Is it really true? Will Stokes be painting a fence like Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer? Not exactly.
For the next few days, I'll actually be a paintin' the future room of "Little Nimbus" as the several gallons of primer and Flaxen yellow paint plus rollers, roller pans, brushes, and the like -- now waiting on the floor of the bedroom next to ours -- will attest.
Yep, I'll just be a paintin' fool through the weekend while the Grand Duchess attends her baby shower on Saturday with her mother and sister, who arrive this evening for a few days. Now, some of you might be thinking to yourselves, "Well, Stokes, that's either plain old dumb luck, or very astute planning!" I'll never tell. ;-)
By the way, for those who might be scratching their heads, Little Nimbus is the name by which we refer to the future heir to the Grand Duchy of Stollen since we are waiting until the baby is born before we learn its sex. We have specific names all picked out whatever the case may be, but "Little Nimbus" is vague enough to work for both a boy or a girl until the big day. And where, prey tell, did we come up with this delightful name?
Well, about three or four years ago, The Grand Duchess was in a particularly dark mood one afternoon when she arrived home. I finally remarked that she was like a looming dark cloud. A Cumulonimbus cloud to be precise. When I slapped the label of Surly Nimbus on her later that evening, it had the desired effect, causing Sonja to break into gales of laughter, and the evil spell was broken. The fair Grand Duchess was restored to a pleasnt mood. Afterwards, whenever we have discussed the future heir to Stollen, we refer jokingly to him/her as "Little Nimbus".