These are blog posts about parenting lessons learned through interactions with my own children:
Those Darned Socks —
In which Laura does some soul-searching about materialism and living a simpler life.
My Son, The Marine —
In which Laura and Karyn struggle to come to terms with Bryan’s decision to enlist in the marines.
Busted By My Four-Year-Old —
In which Eli accuses Laura of not being fully present, an offense she is entirely guilty of.
Teaching Peace —
In which Laura and Karyn take a small step toward a more peaceful household.
Mama Kisses —
In which Eli’s kisses become too intimate and Laura learns the importance of setting clear boundaries.
A Parental Paradox —
In which Laura faces the paradox of wanting children more than life itself, and then, just as strongly, needing to get away.
The Chickenpox Blues —
In which Eli pushes every button Laura has and she has to admit there are times she does not like her son.
Losing My Mind —
In which Laura details all the things she’s lost since her third child, Lizzy was born.
The Love Bomb —
In which Laura and Eli creatively explore a four-year-old’s obsession with big guns.
Ouch! Stop Hurting Me! —
In which Eli keeps physically hurting Laura and she struggles to figure it out.
The Big Bug — February 1998
In which Laura and Eli have a building frenzy with K’nex™.
What’s Heterosexual? — March 1998
In which Laura scrambles to answer Eli’s first questions about homosexuality.
I Don’t Want To Go, Mama —
In which Laura grapples with being the extroverted mother of an introverted child.
Mama, You Hurt My Feelings —
In which Laura once again learns to listen to her children and apologize when she blows it.
Laura’s Last Column? —
In which Eli asks Laura to stop writing her column and Laura struggles with what to do.
Mama, Can I Get A Sticker Now? —
In which a sticker chart helps Justin learn kindness toward his younger sister.
The Art of Do-overs —
In which Vicky teaches Justin how to turn things around when two people have their heels dug in.
I Don’t Want To Go To Kindergarten —
In which Justin expresses the growth ambivalence most of us experience when faced with major life changes.
The Big Heist —
In which Justin mysteriously “finds” fifteen dollars, and Vicky has to talk to him about taking things that aren’t his.
Sick As A Dog And Still On Duty —
In which Laura comments on the daunting challenge of being sick and still having to take care of the kids.
Weaning Emily —
In which Laura weans a reluctant toddler from the breast.
It’s Not Fair! —
In which Vicky tries to come to terms with Justin’s complaints that his little sister always gets more of Mama Vicky’s attention than he does.
The Carseat Wars — February 1999
In which Vicky struggles with two-year-old Emily, who refuses to get in her carseat.
Justin Learns to Ride a Bike — March 1999
In which Vicky watches in delight as Justin master a two-wheeler.
I’ve Lost My Trust In You —
In which Vicky is forced to confront her own rage and help Justin learn to deal with his.
Justin counts! —
In which Justin proudly counts up to a thousand and Vicky reflects on children’s readiness to learn.
Sick Kids at School —
In which Vicky wrestles with whether to send a sick kid to school so she can go to work.
Massage Night —
In which Vicky saves a deteriorating evening by introducing the concept of massage night.
Making Decisions —
In which Vicky uses an early morning argument as a way to teach Justin about the process of making decisions.
The Sandwich Generation —
In which Vicky is faced with juggling the needs of her aging father and her two young children in a scary urban environment.
The Wishing Tree —
In which Vicky and Joan teach Justin and Emily about the importance of having a special tree.
Weaning Emily Again —
In which Laura decides to wean her last child, Emily, a month before her third birthday.
Weaning Emily, Take III —
In which Emily expresses her grief, anger and bewilderment at being weaned, and Laura must contend with a shift in her daughter’s sunny disposition.
I’m a Bad Person — February 2000
In which Laura helps Justin deal with feelings of self-hatred after making a mistake.
Harry Potter — March 2000
In which Laura and Justin dive into the world of Harry Potter.
When Emily Goes Over the Rainbow —
In which Laura, who is rested from a night out, is able to deal with a cranky, irrational daughter with the kind of generosity and grace that come from having a full tank.
Playing Cards with Emily —
In which Laura explores the different ways her three-year-old Emily and seven-year-old Justin approach playing games.
Justin’s Snuggy Tank —
In which Justin gets a lesson in filling the empty places we all have inside
Mama, You Plan Too Much —
In which Laura is confronted with two members of her family whose needs for solitude and quiet time at home far surpass hers.
Swimming Lessons —
In which Laura finally acquiesces to her daughter’s desire to quit swimming lessons.
Grandpa’s Ashes —
In which Laura, Joan, and their daughter Emily go to pick up Grandpa’s ashes.
Fire Story —
In which Laura, Joan and the kids wake up at 4:00 A.M. with their house on fire.
Taking Inventory —
In which Laura reflects on her family’s belongings in the aftermath of the fire.
Point and Grunt —
In which Laura discusses the hidden message that often lies beneath kids’ difficult behavior.
Risk — February 2001
In which Laura ponders the ethics of playing warlike board games with seven-year-olds.
Big Rocks, Little Rocks — March 2001
In which Laura remembers how important it is to prioritize the important things in life.
New School —
In which Laura has to deal with Justin’s reaction when he’s told he’s going to a new school.
In which Laura rediscovers the value of slowing down and stopping the frantic pace of life.
A Child’s Grief —
In which Laura learns to follow the meandering path a child’s grief sometimes takes.
Mom’s Friends —
In which Laura takes stock of the ways she must redefine friendship in the wake of motherhood.
Whose Vacation Is This Anyway? —
In which Laura experiences the conflicting expectations that wreak havoc on family vacations.
The Wall They Bounce Off Of —
In which Justin starts a new school and Vicki learns, once again, that she can’t make his feelings go away.
After The World Has Changed —
In which Vicky struggles to make sense of the world after the attacks of September 11, 2001.
Harry Potter For Dummies —
In which Vicky and her kids soundly trounce Joan in a game of Harry Potter trivia.
But I Have To Do My Homework! —
In which Laura and Joan make Justin go to bed before his homework is done and all hell breaks loose.