family Category

A Mediocre Mother and the Back-to-School Rush

Last week, all the good mothers took their children to get back-to-school haircuts. I meant to, but I got busy painting the guest bathroom. I may take them later this week. Or next. Last week, all the good mothers starting putting their children to bed a little earlier in an effort to ease into the […]

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Counting Cookies

“Who ate all the cookies!” My eleven year old slams the cabinet door. It springs back open in response to the force. “There are still some cookies left,” I say. “There is one cookie left. A broken one.” “Oh.” “There were eight cookies left after dinner last night,” she says. She reviews the facts like […]

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Punishment

Never in the history of parenthood has a single declarative sentence been so fraught with loopholes. The sentence is this: No television or playing outside with friends this afternoon. Today, in a solar eclipse of juvenile delinquency, both of our children managed to earn the same punishment. The girl failed to be ready for school […]

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Can’t Take a Joke

The hunt is over. William and his friends run about the park and hurl plastic eggs at one another. The pastel hand grenades burst on contact, and “individually wrapped, peanut-free, non-melting” candy falls to the ground. Across the park is a rabbit. Solid white and 6 foot 6, he is dressed in nothing more than […]

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Orthopedic Birthday Shoes

“What do you want for your birthday?” Mom asks. On the surface, this is a straightforward question requiring an equally-straightforward answer. Beneath the veneer of our casual conversation, however, the proceedings of a nuanced negotiation have just been set into motion. Women and their mothers; they don’t chat. They play Chess. Mom’s goal is to […]

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Ten-Dollar Bounty

“Hey Carrie,” I say. “Wanna make ten bucks?” “For doing what?” she asks. “For finding my cell phone.” “Where is it?” she asks. “I don’t know, but I’ve got a ten-dollar bill for whoever finds it. Tell your brother.” She yells Wiiil-yuuum! over her shoulder, then turns back to me. “I found it last time,” […]

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Outgrowing Santa: A Timeline

Santa is for us. For parents. He was conceived by and is perpetuated because of Moms and Dads. I offer up to you, as exhibit A, a photograph taken during my daughter’s first visit with Santa Claus in 2003. Look at that infant in Santa’s arms. She doesn’t know who he is. Or who she […]

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Sand-swallowed

“Don’t get wet,” I say. The kids slip out of their flip-flops and charge down the boardwalk toward the beach. This is earlier today. The kids run ahead, and I lean over and flip the hem of my wide-leg linen pants up once. “You can put your feet in the water. That is okay. Just […]

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Last Thursday Our Rabbit Came Back from the Dead

Last Thursday our rabbit came back from the dead. Before I get to the details, though, let me tell you about last Wednesday. Todd and I each received a text from our neighbor, Leah. “Call me, please,” read the massage. We called. It seemed there had been an incident. Something, presumably a dog or fox, […]

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Elephant Cloud

(photo credit: Flicker) “Look at that cloud,” Todd said. “It looks exactly like an elephant.” And I saw it immediately. Typically, when someone points out an image he has spotted in the clouds, I have to tilt my head. I have to squint. I have to clarify which cloud I’m meant to be inspecting, this […]

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