I

Yesterday I woke up to bright sunshine pouring through my bedroom window and onto the wall. This morning I woke up to the sounds of rain being blown up against that same bedroom window as if someone were throwing small pebbles trying to get my attention, but no one else’s.

II

The girls left for morning weights, probably having to jump over puddles as they scurried through the rain on their way to the gym for their morning workout. They don’t ever want to take umbrellas for whatever reason, but I’m not motivated enough to persuade them otherwise.

III

The boys had not woken up yet, and I was still feeling quite tired, so I tiptoed back to my bed to maybe get a few more minutes of rest before hearing the squeak of their bedroom door, the patter of their running feet, and the weight of their bodies jumping onto our bed with the excitement that morning had once again successfully arrived.

My rest lasted just a few moments.

I sometimes can convince them that it is still too early to be up and that they need to try and sleep in more. I’ve learned that if I just send them both back to their room there is a zero percent chance they’ll actually go back to sleep. So I’ve discovered that if I go to their room with them, and lay in one of their beds with them there’s a chance that we can maybe get another twenty to thirty minutes of sleep. But even that is rare.

I tried today without success. My six year old attempted to sleep, and he was the one I was squeezed into bed with, but his younger brother was far from interested in sleeping anymore and decided to make it his mission to keep up from doing so.

I eventually gave up and just let them play. I put my son’s pillow over my head and hoped to get some rest. I think I must have drifted into a sleep for at least a few minutes because I’m pretty sure that I had a brief dream.

IV

My wife eventually came in and had them get dressed for summer school. That was my cue to get up and ready for the rest of my morning routine.

That always starts with my 8:00 coffee ritual. Today was a Chemex kind of day. So I measured and ground up my coffee beans, prepared the water at precisely 205 degrees, soaked the filter with hot water, and poured myself a smooth and wonderful cup of coffee.

The smell of coffee is so welcoming, even before you like the taste of it. As a kid I often remember getting up early and walking downstairs from my bedroom to the kitchen and smelling fresh coffee brewing that my dad was making for himself. It’s a comforting smell. I sometimes wonder if the smell of my coffee each morning will later be remembered by the girls in my home. Will they remember me meticulously making coffee each morning? Or will these times here just be a blur?

V

Today was a bit different of a morning than normal because we had a team meeting with one of our girls. Her PO and mom, as well as a translator, were visiting to talk about her progress. But my wife was taking our boys to summer school, my boss is on vacation, and our assistant doesn’t come in until the afternoons typically. So the only person left and able to run the meeting was me.

So I juggled the responsibilities of the morning all at once. Breakfast needed to be eaten, meds given to those who take them, morning chores completed – all within the span of about fifteen minutes before the members of the team meeting arrived.

Thankfully all went smoothly. I credit that to the girls we currently have in the house. They can all handle being flexible and respectful when things are different.

VI

Brunch date with Sarah

Today is the penultimate day of summer school for the boys. So Sarah and I took advantage of the couple of hours we had this morning sans kids to go out on a brunch date. It was very pleasant. We’ve found that whenever we get these moments together, just her and me, we discover just how much of nerds we are. It’s like our time to catch each other up on all the podcasts we’ve listened to and articles we’ve read about science or psychology or emotion or politics or storytelling. Sometimes there’s so much backlogged to catch up on we find ourselves saying things like, “I can’t remember if this was a podcast or article I read, but there was a study that recently came out…” And it’s great.

I got ribeye, hash browns, eggs, and toast for brunch. And it was about perfect.

Lisa’s Radial Cafe

VII

Afterwards, we walked around the corner to our favorite coffee shop. I got a Cortado, my favorite in the city, and sat down to continue reading the book by Annie Dillard I began yesterday. Sarah also brought a book to read, Wild by Cheryl Strayed. I kept interrupting her because I felt I had to read various sentences to her from my book because I simply love how Annie Dillard writes. I think Sarah gets annoyed when I interrupt her like that, but she never tells me – not with words, anyway. But I can also tell that she loves how much I get excited about good writing or good storytelling, so she lets me do it.

Amateur Coffee, a local vegan coffee shop

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