His hands were covered in pizza sauce, her face was barely visible through the apples and apricots strewn from ear to ear, and there was me and John between them playing referees.
I had made homemade pizza, Luke's favorite and Ellie was armed with two jars of Earth's Best baby food. Easy night, peaceful meal we thought. Most nights Luke picks at this or that, sometimes he'll lap it up (french toast, spaghetti, couscous, avocado, quesadillas and mac'n cheese are always homeruns), and some nights he takes one look at what I have served before him looks at me like, "are you friggin kidding me?" scrunches up his nose and hands it back. Tonight though he knew it was pizza and couldn't wait for it to be ready.
We had worked all day cooking food for the week, cycling the laundry, and organizing some kitchen cupboards as they took simultaneous 4 hour naps. Of course it felt good to get some much needed work done but once we were ready to take a break they woke up, so onward to dinner it was. John started Ellie off who repeatedly would hit the spoon with her flailing hands sending the strained food in the air, hitting the wall, her face, and all over her lap. The more he tried the more food went everywhere but in her mouth, so we switched, I fed her and he entertained Luke as the pizza cooled.
We cut strips of pizza for Luke, of course, just the way he likes it. Ellie ate and played and we danced between them. Luke decided the pizza was too crusty and was done with it after only a few bites when he started handing his saucy strips back to us, nearly landing them on the floor as Ellie hacked and coughed like a degenerate trucker.
We were tired, our kids were playing us like fiddles and we just wanted 5 minutes to eat in peace. John leaned in with a wink and said, "You know these dinner guests really suck."
We cracked up and couldn't stop laughing. They're lovely, beautiful children but sometimes you just gotta tell it like it is.