Stephanie Burgis
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My Valentines
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Happy Valentine's Day to everybody! :) This is our first Valentine's Day as a family of three humans. (We were a three-person family last year, of course, but one of the people was a dog; now we're a four-person family, although Maya doesn't always think we remember that, poor neglected pup). Last year on Valentine's Day, Patrick and I had only just found out that Mr Darcy was on his way, and neither of us could quite believe it yet, or even imagine what life would really be like with a baby - it was a huge, exciting-but-terrifying Unknown coming up ahead of us. Now, of course, we know that it's exhausting, sometimes really hard, but also consistently amazing - because it's not just "a baby", it's Mr Darcy, and he's so lovable that he more than makes up for all the hard parts.

And of course it makes Valentine's Day different, too. Suddenly, different things count as big romantic gestures. By the end of Wednesday afternoon, I was going a little nuts from exhaustion and stress, between lack of sleep on my part and poor Mr Darcy having a bad stomach and crying inconsolably for hours that afternoon. In the old, pre-baby days, a big romantic gesture probably would have been flowers, opera tickets, or chocolates. Nowadays, though, Patrick coming home Wednesday night and sweeping us both out to the local pub, where he cuddled & played with Mr Darcy and listened sympathetically while I vented, drank half a glass of wine, and devoured consolatory chips (French fries), was just exactly perfect. And when, the next day, he did six straight hours of child care so that I could just relax and do anything I felt like...well, if I hadn't already been head-over-heels for him, that would have done it for sure. :) Happy Valentine's Day, sweetheart!

Today, we aren't planning to go out, because Patrick's birthday is coming up in less than a week, and we're saving our big meal out for that day - plus, the three of us already had a great day out in downtown Leeds yesterday - but Patrick and I are going to exchange gifts, Mr Darcy and I are going to read his new books and play our favorite tickling games, and all three of us are going to take Maya out to somewhere beautiful for her walk. And I'm loving all three of my Valentines.

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