The Backwoods

Where we teeter between our love of modern convenience and the yearning for something long past; a world where neighbors knew your name and a “Friend Request” was eye contact and a smile.

20150821_121740_resized

A Home In The Mountains

Posted · 8 Comments

  We came to this land in June of this year, in the midst of a heatwave. We thought we could make a home from the dust but we left after less than two weeks, frustrated. Our plans foiled.  Maybe it wasn’t time yet. Maybe we wimped out. And so we left. For two months […]

78777

A Room With No View

Posted · 23 Comments

  I hate those arrogant ‘update’ blogs. As if the world is waiting, on the edge of their seat, to learn the fate of that once frequent blogger who mysteriously went AWOL from the Facebook feed. But alas…here I lie, tapping away at the keyboard. So much to say… so little of it actually interesting. […]

6787

What They Did To Me Bum…

Posted · 9 Comments

If you’ve not been following the sage of the bear/boys/bum injury, here’s a couple of links: Bear In The Back Woods Cruisin’ For A Bruisin’ Last week I went in for an MRI at the request of our local clinic doc here in Ninilchik who took one look at this bruising and said, “How long […]

Bruise

Cruisin’ for a Bruisin’

Posted · 7 Comments

  I don’t have mirrors in my house. I mean, there is a tall mirror in Robin’s room because, well, she’s seventeen and that is required.  And we have a small hand mirror in the kitchen of course, because doesn’t everybody? But it’s just something we haven’t bothered to buy since moving up to the […]

999

Salsa

Posted · 3 Comments

Let’s make one thing clear. I am not a cook. The fact that my family is still alive can be attributed directly to Kellogs and Wonder and only in the past few years have I began to actually enjoy what happens in a kitchen.  Most of the time when I bake something from scratch it […]

1001

July 12, 2014

Posted · 2 Comments

I rarely take all my kids anywhere at the same time. Specifically since we came home from six months of road tripping, we all avoid the truck and scorn the idea of even the shortest ride. But this morning the girls had to be somewhere at nine and the boys at ten, so we woke […]

999

May 17, 2014

Posted · 1 Comment

After spending six months pretending we were on Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, the adjustment back to cabin life has been a bit of shell shock. Frozen water pipes and batteries didn’t help to ease us back into the woods with grace, but rather encouraged tantrums and big-baby-fits by all. We’ve since gotten the […]

Shoe Attack

Arachnid Shower

Posted · 5 Comments

This morning I had to climb under my truck because we spend more time under it, than in it and that’s a lot considering we are traveling across country. After banging around with a hammer for a while, I crawled back out, reached up to fluff my hair hoping I was one of ‘those chicks’ […]

Me Graduation

Dreams Delayed

Posted · 9 Comments

In the spring of ’03 I had just finished up the third year of my writing degree at Linfield College. (read more) My fellow students were planning their summer vacations, jobs, going home to a family. I was raising one. One morning a professor handed me a piece of paper with a circled ad.  An […]

Bacon

Near Death By Bacon

Posted · 2 Comments

Yesterday I stabbed myself in the hand. Not just stabbed, but sawed, really, while cutting bacon. I knew bacon would be the death of me, I just didn’t realize I would go like this. I’ve never had stitches unless you count childbirth (ouch) nor have I broken a bone.  So my kids thought it hilarious […]

Raisor Family 1942

Legacy Of A Life Lived

Posted · Add Comment

I was twenty before I knew my father had a less than ideal childhood. He didn’t live a life open to discussing a past he’d pushed behind him long before. I didn’t fully know it until my grandfather passed away and I stood in the kitchen and watched my dad’s face, unchanged, from the news. […]

10012

Life On A Boat

Posted · 3 Comments

Last night some random stranger invited my niece Amy and I on an evening boat ride around the Ventura, California Harbor. Sure, complete stranger on a dark and secluded dock, I’ll get in your boat and float away to who knows where…that seems smart. And so I climbed aboard. (Hey, he was wealthy, attractive and […]

