The sun warmed Aunt Abby as she lay on a patchwork quilt surrounded by seven squirming nieces and nephews.
“Look at that cloud,” Aunt Abby pointed up at a big fluffy cloud. “It looks like a dragon.”
Jules squinted up at the cloud. “No, it looks like a birthday cake with candles, flowers, and butterflies.”
“I see a plane like Dusty,” Joshua said with a small, serious frown.
“Dusty?” Bruce said. “I see a motorcycle!”
Constance glanced up from the flowers she gathered for Grammie. “They look like sky-mountains to me.”
“Look, a baby flower,” Ellie said holding up a tiny yellow bud.
Imogene didn’t worry about dragons, cakes, planes, motorcycles, or sky-mountains. She blinked her bright blue eyes at Jude and showed him how to blow spit bubbles. He almost did it on the first try causing her to squeal with delight.
“So, I hear you’re having a new cousin,” Aunt Abby said.
“A new cousin?” Constance said.
“Who has a baby in their belly?” Jules asked. “Did you get married?”
Aunt Abby chuckled. “Jules, I’ve been married longer than your Mommy and Daddy have been married. Just because you’re married doesn’t mean you have a baby in your tummy…but you should not have a baby in your tummy unless you’re married. Understand?”
“Nope,” Ellie said showering Aunt Abby with baby flowers. Aunt Abby sat up spilling the flowers down on Auntie Janet’s quilt.
“Who’s having a baby?” Bruce asked ripping up a handful of grass and throwing it at Ellie. “Is my Mommy? I just got a new brother.”
“Nope, it’s not your Mommy,” Aunt Abby said dusting Ellie off.
“Mine?” said Jules and Ellie.
Ellie dashed off to gather more flowers to throw at Bruce.
“Mine?” said Constance and Joshua.
Jude and Imogene blew spit bubbles to great effect.
“What about Aunt Liz?” Jules asked.
“Nope, not yet.” Aunt Abby said with a sparkle in her eye.
“Then who?” All the cousins squealed together except Jude and Imogene who were far to engaged in bubbles formed from excessive saliva to be bothered about extra cousins. Ellie tossed a handful of weeds, flowers, and dirt on Bruce. He growled and chased her around Aunt Abby.
“Your cousins James and Michelle.”
“They’re our cousins?” Jules said screwing up her face as she tried to understand.
“Well, technically, they’re your parents’ cousins and my cousins. But, they’re having a baby and their baby will be your second cousin.”
“Will it be a boy?” Joshua asked before Jules could ask what a second cousin was.
“Why?” Aunt Abby asked tickling him with one hand and catching Bruce with the other. “Are you feeling a bit outnumbered?”
Joshua rolled away giggling. Bruce growled louder. Aunt Abby growled back.
“Will it be a boy?” Jules asked.
“Yep. They’re having a boy.”
Aunt Abby let go of Bruce. “Hear that?”
Seven little boys and girls sat up or turned around, even bubble blowing stopped.
“What?” hissed Constance.
“Hear the rocks crunching on the driveway?” Aunt Abby whispered dramatically.
The kids stood on their tiptoes and cupped their hands around their ears.
“Someone’s here,” Joshua said.
“It’s cousin Michelle!” Jules said.
“Yes it is,” Aunt Abby climbed to her feet and scooped up Jude covering him in ticklish kisses. “Y’all should all run and give her a hug around her big tummy and welcome Rook into the family.”
All the cousins, Abby’s nieces and nephews, scrambled off to welcome Rook Patrick into the growing family.