A Child is Born

Maria gave birth to her eleventh child (or was it the twelfth?) on the twenty-third of December.

Today we paid homage to the little guy by stopping at their house on the side of the road, bearing gifts generously provided by friends from Hartford. Among others, Phil and Tim took it upon themselves to collect clothing, toys and medicines for the family with "muchos ninos". Thank you, guys. It was a joy for me and Mike to be able to distribute them.

Maria was beaming with pride as the baby held on to her breast. All the other kids swarmed around with great excitement as they saw our basket brimming with stuff. Plush animals, crayons, coloring books, plastic dinosaurs. I explained the diaper rash ointment by patting the baby's bottom and saying "crema."

We gave them one of our bouncy chairs, which lulled Delaney or Hayden to sleep countless times during their babyhood. There was another box of clothes for the older kids, though I think they are all younger than I originally perceived. Now I worry that I didn't have just the "right" stuff, but I know that's silly. What matters is that we came to say our Felicidades. We took some pictures and plan to print them out for them.

Feliz Anno Nuevo. The holidays may be over, but even on Mud Hole Road there is a new beginning.