Ok, so that was a little false advertising. Eliza really really wanted a puppy for her seventh birthday, and while we would all love to add a dog to our family, we don't feel like we are in the place for a dog in our lives. It's added to the "someday soonish" list of plans. However, the Linscotts added a litter of kittens to their numbers and we took one off their hands...she doesn't have a name yet (there is a growing list on the fridge), but she is so much fun. We are slowly introducing her and Charlie - he had a bad experience a year ago with a stray we nursed back to health and then attacked him - so they take turns with the run of the house, but tomorrow might be the day they come face to face (and he realizes just how teeny she is!).
Summer has felt out of whack to me - we are out of our usual routine, Dan is out of his usual routine, and yet we've been quite busy, but somehow missing each other. Eliza had day camp, she's had late rehearsals, Ani and I have had more of each other but less of Papa and sister, and we've had more time with loads of kids somehow - neighbor kids off from school, helping out with watching friends' kids - and that doesn't always sit well with Anika. In fact, she'd pretty much always prefer that it were just her and "sissy". So this week I set out to give us some down time, some exploring time, some just us time. It was not an easy transition, but we've had moments of connecting...mostly when I've sat back and stayed out of the picture (they toss me a few "I love you Mom"s once in a while).
They've both found sticks, which started out as drumming instruments for some spontaneous rain dancing, and then became drawing instruments
The beach gnomes, checking in on Mama.