The trip up to NJ also meant that we’d be home / near a number of my other friends who we so rarely see. So lest there be a moment to sit, I started making plans to see them – and their babies!
Saturday we visited a friend about 15 minutes away from my Mom. She’s got a 3 year old girl and a baby just younger than our munchkin. It was so funny to see the munchkin with the littler one – we’ve never had to tell her “gentle!” and try to correct her around a smaller child. She’s always the smaller child! Their older daughter had just woken up from her nap and was still a little bit cranky, but honestly adorable! Her Mom worried a lot about her, as the 3 year old has Down’s Syndrome. I know that she must present a lot of difficult challenges for her parents, but I have to say, she always just warms our hearts so much! She’s the type of kid who you look at and think – yes, I want to have children! (Her Mom admits she gets away with a lot more than she should by being adorable.)
Unfortunately the little girl was recently diagnosed with Celiac Disease, which requires a gluten free diet. As this is a genetic disease, her Mom and sister must both now be tested. My friend is really a bit down about this as life seems to be piling on the challenges for her. It makes me sad that she really seems to see the challenges far more clearly than the joys. I don’t want to seem insensitive here – there have been many challenges – brain surgery in her 20s, then her father passed away very young, her first child has Down’s, then she was diagnosed as pre-diabetic, etc. But on the other hand, she has these two beautiful daughters who have the potential to bring so much joy! So my hope/prayer for her – more than her test results on Celiac – is that she’s able to find the joy in her life.
The next day, again, lest we sit for a moment!, we headed into NYC to visit some friends from college. One has a 3 year old and a 1 year old – it was so fun to watch our munchkin interact with her (I really need to find a playgroup for this kid!). The other doesn’t have kids, but really enjoys being an auntie to the little ones! The trip into the city was a pain (the car to the train to the subway to –where the heck is their apartment!?), but it was a pretty relaxing afternoon with them. Then we, of course, JUST MISSED the train home (they seem to bunch them 3 together then a long wait for the next one) and had to wait an hour. Oh well.
The one thing I forgot to mention in all this mess is… in the middle, my husband was somehow pulled into another major home improvement project at my Mom’s! This was probably actually a smaller project by the standards established on his prior visits – only ripping down one wall to replace some plumbing fixtures… It started with the simple request to replace the showerhead in the upstairs bathroom – something my Mom could probably due herself, but isn’t entirely confident to do, I guess. These were the sorts of things my Dad handled. So in the talk about this one, she noted that the cold water pressure was so bad downstairs, that shower was unusable. So my husband offered to take a look at it. Why? I’m not sure… Turns out the pipe was clogged – he guessed probably at the fixture, but maybe it was deeper into her plumbing. If it was deeper into the plumbing, he couldn’t help. But… if she wanted… he could pull down the bathroom wall to take a look there. Well, of course, she wanted! He told her if he couldn’t fix it, it might leave a mess, but maybe it would save her some labor costs on a plumber. And, anyway, this would insure the plumber went in through the wall, not the shower (a far more expensive fix with tiling).
Luckily, it was the easier repair – only the fixture had to be replaced. He was able to get the shower running again, re-dry walled it and put the paneling back up. It doesn’t match exactly in the corner, but if you’re not looking closely, you can’t even tell he was in there (and he’s said the corner is an easy fix – for NEXT TIME!).
So yes, a busy visit. As always!