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Gratitude, Giving, and a Giveaway

We’re moving into the season of the two G’s — gratitude and giving — and I recently read two articles that, separately, talked about both. The first, an op-ed in The New York Times, discussed the benefits of giving thanks even if we aren’t feeling very grateful. “For many people, gratitude is difficult, … [Read More...]

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A Mosaic of Shared Memories: The Story of a Well-Loved Crib

I am not an overly sentimental person. Emotional? Yes. Dramatic. You bet. But sentimental? Not particularly. I didn’t keep a pregnancy journal. I don’t have locks of my kids’ hair tucked away in their baby books. I don’t swoon over my children’s art projects. And the markings on their height chart stop in 2013. I […]


Why I Don’t Regret Taking All Those Baby Photos

I have a list of parenting regrets about a mile long. Wasting money on an expensive rocking chair and signing my three-year-old up for soccer, for instance. But one thing I don’t regret, however, is the excessive photo taking—and photo sharing—during my son’s first year. Though I’m no shutterbug by any means, after my son […]

Photo Credit: Angie McMonigal Photography

more love

I have never been to Paris. Well, unless you count that one really stressful layover at Charles de Gaulle Airport last summer. Which I don’t. And yet. My heart sunk when I heard the news on Friday afternoon. Yours did too, I’m sure. By now you’ve seen the news. You’ve read the stories. You’ve heard […]

Photo Credit: 123RF

Waiting for the Scars to Fade

Author’s Note: This essay was written more than a year ago, the situation described happened over two years ago, and since then the scars have continued to fade. It is a long process, but I have found the road to healing and is filled with love and light. If you suffer from (or have suffered […]

A Thick Skin? No thank you.

If there is one piece of advice that I have heard more than any others, it is this: Develop a thick skin. I’ve heard it from family members, friends, fellow writers, and editors. A thick skin, it seems, is the quintessential job requirement for a writer, especially those of us who write creative nonfiction. With […]


The Problem with Soaking It Up

Soak it up, the radio DJ told me yesterday afternoon while I drove home after dropping Teddy off at school. The weather was warm and lovely and delicious, a rare treat for November in Chicago. Soak it up, she said. We’ll miss this weather in a few months.  After I pulled into the driveway, I sat […]

Photo Credit: 123RF Stock Photo

I Know This Much Is True

Every day, it becomes a little bit clearer just how little I know – as a parent, as a writer, as a woman. Just when I think I might have things figured out, the universe decides to throw me a curve ball and shake things up a bit. And lest I forget just how little I […]

Copyright: naypong / 123RF Stock Photo

Baseball, Crossword Puzzles, and an AM/FM Radio

  My grandparents raised their family in a tiny, brick bungalow on the west side of Milwaukee. The size of the house was inversely proportionate to the size of their family, something that by today’s standards seems to not only defy the laws of comfort, but of logic as well. Yet, somehow, they made it […]

Photo Credit: luisrsphoto / 123RF Stock Photo

Balance Is Bullsh*t

  Fairly early on in our marriage, my husband and I made the mutual decision – the merits of which I am not looking to hash out in this article – that one of us would stay home with our children while they were young. For several reasons, I assumed the role of lead parent, […]

Photo Credit: Copyright: gastas / 123RF Stock Photo

Changing the Lyrics

“Tonight’s the night the world begins again” — Lyrics to “Better Days” by Goo Goo Dolls As they say, everything old will be new again. I just never thought it would be the Goo Goo Dolls. I thought I heard the last of them in 1995. As it turns out they actually had some new […]