Winnie turned one this week. I don’t know how it is really possible that a year has passed since I was pregnant, since I had a newborn, or since I was a teacher. It was forever ago, and it was a day ago. It’s unfortunate that the year of the most rapid growth for a baby also coincides with the year of the least sleep. My energy has been used up trying to stay awake and keep little children happy and safe that I haven’t quite been able to process this year full of shifts and transitions and new dreams and obsessions. The dust isn’t going to settle anytime soon, and I’m fine with that. When we got home on the night of Winnie’s birthday, I was going to just put her to bed since she was tired, but Chuck really wanted to try out the new bubble gun and light up balloon that she got for Winnie…So, I put some shoes over Winnie’s pajamas and we went outside just as it was getting dark. James got to try out his new bubble mix, Charlotte tried to pop big bubbles by shooting them with other smaller bubbles, Winnie tried to nurse the balloon, and I thought about that first night of contentedly settling into sleep with my new baby after everyone else had gone home, one year ago.