Keep Calm and Nap On

I come home to a quiet house. Too quiet. The dog’s asleep on my bed. As always. The girls must be out somewhere. Maybe they went shopping after school.

I go about my usual after-school activities—get a snack, finish reading the morning paper, and do a few household chores.

Still no girls. They’ve been out of school for nearly two hours. I text them both. No response from either. More

Terms of Endearment

HAPPY

16

That’s what my daughter has written, so far, on the small pan of Reese’s no-bake bars.

Not quite finished, she moves into position again, the tube of orange icing hovering, her hand beginning to squeeze.

“Wait, wait, wait!” I say.

She rolls her eyes up at me, her body still bent over her creation, gravity drawing a bit of icing into the tip of the tube.Happy 16

“You need to put the t right by the 16.” She’s not known for precise handwriting. But this is looking pretty good so far and I don’t want her to ruin it.

“What t?” she asks.

“The t you’re about to make. For16th.”

“Hush, mom, that’s not what I’m writing.”

Not what she’s writing? Well, what could she be writing? If she wasn’t putting 16th, there was only room for one more word with, at the most, four letters. If she tried to squeeze her friend’s name into the remaining area, it wasn’t going to be pretty.

I watch, intrigued.

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