Here are James and Ryan enjoying a happy meal. Notice the mom in the red sweater in the background. Not that you can see them, but she is with three children under five (two in high chairs) and her mother (grandma). It was watching this mom that made me realize, Wow! I must be in the presence of a saint!
Grandma had arrived five minutes before mom with one child. She found a high chair, took off her grandson's jacket and waited. Next, mom in red sweater arrives with two more children, a girl about four and another toddler in need of a high chair. After another few minutes of removing coats and settling in, Mom in red sweater goes back to get the food. A few more minutes pass and mom in red sweater returns with the food. Mom places the tray on the table and happily announces that she will now go and get the drinks. A few more minutes pass and mom returns with drinks. Food is past out and drinks are past out and mom in red sweater finally sits down.
The next thing that happened made me think I was watching a sitcom. It is not kid number one, two, nor three, but grandma who knocks over a rather large soda, which lands on the four-year-old's coat and on the floor right at grandma's feet. Mom gets up and calmly wipes of the jacket, gives grandma some napkins and joyfully announces (are you kidding?) that she will go and get more napkins. As I watch all of this, I realize that probably twenty minutes have past and mom in red sweater has not had one bite of her food. Not even a food fight would have ruined this mom's mood. Amazingly though, the kids ate their food quietly while mom cleaned up the mess.
I'm not sure how many minutes have past now, but mom in red sweater finally sits down to take her first bite. Before she does, she thoughtfully asks, "Jackson, how are your apples?"
"Mom, I have to go to the bathroom!" says Justine. "Of course you do," replies mom. Grandma quickly gets up to take Justine to the bathroom before mom in red sweater has to get up for the fourth or fifth time (Sadly, I've lost count.) At this point, I was about to offer to take Justine to the bathroom!
And then finally, after what seemed like hours to me, mom in red sweater took her first bite. Thank God. I figure this is why she is so skinny- she has the patience of a saint (not a stress eater) and with this group she never gets a chance to eat anyway!