invested her life into us, and I feel like she missed the best years.
Notes: I *love* their house! Carla decorated it for Eva and her family after a N99 request. It’s one of my favorite houses to play ever. First, Eva had the ROS to quit job, and find a new one that fit her personality. Problem with that ROS is that she was already in the job that fit her, retail. So she’s going to be a stay at home Mom for a bit, and then go back into the work field after Dahlia has gotten a bit older. Mary is Isaac and Isaiah’s Mom, and she was down right witchy to Eva, I don’t think she will miss working for her.
Linnea had no friends before the new hood, and she definitely has none now with hardly anyone knowing anybody! She was low in her aspiration the entire update, but the puppy, Captain really got her in higher spirits. I personally have puppy-fever like crazy, so it was fun for me to play with a puppy in the game again. Plus I will need to kill off Pirate sometime, he’s been alive since Eva was a teen!!… when I said before Linnea was born, I meant WAY before! He is the oldest dog in my game, ever, created in real life 2004?!
Thanks for reading, I got my next update played through, so hopefully I can get two Saturdays in a row here!
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