It’s official: I have a granddaughter! She’s named, in case you haven’t guessed by now, Phoenix Aloha, and was born June 15 in Anacortes, WA, without any problems at all.

Grandpa’s little calabasa

As I write she’s lying in a bassinet next to the table, making little cooing and sighing sounds in her sleep. She’s still in the earliest phase of life but so far seems to be a pretty tranquil little person. As my late wife and Emmet’s mom Pamela noted a long time ago, kids are generally pretty easy to take care of until they learn the word “no.”

Mom and Dad (Kara and Emmet) seem to be doing well, running behind on sleep at times but catching up when they can. Kara is recovering her shape and energy level amazingly quickly, to my non-expert eye. It no doubt helps that she has always been a very fit and athletic person.

Mom & Dad & brand-new Phoenix

Emmet is running back and forth to the island fairly frequently, burning his


candle at both ends a bit, to have as much time as possible with Kara and Phoenix while also keeping up with his work. He’s a self-employed painting contractor and now that the weather has turned (mostly) good he has more work than he can handle.

Kara’s sister Kim is here in the little rented house in Anacortes as well, helping out in myriad ways, showing a beautifully deft and gentle touch with all sorts of baby-related tasks. I flutter around helping where I can with some cooking and kitchen patrol, some shopping, a little baby-burping and baby-sitting, not much in the larger scheme but a pleasure to do.

I couldn’t be happier for Emmet and Kara, couldn’t be happier to have a new


family member. This is a wonderful new focus, a huge, bright positive for me as well, after the darkness and emptiness of the last year and a half.

Words are inadequate to express the feelings that arise in a moment such as this.

They’re not ready right this minute, but I will very soon collect the best of the baby pix to date in a Gallery2 album on line. Click the “My photo albums” link to the right of this post to go there.

Dumpling sleeps. In a while she will awaken, and I ‘ll get to hold her and talk to her and wiggle her teeny little fingers and toes. Life at the moment is good.

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