There are moments that the nieces and nephews are sweet, and there are moments they are funny, but they are priceless all of the time. My favorite moments are the quiet ones.
Lisa's little Hope (1) decided she liked me after we played 'peek' for a while...her laughter is enough to make any heart melt. James (almost 5) was too busy to sit most of the time, but he did plop next to me in a chair at brunch and we chatted about his favorite cars. Lisa's other two girls, Rita (9) and Grace (almost 8), were quite taken with Grandpa and Nana, but I did offer a comfy shoulder to snuggle into after a long day of play.
Shyla is her mother's daughter when it comes to diplomatic gift reception. She may not have wanted a book (auntie is an English teacher) but she thanked me. After she realized it was all about her favorite ghostly stories, Shyla (almost 9) tucked in next to me on the couch to read a bit of the book together. Tate (5.5) colored me an Elmo picture of my very own to decorate my bedroom. Cade (also 5.5) was content to snuggle up in the evenings so I could scratch his back while told me about all he did that day.
I keep my sisters, their husbands, and all those kiddos in prayer. I love and miss you all already!
PS... Ahem, I am also reinforced in my celibate vocation as a Benedictine nun. I'm happy to return to my schdule and times of work and quiet. They are beautiful children of God, but they are energetic and filled with vim and vigor. Whew, I just pray my sisters, and their husbands, can keep up.