20131109_174755

The Prodigal Son…

Posted · 13 Comments

  I remember clearly the night I decided to walk out on my first marriage.  I weaved between the buildings of our Arizona apartment complex in the dark of night, sobbing as only a broken teenage girl can. I clutched the handset of a payphone and held it against my cheek, eyes closed.  I swallowed […]

Depression Image

The Sinkhole of Depression

Posted · 28 Comments

I don’t know when it started, for sure. The feeling of not feeling.  A few months, maybe more. But without warning, without any clear signs it was even happening, I lost myself for a while.  I don’t remember when I stopped being me. Or exactly when everything dimmed.  Just suddenly, I was dark. But nothing […]

PIca

Life…and Death…on a Farm

Posted · 18 Comments

We were lounging in the cabin Saturday evening, arguing over whether MASH dvds were worth generator fuel, when my husband stood to stretch, glanced out the window, and bolted for the door yelling, ‘The dogs have the goats!” He supermanned off the front porch, shoeless, while I screamed at the dogs in my most commanding […]

Mya and Peter

It Takes A Village

Posted · 24 Comments

Our little community of Ninilchik, Alaska, is saddened by the death of one of our local teens in a four wheeler accident on the beach this past weekend.  A boy with a history of trying to find his place.  A boy being raised by a village, known by many and understood by few. A few […]

Me in sunglasses

Things I Don’t Tell You

Posted · 35 Comments

The other day on my Facebook page, I commented something about having a bad day.  A reader replied, saying she was relieved I was having a bad day because it seemed like I always knew what to do…or something like that. I laughed out loud…shook my head…and started to type. It’s so easy to appear, […]

8907

New Babies!

Posted · 5 Comments

About an hour ago our dogs began to bark like crazy. I yelled to Mya to go find out what they were barking at and she comes screaming back towards the house… “PICA HAD A BABY, PICA HAD A BABY!” Sure enough, we have a baaa-ing baby girl and perhaps another on the way.  And […]

20130330_191437

Frozen Assets

Posted · 23 Comments

This afternoon I drove down to HOOKED ESPRESSO here in Ninilchik, Alaska.  Hooked is the coffee shop owned by my teen daughter, Destini. (Read about that HERE and this story will make a lot more sense.) I’ve not been down to Hooked in several months though I’ve driven by a thousand times. Destini is closed […]

Billy Cast

Broken Billy

Posted · 14 Comments

Teenage boys are not exactly famous for the their common sense.  And then for some reason we allow them to operate machinery capable of 80 miles per hour. Billy took a portion of the money he earned last summer as a deckhand on a salmon fishery  and spent it on a pretty darn fast snow […]

Make a difference

Six Seconds

Posted · 16 Comments

I stood in line at a Carl’s Junior restaurant in Palm Desert, California, eager to order my Chicken Fried Steak sandwich and strawberry shake. Sixteen years old, pregnant but not yet showing, my parents had whisked me away from hometown shame and embarked on a sudden cross country trip. A modern day escape from ruination. […]

LukeChores

The Brier Patch Chore

Posted · 12 Comments

My kids do chores. Every day, without fail, they clean my entire house. I know, I know…you don’t believe me. I’m just as in shock as the next guy and when I trace my actions to figure out how I accomplished such an impossible task, it still makes no sense. I’ll save that for another […]

img233 (2)

Child of a Child

Posted · 8 Comments

I was just two weeks into motherhood when I took a job at the Dairy Queen on 28th drive and Cactus in Phoenix, Arizona and made the first of many bad parenting choices.  A few days past my seventeenth birthday, I was still fresh from prom nights, backseats and football games, not quite ready for […]

98978

Behind The Wheel

Posted · 5 Comments

There’s a time for every season…except when rain falls on snow and makes a sheet of ice on which to drive. There’s no time for that.  Not when a boy wants to learn to drive. This week Billy got his driver’s license. Yes, I know, he’s 18 (did I mention Billy turned 18?) and should […]

Dairy Queen (2)

Fragments Of Sanity

Posted · 10 Comments

It was just before noon on a Monday morning, sometime in the fall of 1988, in Phoenix, Arizona.  I stood in my pale blue polo shirt behind the counter at Dairy Queen, my breast milk dampening the front of my uniform.  My baby girl was somewhere across town in a basement apartment with some sitter […]

Ryan Woods

You Aint Dead!

