November 27, 2010


Last night, after an eventful day of seeing old friends and driving a lot, AMP and I tucked the kids in bed, and then sat down together on the couch to look at houses on the internet (an absolutely favorite pastime, even if we are never moving from this house). Around 10:00, these two old folks decided to call it a night, and head upstairs to curl up under our chocolate brown fur duvet and perhaps have a moment or two together before we drifted off to sleep. As I crawled into my side of the bed, (and let's just discreetly say, the pj's weren't on yet), I saw something small, chocolate brown and furry crawl off the foot of the bed - and the screaming ensued!

A rather large mouse was sleeping completely camouflaged and all cozy in the lush furry rolls of the duvet - Apparently, two furry creatures wanted to sleep in my bed last night - AMP and the Mouse. AMP started believing my hysterical shouts and flailings when he saw the mouse charge under my dresser. As he rose up with my tennis shoe in hand to whack it, the sneaky little bugger darted around the corner and into the main room. AMP, in his boxers, chased it wildly around the corner and lost it in the crawlspace. Through this whole escapade, this Chicken was in the fetal position, screaming like an insane person in the middle of the bed - all thoughts of "togetherness" gone forever!

In the light of morning, the fear remains. I had to take the three chicks upstairs with me for protection while I got dressed for our excursion to Home Depot to buy a bigger and better mousetrap. AMP has now named our little intruder Jerry, which seems too personal to me, since there has been a major fatwah declared against him!

November 24, 2010

My Thanksgiving

I am so thankful for my friends who are like family to us. This only child has somehow managed to collect a great brother and some amazing sisters along the way - thanks for being in my life.

We had a riotous family photo shoot last Saturday. If you make it to the end of the slideshow below, you will see the quick descent into insanity that prompted one of my blessed children (take a guess which one) to not get their promised cookie reward. But despite the craziness, Jamie managed to get some great first family pictures (Thanks!). So, this is what I am most thankful for this year - all of my little fabulous chicks home, and AMP who is laughing all along the way with me.

I keep on Falling

I get asked frequently if the love is the same - between a mother and her biological child and a mother and her adopted child, as I have had the privilege to experience both. The answer is unequivocally, yes. Loving a child is just like falling in love. There is an initial spark of love, which when combined with their utter dependence on you for every need is actually a very powerful start to the love - it is nice to be needed, but it is completely intimidating. However, no matter the folklore of love at first sight, I believe it takes time to truly fall in love - a long and wonderful process. I fell in love all over again with Chicken Little again in Colombia, as I watched her mature into Big Sissy seemingly over night, and I fell in love tonight when she cuddled into my lap to watch Curious George. I fell in love with Chicken Nugget the other night when she grabbed my face between her two little hands and quoted my own phrase back to me "Momma, I luv you da most!" And I started falling in love with my little Pollo yesterday, when he climbed up in my lap, curled both arms around my neck, leaned his forehead on mine, and just smiled at me with those huge dimples. Everyone should have this much love in their life, and I am unbelievably lucky to have the daily experience of a love of this magnitude.

November 22, 2010

June is GTA Month

It seems like every month has a theme - a theme of awareness. I googled and found this link, and it will need to be bookmarked so all the month/themes can be added to our family calendar. I was particularly excited to learn that October is National Window Covering Safety month. As a full-fledged Chicken, I have spent many an hour worrying about the general safeness of our window coverings for the wee chicks. Mural Awareness Month in May also intrigued me, but Parental Awareness Month in April confused me. Is it awareness for the struggles of parents, or for all the children to be aware of how aware their parents truly are? I think Seagrass Awareness speaks for itself, but nothing trumps Goat Trauma Awareness (GTA) month in June. Do we think this is head trauma, or psychological trauma - I will keep you posted, as this one must be thoroughly researched. But, I digress - the Google did it again. One quick search and two hours later, I am surrounded by open windows of hilarious, useless information.

In all seriousness, the monthly theme that means the most to AMP and I, is this month, National Adoption Awareness. In this week of heightened awareness around Being Thankful, I believe that one of the things I am most thankful for in my life, is to be apart of the world of adoption. I have been utterly and completely altered and blessed by my experience with adoption, both in my own family and in the lives of my friends. Everyone wins in this situation. I win - I get to parent a phenomenal child, adding a little more diversity, and love and of course general hilarity to my life and future. My child wins - they get all that comes with being part of a family, and having a Mom and Dad to call their own. I thank God everyday for my kids, and the love and joy they have brought to my life.

48 hour challenge update

Considering we decided at the last minute - Friday night at 11pm to be exact - to redo the floor in the bathroom, and considering that we also went to church, had a family photo op with "Aunt Ninny" (photos to come soon), and caught up on a week's worth of laundry, and not to mention managing the monsters, oops I mean children, and....well, can you see where this is headed?

