#28: Welcome Back, Stacey!

I’m so excited because QUEEN STACEY IS BACK! Like, I’m really sorry that it took her parents’ divorce for this to happen, but I am so pumped to have Stacey McGill back in Stoneybrook to entertain me. Anyway, let’s get to it.

Stacey has happily settled back into her New York life, being best friends with Laine, baby-sitting for Henry and Grace, and shopping at Bloomingdale’s. But one thing isn’t perfect – her parents’ marriage. They fight constantly; her father yells about her mother’s spending (“fifteen hundred dollars at Tiffany’s?!”) and her mother yells about her father’s workaholic nature (“I’m surprised Stacey recognizes you anymore!”). It’s not pleasant for Stacey and it makes her really uncomfortable.

Stacey goes to Laine’s to cry it out, and Laine suggests Stacey call Claudia, her “Connecticut best friend”. Stacey does. It’s during a BSC meeting, so she gets to talk to everyone. Kristy and Dawn can kind of commiserate about fighting parents, and everyone else is just happy to hear from Stacey and sympathetic about her circumstances. Stacey leaves Laine’s feeling a bit better… but when she gets home, her parents sit her down and tell her they’re getting a divorce.

Stacey is angry. She doesn’t understand why they can’t work things out, and they won’t fully explain their problems to her (they say it’s personal). She’s pissed. PISSED. She goes right to bed after dinner and doesn’t talk to her parents at all the next day. At school she avoids everyone, even Laine, because she’s embarrassed and doesn’t want to be a “divorced kid”. She has a ton of questions – will her dad move out? With whom will she live? How much will change? She doesn’t want any change.

She finds out that her dad will be staying in NYC because of his job, and her mother will be moving outside the city – maybe to Stoneybrook! Now Stacey has to decide which parent to live with, which is tough for any kid. And with Stoneybrook in play, is the BSC a factor too? Stacey keeps going back and forth, but then she has a thought – what if she can somehow get her parents back together, so they don’t get divorced at all?

She comes up with a few plans: tricking her parents into taking her to a movie and making them sit together, luring them onto a carriage ride, making them a romantic dinner, trying to trick them into going out for a romantic dinner, etc. Unsurprisingly, the antics don’t work. Stacey ends up going to Stoneybrook with her mom to go house-hunting, and they surprise Claudia by picking her up on the way! Most of the houses in the McGills’ price range are small or dingy or need a lot of work or are in bad neighborhoods, but they do look at one that’s in decent shape and right behind the Pikes’ house. Mrs. McGill promises to give the realtor her answer within a week. Stacey gets to have a slumber party with the BSC that night. (Still, New York feels like home, and she’s not sure what to do.)

Stacey ends up making a pro-and-con list after her dad finds a new apartment and she feels like she needs to decide where to live.

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Her ultimate decision? Stoneybrook, of course! Mrs. McGill calls the real estate agent and says she wants the house behind the Pikes’. Then Stacey has to break the news to her dad. He’s a little hurt, but he is supportive. Good job, Mr. McGill. Moving day arrives, and it’s frenzied and sad. Stacey has to pack up everything, and then say goodbye to Henry and Grace, to Laine, and (hardest of all) to her dad. Then it’s off to Stoneybrook! 

When Stacey arrives at her new house, the entire BSC and a bunch of their sitting charges are waiting to greet her. She’s very happy to see everyone, and Claudia sticks around after to help Stacey unpack her room. They have some ~deep~ conversations about Mimi and how Stacey isn’t totally sure that she made the right decision and isn’t 100% happy to be back yet. Claudia understands.

Stacey quickly gets back into the swing of things, though – she baby-sits for (a rapidly maturing) Charlotte Johanssen, she’s in an advanced math class at SMS, she’s back in the Baby-sitters Club (and is even the treasurer again). It’s good to be back.

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