Posted · 12 Comments

Once on an episode of COPS, a woman, upon being arrested, was throwing a Made-For-TV tantrum when her mother, giant breasts sagging out the sides of her tank top, cigarette hanging from one side of her mouth, drawled, “Shut up girl…you aint dead.” You aint dead. And ever since, when things are tough or one […]

405548_482754615069148_54006985_n

This Is My Land

Posted · 6 Comments

It was more than forty years ago that my in-laws, just after giving birth to their seventh child (my husband) purchased an acre of land. An escape, they said, from the L.A. life they found themselves living. Bud worked the assembly line at General Motors in Van Nuys, and Patricia worked in a medical office.  […]

90800

This Blog Is Not Real

Posted · 33 Comments

Last night a young lady with a history much like my children’s wrote me a message and asked for advice.  But before she asked, she spent several paragraphs telling me why she wasn’t worthy of my time.  “…as if reading your blog somehow makes me worthy of placing myself in your life,” she said. As […]

543526_3806218629027_6984647_n

It’s What She Doesn’t Do

Posted · 33 Comments

  My boy, Billy, seventeen and barely on the brink of manhood, is deeply immersed in his first bout of young love. If you’ve seen Billy’s eyes, you correctly guessed he has no trouble enticing the young ladies…but this one, well, I’ve never seen him nearly so smitten.  It’s rather sweet, really, to see the […]

722

Two Down, Six To Go (aka Destini’s Graduation)

Posted · 24 Comments

Our Destini graduated from high school last week and in honor of her success, I’d like to embarrass her a bit by sharing a story with the world. Five years ago this August I picked up my phone to find an Alaska State Trooper on the other end.  He explained to me that my daughter, […]

2012-04-14_18-14-15_374

Two Kids. Two Paths. Both Right.

Posted · 64 Comments

In late August of this year I will be the proud mother of two college students.  Two kids on two very different paths… Destini is eighteen and will graduate Salutatorian of her senior class in a few weeks.  She has been accepted to the Business program at the University of Alaska, Anchorage and has received […]

Daily Drivel

Posted · 24 Comments

Confession time…. I never read blogs. Well, rarely.  I occasionally click on a link someone Posts on FB and enjoy a good read, if I have time.  My knowledge of the internet two years ago went as far as email and occasional Facebook or Myspace.  A friend suggested I start one and so I read […]

PageLines- BackwoodsMomHeaderkidsinorder.jpg

Backwoods Mom Turns One!

Posted · 15 Comments

Yesterday was the one year anniversary of Backwoods Mom. It was just over two years ago when a friend of mine said, “Hey, you should start a blog!”  And I said, “A blog?  What’s that?” And it took me  a while to get going, as I stumbled the path of ignorance, bouncing quickly from “What’s […]

Destini Plays Her Ukulele

Posted · 10 Comments

Tonight Destini played the Ukulele with the Ninilchik High School Choir…which is basically the entire high school, haha…as they sang “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”.

90899

My Parents Are Married…and other college scholarship killers

Posted · 50 Comments

With Destini going off to college in the Fall, we’ve been furiously applying for grants and scholarship as if her future depends upon it…because it does.  With seven kids in the house, surely several of them will seek further education.  And since the earned dollar only goes so far, we were hoping to spread our […]

Mommy, Where Does Money Come From?

