Day 2

    Day 2 of our Pandemic-cation was a relaxing day off for all but Ron. With the kids required to stay home from school while the virus hopefully ceases spreading, we had a peaceful day with one another. As mentioned yesterday, Mary had had some of her friends over for dinner, and I learned the next day that dinner turned into a late-night bash that included Jacob and Clare and even Leigh for a bit. Our “primo piano,” first floor, which is dedicated to our kids, became a social lounge. There was soccer, singing, and late-night philosophical discussions about the meaning of life and the answer to our heart’s yearnings in faith. The parents picked up the guests very late.
    The next day, our kids all slept in and then had a slow day. I had lots of quiet time and Sebastian and Annie played and watched Tom and Jerry.
    Later, Mary and Jacob came into my room and plopped down on the bed and told me all about the night before and how they are doing in general. We talked about dating, friendship, Italy, college, and being missionaries wherever we are. These are two outstanding young people who are thriving in so many areas of their lives–academic, social, athletic, spiritual. They are such a joy to me–I can hardly express the relief and contentment I experience in their being virtually established as well-formed adults. I can hardly believe the grace God has given us in who they have become. All the other kids are well on their way as well–oh, the blessing.
    I took Jacob to a soccer practice and Mary went to a classmate’s birthday party in Frascati. Leigh and Clare cuddled up in our living room and watched Father of the Bride.  
    Ron came home after a long day at work and whisked me out for a date. Being a Friday night in Lent, we went to a restaurant in Grottaferrata that specializes in seafood. I felt a little guilty eating a rich, gourmet meal as though it were a penance! Not knowing what the future holds, whether we will be moved back to the US or moved onto campus and what either of our employment or other work lives will look like in the near future, we savored each moment in the little osteria as though it were our last night in Italy. The bread basket, the frizzante, the mussels with an orange-infused white wine sauce, the artichokes all romana, the seabass–it was all prepared in a way almost impossible to find in the US. The mannerisms of the waiter, the way the Italians dine out–they have such a different attitude and manner in a restaurant than Americans–were lovely to experience. We sat in our uncomfortable little wooden chairs, ate off a table so small that it barely held the dishes, and enjoyed an infused knowledge of what it really means to dine together. I cherish my husband and can hardly believe what joy it is to be married to him. I’ve never known someone more humble, loving, and merciful. I finished the day with a strong sense of gratitude and awareness of the grace that makes our life so wonderful.