I love birth stories. I especially love being able to make a meal for a newly sleep deprived mother who has NO idea of what she just got herself into, because I’ve been there. And what I appreciated the most after having my oldest was the abundance of food delivered each night and the various people “oooing & awwwing” over my beautiful baby. Seriously, what could be better? Sleep, but we all know that’s not gonna happen, so might as well take the food.
Well, I had two roasting chickens that I planned on roasting at the same time (one for our family and one for my friend). And after we ate our chicken, I would use the carcass to make some chicken stock. Both girls were sound asleep still at 4:00, which is a miracle in and of itself and gave me some extra time to cook. But as any mother would tell you, all good things must come to an end and reality sets in. The end of nap time makes me feel like Cinderella when the clock strikes midnight and my dress turns to rags and coach turns to a pumpkin…and I become mama again.
This mama had her almost three year old to tend to and slowly got her entertained with a new dollhouse. I let her be, in order to get my youngest who was crying. Note to self: never underestimate the capabilities of a little girl who’s middle name is “monkey business.” As I was changing a diaper, I was thinking how everything was going according to schedule. The chicken would be done in about five minutes, my cranberry crostata (which I’ll post at a later date) was cooling on the counter, daddy would be home in less than 10 minutes (date night after dinner) and I would get to visit my friend’s newborn baby boy shortly.
Then, I hear a monkey pants coming up the stairs going on & on about something. And as I turn to see what she’s talking about my mouth drops. I hurriedly set my youngest back in the crib and picked up my oldest to head to the bathtub. What she was saying was, “I painted on myself, I painted on my clothes!” She has absolutely no guile in her bones. She definitely stopped chanting her fresco debut once I stripped her down and got the water running, which turned into cries of, “I want my blankie!”
All this to say…the chickens turned out well, but we didn’t eat together as a family, because I had to get some cleaner at the store. Our date night was obliterated, since my husband and I were stuck spending our evening trying to scrub the food coloring gel out of the two flights of stairs and carpet in the basement (oh yes, she was painting herself with pink food coloring gel to resemble frosting). My eldest, a.k.a. monkey pants, went to bed with painted on pink socks, pink/reddish hands, and one bright pink cheek. And I forgot to tell Ben to save the carcass, so when I got home from dropping off the dinner and picking up the cleaning supplies I asked, “You didn’t throw away the chicken carcass, did you?” My destiny for the evening was sealed and that was the last straw. I felt like stamping my feet, throwing myself on the ground and flail about, but I’m the grown up right.
Instead, I took a couple deep breaths, nursed my youngest, said goodnight to monkey pants and started blotting the pink stains with my hubby. We soon waved the white flag of defeat, because this pink stain might just be here to stay (the carpet cleaners are closed for the night…we’ll see tomorrow). As Ben and I breathed in the lovely fumes of various cleaners we were using, I asked Ben, “What could be worse?” He said, “Being in the hospital right now with Veronica, because she got into something that was toxic.” I liked hearing that.
It made cleaning the carpet even more therapeutic and peaceful. It’s only carpet, and Lord knows there’s probably going to be more stains to add to the pink punk rock hue. And although we missed our date night, I was thankful that it was only food coloring gel and not something worse. I was even thankful for the great story this would be for years to come. It’s moments like these that keep me on my toes as a mother and I know when I look back 20 years from now, I’ll take the pink carpet over delicious chicken any day of the week.