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  • Writer's pictureElijah Ricks


We are in Colorado for the Holidays. Living out of suitcases is difficult even for a single person, but with a family of four, especially with little children, it can be nearly impossible to keep track of all of our junk. We had a particularly hard lesson in property management on Christmas Eve. We had been all over town on that day, struggling to visit as many of our kin as possible. When we finally settled back down where we’ve been sleeping, it seemed that the day was behind us and we could all rest peacefully before the big day. Of course, things rarely turn out as we plan.

While preparing Carver for his slumber, it became apparent that we were missing the most vital element of his rest: his pacifier. Unlike Avey, who quickly transitioned to snacking on her thumb as she grew, Carver is attached to a specific pacifier he has known intimately since birth. Unfortunately, we had misplaced it somewhere in the city during our travels.

We were a bit panicked. We have a backup pacifier that is the same shape and brand, but Carver instantly senses the imposter because it is firmer than his usual one. A little coaxing combined with his exhaustion convinced him to try it for a few minutes, at least enough that he fell asleep. However, he has also been a little under the weather since we arrived, and needed all of the comfort he could get. He awoke several times during the night, at one point standing up and saying to me, “Gween Beenky [green binky]?” I informed him that we did not know where it was, to which he smiled and excitedly said and signed, “Deah [idea]!” I asked him his idea, and he suggested it was in the “Gween PackPack [green backpack].” That is where we usually keep his pacifier, but alas, we had searched through the entire thing to no avail. I told him that it was not in the backpack, and that we did not know where it was. He again signed and said that he had an idea, and that it was in the green backpack. The cycle continued for a few minutes until he finally accepted that he would not get his pacifier that night. I only hope that he understood it was because we did not have it rather than because we did not want to get it for him.

We survived the night, and the next day tracked it down to my father’s house, from whence we retrieved it that afternoon. Such a happy reunion has not been witnessed in my lifetime.

And thus ends another year of The Ricks Experiment. Thank you for your love and friendship. We promise many more adventures in 2014, including Carver’s cognitive developments, Eli’s whining about dissertation, Kira’s experiences in preparing for Baby #3, the latter’s birth, and Avey’s acceptance to and graduation from medical school (I assume).

#Happenings #LittleGems

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