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Essay

The View from the Top

In Greek Mythology, the gods punish Sisyphus by making him roll a gigantic boulder up a mountain, and then just as Sisyphus reaches the top, the boulder rolls back down. This happens to Sisyphus every day—for all eternity.

Stinks to be you, Sisyphus.

And yet how many days have I just finished three loads of laundry—and before I can even put all the fresh clothes away there are already dirty ones back in the hamper? And I only have one baby—with tiny, little clothes. What about when we more kids? And more clothes? And more dishes, and more dirt on the floor, and more bills, and more mountains, always more mountains?

Scientists have, in simple terms, recognized something called the “peak-end rule” of memory. That is, when recalling an event, no matter how long it went on or how good or bad it was, we remember it based on 1) how we felt

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Moments

A Moment in Dreams

Photo: Lovelorm Poets

“Is she asleep?” I ask. My husband nods. Though I’m with our daughter all day, my husband always handles one part on his own: Bedtime.

He comes home late from work and he has less than an hour to spend with our little one. He gives her milk, rocks her in the chair, and carries her

When Your Son Thinks He’s a Dog

There’s no way to avoid it, kids are curious, gross little creatures.

Just when you think your precious little cupcake couldn’t top their latest and greatest display of grotesqueness, you find out they have other vile tricks up their sleeve.

This past Thanksgiving, our dog had a litter of puppies. This was the first time my family had

What Happens When Your Child Gets a 500-Piece Puzzle?

parenting

Our almost four-year-old daughter loves puzzles; she’s done puzzles up to 60 pieces. For Christmas, her sister got her a puzzle with 500 pieces of cute kittens in a horse barn.

Now a 500-piece puzzle has “overachievement” written all over it, but what’s life without challenges, right?

In the afternoon all four of us started off by sorting

The Chips Fight

 

Since we conceived our crying one year old, I’ve been very controlled about what I eat. I’m not a big meat eater but I force-fed myself protein the entire 41 weeks. Now, not one chip touches my lips due to my husband’s apparent need for them (he wipes out the pantry).

Today, I had broccoli and a

Hell Hath No Fury Like A Toddler Who Wants A Pony Toothbrush

My daughter is very sweet. She’s downright precious. And I have had several people tell me how well-behaved she is and how happy, and they are right.

But she’s not always that way. She saves those moments for when it’s just me, her, and a couple hundred pairs of eyes at Walmart. She has thrown some

Momma’s Still Got It

We had family members visiting but one afternoon I was tired and in need of a shower, so I stayed behind while the rest of the crew went on their way.
I took a shower and decided to lounge on the couch in the living room buck-naked. The shades were drawn. No one was expected to show up.

Lost the Battle, Not the War!

There I am. Standing in the budget section of the grocery store. Arms piled high in frozen dinners I’ll be lucky enough to enjoy, let alone cook, the remainder of the week. I’ve missed at least two shifts in two days of my two part time jobs, and these are the groceries this week. The

Poop Happens

I remember that night last October better than I recall what I had for lunch yesterday. I learned an invaluable lesson in mommyhood. If you are crouched next to the shower spraying poop off of your daughter’s behind, you should be mindful of where you rest your arm. Because if you accidentally lean into the

Good Intentions

In the rush of getting the kids into the van, to travel to three different places in order to make it to work on time, My middle son, notorious for wanting to play in the driver’s seat (much to my chagrin) had opened the driver’s side door.

I felt an instantaneous surge of discontent and as

Parenting Lessons: Take One

Our son gave me a funny look as he sat across the table from me. We were eating breakfast when he sneezed.

A huge glob of nasty nose fluid hung suspended in mid-air from the tip of his face.

He started to freak out. He cried as if the world were ending. He was on the brink of hysteria.

I sprang

30 Ways To Offend Your Toddler

After years of triggering tantrums from doing just about nothing, I’ve finally realized that toddlers are probably the most easily offended people on the planet. The general rule of thumb is to stay away controversial topics like religion and politics. To avoid offending toddlers, you have to stay away from a much broader spectrum of

The Talk

I’ve been reading a lot of posts on Facebook from parents struggling to have “the talk” with their children.

I didn’t find it that hard.

My daughter started asking questions when she was nine, always when we were in the car with her three-year-old sister. I had the best educated three-year-old in the country.

I kept expecting to

Sticky Fingers

What’s the last text you want to get from your husband when you’re away from home? “We really shouldn’t leave the Super Glue where the kids can reach it.”

Can I Have a Popsicle?

When my foster daughter was about four we were in a super store at the cashier. She reached into my purse, pulled out a tampon and holding it high in the air, yelled, “Hey Mom, can I have this popsicle?”

Good thing other shoppers have a good sense of humor and children of their own.

Photo: Eden,

It’s Not You, It’s the Zipper!

I ordered a dress in a size smaller than I am for my daughter’s wedding, because:
A. I plan to lose weight before the wedding and
B. I didn’t want to have to hem it
So when it arrived I tried it on and asked my sweet little man, Tommy, to zip me up. As he struggled getting

This is What the Oregon Trail Prepared Me For

Photo: Lovelorm Poets

Day 07 of the fever sickness. It’s not the sickness but the isolation that will get you.

Nina has definitely had some flashes of being out of touch. I can only hope she will regain her social identity and leave this behind at some point. She has taken to pulling out hair (first from my head

These Are the Days

My favorite days at home with my girls–ages 5 and 8-months–are the days when we go slowly. The days we lie on the floor of our kitchen and try to teach Annie to crawl by crawling around ourselves. The days I sit in the rocking chair in Annie’s sunlit room, with both girls on my

Text to Self

It was dark, too dark to be out on a walk with a toddler. We had been in search of a playground and it was just a day or two after the daylight savings time change.

I had misjudged both the time and the distance. It was past dinnertime and I was tired, my baby cranky.

I

Just Say Yes

With all the craziness of downsizing from 1600 sq. ft. home to a 320 sq. ft. trailer to see the lower 48 states in a year-long family road trip, I’ve had some control issues. This has caused the word “No” to come out of my mouth more often than I would like.

So when my daughter mentioned

When You Least Expect It

I got up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night. When I opened the door to the hallway, there was my seven-year-old son waiting for his turn.

And seeing him, standing in his boy-sized underwear in the glow of the nightlight, my heart split right open and my throat caught.

There was something in