Most of our days are routine, Gideon is working on a new research grant letter. His previous horticulture project at the university has completed, and he’s ready to tackle his next big questions. He loathes this part of the job the most. I can’t say I’m terribly fond myself, as he stays up late into the night, and I don’t like going to bed alone.
I usually spend my evenings with Dahlia. Even though she’s eleven, she still enjoys cuddling with her Mama, and I’m not complaining.
When she’s off to bed, I usually talk to my grown daughters. They both keep such early hours working at the bakery together, that I have to schedule my call if it’s past seven o’clock. I don’t get to see them as often as I’d like, but Paloma is busy with the twins, and Linnea is busy learning how to be an adult.
Dahlia is on the cusp of being a teenager, and I really hope she remains sweet. Both of her sisters were a bit wild in their youth and Paloma was the most contrary. They’ve all grown up nicely, and we get along well, but I’d like to not relive it. Gideon thinks we will be fine as Dahlia is already much sweeter than my older girls.
She’s not huge on homework though, which was always a struggle with the other two. Only Linnea bothered to attend college, and I really hope Dahlia will as well.
Julia quit, then got fired from her new position, and now she’s back to working with me. We don’t have an actual office space, which didn’t matter previously. She gets along swimmingly with Dahlia and her best friend, Tillie. Working from my home has allowed her to fit in nicely with my family, but it does come with distractions.
Currently we are planning Julia’s wedding, she’s hoping for an autumn wedding at the barn, but it’s difficult with the harvest. She’s keeping it intimate, which I think gives us more flexibility.
I also broach the idea of renting our own office space. As much as I love filling my dining room table with work projects and meeting clients all over town at coffee shops, I know Gideon isn’t a fan of the mess. When I started the business, it was one wedding a year, if I was lucky. But I’m booking several, plus birthday parties now too, I think we can afford it.
Thankfully Julia agreed after asking a few questions. We agree that renting is the place to start, because we can’t front the down payments, and neither of us want to maintain an older building, which would be the best we could hope for. She’s expecting, and I know she’s going to be busy with the baby. I realize I might have to temporarily hire someone, but I’m going to ask Linnea first. She works at Paloma’s bakery part-time, and I think she could use the money.
When Dahlia gets back home, we share the news and have an impromptu dance party. Even as a toddler, she’s loved to dance, and Skipjack loves to dance and howl along with her.
In the evening, I prepare dinner while she works on her homework. The table is covered with my office supplies, and for the first time I’m not bothered by the mess. Soon enough, we will have our own office space.
Gideon is thrilled with the decision as well. He’s been urging me to invest more in the company, and I’m finally being brave enough to do so. It seems a bit wild, given my age, but you only live once.
At dinner, Dahlia fills us in on Tillie’s eleventh birthday party. It’s at the local pool in Millwood, and she has to go as Tillie is her best friend. Gideon has a class to teach at the university, so I put it on my calendar.
We get approved funding from the bank, and suddenly Julia and I are in Marta Steele’s real estate office actually working toward this dream.
I’m a bit concerned when she shows up pregnant. I don’t discriminate against pregnant woman, I just hope she can get us settled before she gives birth and starts maternity leave.
She shows us some properties, trying to get a feel for our needs and style. I would love an office in Millwood, but I know it doesn’t make sense, so I insist on South Port.
When I tell her we want cheap, I mean it. We want the cheapest place that is also put together and not hazardous. So we are willing to pay, but not overpay.
She talks of some places, and Julia brightens when she realizes one is near to her favorite shops. She believes it’ll be the perfect location.
Marta agrees to get us a viewing of the property and the lease papers so we can look it all over. All in all if it’s half as good as Marta sells, we will be in a good place.
That weekend we hit the birthday party. Grace and I are neighbors, pregnant with Tillie and Dahlia at the same time, so we’ve become friends over the years. I decide to stay at the party so we can catch up. Plus the rental property is near to her Salon, so I was hoping for a scoop on the property owner and locale.
The girls all got together for a photo before they hit the water.
Then they were off! Hattie took the slide like a little daredevil.
Mallory belly flopped off the diving board without any qualms. Her only qualms were over her swimsuit, which she’d had to borrow from Tillie’s older sister, Ainsley.
Tillie wasn’t feeling as brave for the diving board though. She was eleven now, and she thought she ought to be brave, but she couldn’t summon any.
She ended up squeaking down the waterslide as it started to rain.
It didn’t lightening so the pool stayed open, and everyone else cleared out so they had it to themselves.