Posted · 20 Comments

I’m standing in front of the candy rack, neck kinked upwards, staring at the boxes in the top row. I can’t see inside them…they are too tall and I am too small.  But I know what’s in there.  And I know it’s out of reach in more ways than one.   The twenty-five cent rack…might as […]

8759

Consolidation

Posted · 23 Comments

Sometime in the next few months our family of nine intends to move from our 7 bedroom, 3300 square foot house, into a cabin less than half that size.  Good luck, you no doubt laughingly say, and we’ll need it.  We’ve spent the past six months slowly narrowing down our belongings to a reasonable amount, […]

444

Anthony The Artist

Posted · 17 Comments

By popular demand…Anthony, age eleven, has finally completed five sketches he would be willing to sell.  In print form, of course.  And I quote: “Once they start selling really well, we can raise the price in tiny increments until I am making a lot of money.  Then I will split the income up. I’ll give […]

Pancakes

If You Give This Pig A Pancake

Posted · 23 Comments

As I suck down a pile of peanut butter coated, from scratch, pancakes…drizzled with real maple syrup and chug back a giant mug of cold milk, I peruse the list of challenges I’ve just signed up to follow for the next six weeks. A health challenge, offered by our local health club here in Ninilchik, […]

DO I work

I Am Mom…Do I Work?

Posted · 29 Comments

Last year my daughter was assigned to interview a person about their job for school.  She asked, “Can I interview my mom?” “Does she work?” asked the teacher. Hmmmm…do I work… For the better part of my adult life I’ve been at home with my kids.  I don’t have a ‘job’.  I don’t get a […]

53267

Fire Starter

Posted · 16 Comments

With snow piling up by the foot, not the inch, on these long…dark…January…Alaska days, the number one thing on our minds is “Heat”.  Well, actually, Netflix is the number one thing on our minds…but heat is a close second. About fifteen years ago my mother-in-law, the most self-sufficient, independent, 70-something woman I know, taught me […]

877

SNOW DAY!

Posted · 22 Comments

Anderson Hill, near Ninilchik, Alaska… In celebration of our first completed week doing our schooling at home…and after all the kids were finished with their work…we hit the sledding hill down the road.  Billy built a jump…and it was all ‘downhill’ from there! Luke…has…no…nerve…endings. He bursts throug the jump…   Billy attempts snow boarding…   […]

Three Small Things

Posted · 23 Comments

Originally written in May, 2011…re-posting. A small brush fire near my home last night brought a trooper to my door saying to prepare for the worst…the wind was taking it our direction…be ready to leave without warning.  Warning. Wasn’t that what he just gave us? I went back into the house and gathered the children.  […]

303145_194990573911982_120541408023566_421529_1064978236_n

The Shield Of Confidence

Posted · 129 Comments

  In 2004 I graduated with a 3.89 GPA from one of the highest rated private colleges on the west coast.  And I did so, while parenting eight children, six of whom had some kind of special need.  My final semester I managed 25 credits at two different colleges, picking up some missing credits at […]

Realistic Advice To Teenage Girls

Posted · 151 Comments

 Because naive parenting leads to unprepared teenagers… Nobody really looks like that.  Stop trying to achieve the impossible. That eighty dollar pair of jeans looks exactly the same as that thirty dollar pair of jeans. In ten years you will be nothing like the person you are today.   I know you don’t believe me.  But […]

84568754

Times Are A Changin’…

Posted · 10 Comments

  When I was eight I years old I spent my summer shooting BB’s at everything that moved, and everything that didn’t.  When the gun ran dry, I cocked it back, aimed, and blew the crap out of ant hills with the powerful puff of air that came from the tip.  I rolled down steep […]

Children Will Remember

Posted · 106 Comments

As parents, we spend our lives trying to be good enough.  Trying to keep up.  We worry that we’ve failed.  We worry that we’ve screwed up our kids to the point of no return because somehow we’ve not been good enough…as parents.  But let me explain something. Our children will not remember their childhood the […]

img013

Moments Of Your Life

Posted · 17 Comments

“It can’t get any better than this,” says the new parent, over and over, as they hold their precious newborn for the first time.  And yet it can. Because the best moment of your life is not when your child is born…it is the billions of moments to follow. It’s the moist smell of her […]

