Are We There Yet?

Are We There Yet?

Soccer mom, stage mom — it’s a learning experience

We parents wear many hats.

We chauffeur. We teach. We cook. We launder.

We are also activity directors. Each season we plot out our kids’ extracurriculars and calculate how the practice schedules may or may not fit into our own lives.

And with that role comes another responsibility: parent volunteer. I have to say my record in this area is somewhat checkered.

Auto correcting

When my son turned 8 years old, one reassuring thought popped in my head: he’s still only halfway to driving.

That fear has lurked in the recesses of my brain since the day he as born, when I couldn’t imagine this tiny baby someday commandeering a metal killing machine.

We have arrived at that day. He is now 15, and about to get his permit.

Midweek beach getaway good for the soul

Summer has just started (by the school calendar if not the actual calendar) and we’ve already checked one item off my daughter’s vacation bucket list: a beach road trip.

It wasn’t a drive-two-days-to-get-to-the-ocean beach vacation, although I am always open to that possibility. It wasn’t even a weekend getaway.

This was more of a mini, midweek beach trip.

Two strikes and it's gone

The house of Weiss Lancaster’s youth was a magical place to grow up, an old Victorian mansion with back stairs and a tower and a huge porch.

Can't say no to Fido - or Kitty?

The pet pressure is building in our household.

I’ve managed to hold off acquiring a furry friend for eight years, since our last kitty went to meet her feline maker.

But our kids are fairly relentless, and I’ve run out of excuses.

For awhile, it was hairball fatigue. I wasn’t ready to deal with the cleanup involved with a pet and two young kids.

Decluttering can be a costly proposition

There I was, contemplating how I could steal something back from a local thrift shop and asking myself, “How did I get here?”

Let’s back up a few days.

About a month ago, on the first sunny Saturday in a while, I felt energized to do some spring cleaning.

This doesn’t come easy for me. I save everything. My house could be one of those “before” pictures on decluttering.com.

Custard's last stand

We’ve heard a lot about ice cream lately.

Specifically, frozen custard.

The open-closed-open again tale of Jarling’s Custard Cup has kept fans of the frozen treat guessing for the past few weeks.

We meet again, Mickey

When I tell people what I did over spring break, I get a variety of reactions.

Laughter. Sympathy. And from some fellow parents, knowing smiles.

My vacation involved a trip to Florida with my daughter — and about 100 of her middle-school friends. Four days at the Disney World theme parks, two overnight bus trips there and back.

Outwitted by a thermostat

With all the shoveling, back pain and creative driving we’ve endured in recent days, I thought I’d offer some tried-and-true homeowner advice to help you get through the rest of the winter.

Today’s installment is a step-by-step guide for what (not) to do when your furnace stops working on the coldest day of the year. Just in case, you know, that were to ever happen.

'A beautiful gesture'

Shelby Rowan has had a rough life. No two ways about it.

He lived with his mom in a homeless shelter, on and off, for the first 14 years of his life.

His dad wasn’t in the picture. One brother died at birth. Another spent time in jail.