I was surprised Dahlia was afraid of the diving board, but she did jump in. Grace mentioned always wanting to put a pool in their backyard, and I have to admit it would be nice to have one just across the street instead of a few blocks down.
Mallory’s Mom ended up staying for the party as well. None of us are close with her, she works a lot of hours on a different shift than us. She didn’t want to drive all the way back to South Port though then back to pick up Mallory, which I totally understand.
I feel like I’m surrounded by pregnant people, and it’s strange because most of them aren’t young. Julia is in the prime of her life, ready to settle down, have babies, but Erin and Marta are both older women. Erin already has two kids which are both pretty old compared to a newborn.
She spent most of her time talking with Mallory, eating snacks, and napping in the chairs though. I don’t feel like we got to know her much better. I remember in the beginning, Grace wasn’t a fan of Tillie being friends with Mallory, but they all seem to get along well which is great.
Grace and I sat out in the rain, watching the girls play. She wasn’t exactly sure where the property was located, but she admitted the name Windshire sounded familiar. She was positive she’d seen the sign for the development when going to work. She had nothing but nice things to say about the area too, saying all of them were local business owners, and they were primarily female. They all worked together on solving issues and promoting one another.
I was really getting excited about my new venture with Julia. While we talked, the girls played marco polo and had a blast of their own. I wondered if any of Grace’s girls would take over her business, and if Dahlia would be interested in mine, seeing I was about to have an actual space to house my business.
The only negative to the month was Linnea is still seeing Hal. We’d met them over the holidays, and both Gideon and I had hoped he’d be gone by now. Linnea has never had anyone to love her, and she’s never had a serious relationship. We don’t know why she is settling for Hal now.
She asks me to meet with them at the park, she’s going to exercise, and she wants me to give Hal yet another chance. I really do try. When he flatters me on raising a beautiful daughter, I accept it.
But no sooner than she leaves, and he’s ranting about politics. He’s such a radical, and he turns the dial from friendly to enraged so quickly, he makes me jumpy.
I try to smile through it, and change the subject, but he’s really quite adamant about being upset.
I arrange to meet with Linnea at the coffee shop later in the week. Gideon and I both want to discuss Hal with her. We already know her roommate, Itzel doesn’t like him ether, says he’s rude when she talks, and I guess he hates her cat, which is really odd to me. I can understand not favoring cats, but hate?
We try to beat around the bush a bit, she’s so excited to see us.
But really, there are only so many things we can discuss before we mention are concern about Hal.
Gideon is very pleased that Hal treats her good, and we understand how that truly is a priority.
However, with such a quick temper, obstinate attitude, we are concerned his good manners could wear off.
Linnea doesn’t understand why everyone has to team up against the first guy that has ever liked her back. She is hurt by our report, but I do feel concerned for their pairing. I don’t want a future son-in-law who may hurt my daughter.
She believes we are overreacting, glaring at us, as we try to explain our concern, and our hope that she will be cautious.
After we’ve explained our feelings, we accept that she’s an adult, and we trust her judgement. We finish having tea, and we end the afternoon on a positive note. She isn’t one to hold grudges like Paloma, so it’s easier to talk with her.
I just hope she realizes her worth and finds someone better, or Hal begins working on his issues, perhaps anger management. There’s more to life than politics, and I’d like him to realize that instead of getting angry over things I don’t really care about at all.
Notes: Linnea and Hal are pretty in love at this point. They’ve been together nine months now, and even Linnea wasn’t head over heals for him at the start. He did get irritated over their new kitten back in August as well. He rubs people the wrong way, and he makes me laugh, because he really likes politics and Eva hates the topic. I think Eva would like someone more calm and perhaps artistic for her daughter, but Eva doesn’t get to choose, so we will wait and see.
Dahlia turns teen in January, which I’m pretty excited about. Her other friend, Rita already had her birthday, and Tillie will be four months after her for her teen birthday. I’m excited for this girl group to turn teens. Mallory is in that group too, but I don’t have her birthday in my head, but it’s soon!
I do have a place for Eva, and I’ve already built and decorated it. It didn’t make it in the update, because I don’t have the time to load it and pose the ladies. I’ve been swamped, traveling, kids, work, and now my Mom is visiting, which I love! So I’ll post photos of her new office space on tumblr soon! I just had to get this update OUT! I started it at the beginning of August, and we are nearly October. This is also the last post for this round, so summary will be up next week too.
Thanks for coming by, I appreciate all of you!