October 31, 2010

Goodnight Prayers

Overheard tonight during prayers with Chicken Nugget:

"Tank you God for my...(almost said food, then caught herself) my Mommy and my

Overheard tonight during goodnight prayers with Pollo:

"Tank you God for candy, and for Cow (Chicken Nugget's costume), and for Giraffe (his costume), and for Olivia, and Emma, and Oscar (all friends from church) and tank you God for Grandpa and Apa. (Both of his Grandpas)"

Overheard tonight during goodnight prayers with Chicken Little, after I jumped in her bed and rolled around to warm it up (her special request) while she put on her PJ's:

"Thank you God, for my Mommy, because she loves me, and thank you that she warmed up my bed, and thank you that her toot wasn't too smelly, and that the smell isn't on this side of my bed."

October 26, 2010

First Class

Yesterday, when planning my first trip (nothing like coming back from
maternity leave and traveling on day 2), I got upgraded to first class on
the Acela-that was a definite first!

This morning, I got up way ahead of schedule (another first and quite
shocking to say the least), and leisurely got ready. Of course there were
costume changes, and when I settled one of my favorite military style
winter(turned out to be a very poor choice for the 70 degree nyc day)
blazers (that hasn't fit in three years-yeah me), I felt very first
class.-at least until I remembered that what I thought was a cool shrunken
blazer 4 years ago, is actual a petite jacket on a non-petite girl (ie,.
Big girl in a Little girls jacket). No matter, I finished getting ready
except for my makeup, zip up the suitcase, and hop in the car to catch
my fancy train car.

I thought I had left plenty of time to get to the train, but as I parked
the car, I heard the train in the station, and I have never seen it early,
so I raced-huffing and puffing past all the beautiful people to slump in
seat. I started digging around in bag for my makeup(lots of time to put in
makeup on the train), and then digging some more. Then dumping the purse
out on the seat to dig some more.

Second day back on the job, first day in the beauty market, zero makeup on
the buyer. Very classy.

October 25, 2010

Charging forward

Hi ho, Hi ho
It's home from work we go

7:44 am - After three frantic wardrobe changes, I went with the outfit that my 6 year old picked out, and Chicken Little and I raced out the door.

8:02 - Quick sip and spit of the coffee that lacked any creamer - very thoughtfully made by Absent Minded Husband.

8:23 - Called Lisa and reinitiated the morning commute phone call - Calm adult conversation ensues, with only the occasional "Stop that"yelled on her end.

9:01 - I congratulate myself enthusiatically on making it to work on time, even with fog.

9:07 - Happily enter the world of bath soaps and shampoos and lotion and all sorts of hair removal instruments- I am going to be one nice smelling, exfoliated, hairless Chicken!

5:04 - Totter back out to the car in the new shoes - hello beautiful shoes, and hello new blisters!

6:30 pm - I open the back door and am charged and tackled by three happy little monsters! Lots of hugs and kisses, and "Momma, I lud you!"

Day 1 - complete success.

October 24, 2010

12 hours to Sanity

12 weeks ago, I left work, four days away from meeting my new son. It has been 3 months and so much has happened. We really started to settle into a routine last week and now, chaos, or rather, sanity, returns to the deChicken family. Momma goes back to work tomorrow (hear Hallelujah chorus resounding through the air). The lunch bags are packed, the snacks are stowed, the outfits are clean (though I have yet to confirm my first day outfit - oh the stress) and drop-off and pick-ups are scheduled. 5 people and 5 different locations - Keep your fingers crossed, people, this could get interesting!

On a technical side note, the struggle for hipness continues - I asked myself, what hip person uses a pc these days? So, on a whim (or rather in desperate frustration at the ancient 6 year old beast in the basement) tonight at 5:15 AMP and I decided to bring Christmas home early to the deChicken family. At 5:38, he peeled out of the driveway, racing to the Mac store before it closed at 6. He shut the store down, but he got it, and now I am typing this post on my new Mac Air. Big hearts are encircling this tiny computer! But now how to spell check with the right click....

October 23, 2010

Hipster Flair

I have spent the last two weeks in a last ditch effort to increase my coolness factor, and reduce or at least attempt to mask my mom-of-3-ness. I go back to work on Monday, to a whole new department, where I will be buying bath and body product (who's excited?!?! I only shrieked in excitement in the ear of my former boss when he called and told me - super professional and so cool of me!). I need to be as hip as this nerdy, lost somewhere in post-29 world mom can be. In a classic example of just how truly nerdy I am, I was out for coffee and dessert last night with two good friends (Happy Birthday B! and S, I would be happy to be friends with the good twin), in the hippest section of of the city, at 11 o'clock at night, and we spent the better part of three hours discussing theology and the Council of Nicene. But I digress.

