A Holiday Round-up for your entertainment

Dear generous readers, The worst thing about being a writer is not writing. When I’m not writing, my waking hours consist of strange and beautiful sentences forming in my head, begging to be eternalized through the stroke of a few keys. They had wanted to name her Astrid, but between the language barrier and her mother’s fledgling literacy, she got stuck with Aspic. She didn’t know it was a bad name until her fourth grade teacher helpfully explained to the class that aspic was alsoRead more

Bernie Sanders came to my house, and he slept under the covers.

Every weekend I visit the rescue dogs at Pet Supermarket as a test of willpower. This is a secret, except sometimes I make one of the children come in case he/she so falls in love with a pup that I HAVE to take it home. This might sound familiar because this is exactly the way we acquired Yobe the Rescue Dog, and afterwards Hot Firefighter Husband made me promise to never ever do that again. I didn’t exactly promise but I conceded thatRead more

I WROTE A BOOK! I WROTE A BOOK! I WROTE A BOOK! Also….I WROTE A BOOK!

I have amazing news for the gazillions of people who’ve told me I should write a book. I HAVE WRITTEN A BOOK. And it’s going to be published. Coming in Spring 2017 to a bookstore near you: The Place of Peace and Crickets: how adoption, heartache, and love built a family Is that the best title ever or what? I could tell you what it means, but then I’d have to kill you. KIDDING. But really. I’m not going to tellRead more

The Canine State of Affairs around here

Damn Gem, our 13-year-old chocolate lab, left us on a cold December Saturday morning. She took her last breath while laying in my lap on the floor of the veterinarian exam room. I had been meaning to take her to the beach one last time. She loved the smell of the ocean; it never failed to fill her old body with the youthfulness we assumed was gone for good. But her illness crept up on us – two days after IRead more

Vacation Chronicles 2015, the prologue. Make some popcorn.

Guess what! We’re in Maine! The annual Vacation Odyssey has begun. But first: I owe you a confirmation that we have indeed added a third canine to the family. In my head right now I’m shouting the Tyrant’s favorite refrain: I’m sorry! It wasn’t my fault! I didn’t do anything wrong! although I’m only a teeny bit sorry, and it was totally my fault, and I guess I did something wrong. Here’s how it went down. Well. You know how I am.Read more

A Stephen King novel unfolds in my kitchen. Also, Dumbo.

We sat down to dinner late the other night, so the Diva ate a single shrimp and said, “May I be excused?” She’s maniacal about her bedtime. Have I mentioned that I adore that child? The single breathing being in the house who takes care of herself? The rest of us started up the usual dinner chaos. I peeled shrimp for the boy, but the girlie peeled them herself, which made her brother jealous, so he told her she was servingRead more

2014 ANNUAL VACATION ODYSSEY, PART I! Snakes and dolls.

Hi guys! Where have I been all your life for the past entire week? RIGHT HERE! But I was in the throes of our ANNUAL VACATION ODYSSEY, which means being busy with the usual assortment of Doritos, tooth fairy failures, and snakes. SNAKES. Before we even left the house. The night before our departure, Buddy the Wonder Dog woke me up to go pee or eat cat poop or stare at me adoringly. I opened the bedroom door to let him out, but he wouldn’tRead more

Buddy’s sock fetish causes bodily harm.

Saturday morning dawned with a familiar sound. BLUCK. BLUCK. BLUCK. BLOOP. That is Buddy the Wonder Dog throwing up a sock. After the first BLUCK, I was at Buddy’s side, soothing him, moving cloth items out of BLUCKing range. I was already off in search of paper towels when Hot Firefighter Husband rolled over and said, “Honey? Buddy’s throwing up.” In the mess I found a pink ankle sock. The Tyrant! Damn her habit of stripping down wherever and throwingRead more

Buddy and me and the boy

I have a secret to tell you about Buddy the Wonder Dog, and it has nothing to do with poop or socks. But first let me tell about a cathartic moment I had yesterday. I was going through the morning epic ritual of getting the younger kids ready for school, and we had 10 minutes remaining till departure time. The Pterodactyl likes me to write things down for him, so he was carrying around an index card reading SHOES TEETHRead more

Damn Gem marks a decade

I was 30 years old and just married when we brought home Boston, our yellow lab. Goddamn, we loved that dog. He was big, independent, and athletic – “a real dog’s dog,” a trainer once told me. One evening, when he was 8 years old, he climbed up into my lap, which was unusual. Normally he rested on my feet. On this night, he repeatedly wedged his head beneath my hands, only resting after my arms had encircled his torsoRead more