Ray woke up a few minutes before the alarm was to ring. They had had a busy day the day before, and Daniel had been awake a few times during the night. They had gone over to Martha and Hank’s to celebrate Daniel's first birthday. His birthday is December 9, which fell on Sunday, but since his cousins were going to be busy on Sunday afternoon practicing for the Christmas concert at church, they celebrated a day earlier. Ray and Livy were going to have a quiet day with him on Sunday. It was a very good party for Daniel, but all the fun and food was interrupting his sleep causing him to be fussy, and he woke up several times in the night. And if his sleep was interrupted, then it disturbed Livy and Ray's sleep as well.
Livy had not slept well. Daniel had had her get up several times in the night, so she was not in a deep sleep when she heard Ray get up.
Ray got out of bed and started his morning routine. He went downstairs and put the water on to boil for his coffee, and he went to his desk to do some work. Since today was Sunday he would shave and bathe after the chores and breakfast, and before church. While he was sitting at his desk, he heard a noise. He got up from his chair and went down the hall to the kitchen.
Through the kitchen window he could see that the sun was just coming up, and Livy was standing in front of the sink. She was washing out a bottle for Daniel.
Ray stared at the vision before him. The early morning sun was casting some beautiful highlights on her hair. Just then Livy turned around. She saw him and said, with a smile on her face, 'Hi.' He was momentarily stuck for a reply because he had been staring at her, admiring her beauty.
'Ray, are you all right?' she asked. 'Umhm,' he replied.
He walked toward her. He guessed that she did not expect him to be in the house because she had not put her robe on. Her nightgown was made of a satiny material, and clung to her body. Ray was transfixed by the sight of his wife. Wordlessly he walked toward her. When he was in front of her he put his arms around her and drew her close. She smelled wonderful. Livy melted in his arms, and put her arms around him, enjoying the early morning hug. He smelled so good! Ray released his hug enough so he could pull back to see her face. He loved that face. She tipped her head back, and when their lips met it was magical. They both felt an unusual rush of feeling. The kiss was tender and sweet. They both sensed something envelope them, holding them together. When their lips parted, they were still in awe of the power of the kiss. Their foreheads touched.
Then they heard Daniel, and knew the moment was over, but not forgotten. They hugged again and Livy went back to making Daniel's bottle, and Ray went to make his coffee. She stroked his back as she went by him to go upstairs. She loved the touch of his flannel shirt. He turned to her and smiled, making creases in his cheeks. He loved her so much, and he could see that she felt the same way.
Franklin followed Ray to the barn. After chores, Ray came into the house, had a shower and shave, sat down to breakfast, and then they went to church. It was an especially good service for them because this was Daniel's first birthday. A big fuss was made over him by Mrs. Case and the other ladies of the church.
After church they came home for lunch, and then Livy put Daniel to bed. She was sure he wasn't going to sleep well with all the attention he received yesterday and today because of his birthday.
Ray was still feeling the effects of their morning kiss, and went upstairs. He watched his wife as she sang softly to Daniel hoping that would help him get to sleep. When she stood up Ray was behind her and he wrapped his arms around her. She leaned against him. He whispered in her ear, and she blushed, and then nodded. They retired to their bedroom, closed the door, and enjoyed their time together.
They both fell asleep until Daniel woke them up a few hours later. Ray went out to do the chores, and Livy prepared supper. Martha had sent them leftovers from Saturday's dinner, including more of Daniel's birthday cake.
After Daniel went to bed that evening, Ray and Livy enjoyed a quiet time in the living room. Franklin had found his spot near the fire, and with a big sigh plopped down on the rug. Ray and Livy chucked, you'd think Franklin had had a busy day too! They talked about Daniel's birthday, and how big his eyes would get when he was handed his gifts from his cousins. They would each help him unwrap the gifts, and Daniel would say, 'Oh!' with big wide eyes of delight at his presents. They all got a big laugh out of how perfectly his mouth formed into an 'O' when he admired each gift. Ray and Livy laughed at the retelling of yesterday's events.
After a few moments they fell silent, enjoying the company of each other. It had been a busy two days for everyone in the Singleton household. Ray asked Livy if she wanted a cup of tea and some cake. Smiling at him she said, 'Sure, love, that would be nice.' Ray brought the tea pot and cups into the living room and set them on the table, and then went back to get the cake. He brought one big piece of cake and two forks. He pulled up a chair and sat in front of her. As he raised his head to look at her, they both had an immediate flashback. It was exactly one year ago today that Daniel was born, and it was in this exact place where they now sat that they shared their first real kiss as husband and wife.
Lovingly, softly Livy said, 'Ray.'
He was still looking at her. He loved her so much, and they had come a long way in the last year.
He still had the cake in his hand, and leaned forward to kiss her, and she leaned forward to meet him half way.
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