This past week we placed two of my family members into the hands of God. On Sunday we baptised my little Olivia. On Wednesday we buried my grandmother. Throughout my grandma's funeral people spoke of how loving she was and how dedicated she was to her family. I am blessed, because this love of family is something that lives on. For Olivia's baptism my sister drove from New Jersey with her family, our mom, and our brother all in her car through Saturday's snow storm. Along with our friends and my husband's parents they trudged to church in the ice and snow and then back to my house for food and coffee and talk. I've been a little sleep deprived lately, so all this was posssible because my family and friends make themselves at home in my kitchen, pulling out dishes, making coffee, finding the mustard in the back of the fridge. On Tuesday Olivia and I took a cab and two trains to Long Island for my grandmother's wake and funeral. While the occasion was sad, I could not but help take joy in seeing my little Olivia running around my Aunt Johanna and Uncle Vinny's house. I have so many happy childhood memories of our trips to Long Island. On this trip it was my little girl who was showered in love by aunts, uncles, and cousins, just as I remember being showered in love as a child. For the love of my family and friends I am most grateful.
Traveling with Olivia strapped to me and a car seat strapped to a piece of rolly luggage, I am also grateful for the kindness of strangers. The dad who helped me with the clasp of the baby carrier, explaining his wife was traveling alone with their two kids and he was feeling a little guilty. The people who saw me coming and opened doors. The train conductor who ended Olivia's meltdown by making a paper doll out of a ticket with his hole punch. The woman who let me buy her return ticket on the Long Island railroad as I found myself without enough cash to buy my own ticket at the elevated on train price. The red cap at Penn Station who told me how to get down to the train platform before the train was announced. Thank you.