Olivia’s

Dinnertime: Family conversation. Out of nowhere, Sophie announces her career change: “I’m going to get a job at Olivia’s.” My first response: “Who’s going to drive you to Olivia’s every night?” Sophie already has a job. She’s a babysitter at the Y. When parents with young children come in to exercise, Sophie’s the girl who … Continue reading Olivia’s

Gratitude

“Don’t let your attitude affect your gratitude!” That’s me talking. “Dad! Shut up! You sound like a stupid kids’ TV show.” This is Eli, he’s eleven. Is he allowed to tell me to shut up? I guess so—when I’m being obnoxious. I’ve been saying the attitude/gratitude thing over and over. I say it like this: … Continue reading Gratitude

Paradise

Like a campy hallucination scene from a cautionary drug-addiction movie, pin-head sized white spiders skitter across my laptop keyboard and screen. But these are real (I think). As genuine as the warm, wafting breezes crossing the main living space of our rental house. And the mosquitoes so engorged they sit on the floor, unable to … Continue reading Paradise

The Hair Wiz

Self-reflection: I’m notoriously cheap. At least when it comes to buying stuff for myself. I’ll wear my clothes to the point of disintegration; dinner leftovers, no matter how unappealing, I throw together and take to work for my lunch (pasta mixed with rice and doused with Cholula?); and paying for a haircut strikes me as equivalent to throwing … Continue reading The Hair Wiz

Books

This  may not appeal to many readers. I'm scratching an itch that I've felt for years... After years of research, countless focus groups, and intensive analysis of text, I know the answer. These are the best children’s books ever written: Eek-a-boo (Joan Holub) A Fly Went By (Mike McClintock) Horton Hatches the Egg (Dr. Seuss) … Continue reading Books

Worms

“My mom has worms in her butt.” Aw, kids say the darndest things. Fortunately, at least for Susan, this wasn’t my kid. It was my nephew. Announcing a fact about his mom. Worms! Butt! This was old news. Decades old. Said mom, Carolyn, had pinworms when she was a child. Her son, now six, just … Continue reading Worms