Thanksgiving-Charlie-Brown-Snoopy

Thanksgiving Day 2011

Posted · 14 Comments

I once had a foster child who’s most vivid holiday memory was sitting on the side of the freeway watching fireworks while smoking a joint with her parents.  Oh, how sweet…those parent/child bonding moments… We’re not a family with solid holiday traditions.  We don’t have a special platter we use for turkey.  We don’t have […]

978

To Tell Or Not To Tell

Posted · 31 Comments

Today a friend asked me if I shared my history with my kids…if they know my sordid past or if I keep the dirty details to myself. Funny, it never even occurred to me not to tell my kids…at least my teens…my story.  It is me. They know it all. They know I smoked pot.  […]

GarfieldRoom

Dirty Little Secret

Posted · 13 Comments

  I’m not a neat freak by any stretch of the imagination. On any given day you can find my house fairly messy.  I clean it every single day, or at least have my little minions do the job.  But with nine people as busy as we…well…the white glove test…we would not pass. If you […]

787891

Hollow-why-not?

Posted · 18 Comments

I approached the dark porch with excitement, eager to see my classmate in full Halloween garb.  I knocked on the door and clutched my pumpkin shaped candy bucket in one small hand.  The boy opened the door a few inches, peered out at me in nothing but jeans and a t-shirt, and said, “We don’t […]

TillamookStateForest

I See Camo People

Posted · 36 Comments

I’m not sure I believe in a sixth sense…or some other level of understanding beyond what is right in front of our nose.  I’m a skeptic by nature and find myself consistently questioning…always needing some irrefutable proof or scientific fact to back up data.  I rarely believe things I hear or read…until I’ve heard it […]

handfoot2

It’s The Little Things…

Posted · 19 Comments

It’s the little things that get to you. It’s the, “Not Me” that always gets blamed.  The Birds and the Bees that needs explained. It’s the cookies hidden beneath the bed.  The fifteen millionth book to be read. The science fair project that’s due tomorrow.  The hand held out, wanting to borrow. It’s the crusty, […]

scales

A Balance Point

Posted · 13 Comments

Lately I find myself in a sort of evaluation of priorities in which I stop…look around…take a breath…and consider my life from an outside perspective.  I call it…readjusting my motor.  Because going full speed ahead is not always the right way to go…if you are pointed in the wrong direction. And somehow I need to […]

Kids With No Cable

Posted · 36 Comments

[singlepic id=241 w=320 h=240 float=center] It was a sunny afternoon in 2002 and the kids were zoned in on the television with rapt attention.  Dan walked in the room, stared at our bunch for a moment, and then walked right outside and cut the satellite television cable in half.  After the shock wore off, the […]

43254

Anthony the Anomaly

Posted · 68 Comments

Over the past couple of months our family has been trying to get to the bottom of Anthony’s hair loss.  For those who’ve asked, I thought I’d write an update on the situation. Let me start by saying we’ve been extremely lucky in that none of our children have ever been ill. They are, in […]

69879

Free…To Whom?

Posted · 68 Comments

My small boys wake each morning and come directly to the kitchen table, still rubbing the sleep from their eyes.  I send them to wash while I pile on their plate either eggs and potatoes and toast or oatmeal with honey and butter. Sometimes we have peanut butter toast and a sliced pear and once […]

prescription-drugs_0

How Did I Miss This?