So, I have been on a small shopping spree at all the hippest places - TJ's, Marshall's and Target obviously! I have bought sweater dresses/tunics and leggings, worn knee boots out of the house, tried skinny leg jeans and dress pants and all manor of long, wrappy sweaters. However, in the flurry of trying to shop while flailing frantically at the three small, store-destroying, scene-causing children, I bought a pair of jeans that looked as if they were identical matches to another pair of jeans I own, only down a size. It was only upon arriving back at that house, as I reached to remove the tags that I saw the two little words that are so not cool: Easy Rider. I had bought Mom jeans - I cried, but I kept them because they were so crazy comfortable

I had my nails done and my hair cut and colored - though there is no way to mask the damage done to my hair by Chicken Nugget. Absolutely no one tells you that after having a baby, large sections of your hair just, fall out! and have to regrow. I am either growing out thick bangs, or just living and loving my mullet - and please note that hair stealing baby is 2 years old and the damage is still very visible!

I have been watching trash TV - Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice and Gossip Girl by the hour (all while the children are sleeping of course - this is serious trash, in my book at least). But honestly, besides loving the fashion (that I could never fathom wearing, but hey, I am not Blake Lively and I, and thankfully, my husband have accepted this fact) and the true City feel ( I miss it!) I truly don't understand how they all so connected and ultimately disconnected by these "blasts" of gossip from some anonymous person. There is lots of dramatic pausing after dramatic text reading. This leads me to my most unhip trait.

Texting. When texting started, or at least when it started registering on my radar in 2004, I thought I could age gracefully past this phase, and join the world of post 29year olders who had no need for and no clue about texting. I make phone calls. I live for the phone, in fact, but I don't type on my phone. Unfortunately, everyone else my age did not make this decision to leave the texting to the younger folk. So now, I find texts 3 days later, I am constantly trying to text back in that ridiculous limited character space to friends about dinner plans that already happened, or the fact that they are running late (or more likely them finding out where the late Chicken is). Last week, I sent the exact same text to a person 6 times, and in the end, it actually wasn't a text to them. Add coworkers and bosses instant messaging me on my blackberry, and I am really in trouble. So I give up. I am not texting cool. I will DVR, blog, email and talk to my friends on my smartphone, skype, check my three sets of voicemail, facebook message and wall and chat, and even mobile upload from my ipod touch. I am as connected as I can be, but I will not text. That is my new line in the uncool, unhip sand around my streaky hair, mom jean, appliqued sweater wearing self.

October 21, 2010

"Too Tired"

Where, oh where has the blogger been?
This question was posed to me yesterday by one of my best friends (Happy Birthday B, by the way) and my answer was one word - "Too Tired" - oh wait, that is three words.
Day 1 - "Too Tired" to do laundry - but if I hadn't, the basement would have been buried soon, and the children would be naked, and we made a rule recently that no deChicken can run naked through the house, so...no blog, only endless laundry.
Day 2 - "Too Tired" to wake up and go to the bathroom. I have a dream that one day I will not have to wash 2 sets of pee-pee sheets a day. The nap adds a set, so I could have them skip the nap, but then when would Mommy clear out the DVR? So no blog, just drowning in a sea of pee-pee sheets and pants.
Day 3 - "Too Tired" of the doctor's office. Current calculation is 7 hours this week, and that brings the grand total to 26 hours in the last month - not including the dentist appt I missed last week. Nothing serious, just obscure and weird, requiring large amounts of times spent WebMD'ing the latest diagnosis and adding two more specialist to both the speed dial and the Mom calendar I had to buy today (with full people tracking flow chart). So no blog, just endless sympathy stickers, and sympathy lollipops, and unsympathetic wrestling holds for needles!
Day 4 - "Too Tired" to put away nicely folded laundry in piles all over the living room, so when the dinner guests arrived, I held crying "Pollo", (he wakes up as happy as his Momma does) and AMP did frantic laundry hurdles when he got home 10 minutes later. Apparently, someone in the family, (and I swear this time it wasn't me) was also "Too Tired" to flush, because one of guests was treated to surprise in the downstairs toilet (again, what is with this family and potty issues! And no, I promise, it wasn't me, Jo!) - not embarrassing at all. So no blog, just endless apologies for the floater, and the laundry piles, and the burnt grilled cheese (isn't that what everyone serves dinner guests?)
Day 5 - "Too Tired" to watch TV. I promised the B (Happy Birthday to you, wait, did I already say that?) I would write this post (it might have sounded way funnier on the phone to her last night), then was "too tired" to make it through one hysterical episode of 30 Rock - went comatose on the couch at 9:15. So no blog, only drooling and snoozing.
3 more days, and I get to go back to work! This staying at home nonsense is exhausting!

