My Christmas tree is at the curb. My fridge is full of hearty greens and non-dairy milks. I’m eyeing the exercise bike with renewed interest and contempt, and I’ve started a bullet journal. In other words, it’s January. The excitement and anticipation that began in December has passed. The decorations we feverishly brought out -- greenery, Christmas lights, tree trimming -- are being stripped and put away, one by one, while the house is quiet.


I’ve been thinking a lot about writing lately — which is to say, doing a lot more thinking than writing. I’ve started teaching again, mostly adults this time, a part-time job that I am loving. However, teaching writing and actually writing are two different things. Just as having 3 kids in school and actually managing three school schedules are two different things. Totally. Different. Terms bounce around in my head, devices to help me better


My dog got sheared last week. A “summer cut” we call it, to explain away his white shag. The pointy merengue curls are gone, shaved close to his skin, leaving only the foamy wake of the buzzer. Truthfully, I hate his haircut. I prefer the scruffy whitecaps that loop over his eyes and soften his snout. As the weather heats up though, a chunky coat is unreasonable. So, we have him shaved. I think his


On Monday night, when our internet, phone and television service went dark, I quickly ran through my arsenal of fix-it tricks. I turned off wi-fi and turned it back on. I unplugged the cable box, then plugged it in again. I ignored the problem. Nothing worked. “Well, I guess we’re Amish now,” I joked, but everyone was too busy feverishly attempting to refresh their internet to laugh. I realized from the panic on their faces


This morning, I woke up with a tattoo on my finger and a massive headache -- which is either the beginning of a great story or an average day of motherhood. The tattoo is a Luche Libre style Spider-Man face that covers the pad of my thumb, temporary decals that were leftover from Valentine’s Day cards my son gave to his classmates a few weeks ago. Unlike years past, I actually remembered to buy valentines


I am a hat person now. I say this not as an assessment of my fashion sense. Nor is it a claim to have the kind of well-shaped face with big eyes that looks good in hats. No, this is a statement of defeat. The furry little pom-pom that hangs off the back of my slouchy beanie waves like the white flag of surrender. I’m getting older. I don’t want to be cold. My mother


The instructions for my kindergartener’s 100 day of school project were simple: the child should create a picture with 100 of something. There were examples of drawings for inspiration: one hundred stickers on a page, one hundred leaves on a tree, one hundred circles in a gumball machine.The student should be able to count to 100 themselves, which my son often does. Like at bedtime, when he should be brushing his teeth. Or in the

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When I was in college, my grandmother would call from New Jersey and whichever roommate answered the phone, part of the chit chat was inevitably about the weather. Of course, she already knew the forecast for Rhode Island, certainly better than a roomful of nineteen year old girls. “How’s the weather up there?” she’d begin the conversation. Because it had not occurred to us to notice, we’d look out the window and report current conditions.


The Monday after Thanksgiving, as the world around me had clearly shifted into full-on holiday mode, I sat in our orthodontist’s waiting room with my two sons. The office, of course, was strung with garland and lights. While my older son was in the back being treated, my five year old played Wii tennis in the office’s play room. On the television, the early morning talk show hosts were showcasing gift ideas, but I couldn’t


Thanksgiving is this week, which is surprising because I could swear it was just August and I was standing in Staples, arguing with my 5 year old about eating Play Doh. For the record, I was against it; he felt vaguely tempted by the label “non-toxic.” If you’ve been looking for me for the past two months, I’ve been driving in circles -- which is both a brutally honest job description and the most apt