It was Tuesday morning, Oct. 1 and Ashley and Cameron were headed to the hospital early that morning. Not much was happening on the hospital side. However, the situation at home was a little different.

Certainly, I had plenty of experience, welcoming eight children into my home. I believe I raised them as best as I could. They were bathed, fed, educated, and entertained, everything a good parent should do.

So when Ashley asked me if I could handle the kids for two days when she went to the hospital to have the baby, I responded, “Of course, Ashley. I took care of you.”

Ashley's children, Dallin, Cade, Carter, and Brooke, range from 2 to 9 years old.

Times have changed. Kids learn differently, behave differently, and are entertained differently. In addition, we live in another galaxy with technology.

I don't know much but I do know how to get four children dressed, fed breakfast, and to school on time.


Let's return to Oct. 1. It was a beautiful 6:00 am in Idaho. The mountains were shining, practically smiling under their snowy peaks. The backyard leaves were hurriedly dancing downward, toward the dew kissed grass.

Don't you love Idaho?

I waited 30 minutes, woke the kids, and the race began.

Dallin asked what was in his lunch. Carter said he was too tired to get up. Cade didn't need his jacket because it was hot outside, and Brooke wanted to go see her baby sister, who had not been born yet.

I started with breakfast by asking the kids if they liked egg sandwiches, and they said yes. But Carter wanted his egg dippy, without bread. Cade wanted scrambled eggs. Dallin didn't want eggs, just cereal, and Brooke wanted chocolate milk.

I complied and told them to hurry and get dressed. Ashley had instructed me on how to style their hair.

Now, I had not styled my boys’ hair but was willing to go with the flow.

I was to spray their hair with water. Then I was to gel, blow dry, and mouse, in that order.

I did so and they looked adorable.

Carter had not dressed in the clothes he was to wear. So when I pulled his shirt over his head, we smashed his hair and had to style it again.

About that time, Dallin hollered that Brooke was in the fridge, looking for treats, and needed her diaper changed.

I hadn't even dressed, but was willing to forgo dressing and wear my nightgown to drop the kids off at school, so I could change Brooke and get her a chocolate milk. Nightgowned and slippered, I raced out the door leaving the house a bit untidy.

No worry, I speedily loaded the kids, their lunches, their backpacks and Brooke's diaper bag into the car.

I was to drop them off and then race to the hospital to be part of the wonderful birthing process. However, I needed to first come home and get dressed, after dropping the kids.

As I backed the Escalade out of the garage, I pushed the garage button on the roof, and the garage did not close but the roof top opened.

Cade and Dallin looked at each other, like grandma is . . . . funny?

Before you knew it, I was pushing every button in sight, rotating mirrors, changing my seat position and the heater, while adjusting the security system.

Carter mentioned that I didn't close the garage but opened the roof. I told him to not worry because grandma was warm.

The three boys looked at each other, questioning my every move. I told them not to fret about their grandma, who was driving down the road in my nightgown and ’60s eyeglasses.

The ride to school was a little long, especially with the short drive up the mountain. Luckily, I got the boys to school before the tardy bell.

And the rest is history. After 31 hours of labor, for me and Ashley, sweet Lauren was born.

I testify, these precious infants come directly from Heaven. I felt it. I witnessed it. I know it.

Diane Mack is coordinator of Putting Families First, Jackson County’s Family Week Foundation. Email her at or visit