The 2014 Chronicle Books #GiveBooks Pledge

This holiday season, instead of eating yourself into a ham coma, I encourage you to participate in the free Give Books Campaign (click it!) sponsored by Chronicle Books. I suppose those aren’t mutually exclusive. One could, technically, gorge on festive meats and share his or her love of literacy with those less fortunate. I can’t tell you how to[…]

Consider This Your Warning

Be prepared to probably not do any of the following things for at least three years after having children. These are in no particular order:

  1. Say no to pizza
  2. Floss
  3. Canoe
  4. Take more than 8 minutes to eat a meal
  5. Have a great pair of socks
  6. Set your alarm
  7. Go antiquing
  8. Stretch
  9. Like your hair
  10. Hold in a fart
  11. Hang glide
  12. Make a Salad
  13. Listen to a story
  14. Use a hot tub
  15. Iron something
  16. Snorkel
  17. Karate
  18. Emergency couple’s therapy

Don’t freak-out.

Tips For Calling In Sick

My friend Jeremy has a great policy: If you’re going to call in sick to work, make it something your boss will be too scared or embarrassed to question. He has used “I have to get my lung drained” on multiple occasions. The response is usually, “Oh God, take as much time as you need.” BINGO. Here are some[…]

Don’t Do Things Like I Do

I can’t do anything without my seven year-old questioning my motives. I know he’s just trying to figure out how the world works and what motivates people, but his curiosity is forcing me to analyze my own behavior, and it’s hard enough to admit to myself that I grabbed the 1% milk instead of the whole[…]

Taking My Father’s Class

I was the youngest student in the class and unfortunately the most naive and confident—there’s no more toxic a combination than youth and bravado. The other students were college juniors from prestigious universities, and I was fresh off graduating from Rutherford Hayes high school in Delaware Ohio. My Dad had accepted a director position at[…]

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The Pinewood Derby

My grandfather’s basement workshop was pristine and overly outfitted, like he’d won it on a gameshow. As a boy, I would venture down there with him to fix a wobbly chair or grab a hammer needed to re-enforce a birdhouse. He was over prepared. I was ten years-old and in the Cub Scouts for the[…]

You Deserve a Break

About a year ago, I drove through a pothole and my front tire exploded. Because I’m a proper lady, I called AAA to come put my spare on for me. I drove the doughnut-wheeled car to the Honda dealership where I waited for them to replace the tire. I texted my wife and told her[…]

Operation Roommate

Here, you’ll find the psychologically complicated eight-step process my son used to trick me into sleeping in his bed with him. I encourage you to watch for the warning signs that your kid might be attempting something similar. Step 1. Establish need: Wake frequently at night, causing your father to go from a dead sleep[…]

Baby Wipes Forever

We no longer have babies and should — at least traditionally — have no use for baby wipes. But I’m here to admit that we just received a brand new shipment. On my list of priorities these days, “conserving paper” is right above “Inventing a car that runs on pee.” A year ago, when I changed a[…]