A plane buzzed beneath the clouds. Insects whirred and screeched in the trees, unseen. Sunshine striped along the soft skin of my children, whose faces were turned with trust toward the man strumming his car and singing into a microphone.

Behind us, the muddy water of a shallow river coursed along its way. I don’t remember his words but Shaya said something in two-year-old speak about how the river leads eventually into something bigger.

On the grass, Asher sipped a smoothie. The conflicting scents of the farmers market – fragrant basil, roasting corn, fresh-cut flowers – mingled with the musty hint of the perimeter wood.

That morning, Asher had the singular role of sampling tomatoes and deciding which to purchsae. Juice and small round seeds dripped down his chin and over the skin of his upturned arm.

We passed sunflowers crowding into buckets like eager faces and pickles cut into wedges for sampling. At the ice cream truck, I rushed the kids along, wanting nothing too processed for our morning.

Before we left, the singer broke into “You are my sunshine,” and we joined in with the words. Asher bopped his little lean body to the notes. “Mommy, almost everybody here is kids,” said Eliana.

Today, Seth Godin wrote a blog about being authentic. A handwritten note, a meal created by a chef who loves the art of the ingredients. Nothing too electrified or huge to have eluded the definition of real.

I know what he means. On Sunday, we had bliss at the farmers market. The sun shone like it should for a homecoming. Yesterday, I sat suspended, awaiting answers that I have yet to get. Last night, Eliana and Shaya caterwauled until late, never able to settle into the serenity of night. Asher is clouded by a cold, his breathing labored.

There is peace and there is ruckus. That is the authentic life of a family. One day in, one day out, one day turned upside down.


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