Anniversary, with Tween

2018-02-21T16:26:43+00:00 February 21st, 2018|adoption, parenting|

It was the 9th anniversary of the day we met, though not our wedding anniversary, which will be 5 years in August. My head spins at how quickly it goes. We dragged the kids to a fantastic Berkeley Cajun place we hadn't taken them before. Fingers were crossed. A few years ago we were sure [...]

An Hour of My Own

2018-02-12T09:03:01+00:00 February 11th, 2018|adoption|

It's Girl Scout cookie season, and you've got to hit it early and hit it hard. We had our booth set up on Solano Avenue. It was normally chilly for February, but somewhat of a shock after a hot, gorgeous week that was anything but normal. It's fun to see the girls sell in a [...]

Fever and Delirium

2018-01-23T13:50:46+00:00 January 23rd, 2018|parenting|

It's tiresome, how unprepared I am for the things that inevitably happen. Jaden was running a fever of 102, 104, even briefly 105 over the weekend, and was snuggling with me, and coughing in my face, during the night. The advice nurse said we were doing the right things: fluids, rest, ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Compared [...]


2018-01-17T14:37:37+00:00 January 17th, 2018|adoption, parenting|

It comes in waves. When you watch the ripples on a lake, and two big sets of waves come together and it's all foamy and turbulent? That's the state we reached this morning. The screaming was epic. New year, post vacation, then Monday was a holiday. It sounds nice, but getting out of the routine [...]

My Month Off Facebook

2017-12-29T15:37:59+00:00 December 29th, 2017|daily life|

It was an impulse, unplanned, but in retrospect inevitable. This had been coming. In early December I deleted Facebook off my phone. There were a lot of reasons. For one, it was taking too much time. I enjoy keeping up with friends and their kids, pets, hobbies and vacations. But I was getting more (and more distracting) [...]

The Breaking Point

2017-11-25T20:15:07+00:00 November 25th, 2017|parenting|

The school secretary sounded serious. "Your daughter is ok, but I think she needs to be seen by a doctor," she told me. She'd slipped in the mud playing football and her arm hurt. In the office, the principal and I asked her to wiggle her fingers, and how much it hurt. It didn't seem [...]


2017-10-14T03:20:15+00:00 October 14th, 2017|daily life|

My mother lived only 2 days into her 54th year, and the end of her life was a case study of how we sometimes ramp up, into expensive and invasive treatment and activity, just when some softening and easing would be perfect. "We'll fight this and beat this" has its place, but the push and [...]

Cub Scouts and Knausgaard

2017-10-03T20:54:12+00:00 October 3rd, 2017|daily life, parenting|

Really all I need is a simple way back to now. And I need it again, and again, and again. When I escape the trap of my worries, the real world seems so solid and beautiful. I find myself Assistant Scout Master for my son's pack, or pride or den, whatever it's called. First grade is [...]


2017-09-27T10:52:25+00:00 September 27th, 2017|adoption|

It's so hard to keep perspective.  A cold and cough swept through the family, Jaden then me then Shayla, with 2.5 sick days and a sick weekend, which feels especially cruel. Jaden's better, but woke up grumpy. "Don't talk to me," he howled when I suggested he get dressed. Then he cried and cried when [...]

Labor, and Rest

2017-09-04T22:12:19+00:00 September 4th, 2017|parenting|

As an anxious person, I spend a lot of time trying to calm myself (and others) down. As a loving person I long to be in synch with and connected to people. I watch with envy those who seem calm and at ease with themselves, and strive to make myself that way too, but I'm [...]

Notes on (Family) Camp

2017-08-07T06:47:22+00:00 August 6th, 2017|holidays and celebrations|

We spent a week at a camp for GLBT families July 29 to August 6. Yes, 8 days of camp. Here are some notes and photos. Saturday Arrived with ash falling from the sky and the sun red from smoke. Hot as hades. They said a fire burning South of Quincy wasn’t moving this way; [...]

Remembering Finnegan, 2001 – 2017

2017-07-24T16:31:53+00:00 July 24th, 2017|daily life|

Finnegan was 16 and a half years old, which is quite up there for a Jack Russell Terror Terrier. Most of his life he was everything you’d expect: feisty and full of bravado, snuggly and in need of comfort. Jay says that as a puppy Finnegan charged out into the back yard, barking fiercely and [...]

Birth Mom

2017-07-13T10:21:06+00:00 July 12th, 2017|adoption|

This is the story of a confusing but important relationship. She created two of the best things that have happened to me, my kids. She gave them their lives, and perhaps some of their biggest life challenges. Her own life has been difficult as she tried to overcome addiction and other problems. Pregnant with our [...]

My Children Far, and Near

2017-07-01T08:35:18+00:00 July 1st, 2017|adoption, parenting|

We're just back from a week at family camp. It was our eighth year, and there's much to love. For one, the corny entertainments. There are singalongs and sketches and silliness that benefit from being performed in such an improbable spot, tucked into the trees in the Sierra Mountain wilderness. There's barely electricity, but these [...]

Summer Fever Dream

2017-06-08T15:14:21+00:00 June 8th, 2017|daily life|

We've needed rain so much, and the Spring delivered. Rain, and rain, and more rain. We're headed into the dry season but the plants are gloriously happy. The pollen shimmers in the warming air, and as the kids' summer break speeds towards me I find myself in a strangely frantic lethargy. There's so much to [...]