When Mom Ain’t Happy…

Yesterday, a friend and I helped organize donations for our local Refugee & Immigration Services. The lovely young woman who was giving us directions gestured at a group of stuff on the floor and said, “And if you have time, you could try to inventory those… um…” “Car seats?” my friend and I said, laughing.…

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Rethinking Priorities

It is time to choose next year’s classes for my three middle- and high-schoolers. Going through this process this year made me realize how much the upheaval of the last year has actually benefited me as a parent–strengthened and sensitized me, reshaped and reordered my priorities. I was a straight-A student, and as such, parenthood…

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A little fun for Epiphany week

Normally, my husband’s and my choir does a “Farewell to Christmas” concert on Epiphany Sunday. Of course, in COVID era, we haven’t had choir, so our family decided to do the concert ourselves via the church’s live stream so the tradition would remain unbroken. My parents watched the concert and when I talked to them…

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Carpool Karaoke, Elementary School Style

The scene: the after-school carpool, yesterday. The characters: A second grade girl and a third grade boy who are totally inseparable, except when they’re screaming at each other. Today they’re not screaming, so they’re inseparable. Oh yes, and me. All of us masked, because COVID. Girl: “Ooh, Mrs. Basi, you CAN play Story of My…

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Taking On The Emotional Baggage Of My Children

When I stopped blogging frequently a few years ago, it was for two reasons. The first was that it took a lot of time, and I couldn’t justify it any longer. The kids were getting older, having more activities, and more directly professional commitments needed to take priority in what time I had for writing.…

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The Irony of Introversion in a Time of Pandemic

Saturday night, after taking our kids to church and nearly exploding with rage at their sullen attitudes, my husband and I decided we needed to get away from the kids for a couple hours, so we went on a date to Menard’s. (Sidebar 1: this is a sign of the times: you need a date…

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Walking Beans, Pulling Crabgrass…Just the thing to make everyone want to click through

When I was in middle school, my parents started a new endeavor on the farm. We’d always raised corn and soybeans (and hogs, cattle and chickens), but now Dad started growing seed beans. In other words, he grew the seeds that farmers would plant next year. This meant the grain that was harvested had to…

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The good and the bad, part 1: Distance Learning

I’m processing my life right now by writing through it, and the thing that’s striking me is, once again, how close together the good and bad things in life are. So I figured I’d share some of those good-and-bad things. It’s turned into far too long a post… you know, every time you process one…

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Adulting Is Kicking My Butt

Normally, I’d say I do pretty well at “adulting.” Let’s be honest, I was probably more adult at twelve than some people are at twenty. But adulting is really kicking my butt right now. Last week, midweek, I had a really black moment. My oldest was mad at me–mad in a way every parent is…

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Random Observations of a Writer On the Reality of Living Through the Coronavirus Shutdown

It’s been a week since the kids came home from school for the foreseeable future, and today is day 2 of an official “stay at home order” where I live–though we can still go hiking (and we intend to continue doing so as long as we’re permitted, weather permitting—which it hasn’t done much of lately).…

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