Posted · 9 Comments

  Today a dear friend lost someone they love to a prescription drug overdose.  Such a sad thing.  As I shared the news with Billy, he looked confused. “What’s Oxycodone?” he questioned. “It’s an addictive prescription drug.  A pain medicine.” “I don’t understand,” he said.  “That kills you?” I don’t understand. WHAT? How did I […]

8997

I Can Not Tell A Lie…

Posted · 17 Comments

I came across this “letter of apology” today. I have dozens of them from Anthony over the past four years.  Whenever he is sent to his room to reflect on his behavior….which is a LOT…he likes to write a note or draw a picture about what happened.  On this day, I’m guessing he was busted […]

Backwoods Bread

Posted · 13 Comments

Backwoods Bread I grew up on homemade bread.  It was thick. It was soft. It was healthy.  It was probably delicious. And I hated it. So when I became a parent myself I swore to give my children only the best store bought, fluffy white bread.  But when I acquired a houseful of children who […]

Fed up

Fed Up!

Posted · 2 Comments

  My chiropractor has a chicken nugget sitting on her shelf that is four years old. And it looks like you could dip it in barbecue sauce and chow down.  It’s not discolored. It’s not shrunken. It looks exactly like it did four years ago when it came hot out of the magic oil at […]

What Comes Around

What Comes Around

Posted · Add Comment

  I’m not a good gift giver.  I show up to parties without a bottle of wine.  I send my kids to birthdays with no bag of trinkets.  I rarely remember my friends with a card or a gift certificate to their favorite book store.  I’m probably snickered about behind my back.  Eye rolls likely […]

Honesty Is Not Lost

Honesty Is Not Lost

Posted · Add Comment

A few weeks ago my mother’s wedding ring fell from her finger while she was shopping in town.  Now, this is a small town…so there aren’t that many places to look. But my mom lives a half hour from town and only goes in about once a week so she makes it worth her while. […]

When Someone You Know

When Someone You Know…Becomes Someone You Knew

Posted · 1 Comment

We’ve all been there… I’ve had friends…who I loved…who I couldn’t imagine my life without. Friends who were dear to me.  Friends…best friends…you thought would stick around forever. And then you move. Or they do. Or something happens and life just leads you in opposite directions. You swear to remain close. You call, you write, […]

Mislead By Example

Mis-Lead By Example

Posted · 2 Comments

This morning I popped Anthony on the butt.  I don’t normally spank my kids…gave it up years ago when I started fostering simply because it seemed unfair to spank one kid, and not the other, when they both did the same thing wrong. So I spanked Anthony, one solid whack to the backside.  Which is […]

Corn On The Job

Corn On The Job

Posted · Add Comment

My phone rang late tonight.  Normally I’d be worried, but it’s Alaska in the summertime…there is no such thing as “too late to call”.  And I love living in a world where someone calls in the middle of the night to pass along a garbage bag of frozen corn.  I’ve had similar calls involving moose […]

Waiting For Results

Posted · 1 Comment

There are few sentences in the world that will stop you dead in your tracks as fast as, “You have a lump.”  Like hitting a brick wall. The invincible, indestructible you suddenly feels like a paper airplane in a hail storm…helpless and going down fast. And in those first days of waiting, you examine every […]

Destini Reads

Posted · Add Comment

Apparently, children learn via repetition…as demonstrated in this video of Destini at about 2 1/2 years old.  Let me start by saying, Destini had an unusually good grasp of language at a very young age. I have video of her using full, complete sentences, at fourteen months old.  By two, she was speaking very fluently. […]

Declaration Of Ignorance

Declaration of Ignorance

Posted · Add Comment

Never happier than when he got his very own copy…   Last week I noticed some political signs going up along the street in town. Same names, different year.  And I said to the husband, “Is there a vote coming up?” “Yes,” he says…next year is the presidential election.” “Really?  Already?” I know next to […]

I'll worry If I Get Sick

I’ll Worry About It…If I Get Sick

Posted · Add Comment

  This week my doctor found a nodule on my thyroid.  She sucked some blood from my body, promised test results soon and told me to return in a week. I went in for an earache and pain when I swallowed and came out with far more than I bargained for. On the one hand, […]

Sixteen And Pregnant 2

Sixteen And Pregnant – Part Two

Posted · 3 Comments

  Part One Here I lay on top of the pale green sheets on the eighth floor of John C. Lincoln Memorial Hospital and stared out at the night.  It was August of 1988 and the thunder raging outside the fourth floor window seemed a warning of things to come.  Bolts of fire lit up […]