October 16, 2010

Potty Talk

A friend of mine posted on Facebook that there are 18x more germs on a cell phone than on a public restroom seat. At some point in the sea of mundane comments about how nasty this was (mine included), someone made the insightful comment that we should then start grabbing cell phones out of the mouths of toddlers, and handing them toilet seats. I say all this because this reminded me of the grossest and funniest deChicken story ever. Prepare yourself - this is a seriously gross, stomach-turning story - weak stomachs, and germaphobes please exit here.

Last year, I went on a trip to Europe in February, right after Chicken Nugget really got her feet under her and started toddling in full force. AMP always likes to come up to the airport and pick me up when I come back from an overseas trip, so he packed the girls up in the car and headed up to get me (he is super-dad still at this part of the story. In true AMP form, he went to the wrong terminal, so I ended up waiting for a few minutes outside baggage claim. When they showed up finally, Chicken Little looked horrified and excited, in the way only a 5 year old can. AMP looked, well ill, and Chicken Nugget looked happy as a clam. Kisses all around, and as I carried Chicken Nugget to the car, I asked why they were so late. AMP of course confessed the terminal confusion (and his terminal state of confusion), and then unloaded the rest of this on me:

AMP: "So, ummmm, Chicken Little had to pee right when we got here."
Me: "Okay"- searching look
AMP: Rubbing his face with his hands first, he says "Well, I took them into the men's room, and then I had to help Chicken Little with her button. I didn't realize Chicken Nugget could move so fast yet, so when I looked up, she was over by the urinals and was holding 'baa-boo' (her pacifer) in her hand."
Me: "Okay" - confused and slightly concerned look
AMP: Swallow - "She dipped it, in the urinal...."
Me: "Noooo"
Chicken Little piping in : ".....and she put it right back in her mouth! After she swished it around in the boy potty!"
Chicken Nugget: Just staring at me with the happiest little smirk on her face.

So the moral of this story is, please don't be concerned about the germs on your cell phone. My one year old happily survived the airport urinal.

October 13, 2010

Apple Pie

In order to appease my husband about the other weekend's apple picking escapade, I decided to make him a homemade apple pie. This is the holy grail of desserts for AMP, and I once made a good one (note, once). So, I start cutting and peeling and coring this afternoon, while my three crazy nut job children played outside - check out what they did when left to their own devices in the garage:

All was going along swimmingly (AMP's favorite word - he even tried to put it in his dissertation), until I started digging around in the cabinets for my pie pan. Nada. I went through every cabinet in the kitchen, and .... nada. I thought they might be hiding in the drawer under the stove - the drawer that has been jammed closed for over a year - so my Dad, Papa Chicken (he and Nana Hen are currently visiting the Coop), took apart the drawer with a screw driver, and....nada. So I gave up, we hauled the children inside so Papa Chicken could watch them watch television, and I took the Swagger Wagon to the grocery store. I decided to splurge and buy myself a new ceramic pie pan instead of the disposable kind, because what self-respecting baker uses disposable aluminum pans? An hour after the whole process started, I pull back into the driveway (the house was still standing) and carry my new pan into the house and dump my handbag on the mudroom counter.....right next to a ceramic pie pan. My friend Christina had left it at our house on Sunday night after the girl's party. I had washed it up nicely and put on the back porch so I wouldn't forget it of course! To add insult to injury, the decal on the bottom of her pan is - you guessed it, an apple pie recipe.

October 9, 2010


Surrounded in the kitchen by 50 pink Princesses cupcakes, I re-found one of favorite songs on my Ipod - Sarah MacLachlan's "Prayer of St. Francis". I just went back to my most trusted source of knowledge (Wikipedia), and found out that while it is attributed to St Francis, it can only be traced back to a 1912 French prayer magazine. No matter the source, I love it. This is what I believe and what I can only attempt to live.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon:
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope
where there is darkness, light
where there is sadness, joy
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

October 8, 2010

Sister Birthdays

On October 8th, 2004 Chicken Little was born in Ethiopia. On October 6th, 2008, Chicken Little got a sister. Two years ago this morning, I left the hospital with Chicken Nugget, in all her two day old newborn glory. We hit the grocery store for cupcakes and Domino's for pizza all before heading to Big Sissy's preschool - it was Chicken Little's birthday and we had a party to throw! Chicken Nugget was in school before she ever entered our home, but that is of course only fitting for a member of the deChicken family. And who would be scared of taking a brand new baby, barely 48 hours old, into a preschool full of kids in the middle of cold and flu season. Not me says the Ultimate Chicken, but maybe that was the residual epidural speaking, or perhaps AMP was projecting his endless bravery (needless recklessness) onto me.

