For spring break this year, as other families posted Instagram pictures from sunny locations, my daughter and I packed the car and headed out on the road to look at colleges. Our itinerary would take us through Pennsylvania into Washington DC, then up through Baltimore and back home to New Jersey. The plan included five schools, four tours and two overnights with family and friends. The weather was spectacular. Just beautiful enough, I hoped, to


The thing with having kids ten years apart is that you remember just enough of each phase to accept that almost all behaviors fall within a broad spectrum of normal, but forget the specifics in ways that surprise you when you are reminded of the gritty details of child-rearing. Like the heebie-jeebies you get when confronted with a wiggly tooth hanging on by a wisp of gum. I forgot about that feeling until last week.

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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