The Talk

“The Talk…”

Posted · 3 Comments

  When I was fifteen, I stood by my mother in the kitchen and she said, “Do you have any questions for me about sex?” “No,” I answered, rolling my eyes. “Okay, then… there’s a book on the shelf if you need it.” I imagine the relief she felt was great when I said, “no”.  […]

From The Next

From The Nest

Posted · Add Comment

  “It’s odd,” I said to Destini this morning, “to watch your kids grow up and move on with their lives…I rarely hear from Heather anymore.” “Well,” she said, “I probably won’t call every day when I move out either.” “WHAT?????!!!” “Uhm….I mean….I’m sure I’ll live at home until you die of old age and […]

In This Life 7-23-11

In This Life 7/23/11

Posted · 17 Comments

Billy just walked through the door looking like death and smelling even worse after four days at sea on a salmon boat.  This picture doesn’t do him justice…his hair is disgusting and the rest of him aint so peachy either.  I wish you could smell him. I wish I couldn’t. “We only had one day […]

Sixteen And Pregnant

Sixteen And Pregnant- Part One

Posted · 2 Comments

  On July 7, 1988, I found myself traveling across Phoenix, Arizona in an un-air-conditioned 67 Gallaxy with red leather seats sticking to the backs of my thighs.  Windows rolled down, pony tail flying in the wind, I looked out at the city rolling by…so far from Alaska, so far from home…and wondered how I’d […]

When The Boy Becomes A Man

When The Boy Becomes A Man

Posted · 12 Comments

It’s just after midnight and if you’d driven by my house a few moments ago, you’d have seen me in my pajamas, blood up to my elbows, chasing a salmon head around the grass in the dark. Even as I sit and type, scales are still attached to my forearms and two bandaids stop the […]

I Sit To Save Lives

I Sit To Save Lives

Posted · 1 Comment

I’ve spent the past twenty years wishing I was one of those perky, pony-tailed, runner-chicks I see on the side of the road. You know the ones that your steering wheel tugs towards as you pass and you have to fight yourself not to flatten their tiny sweats-clad ass with your bumper?  Yah, those chicks. […]

How I Found Me

Posted · 4 Comments

I found my self-worth on a hot May day in 2004 when I crossed the center stage and, holding my head high for perhaps the first time in my thirty-three years, was handed a piece of paper that said I’d finally arrived. And in that half sheet of fancy paper, marked with the seal of […]

Remember When My Eye Fell Out?

Posted · Add Comment

When Destini was six years old, her eye fell out. No, really.  Okay, let me back up a bit.   It was a Sunday evening and we were in town, parked at McDonalds.  It was late, we were getting some food, and then heading home.  Destini complained she didn’t feel well.  Then she puked in the […]

Sneaking Out

Sneaking Out …The Next Generation

Posted · 22 Comments

I spent half my teen years suspended over the frame of my daylight basement bedroom window, either sneaking out … or sneaking back in.  So when I found my son’s bed empty at four a.m. the other night, I was only surprised by the fact that I’d not caught him before. We’ll not go into […]

The Downfall Of Duct Tape

The Downfall Of Duct Tape

Posted · Add Comment

  Today I laid down 99 cents each for those balsa wood airplanes for my three youngest boys. I don’t know why…an impulse buy at the register.  Because, aside from being incredibly flimsy, physically incapable of flight and a total waste of a dollar, they are also the only thing in the world that duct […]

Role Reversal

Role Reversal

Posted · Add Comment

A few years ago Dan left his job and stayed home with the kids for five months so I could finish college. We had 8 kids at home.  Five of them had some kind of special needs, two severely handicapped, intensive needs. They attended five different schools in two different towns. I was taking 25 […]

