Category Archives: parenting

Date Night Now by Sittercity: Weekend Babysitting Made Easy

Date Night Now by Sittercity: Weekend Babysitting Made Easy

ShareTweet I was an early adopter of the Sittercity service. Close to a decade ago, as a new mother of two, I raved about Sittercity both online and offline. Finding a babysitter to have a few hours alone with Steve on a Saturday night was no longer a word of mouth searching exercise. Sittercity gaveContinue Reading

A Weekend in France in Pictures

A Weekend in France in Pictures

ShareTweet We love our life in Chicago, but our family is far, far away. Weekends together are carefully organized, and involve a lot more than a quick car ride. Sometimes, the call of family is so strong that you have to put a stop to everything and just jump on a plane. For no specialContinue Reading

Apple Jelly and a Nebulous Sense of Home

Apple Jelly and a Nebulous Sense of Home

ShareTweet Our suburb is near Chicago, less than a 20 minute drive without traffic, but it has the feel of a small town, with many families who have lived here for generations. It’s the kind of place that beckons people home after college, and many of my kids’ friends were high school sweethearts, right hereContinue Reading

Baby Curl Tears

ShareTweet Once I had a little girl with curls that haloed around her head. At bedtime those curls caressed my face. I lingered, agreeing to one more book after another. I was addicted to Juju’s curls, their soft feather kisses, like a drug. Then, one spring day, her brother cut them, with dull kindergarten safe scissors. TheyContinue Reading

I Remember: Sharing 9/11 Stories

ShareTweet Today my Facebook feed is filled with 9/11 memory stories. Some were in New York, others far away, but everyone remembers that moment when we ushered in the era of terror at home. It seems fitting to honor this day with our personal memories, a national shared memory. My kids never tire of anchoringContinue Reading

Losing the Swearing Battle

Losing the Swearing Battle

ShareTweet With four kids, things tend to slide over time. Rules once considered essential become more lax. Daily baths become once every few days. Yearly check ups have six month delays. And the definition of a swear goes from cute to street. At the beginning, I used to worry a lot about swearing. Hate was a swear word. SoContinue Reading

Tennis Tough Love

Tennis Tough Love

ShareTweet I like to think of myself as a pretty tough mom. I beat my kids at Candyland, telling them they need to learn how to lose graciously. I’m militant about having them say thank you. And when they get in trouble? I sentence them to trash duty, which includes cleaning the garbage cans. FistContinue Reading

Summer Growth for Moms Too

Summer Growth for Moms Too

ShareTweet Three years ago, drowning with the loss of my routine to my children’s summer needs, I made myself a promise: Next summer, my kids won’t be the only ones to go to camp. I’ll carve out some summer time for myself to grow. Learning and growing gave me the room I needed to breathe, between campContinue Reading

The Joys of the Open Road with Kids in Tow

The Joys of the Open Road with Kids in Tow

ShareTweet After college graduation, I drove cross-country and back again with my ex-boyfriend. The trip was planned before our relationship ended, and the lure of our planned adventure was stronger than any lingering bad feelings. We had 26 days to get to California and back in time to start work and our adult lives. NotContinue Reading

The Bottle Fairy

The Bottle Fairy

ShareTweet My littlest may only be two and a half, but she has no doubt about her place in the world. She is the center of our family, adored by her big siblings, our undisputed princess, and she recently set our pediatrician straight when she dared to question Sophie’s world order. “Sophie,” said the doctor, “you’reContinue Reading

So Lucky – Lessons from a Car Crash

So Lucky – Lessons from a Car Crash

ShareTweet The driver pulled out without paying attention, smacking into my boys in their candy red mini. Smacking them so hard that they spun around and plowed into a parked car. Time slows down in an accident. Steve saw him coming, knew the crash was about to happen, but had no time to do anythingContinue Reading

All For Schools: a Convenient New School Fundraising Option

All For Schools: a Convenient New School Fundraising Option

ShareTweet How does your school handle their fundraising? Do you have a school auction or do smaller campaigns all year round? Having been pressured one too many times to bid on something I didn’t really want, I prefer the fundraising opportunities that are woven in my life, the private ones that no one has toContinue Reading

Escape from Winter Hell

Escape from Winter Hell

ShareTweet The world is brushed with shades of gray, dirty snow, hidden ice, and smears of crusted salt. Frost is not only on the outside of the car, but also inside. Scraped, it falls on the dashboard, another dusting of frozen snow. Half-asleep, hunched and cramped uncomfortably from the pervasive chill in the air, IContinue Reading

Family Friendly Tech: Lenovo Flex Series All In One Desktops

Family Friendly Tech: Lenovo Flex Series All In One Desktops

ShareTweet Do you have a family computer? Or does everyone in your house have their own tech device? Although there are many tablets floating around in our house, we also have a family computer that lives in the heart of our kitchen clutter, on hand for homework, YouTube fun, and even toddler explorations. When BellaContinue Reading

Soar: Taking Flight in 2014

Soar: Taking Flight in 2014

ShareTweet My new year’s thoughts got swept up in the clear blue waters of Cancun and the travel halting polar vortex. Marooned in Mexico, I had a few extra days to ponder life and attitude changes for 2014. Over and over again, the word SOAR came to mind, to encapsulate my aspiration for the yearContinue Reading

Bah Humbug! Falling Off the Holiday Hamster Wheel

Bah Humbug! Falling Off the Holiday Hamster Wheel

ShareTweet How does one get off this holiday hamster wheel? Today I emailed my son’s entire class, making a desperate plea for last minute class gift donations. My email hadn’t been out a few minutes before I started getting confused replies, telling me another mom had been taking collection since Saturday. Had I missed theContinue Reading

Reflecting on a Thanksgiving Blur of Family, Food and Sights

Reflecting on a Thanksgiving Blur of Family, Food and Sights

ShareTweet Thanksgiving can be a busy time for food bloggers, but this year, I put myself on the bench, in social media blackout. The recipes I’d planned on sharing remained un-photographed. You’ll get them in the next week, and hopefully can use them this Christmas. Since moving to the Midwest, Thanksgiving has become more thanContinue Reading

Bringing Great Books to Life with Family Movie Night

Bringing Great Books to Life with Family Movie Night

ShareTweet Friday night family movie night is one of my favorite rituals. After a week of running around, settling deep into the couch with whole crew sprawled around me in front of the big screen is pure bliss. All too often unfortunately, our family QT dissolves into fighting when choosing a movie. Between Netflix, cableContinue Reading

Girl Power in the Stables

Girl Power in the Stables

ShareTweet For years, I’ve wanted my children to have horses in their lives. Until this month, with the exception of a few summer trail rides, regular horseback riding lessons remained a unpractical and unfeasible horsey mother’s dream. The nearest riding stables were a 30 minute drive away and our schedule was just too packed. ButContinue Reading

Creamy Bacon Tomato Soup: A Love Letter to Myself

Creamy Bacon Tomato Soup: A Love Letter to Myself

ShareTweet My cooking is done in large batches nowadays. It’s not uncommon to find two chickens roasting in my oven and double pans of duck fat potatoes crisping on the stovetop, while the slow cooker labors alone in the background, filled to the rim with creamy bolognese sauce for the next night’s dinner. I sometimesContinue Reading