My kids are back with me after their week with their daddy in Hopewell Junction, NY. They were dirty, matted, exhausted, and a little stinky. But their limbs were in tact and they were happy. That's really all a single mom can ask for.
So after BlogHer 2010 I closed up the house in Woodstock and headed out to my mom's house in the Hamptons for a few days to "catch up" with my babies. It was so nice to tuck them into bed and kiss them.
Ben said "Say Hi to Chicken!” And he shoved a chicken in my face and made it dance around.
My son has lots of stuffed animals. Not the kind most little boys in movies have. He’s not interested in those. He doesn’t care for bears, or floppy dogs. His favorite stuffed animals are a stuffed leopard shark (it’s really cool) and this fluffy chicken. It’s a big chicken too. Not like a tiny Beanie Babies chicken. This thing is like a solid 18” from comb to chicken foot. And he loves it.
I say “Hi Chicken.” I hugged the dancing chicken.
“I threw up on him a little. But he’s okay now.”
I froze - chicken clutched to breast. “Um. When did you throw up on him?” I’m wondering if he’s remembering something from YEARS past. Sometimes these kids like to bring up old history – you know, just to remind you of it. And I'm hoping this is one of those times.
“Last week. When I was with daddy.”
No need to discuss the fact that Daddy didn’t tell me Ben threw up. Ben throws up a lot. This is not particularly newsworthy. However, a barfy chicken is newsworthy – if only so it can be properly sanitized.
"How did you and daddy clean it?"
"With a wet paper towel." I imagined Ben and his Dad taking a wet Bounty (or God Forbid, a lesser brand – love my Bounty!), running it under water and taking a topical swipe at the barf embedded in the stuffed bird’s long fuzz.
“That sounds “efficient.” I said. I was now holding the chicken by the beak with two fingers.
“You’re being dramatic aren’t you.” Wow. He knows me.
“You mean sarcastic.”
“Yeah. That.” He smiled at me and smoothed the chicken's fur...uh feathers...wait...pukey feathers/fur.
“You’re right. I am being sarcastic….You might want to wash that.” I pointed to his hand.
“He’s fine. We wiped off all the big chunks.”
AND with that, Mr. Chicken went into the washing machine and I took a shower.
Next time I'm setting the bar higher for "Daddy Time". "Happy kids with all their limbs" will just not be enough.