Here is our cozy porch, the flowers were planted by Asher and myself. Annika and Asher planted squash and sunflowers in the seed starting kit, lower right side of the photo.More step-mother thoughts: While I've been reading these books written by "experts" about step-families, they haven't really felt applicable to me and my own thoughts. I was reading this novel, Nightwoods. The main character has just inherited her neice and nephew, a set-of twins. They don't speak to her, and she's never been a parent before. She is trying to wrap her head around how they are all supposed to relate to each other. She says to herself, I don't expect myself to love them (which she inevitably does in time) I just have to be polite to them. She also calls herself "docent Luce." Her name is Luce, short for Lucinda, and she considers herself a docent for the kids, a teacher and one who guides them through this exhibit we call life. That spoke to me, I'm actually a docent for my job, and I know what that entails. I've been falsely thinking I'm supposed to immediately love Asher and Annika and be ready to jump in front of a train for them (like their Dad would). But really, I don't have to. If I ever get to the point that I feel that way, great. But it's not a requirement to being a good step-mom.