Category Archives: Family

on difficult transitions. 7

In my mind, surely placed there by a thousand ad campaigns and television shows, the working mom stood by the stove, frazzled, while the kid cried his face off nearby. This was the image I had of what our home life would be like when I went back to work. I was shocked and pleased […]

before you came into my life I missed you so bad. 6

My feelings about Atticus were complicated before he was born. We hadn’t met, so even though I cared about and for him, it was difficult having a stranger living inside me. Not to mention that he was (and is) an active boy. When I was pregnant, this meant that he constantly kicked me. It was […]

saving my life. 3

When you are a little girl, your older cousin seems impossibly cool. He has cable at his house, and he has two older brothers and an older sister. They have cats. He teaches you about different things throughout the years: The Hobbit, REM, They Might Be Giants. You use your Fisher Price tape recorder to […]

eighteen 2

Dear Atticus, You are eighteen months old! One of my students constantly asks how old you are and then says, “Why do you say it in months?” I don’t know. That’s just what you do. Around fifteen or sixteen months, I lost track of how many months I was supposed to say. And what does […]

feast of love. 8

It amused me, at my brother’s wedding, to be reminded of how different he and I are. Mike and I had our ceremony and readings set early, and one of the things I cared most about was having nice bulletins. At my brother’s wedding, they didn’t set the ceremony until the week of the wedding, […]

compline. 12

(Or, the liturgy of bedtime.) The Call to Bed Atticus, it is time to watch

ordinary time. 1

When left to his own devices, Atticus happily climbs on top of the table. On top of the couch. On the windowsill. On the bookcase. On the toilet. Mike and I are learning which silences actually mean RED ALERT. We have had our share of bumps and bruises, but Atticus is undeterred. Climbing is so […]

mutuality. 7

Atticus and my grandma. When I was 14 or 15, I was handed a copy of The Beekeeper’s Apprentice by Laurie R. King. I have written about it several times, so all I will say here is that reading about a girl my age who could mentally keep up with Sherlock Holmes was a game […]

the joys of boys. 4

Two Sundays ago, I picked Atticus up from the nursery and we went out the back door of the church, heading for the car. This was a bit of a miscalculation, because it meant that we had to go by the playground, but I decided not to fight it. He loves climbing up the slide, […]

saving my life 11

For the next few months, my mom is watching Atticus three days a week. I could explain the reasons to you, but what is really important is that Atticus is getting extra Grammy Time. He still goes to his school two days a week, and other than Monday’s meltdown (which was not repeated on Thursday), […]

down the stairs. 1

Atticus has not yet thrown himself down any staircases. He pauses, slightly bent at the waist, at the top of the stairs. Usually. If he is looking. He can climb down using the railing, and he can scoot down on his bottom. But his preferred method is to wait, hand in the air, until someone […]

saving my life: play date edition 2

My sister-in-law says that her favorite baby stage is from 12-24 months. Here at nearly 15 months, I can see why she would feel that way. Our bright and active boy runs and smiles everywhere he goes. New words pop out of him every day. He is overcome with joy at the sight of books […]

progress. 7

I didn’t bond instantly with Atticus like some moms say they do, and I took our nursing relationship for granted as the easy way to build our closeness. Now that that is over, I am finding that I have to work a little bit harder to engage him and spend time with him. Atticus is […]

missing so much. 3

Dear Dad, The news is focused on the tenth anniversary of 9/11, and the coverage brings back so many memories of sitting on the couch watching everything unfold, all those American flags, the lines to donate blood. Everyone called everyone else. Even though we were far from the tragedy, you called me. We didn’t have […]

in dependence upon God’s grace and with the help of the church. 2

Mighty God, by your love we are given children through the miracle of birth. We give you thanks for them. May we greet each new son and daughter with joy, and surround them with all faith, so they may know who you are and want to be your disciples. Never let us neglect children, but […]

eleven. 9

One of the memoirs I read last week was by Ian Morgan Cron, called Jesus, My Father, the CIA, and Me. I read it because Don Chaffer said that he is friends with Ian Cron, and that is a pretty good recommendation. I read it because it’s going to be a Discover Great New Writers […]

Not all who wander are lost. 11

Things I have not lost: The last of the baby weight. I am okay with this in the sense that I do have more respect for my body now, having grown and pushed out a baby. And having kept said baby alive for nearly six months using nothing but my body. I am able to […]

The baby new to earth and sky. 7

Last year on the Thursday before Memorial Day weekend, I started bleeding at work. I was, of course, wearing a white skirt. We did not know who our baby was going to be, had not felt him move, had not told very many people that we were expecting. It was scary, made even more so […]

udder/fodder. 18

Yep, that’s my milk up there (with some of Mike’s thin mints). It’s shocking how much of my day is now spent calculating ounces pumped. I had not anticipated quite how humiliating it would be to pump at work. Because it is. Humiliating. That is not to blame my very nice coworkers at my very […]

While you were sleeping. 6

People must forget how much the first month of having a baby is a total blur. Surely that is the only reason that I would have been asked questions like, “What is your favorite part?” I had no favorite part, but rather than slugging the person who was asking, I began to claim that my […]