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In the pickup, Terry turned on the radio and started humming the Christian tune that was playing. In the car ahead of him, Izumi was looking over her list, smiling radiantly like an expectant mother of triplets.

"I was thinking," said Jake, as the train of vehicles merged onto the freeway, "that maybe we could paint a mural in the baby nursery as a present."

"I think Mom would like that," agreed Abby. "Did you have any subject matter in mind?"

"Dad is always calling Mom 'Little Dove,'" said Jake, "so I thought a dove's nest might be a good idea. What do you think?"

"Dad would really enjoy that," said Abby. "Did you know that Dove is my middle name? When I was born, Dad said he had two doves. It sounds a little silly, doesn't it? I mean, Abigail Dove Murphy. Even with my maiden name, it doesn't sound any better. When I was little, I used to beg Dad and Mom to change my middle name because some of the kids at school were making fun of it."

"I'm glad they didn't," replied Jake. "I like it."

Baby Bunting Bazaar was in Watertown, and required a few miles of driving to get there. As the small caravan of vehicles pulled into the parking lot, they had to split up, for parking spaces were scarce, and everyone had to fend for themselves.

John, Izumi, Terry, and AJ, met at the entrance, and everyone went inside. Displays of baby cribs, bedding, car seats, strollers, and clothing filled the large store.

"Welcome to baby land," chuckled Terry, unjamming a grocery cart from the line of others.

"Not that I'm complaining," Jake whispered to Abby, "but why did we need to come?"

"I guess they just wanted the whole family to be here," she shrugged.

Izumi began piling stuff into the cart-- eighteen sleepers in various colors, several large bundles of disposable diapers, nine pacifiers, forty bottles, nine light weight blankets, three heavy blankets, twelve pairs of socks, six pairs of baby booties, six baby bibs, baby powder, and so many other necessities that Abby mentally lost track of it all. By the time they reached the checkout, everyone but Izumi was pushing a cart.

"No need to go anywhere else, right?" asked Terry, a little hopefully.

"Sorry," smiled Izumi.

"Are you starting a day care?" asked the woman at the cash register.

"Nope," grinned John. "We're having triplets!"

"Congratulations!" said the woman, beckoning for some help from her co-workers.

Four carts of baby supplies left the store and were packed into John's car and Abby's jeep.

"It's getting near lunchtime," said John, as Jake helped unload the last of the load into the jeep. "Why don't we meet at the restaurant across the street?"

"Sounds good to me," said Terry, gathering the carts.

John and Izumi went ahead, while AJ waited for Terry.

"Are you doing all right?" inquired Abby, for Jake hadn't had any difficulty all day.

"I'm doing good," he grinned.

After Terry had returned the shopping carts, the three joined Izumi and John, who had already gotten a table at the restaurant.

"The next few stores will be the hardest," warned Izumi, as they ate their meal.

Terry cracked one joke after another, making it difficult for the others to finish eating. In spite of the long lines and endless waiting while Izumi made up her mind, Terry was enjoying himself. Come next January or early February, they were going to have three darling little babies! Three more Johanneses that Terry could enjoy their childhood with, that he could take fishing, and do all the things that had made Abby's childhood so special. As Abby watched her adopted uncle's joy, she knew her three new siblings would have the time of their life.
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