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Justin and I walked into the house, laughing about how our day had turned out.

"What are you excited about?" Diane asked, a smile on her face.

"Dileah attacked me with snow, grandma." Justin pouted.

I laughed and punched his arm.

"You got me back! I'm shivering right now." I said.

"You deserved it."

I rolled my eyes.

"You're evil."

"Did you remember to get the Christmas lights?" Diane asked.

"Yes." Justin said, and I held up the new box of lights.

It was just after lunch time and I knew that I had to get started on cooking soon if I wanted us to have dinner on time.

We placed the groceries on the kitchen counter and Diane got our food out of the microwave for us.

"Pattie and Richard are going to have a lovely welcome with Dileah's cooking." Diane smiled.

"I wasn't expecting them so soon." Justin said.

"I guess they managed to do all they had to on time. I'm just excited to have them here this soon."

"Me too." I said, "But Richard is a really good cook. I don't know what he'll think of my mom's lasagna."

"He'll love it, baby. Don't worry." Justin assured me with a smile.

After we ate, I got to work in the kitchen and Justin helped Diane with the dishes.

By the time I was ready to dish up, Pattie and Richard walked through the door and the house was full of excitement.

"It smells amazing in here." Pattie smiled as she hugged me.

"Dileah's kitchen magic." Diane said.

"And we're just in time. Lovely."

"I'll go dish up for everybody." I smiled after greeting Pattie and Richard.

While Justin and Bruce took the suitcases upstairs, Diane quickly finished setting the table with Pattie and soon we were all seated at the table, enjoying a nice dinner with some white wine that Richard had so kindly brought along.

The table was full of conversation and it warmed my heart to experience all of this for the first time-- a real family. Everyone was happy and we were all laughing and sharing jokes. It was all better than I could've imagined and, if it wasn't for Justin kissing my cheek, I would've over thought the scene and started crying.

"Are you alright there, baby?" He asked me softly while everyone carried on with their conversations.

"Yes." I managed a smile. "I'm just really happy, that's all."

He held my hand under the table and gave my hand a squeeze.

"This is delicious." Richard said, smiling at me.

I still wasn't used to Richard being nice to me and I wasn't used to seeing him smile either. I had to quickly get used to it so I wouldn't be caught looking at him weirdly when he was nice to me. It was a different side to him... but I liked it better than his bitter, angry side.

"Thank you." I said.

"Can I have the recipe?" He tested me.


"It's her mother's recipe." Diane smiled. "I think Dileah's answer is actually 'no', Richard."

"She's too polite to say so." Pattie smiled.

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