One Week Bathroom project eases its way into Two Week Bathroom. There is just a teeny bit left to do on the bathroom, like install the sink, or mirror or shower. But toilet is back in the house and working (insert Hallelujah Chorus here) the paint is on the walls, and the floor looks spectacular thanks to AMP's hours of painstaking work last night. I must admit the mental image of AMP tiling in a white tshirt, boxers and moccasins is going to stick with me for a while - I couldn't stop laughing. Internally of course, because you don't want to tick off the man with the trowel in his hand.

November 20, 2010

48 hour challenge

6:30 this Saturday morning, and I am up and dressed before the kids are even awake (for those of you who know me, please pick yourself off of the floor, close your mouth and continue reading. This is the deal. In this House of Horrors, I mean House of Projects, we have a disturbing tendency to start a project and leave it unfinished...for years. Basement, started in late 2006 - early 2007 before Chicken Little appeared. Current status, being finished off (tile, door, window, heat, moldings) by our trusty friend Pep the Builder and his brother. Upstairs Bedroom (ours) and sitting room, started in the summer (2008) before Chicken Nugget arrived, in order to have a place for our bestie Leanndra (also Chicken Nugget's care giver to live for a year), which she did, amidst the studs and installation. Current status, still some minor painting and lighting and then final setup to do.
And now we have torn out the bathroom - the main floor bathroom, the one our crazy pee-pee producers use. It was supposed to be a week project, and it started last Saturday morning. The new goal is that by 6:30 am Monday morning, when we get up for work, that spectacular new room will be done. Current staus, no paint on walls or moldings, floor to be retiled, no fixtures, and if course no running water. Keep your fingers crossed and say a prayer. This Late Lucy Chicken might crack under the stress!

November 17, 2010

The Good Egg

Fell asleep at 8pm with wee Chickens. Awoke just now at 10:45 to find AMP cleaning house and the toilet back in the house. Despite all the best laid Chicken/Lisa plans of painting tonight, and progressing towards resuming our social activities, our trashiness quotient is receding (thanks only to an industrious husband installing that toilet), and the measure of our laziness (okay, I own that one) is only climbing. While AMP is now vacuuming (what a good Egg~), this Chicken is heading to bed. Goodnight. High hopes for tomorrow.

November 16, 2010

Water Shortage

So, we made it, in the nick of time, and we have a shiny, new bathroom - bright white and empty. Unfortunately, (or fortunately) we can't do anything tonight to the bathroom while it "cures". Fortunate, that now I can catch up on The Good Wife and go to bed in the pm, not the am for the first time in several days. Unfortunate, because AMP, in an unexplainable passion to suddenly not have a half-done project, has established the edict that no social plans can be made until the bathroom is done. Not one shared cup of coffee, nada. This was upsetting to me at first, as there are several friends I want, even need, to hang out with this weekend. But then I came home tonight to get the kids ready for bed, and there was no water.

We will now take a short commercial break while I run up and down the stairs "assisting" my husband (which mostly involves me standing on the cold cement basement floor, looking concerned, generally useless, but extremely supportive) in getting the water flowing again in the house. (insert soothing, non water-related music here)

As I return to the dry safety of the couch, the water is running, but the toilet is still in the backyard (and he has hijacked the television - no Good Wife for me). In conclusion, three young, potty training children and one working bathroom all the way in the basement - Did I ever mention Chickens are excellent planners?

One Week Bathroom

AMP and I decided to just get some projects done around the house, so that we are less stressed thinking about all that needs to be done. Why we chose to do this when I am less than 4 weeks back from my third maternity leave in 4 years kind of escapes me, but why not? So, we hired someone to help us finish the basement playroom and spare bedroom (ongoing project since the Winter of 2007 - it was time) and then to just further complicate the lives of 5 people who go to 5 different places every single day of the week, we decided to redo our original bathroom. I think I can no longer claim to be even moderately smart after making this decision - all rational thinking went out the window last week when I called the guy to come refinish the tile for tomorrow. In order for the tile to be finished, the bathroom must be empty of everything - completely cleaned out and bare.

Last Saturday morning - wake up to the same disgusting bathroom AMP and I have used for the last 5 and half years in this house. There was the original tile on the wall (79 years old), all cracked and dingy. There was the icky towel bar that was also quite up there in years, with the matching ceramic inset toothbrush holder, that didn't come close to fitting these new fangled thick-handled toothbrushes. There was also the last remaining wall paper (baby blue stripe -matched the black and white tile detail and the yellow sink and tub perfectly) in a house that was once fully coated in tiny floral wall paper. By the end of Saturday, the wall paper was down, the walls were half scrubbed and the weird tile pieces were broken out. Yesterday, AMP spent 7 hours stripping the woodwork, while I bribed the children to not go swim in the paint stripper and turpentine. Tonight, AMP did some scholarly professor work, while I grouted the new tiles, and cleaned out the mess. Now, it is 1:30 am. AMP is still working, I am six seconds from bed, and while we are the trashy people with a toilet in the back yard, the sink and radiator are still nestled happily in their spots in the bathroom. T-Minus 6 and half hours until Tile Man arrives, expecting a bare bathroom - I wish him luck.