If it’s August and you bring a mother to a supermarket, she's going to have a few kids with her. Even though her children usually hate food shopping, tagging along interests them more than summer reading, so they'll be strangely excited to go. She'll have a list, that she'll forget at home, but she’ll think she can remember everything -- it isn’t that long. Cereal, soap, canned tomatoes, grated cheese, olive oil (how did she

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The directive on my computer screen was simple and enthusiastic. It immediately filled me with a sense of dread. To celebrate the upcoming 25th reunion of my high school class, each attendee was to send a “fun fact” about themselves. At the event, the facts would be read aloud and we'd try to guess each classmate based on their fact. Assessing my last 25 years in a nanosecond -- 15 of which I have spent

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Summer is unofficially upon us. My preschooler is done with school and pining to go back. My high-schooler is in the midst of finals and whining to get out. But, before we get any further into the season, I should apologize now. I spent the summers from my sophomore year of high school through my junior year of college lifeguarding at a pool club, which is the best summer job ever if you love wearing

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Last Saturday afternoon, after much hype, my youngest son attended a friend’s 5th birthday party. It was a karate party and the children on the mat, all darting legs, arms and earnestness were adorable to watch. My son, who had been looking forward to the party all week, had become convinced that he would emerge from the hour a full-fledged ninja. He had spent the days leading up to the party slinking around the family

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Act I, sc i Me: Are you hungry, sweetheart? Do you want a grilled cheese? 3 yo: Yes. Me: Great! I'll make it now. 3 yo: Don't forget the cheese. Me: Got it. 3 yo: Don't forget the bread. Me: I'm making grilled cheese, how could I forget cheese and bread? 3 yo: Sometimes you forget things. Me: (whispering to myself as I light the stove) I am good enough. I am smart enough and, doggone it, people like

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Act I, sc i Me: (trying to distract him) OOH, is it snowing yet? 4 yo: (mumbles) I don't know. Me: (pointing to the window) Maybe you should check... 4 yo: I can't. I don't have an iPhone. end scene. If in the last week we’ve run into you at school, in the supermarket, at the playground, in church -- or if you simply live within a two state radius of New Jersey -- then I’m sure you have heard: my

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It’s been a month since I’ve last written and if you started to worry that I went missing, in some ways I have. I don’t know if I’m suffering from a winter of discontent, Attention Deficit Disorder, Seasonal Affective Disorder, or just general disorder, but the last few weeks have left me feeling breathless. It has been an unusual season for many reasons. I find I'm easily agitated and unproductive and the tornadic activity of

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Act I, sc i Grandma: (whispering to me and pointing to my son) Can I order him some ice cream? Me: Yes, he'd love it. Grandma: I always have to ask. You might not want him to have it before lunch. Me: Thanks, Nan, but it's fine. I don't think we have many rules anymore. Grandma: Why is that? Me: You know, grandma...he's the third, he's the baby, he gets dragged everywhere. I might be spoiling him, but I'm not arguing over ice

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Act I, sc i Me: Sighs. end scene. January has always seemed to me a terrible time to make resolutions. Sure, the calendar marks a new year, and with it an opportunity for a fresh start. But on the continuum of marking periods, sports seasons and winter weather, there is no difference in how I perceive the world on December 31st vs. January 1. The shift from one year to another does not alter the fact

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In going through pictures for our Christmas card this year, I had a hard time finding any one image that I liked enough to make the centerpiece of our greeting. Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had a good year. But there was no big family trip or event that lightened our collective spirits and captured that feeling in a single photograph. My favorite pictures, simply put, were not card-worthy. There were some candid moments where mouths were wide

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