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On Being A Good Mother, In Spite Of It All

November 9, 2010

Before Emilia was born, I had a very clear plan about what kind of mother I was going to be. I was going to carry her with me everywhere in designer slings, I was going to hand-blend my own organic baby food, I was going to shun pacifiers, I was going to teach her sign [...]

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A Word Cloud Is Worth 49 Words

November 8, 2010

My One Word, wordled. Or rather, my 49 One Words, as decided by you (duplicates were eliminated) and then transcribed into Wordle for the purposes of making a word cloud, which is so last-month-media, but still. Note that I opted to include the word ‘moist,’ despite my deep aversion to it, for the simple reason [...]

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On Writing And Chaos And Other Precious Things

October 26, 2010

Here’s something about being a writer who documents her life online: there’s this compulsion to make the narrative coherent, to enforce a kind of literary flow, to work toward having the whole of the story – whatever that means – fall together in a way that makes some kind of sense. And yet the process [...]

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You Do The Hokey Pokey And You Write An Elegy

October 4, 2010

I was mid-way through a rant about Malcolm Gladwell when I saw this tweet from my friend Jenny. “Rest in peace, Nancy W. Kappes,” it said. My heart dropped. You probably didn’t know Nancy W. Kappes, Paralegal, but your life would have been richer if you did. Nancy was a self-professed ‘bad mom,’ an impious [...]

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Their Eyes Were Watching God

September 20, 2010

Sunset over Maseru, Lesotho, September 2010 When I was a child, I thought that the appearance of sunbeams through a cloud was a sign that God was watching. Those beams were like God’s flashlight, I thought: they were evidence of Him peering through the gloom, looking for signs of human grace, or whatever it is [...]

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On A Wing And A Something

September 18, 2010

This. (Don’t cry when you watch it. DON’T.) (Okay, maybe a tear or two. Go ahead.) This is what I’m doing this week. Going to visit this project, to hear these stories. As you’re reading this, I’m en route. And as you’re reading this, my heart is pounding. I’m excited, and nervous, and thrilled, and [...]

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If We Took A Holiday

September 1, 2010

We – Kyle, Emilia, Jasper and I – have never taken a vacation together. Not unless you count traveling to visit family during the holidays, which I do not, because no thinking human considers dragging small children across the country to sleep in Grandma’s basement – however wonderful and soul-enriching such visits with family might [...]

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Sense Memory #637

August 30, 2010

Let’s say that you go to the drugstore to buy diapers and tampons and Vanity Fair magazine, and while you are there, you buy one of those little tubs of Noxzema – not the big one, the one that slides to one corner of the shopping basket and tips it with its weight, the little [...]

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Buffy Only Fought Vampires

August 27, 2010

I like to think that I’m the sort of person who doesn’t take things for granted. I know how fortunate I am to have the life that I have; I know, too, that the terms and conditions of that life include no guarantees against frustration and sadness and pain and loss. I know, even the [...]

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The Monster In The Closet

August 18, 2010

It was just one night, and one night, measured against the course of a lifetime, doesn’t seem all that significant. But it was a dark night, and I have never been able to shed the weight of the memory of it. I have never been able to put it, as they say, in perspective. I [...]

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