A NEW RELATIVE
May came in with the sunshine and balmy days that are popularly supposed to belong to that month, but which do not always materialise.
Wistaria Porch was fairly basking in the sunshine, and the flower gardens were already showing their early blooms. The tulip beds were a blaze of bright glory and hyacinths and daffodils added their sweetness and beauty.
“Such a heavenly place!” Patty exclaimed as she and Little Billee strolled along the garden paths in the late afternoon. “I’m glad we have this week-end to ourselves,—I love to have guests, but once in a while,—you know—”
“I do know!” declared Farnsworth, “and I’d be willing to have ’em twice in a while—”
“Week-ends alone with you! Oh, I like company, too,—have all you want, but now and then—just now and then, a family party looks good to me! Where’s our blessed child at the moment?”
“She ought to be here,—it’s time. Winnie usually brings her for her afternoon visit to her proud parents. And here she comes! Here’s mudder’s own Poggly-woggly Pom-pom head!”
“What delightful names you invent! Let me have a try at it! Here’s Fodder’s own Piggly-winktum! There, how’s that?”
“Perfectly horrid! Sounds like a pig!”
“All right, let’s try again. Who’s the airiest, fairiest, tiny mite? Who’s the pinky-goldiest Smiley-eyes in the whole world? Here she is!” and big Bill took the baby, from nurse’s arms, and flung her high in the air, catching her deftly on her descent, while Patty held her breath in apprehension. She knew perfectly well Bill wouldn’t let the child fall,—and yet, accidents had occurred,—and the crowing baby might squirm out of the watchful father’s arms.
But no accident happened and the two had their usual afternoon romp.
Little Fleurette knew her father and adored the big, comfortable man who held her so firmly and tossed her up so delightfully.
“Now, it’s my turn,—give her to me,” said Patty, at last. Then Bill deposited the child in her mother’s arms, and the little one nestled there contentedly. She was a good baby, and rarely cried or fretted. Healthy and strong, she bade fair to become a fine big woman some day, and Patty’s leaping mind had already planned out her whole lifetime!
“I think I’ll send her to the Mortimer School,” she said, musingly.
“Why, that’s a finishing school!” exclaimed Bill, knowing of the fashionable establishment.
“Yes; I mean when she’s ready to be ‘finished,’” said Patty, calmly. “Before that, she’ll go to Kindergarten,—and some other school, I suppose.”
“I suppose she will; but we’ll have a few years of her company here, at home, won’t we, before her schooldays begin?”
“Yes, of course, we’re having them now. But they go so fast! Oh, Little Billee, all the days fly so fast,—I can’t realise we’ve been married nearly two years—”