Failure: An Anecdote in Three Parts

I. Signs that you have not had enough downtime in the last six months or so: You get so excited just to be alone in an airport bookstore that YOU MISS YOUR FLIGHT. In my defense, the entire landscape of the SFO Terminal 3 has changed significantly since the last time I was on an airplane back in the Dark Ages.  It’s all vast and light-filled and there are about 50 restaurants.  Walking into it I was like a child who hasn’t seen the outside world before. Also, the flight left ahead of schedule by about ten minutes.  (This, by the way, is why they advise you to be at the gate 30 minutes ... [READ MORE]

Beauty Lurking Everywhere

For the second year in a row, a massive wildfire scuttled our plans to take to the mountains for one last gasp of summer. If parenthood teaches you nothing else, it teaches you how to flex.  And so noon on a September Friday found me with the car fully loaded, THREE children wedged into the backseat (we borrowed a friend of LittleMan's for the weekend, in a rather foolhardy weekend-long play at our first-ever sleepover), and no clue where I was headed.  My husband called: "Guerneville.  Check your email for the map.  I'll be out front of the office." Lake Tahoe, Russian River...any old ... [READ MORE]

Break it Down

A week ago I decided I am terrified of the dishwasher.  I read some article about the majority of home fires starting in appliances (dishwashers, washer-driers, toasters).  I did the math and concluded that a fire in our dishwasher would immediately block the door to apartment, the only real means of egress (there are fire escapes but they are down the hall), leaving us to perish or -- best-case scenario -- be airlifted off our deck by helicopter. (We would send the kids off to safety first.  I envisioned Babygirl and LittleMan, all strapped into one of those harnesses, swinging over ... [READ MORE]


Early July.  The kids and I arrived in New York City a couple of hours behind schedule due to weather, overheated and overtired and overexcited to be on such an adventure, together, for the first time. Our first stop was the Upper East Side apartment of our dear college friends; the following afternoon we would take a bus to their house in Bridgehampton.  Only the husband, the onetime roommate of my husband (oh, the stories we share), was in the city, his wife and three children having already decamped to the beach. As our tired host graciously served up pizza at 10pm and poured me a glass ... [READ MORE]

In the Air Over There

Well good gracious.  It has been a full six weeks or so since I last posted, which means it must be summer vacation.  Which is, apparently, the most hectic time of the year.  You heard me: more hectic than back-to-school, more hectic than Christmas.  Heck.  Tick. Mercifully, this hectic-ness is punctuated by sublime spurts of rest during which it seems wrong to fire up the old laptop and blog, when one could be doing nothing, for heaven's sake. So here we are.  Mid-to-late July.  How did we get here?  By way of five summer camps and Bridgehampton, for starters.  All while my office is ... [READ MORE]

The Jelly Bean Jar

"One forgets about parenthood — the on and on-ness of it."  - Downton Abbey As ever, the Dowager is given the best line. Our darling daughter has reached a "stage in her development" where her only purpose in life is to interrupt (at best) or totally disrupt (at worst) any activity her brother is engaged in, leaving me in a constant state of vigilance to maintain a tenuous peace.  Got a check to write?  A lunchbox to pack?  Too bad.  In the two seconds it takes to uncap a ballpoint pen, Babygirl has parkoured across the livingroom and onto the couch, the better to pull out giant chunks ... [READ MORE]

And So It Begins, Part 2 (How It Really Began)

Babyman started his new Pre-K the first Monday after our two-week family vacation in Tahoe. Babyman is not fond of change or shake-ups to his routine.  He is, however, tremendously fond of family vacations in Tahoe.  It follows that shaking up his routine just as our Tahoe vacation came to an end was something less than popular. We dedicated the ride home to hyper-enthusiastic Pre-K prep as only nervous parents can.  We stopped along the way to get a back-to-school outfit and, most importantly, a snazzy Cars 2 lunchbox.  The lunchbox, its utter coolness, its "I can't wait to show the ... [READ MORE]