Life as a parent

Summer hack: fruit stain removal

1 June 2016
Thumbnail image for Summer hack:  fruit stain removal

June is freaking me out. I’m a week away from being the parent of a high schooler. The two minor graduations we have next week – middle school and elementary – are reminders that in four years our household count will start shrinking. My heart hurts just thinking about it. It sounds silly that end […]

Full article →

When you get there

12 January 2015
Thumbnail image for When you get there

Across the finish line, I’m a little unsteady on my feet in the silence. The youngest of my kids started kindergarten, and the oldest just entered his teens. Our endless house project is at last over, three and a half years after it began. I thought the decade of my 20s was the rat race […]

Full article →

Why I let my kids eat all the Halloween candy they want

31 October 2011
Thumbnail image for Why I let my kids eat all the Halloween candy they want

Am I crazy? Or crazy like a fox? Here’s why I let my kids eat all the Halloween candy they want: Kids get way too much Halloween candy, and this is my way of getting rid of it early. If I doled out one or two pieces at a time, they’d still be hoarding a […]

Full article →

Apologies to Connecticut

5 October 2011
Thumbnail image for Apologies to Connecticut

I owe Conecticut an apology. For six long months in my mid-20s I reverse-commuted from New York City to the suburbs of Connecticut for a job, and every day I wondered at the strangeness of such a nearby but utterly alien land. At lunchtime I struggled to feign interest in foreign conversation topics. “I installed […]

Full article →

Pioneer day

8 June 2011
Thumbnail image for Pioneer day

From my elementary school days in California, I remember panning for gold-painted pebbles and taking a field trip to a local Spanish mission, where we learned about making adobe bricks from clay and marveled at how small the Spanish padres must have been to fit into such tiny beds. But for my school kids in […]

Full article →

Sentimental value

9 May 2011
Thumbnail image for Sentimental value

Pangs of guilt go into my paper recycling bin. I look fondly at the doodles on school worksheets, the evolving handwriting and kid-logical spellings, but after four children I know I can’t save it all. Knowing that even the most special items I hold onto get faded and tired as the years pass, I’ve learned […]

Full article →

Celebrating springtime: Easter tree and gifts

15 April 2011
Thumbnail image for Celebrating springtime: Easter tree and gifts

It’s finally spring in Ohio. Grass is green, leaves are budding, and the sunlight is blessedly warm. Winter’s brittle ice tree is now a jauntily swaying festivity of rainbow eggs. My clever friend Jenny conjured up this surprise for the kids. It’s like a Christmas tree but better – easy, fun, inexpensive – and best […]

Full article →

Standing up

5 November 2010
Thumbnail image for Standing up

Just read something I had to pass along – a mom in Missouri wrote a post about her preschool son dressing up as Daphne from Scooby Doo for Halloween. It’s a brilliant story about standing up for your kids, but it’s also about saving childhood for free imagination. Grade school is already a stinging awakening […]

Full article →


1 November 2010
Thumbnail image for Mondays

You’d think that now that I’m out of the paid workforce, I should be free of the Monday blahs. Every day has the same cooking, cleaning, laundry, driving and piles of paperwork, and since I have two in school, you’d think Mondays might even be a relief from the all-the-kids-all-the-time clamor on the weekends. But […]

Full article →


30 October 2010
Thumbnail image for Boo

I take photographs so I don’t forget moments like these. My first Halloween as a mom, and this dear, silly, doggie moment – like much of that sleepless year – would have disappeared from my memory if I hadn’t captured it with my first little Canon Elph digital camera. The person-ghost is my banana bread/scone […]

Full article →