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Home Again, Home Again Zip-A-Di-Da

She came in on a train direct from Union Station.  It was Friday night, the week before Christmas.  I was so joyful.  DJ, my college sophomore, was returning for an entire month! I was committed to our performance in the Christmas Carol play so her grandmother picked her up.  DJ was in a hurry because she had agreed to bar tend at a neighbor’s Christmas party for cash.  I’m so proud – my daughter, a barmaid. I was amazed that she got her suitcase into the house.  It was ...

A Single Parent Morning

It was one of those days that being a single parent hurts. It was 7:20: Stephanie had an exam at 8.  I was about to take Michelle to school.  The older headed out the door in a rush to meet a friend for some final cramming. 7:21 AM:  “Dad, my car won’t start!  HELP!” Indeed, we had a dead battery.  I was buttoning my white, starched, dress shirt but my flannels and bedroom shoes were still on my bottom half.  I grabbed my keys knowing I’d be late to work. 7:22 ...

Hands-on Giving

I fully buy into Christmas being about giving. As a kid, Christmas presents were a big, big deal.  My parents went over the top with Santa followed by gifts from them.  In addition, my brother and I were the only grandchildren on both sides of the family.  They ensured that any potential gaps in our want list were fully covered. My parents also didn’t buy us anything the other 11 months of the year.  December not only brought in the toys we desired, but it also stocked us up on ...

Blended Families: Holiday Edition

Holidays are a special time for families. They are extra special for blended families. During the holidays, these non-traditional families who are united by marriage and bonded through mutual experience, join in fellowship and celebration. I grew up in a blended family. Now I have one of my own. I have learned from experience, the bigger the family, the more people to love and the more effort required to bring loved ones together. This is especially true around the holidays when successful ...

Toothy Drama

We've had trouble with our son being a picky eater for years. While he's been picky, until recently he ate enough healthy foods to get by. About three weeks ago he started rejecting some of his long-time staples and we had a series of serious talks to get him back on track. My husband and I thought all was fine, until he got a loose tooth. We noticed it a few weeks ago when we were helping him brush his teeth, but he acted like he didn't hear us. Then last week, he "discovered it" again ...

Ooops Dad

On Tuesday I received this text from DJ, my oldest daughter, who is away at college: So I brought this dress for our next two sorority events and I accidentally put it on your credit card I’m wondering how that happened… Did the card fall out of her wallet and accidentally get lodged in the chip reader??? You accidentally spill your lemonade.  You accidentally break a vase, like when Greg and Peter Brady tossed the basketball inside the house and then didn’t tell their ...

No More Frozen Foods For Me!

I may NEVER go to the grocery store again. Did you know that for $4.95, the Harris Teeter will allow you to pick out your grocifery needs ONLINE, and they will do the shopping for you?  Hallelujah!  Praise to the gods of innovation and technology.  Why would any of us ever, ever, ever, ever step foot back in frozen foods? The grocery store is cold! One can never find cornstarch! My basket always has a bum wheel that clacks throughout the store!  And people glare at me as if I ...

Halloween Planning

Halloween is coming up, and as we are content with our costumes and both kids plan to go trick-or-treating next year, it hasn’t always been so easy. And, I know it is not at all an easy holiday for some families.   Many kids struggle with the skills required to go trick-or-treating. I hear from friends about the sheer terror of walking around the neighborhood with a child with allergies, not knowing what wrappers may be on the ground, or what allergen may be in the candy bowls. ...

Ninety-sit Percent

I was at a concert last Friday night – it was an event for work.  I was excited when I ran into an old friend.  He knew Lisa. I asked how he was doing.  He said, “96% great!  4% could be better.”  He teared up.  “Your experience taught me that can change at any given moment.” I had some times where finding 4% good was a struggle. My former boss gave me a journal the day after Lisa was diagnosed with cancer.  He told me to write down blessing that we found throughout ...

My Thoughts on Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is one of those topics that moms seem to give each other such a hard time about. It worked for me and each of my kids. But the experiences with each of them were quite different. My daughter continued nursing until she was 14 months when I’d had enough and felt the need to ween here. My son lost interest about six months in, and we struggled to month nine (when I needed a strong antibiotic to deal with a sinus infection – and decided that I need a drink to deal with the ...