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Some of my short fiction can be found on

Swimming with the Taylers

“Time for swim lessons!” The call produces instant action from Link, Gleek, and Patch. They all run for their swimsuits. Four days in, swimming is still exciting and new. Will they be laggard and whining by week six, or will they still scramble into their swimsuits at the mere mention of lessons? Only hindsight will […]

Parenting a child who is different from me

The grass had grown long over the past two weeks. The need for mowing was urgent, so I declared that Kiki and Link must do it today. Kiki mowed the back without complaint. She is practiced at mowing because it was her job all last summer. Link is in charge of the much smaller front […]

Conflicting needs, parenting guilt, and brownies

Gleek thrashed in the tub water as I tried to wash her hair. The water was too hot. Sitting up was too cold. Why did she need to wash anyway? Um… maybe because it has been three days and she was grubby, filthy, sweaty. But she did not want a bath. She wanted to be […]

Helping stressed kids

Patch stormed into the house and stomped his way into his room. Then the crying began. I excused myself from the kitchen table where I was having a business meeting with a couple of (fortunately very understanding) friends. Patch sobbed out his tale of woe: My neighbor had sliced the hot dog rather than poking […]

Success and criticism

“I did it myself!” Patch announced. I looked down at him. He was wearing his Sunday dress shirt and the buttons were already buttoned. Maneuvering those tiny buttons into the tiny holes is a major accomplishment for six-year-old fingers. Another major accomplishment is making sure that the buttons and holes are aligned correctly. Patch had […]


The summer when I was 9, my older brother and I spent two weeks at Grandma’s House in the mountains. Somehow it was always Grandma’s House even though Grandpa lived there too. The house belonged to Grandma, but the large workshop/garage behind it was Grandpa’s space. I loved Grandpa’s garage. It was huge, and dark, […]

It’s my job

I’d just spent two hours talking Kiki into believing that she can handle her homework load. Talking her through the process of organizing and drafting a novel (her English project) and the process of organizing and finding pictures for an illustrated Revolutionary War ABC book (her History project.) This intensive effort was interrupted by visitors […]

Some days I miss all the clues

Gleek trudged to the car, the very picture of forlorn sadness. She scraped each foot across the snow slowly, shoulders slumped, mouth turned down. “What’s wrong?” I asked as she climbed in. She did not answer. I put the car into gear and drove toward home. Link still needed to pack for a scout snowy […]

When seconds count

It had been a normal school morning, kids dawdling and my commands increasingly grouchy. I’d reached the point where Patch, Gleek, and Kiki were all in the car. Link was putting on his coat and I decided to take a second to throw some salt on the icy patch I’d slid on twice. I was […]

The intersection of writing and parenting

On a writers forum to which I belong, there is a discussion about how being a parent affects being a writer. The thread was begun by a writer who is not yet a parent and who is worried that becoming a parent will be detrimental to the writing. She was particularly concerned about becoming a […]