This Stage of Motherhood, In Four Pictures

1. Alex’s search for the meaning of life is carried out using the simplest of tools…like the wax tablet he made in his gifted program, where he has spent the last several weeks learning to utter such profundities as “May the Force Be With You” and “Stay out of my room”…in Latin. 2. Alex was assigned to…

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More Post-Nap Cuteness

3:05 p.m. and I hear hands rattling the spokes on the stairs. “Hey, Munchkin, you up?” I call. “Yes.” Michael pads into my bedroom, where I’m channeling my childhood by writing while stretched out across my bed. “Mommy, why do you call me Munchkin?” “Because I like to call you loving, silly names. Like boo…

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Then And Now

We stretched out across the front pew when we arrived at church Sunday morning, the boys (as usual) waging a silent war to sit by Mommy, who did not at all appreciate being consequently shoved so far to the end of the pew that there wasn’t room on the kneeler. When the fallout cleared, Nicholas…

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Fading Into Memory

Bedtime on a Tuesday evening is a zoo. Christian is in the basement teaching piano. Julianna is listening to a Christmas sing-along CD (yes, still). Nicholas is endeavoring to stay in the tub until he develops hypothermia. In the other bathroom, Alex sounds like he’s making a movie in the shower, complete with sound effects,…

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In Which Julianna And I Find Something In Common

I was nine years old the year I discovered figure skating. That was the year Katarina Witt won the gold medal at the Sarejevo Olympics, and it was my first fandom. In retrospect, I think what I loved most about her was the fact that she served as a mirror for me, or rather a…

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Beautiful and Terrible

Last week, Alex asked for a diary with a lock. “Not a girly one,” he specified. “Why on earth do you need a diary with a lock?” I asked. “To write things I don’t want you to see.” Duh. “Like…like what kinds of things?” I wanted categories, you know, not details. But he gave me…

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Mama Rabbit And Me

There’s a rabbit under the red maple in front of my house. It’s standing in a funny position, back legs on the grass, front legs up on the mulch. I’m about to turn away when suddenly there’s a flash of gray under its belly. A wiggle. Another flash. You know that cliché about hearts stopping?…

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Not Yet

Every January there’s a day or two like this: shorts weather in the middle of frozen weeks. Days when we open the windows and let the humidity in, sniffing the air and saying, “Oh right, that’s what that feels like.” In the afternoon, I put shoes on the kids and we trek outside to scooters…

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When the Stars Aligned…

Most days, I know what I want to blog about well before I make it to the computer. This week, not so much. I have a very big post in mind, but I’m not quite ready to write it yet, and besides, after I spent twenty minutes on the Nordic Track and made it downstairs…

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Big Feet

The thing about having four children close together is that I’ve been locked in small child mode for so long, I’ve become fixated on the age of five. By five, they should be past diapers and defiance, they can brush their own teeth and bathe themselves, be trusted with certain tasks and I can feel…

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