Monday, August 08, 2005

Thank Goodness . . .

for the Granny Brigade. There is a particular attraction that pulls in Grannies and Girls at church, the Infant. I am not speaking of the robust specimens of grandparent like my mother and mother in law, but the grannies with the shiny white curls with the cane that matches thier summer weight wool suits who, honest to God, utter the phrase, "What a cute little Puddin'." On the other end of the spectrum are the Girls. Starting at about eleven and going to about fifteen, they almost invariably roam the foyer in groups of three; too old to run with the little kids and not quite old enough to act jaded and cool by the coffee cart.

Last Sunday we slept in. Not too late, but so there was just enough time to get ready and hurry out the door to be on time for church. We drive 45 minutes down island to get to church, planning is essential. I didn't have the option of not going either, I was ushing at the main door and thought I would probably get tapped for Communion service too. No lingering over cereal bowls this morning, all three kids were cleaned up and dressed in record time. Even the Verbalist sensed that this was not the morning to make long winded observations on what toy he planned to bring and just what he was going to tell his Sunday School teacher.

There was a hitch in my process, which came from an unusual source - my Dear Husband. The DH tends to be overly organized and also leaves plenty of padding in the schedule for driving. As I tend to start twitching if we arrive late to places, this is a good thing. This morning he didn't get ready. He had forgotten it was my morning to usher and had so sat tinkering with his computer until too late. I poured the children into the car, left the DH to his shower and set off for church contemplating how I was going to juggle 3 children and ushing duties. The youngest 2 could be handed off to nursery personel as soon as the nursery opened, and I was reasonably sure the Verbalist would want to "help" pass the collection plate and bulletins, no my concern was what to do until the nursery opened.

I shouldn't have worried, the Infant pulled many Grannies and Girls into her orbit and I had only to choose among many eager assistants. The Infant and the Muralist were then installed in the nursery, stuck to my side the Verbalist. He was Very Good and sat quietly while I helped serve Communion. He is beginning to understand that church is fun but there are times of solemnity that small boys do not talk through, they do not wiggle in, and that are not occasions when Panda Bears should dance. Then there is the collection, which apparently is OK for boys to wiggle and Panda Bears to solicit funds from folks in the front row. Shakedown for Jesus, courtesy of my four year old's stuffed bear. It's one thing to pass the collection plate, it's another to ask, "Aren't you going to put something in?" while waving it under thier noses. Children were then dismissed to Sunday School, small mercies abound.

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