Raising Teenagers

Time for a Coffee BRAKE

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When I first noticed the twitching, it didn’t alarm me much. I was sitting
in church and glanced down at my left hand, resting on my leg. My left thumb was moving side to side slightly, without me telling it to do so. Weird, I thought, but we all sometimes get
unexplainable twitches, twinges or pains that end up never happening again and not amounting to anything, right? I moved my hand and the twitching stopped. But when the twitching
happened again the next day, I took more notice. I remembered Michael J. Fox talking about his early signs of Parkinson’s disease—didn’t he say it began with hand twitching? I consulted the
Internet, which is where we all go to get a good scare whenever we need more medical information, and it confirmed my suspicions. Though Fox’s first twitches were in his pinkie finger, when I
Googled “thumb twitching” and …

Humor, Kids and Money, Raising Teenagers

Many Happy Returns: Some Post Tax Day Humor and Ways to Teach Your Kids About Money

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Whew- so glad to be done with the taxes! Yep, that’s where I’ve been over
the past few days—glued to Turbo Tax and barely coming up for air. I HATE DOING TAXES because I always wait until the last minute. I used to do them all by myself, but I think Andy was tired of
driving to the post office at 11 p.m. on April 15 in a panic (but hey, the postal employees always made it so festive and welcoming and would be standing out there waving signs and holding baskets
and you could just drive up and throw in your envelope…) and so a couple years ago we started splitting the tax prep responsibility, so he does half and then hands the file over to me, usually in
February or March. But I’ve always got a million other pressing things to do that keep me from opening that file, and so there I sat on Tax Day, finishing up “under …

Raising Girls, Raising Teenagers

Pinterest & Teens: A “Good Thing”?

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I heard a sweet sound in the house over the past weekend I haven’t heard in a long time: the whirr of the sewing machine. A sewing machine, I might add, that I bought on a Black Friday years ago,
getting up at four in the morning for a “Door Buster Special”. My oldest daughter was 10 at the time, determined to become a fashion designer and learn how to sew, and I was determined to help foster that

Ah, my daughters and I were once such a crafty bunch.  I’m reminded of that a lot—in the garden, where stepping
stones the kids and I made (out of cement mix and pizza boxes) still mark a …

Being a Better Parent, Domestic Engineering, Grandparents

The Feng Shui of Family Photos

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“The realtor has told me to put away any personal photographs,” said Mom the other day.
“Is that right?” I just knew she was going to ask me that. She’s been asking me a lot of things lately since she just put her house on the market this week– something she’s never had to
do before. At least, not by herself. But Dad’s been gone for almost nine of the 50+ years she’s been in that house, and the kids all live far away, so it’s been a nerve-wracking and scary process
for her. She phones often. While I’m no expert, I (and Andy) did sell a house less than six years ago (and shopped for a new one) and last fall, we helped his parents navigate a little bit of
their move to “senior living”…

I’m sure my realtor friends would disagree, …