East­er found us at my inlaws’ farm, enjoy­ing a chilly spring day with my wife, her par­ents, and her sis­ter and her fam­i­ly. Mr. M, who is two and a half (if I recall cor­rect­ly), enter­tained us all, espe­cial­ly with his hoarse and throaty shout-out to a ceram­ic Cook­ie Mon­ster fig­urine. (“Coooooooook­ie Mon­ster!”, quoth the boy, and my wife fair dou­bled over with laugh­ter. Oh, what a day.)

We drove out in the morn­ing on East­er Sun­day, since K had to work till 10:30 on the Sat­ur­day, and we came back on Sun­day night, since I had to work on Mon­day. We arrived at church, and wait­ed for the rest of the fam­i­ly to show up (we were sur­prised to be there first, since we got there at about 10:25, and the ser­vice start­ed at 10:30). They made it in before the begin­ning of the ser­vice. Mr. M enter­tained every­one in the church when he escaped and scam­pered up to the front, his father in hot pur­suit. As he was being car­ried down the aisle to the back of the church, he was in high spir­its: “Hi Pat!” he called, wav­ing to me. “Hi Mimi!” (which is his name for Kath­leen, some­thing that she brought on her­self, and per­haps a sto­ry I’ll tell you anoth­er day).

At the farm, we had lunch, and then the order of the day became vari­a­tions on the theme of “Nap­time”. Mr. M went down­stairs, E sacked out on the couch, Grand­pa R snored in his chair in front of the TV, K flaked out on the hide-a-bed in her old bed­room, and I read mag­a­zines and let my mind go idle. J even­tu­al­ly went down­stairs and joined his son; Grand­ma M did up some dishes.

John and Pat


Sup­per was chick­en and all the trim­mings, which includ­ed mashed pota­toes, gravy, stuf­fin’, broc­coli, buns, and (last and def­i­nite­ly least) turnips. I devoured a cou­ple of serv­ings, and then dessert hit the table, and by the time I was done eat­ing I felt like my eyes were crossed. Mmmm mmmm good.

The Charmer

We did dish­es, went out­side with Mr. M and looked at the cows and the trac­tor (and he sly­ly tried to lead J and me toward the tram­po­line, but we con­vinced him oth­er­wise), had some more vis­it­ing time, and then we head­ed home, full of chick­en, East­er choco­late, Swedish tea ring, Jell‑O and fruit. It was a good weekend.

Inter­est­ed in prints of my pho­tos? Let me know, and we can work some­thing out.