It is fun that they can celebrate their birthdays with one big party (and very convenient for Mom and Dad) while still having their own special day, two days apart. While I was pregnant, Lisa and I speculated at length about the possibility of Chicken Nugget being born on Chicken Little's birthday. We couldn't fathom how anyone would deal with two children in the same family having the same exact birthday - we talked about this off and on for months (no lie), until we remembered that Lisa's sons.....are twins!

Anyway, I couldn't be prouder of my two little girls. They have been the best of friends since the beginning, and are both just magical in some many different ways. I always had this insane fear that I would end up the mother of 4 boys, with no Pink, and no Princesses, and no Sparkles and Sunshine. And then we started the adoption process in Ethiopia, they told us there was an 80% chance we would get a boy - and we got Chicken Little. When I got pregnant with Chicken Nugget, we assumed it was a boy, because that deChicken family is a Y producing herd(what are families of Chickens called?). And then suddenly we had another beautiful girl, and my world was full of Princesses, and Pink, and all sorts of Magic and Sparkles, and let's not forget the Drama that comes with two girls! I love that I get to be their Mom, and really love that they get to be sisters. So here is a resounding Happy Birthday to Chicken Little, and an equally resounding belated Happy Birthday my little Chicken Nugget! Who loves you the most?

The first time Chicken Little saw Chicken Nugget.

A year ago with Grandma

The Birthday Girls!

October 5, 2010


So we attract a bit of attention. Four years ago, when it was just AMP and I, no one ever payed a bit of attention to the slightly (okay, more than slightly) nerdy couple in the corner. Introduce the magical Chicken Little, and I begin to notice more attention, but I attributed this all to the amazing cuteness of my darling daughter. When Chicken Nugget came along, we did (and continue to get) a lot of comments like, "Oh, she is such a miracle!" (like Chicken Little isn't?) or "So glad you got to have one of your own" (Again, and Chicken Little isn't our own child?), but I just explain that we chose to add Chicken Little to our family, and that Chicken Nugget was a happy (but completely unplanned) surprise - not that anyone truly needs the details of our family planning strategy (we didn't have one). Anyway, throw in Pollo with Skin Shade #3, and the odd looks come 90 miles an hour, all day long. I am sure that there are some people imagining crazy stories, when AMP isn't with us, and I am out and about with my beautiful children. The abject staring, pointing, and whispering started in full force in Colombia, but again, we attributed this to Chicken Nugget's major blondie status, which of course doesn't blend in quite so well down there. And while it seems like it may be better here, I believe that is because I turned my Are-those-people-staring-at-us? radar off a few days ago. Yet with the decrease in staring has come a rapid increase in inappropriate comments and questions. While adoption is my favorite topic, which I will happily discuss at length at any time, some questions and comments are just weird, like "So what happened to their real family?", or "It is like when I adopted my puppy...." . This Dad says it perfectly in his blog (Click here to read it)- all but #10 has been said to me more times than I can begin to count. With the increase in inappropriate comments has also come increased attention from random members of the opposite sex - never have I been hit on so much! So I say all this to say, please at least try not to stare, judge, or make assumptions when you see this crazy blonde woman with three different colored children all under the age of 6 traipsing down the street . Don't ask her if they are all really hers - they are. And don't assume she is easy - her husband will readily attest to the fact that she isn't.

October 3, 2010

First Annual deChicken Plucking Festival

Today seemed like the first true day of Fall. We headed out to a local farm with our friends to try apple and pumpkin picking. Now, my husband may have grown up on a farm, but I am a city Chick for sure - no picking experience whatsoever. The fabulous fresh air, the hysterical friends we were with, the beautiful scenic views of the red barns (because all barns were meant to be red), the cozy sweatshirts and the vision of my three gorgeous (no bias here) children romping the fields and glorious orchards must have sparked a temporary bout of complete insanity. Currently in the trunk of my Swagger Wagon are two extremely full bags of apples (not including the one Chicken Nugget devoured, seeds and all - I promise I feed the child!) and 66, yes I repeat, 66 lbs of pumpkins. As a note, we eat about 1 apple a week if we are lucky, and the last pumpkin we bought rotted in our front porch window. AMP on the other hand, in true Dutch form, was muttering about bologna sandwiches all next week to pay for the pumpkins. But my three children were swirling happily in the insanity with me, and I tell you, I have never seen Pollo so happy - Check it out!

October 2, 2010

Parade of Fun

Five best friends tackling an Elephant.

Four seconds of terror during a gigantic Sissy Underdog.

Three girls learning what it takes to push a man around.

Two sisters sharing a slide and a laugh.

One happy little boy desperately fleeing the insanity of his two crazy sisters.

After last week's endless parade of doctor's appts, this has been a week of some serious fun.