"Whaaaa! Whaaaaa! You ready for 3 a.m. feedings, Joe?" Dale teased, rubbing his eyes in an imitation of crying. "Ready to change some diapers?"
The crew laughed, and Joe grimaced good-naturedly. One of the perils of working for your brother-in-law was the boss knowing all your business. He shook his head and tried to focus on the siding job in front of him.
He and Lily had thought they were done having children. This little "surprise" would be a full 9 years younger than their son. He really wasn't looking forward to the long nights again. His elementary school daughter and son were at a low-maintenance age, and he enjoyed that.
Too distracted to work, he pulled his Marlboros from his pocket and walked out to the driveway before lighting up. Dale, having finished talking with the homeowner, was headed for his truck. Just before pulling out, he rolled down his window and said "Hey, Joe, you wanna come see the boys play tonight?"
Joe took a long drag, considering the question. Dale's twin sons, one year younger than his daughter, were fair athletes, but one little league game is about the same as the next.
"Nah," he shook his head, "Lily's been tired. Better stay home."
"Better get ready", Dale grinned, miming rocking a baby.
Joe half-waved at him and crushed out his cigarette as Dale drove off.
Later that night, on the ball field, Dale mentally patted himself of the back, it had not been easy to get all 3 of the kids ready and there on time, but he'd done it. He'd be glad when Susie got back from the doctor, though, it was hard to coach first base and keep an eye on Jillie at the same time.
A few minutes later, he saw her walking over to the bleachers and signed in relief. It was so much easier when they could divide and conquer the supervision duties.
He smiled and waved and immediately tried to concentrate on the game. For second and third graders, the Blue Jays were a pretty good team. He coached a runner to steal second and waited for the next batter.
Susie, however, had finally reached the stands and was talking with some of the other moms on the bleachers. Her high, excited voice was carrying onto the field, in pieces.
Dale heard, "Doctor....shocked...pregnant" and whipped his head around, completely missing whatever was happening on the field. There was a crack of a bat and wild cheering but he heard nothing but his wife say "....twins"
For the rest of the game, he was useless. His mind whirled with thoughts of two more children, how to provide, expanding the house and, annoyingly, "What will Joe say?".
This is a true story of Belle Mère and Big Poppa. Joe and Lily has a son, and not long later, my in-laws, Susie and Dale, had their second set of twins, Elizabeth and David. Joe graciously didn't tease Dale too badly.