Why My Kids Read

Why My Kids Read

Posted · 1 Comment

Every kid in my house is a constant reader…though four of them have, or have had at some time, a reading disability.  They didn’t start out as readers…and it took some effort…but I did it.  And it was strategically planned from my very first child. Bedtime in my house is strictly ritualistic.  My kids need […]

All In A Days Work

All In A Days Work

Posted · Add Comment

I just found the lunch I was supposed to eat today sitting on my desk between my laptop and the pencil sharpener with two bites gone.  Proof…once again…that I don’t stop and think about what I’m doing. I just do. My other half (not better, just other) told me the other day, “You don’t think […]

I Cry in The Bathroom

I Cry In The Bathroom

Posted · 11 Comments

I write these sad stories about my kids…about their survival and their trials. About their successes.  And my readers cry out, “Good job, mom!”…or… “Where would they be without you?” And I’ll accept the compliments with one raised eyebrow as I think, “They did it despite my failures half the time…”  But I acknowledge my […]

Diamonds Roses

Diamonds, Roses, and Rotary Sanders

Posted · 2 Comments

They say a diamond is a girl’s best friend…and that’s true for me…if the diamond comes in the form of a sparkly new diamond blade for my sliding compound miter saw! The diamond, chocolate, and fancy card markets peak every holiday as men and women alike run out to buy their dearest ones something that […]

Daddy I Did something

Daddy, I Did Something Very Bad…

Posted · 1 Comment

Every father’s worst nightmare happened this morning when Destini walked into the living room, tears brimming, and said, “Daddy, I did something very bad.” Immediately, his thoughts go to the worst. Pregnancy…drugs…pregnancy… are the words that pretty much resonate off the insides of the brain of a parent upon hearing such a sentence. His insides […]

SIxteen And Profitable

Sixteen and Profitable

Posted · 3 Comments

Someday I hope to live child-free. And in order see that fantasy happen, I have to get them out of my house…independent…living on their own.  And to achieve that goal, I must teach them how to support themselves, so they don’t come back and live in my basement with their six children and deadbeat spouse.  […]

Girly-Girl Time

Posted · Add Comment

It’s a well-known fact amongst my friends that I am not a girly-girl.  I don’t do my nails. I don’t spend more than six minutes a day on my hair, (and that includes shampoo).  And my makeup bag consists of a three year old, two dollar tube of mascara and an under eye insomnia concealer.  […]

Time Dawdles On

Time Dawdles On

Posted · Add Comment

As time moves quickly, just like our parents warned, most of us spend at least a small portion of time re-evaluating who we are, where we’ve been and what we’re going to do next.   As my peers and I circle our fortieth year, preparing to land in our fifth decade, we can’t help but reflect…not […]

Boys And Their Tools

Boys and Their Tools

Posted · Add Comment

There are few things more impulsive than a teenage boy when accompanied by other teenage boys.  Put two or more within the same vicinity and their brains shrink to the size of a worm and the little sense of reason they possess as an individual goes right out the window.  It’s just a scientific fact. […]

Calling All Addicts

Calling All Addicts

Posted · Add Comment

I’m not saying I’m addicted to my phone, but I once nearly tore my nipple off on the sharp edge of wooden paneling while running towards the jingling fiend.  But again, not addicted.  Not really. My love goes back to our black rotary dial phone we had when I was young.  She sat on a […]

I See Clear People

I See Clear People

Posted · Add Comment

It’s a simple story really.  A simple story with a big impact.  I’ve tried to elaborate it. I’ve tried to embellish it.  But in the end, it all comes down to a three minute conversation with a five year old.  Here it is. I stared across the room at my oldest child in her bed, […]

Laundry Soap Cheats

Laundry Soap Cheats

Posted · 8 Comments

I’ve been making my own laundry soap for a few years now. I know that sounds impressive…like I’m some kind of housewife guru or something…but believe me, it’s nothing of the sort.  The fact is I’m too cheap to buy the stuff. Plain and simple.   So a few years ago I came across a website […]