Tending the Home Fires

This is where we talk about what it means to care for our homes and ourselves and any other humans (and/or animals) lucky enough to share those spaces with us.

Upon realizing not everyone has a Felicia

Upon Realizing Not Everyone Has a Felicia

I am not here to tell you why junior high in America is awful. All I know is that it is. Awful. I was a smart girl with a weird name and junior high was my 4th school. Luckily, I was white lower middle class in a predominantly white middle class town so that made it much easier. But, at the time, I didn’t know that my race smoothed my way. And I never got used to being the new kid. The first day at a new school was prefaced by a good week of sleepless nights and what I later learned were anxiety attacks. Read more

Releasing the dream of getting it all done

Releasing the Dream of Getting it all Done

I like lists. But I am beginning to think they aren’t all that good for me. Lists give me a false sense that it is possible to be done or through with the tasks involved with living.

Okay, it occurs to me (after having read the above sentence) that it isn’t the lists that are bad, it is the way I think about them. A list won’t ever control for the chaos that is living. A list can impose a mental framework from which I can manage my time and energy but that is all. Lists won’t make the passing of time and the changes that come easier. Read more

The dead zone from spring break to the end of the school year

The Dead Zone: From the End of Spring Break to the End of the Year

I hate the month of May.  I wish I didn’t but I do. When my kids were little and May rolled around, I used to worry about how I was going to fill the summer days. They were in preschool for a few hours each week, which gave them social and educational enrichment and gave me time to get errands done, have lunch with friends, or just be alone for short periods of time. We all came back together refreshed and recharged on preschool days.  

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Persistiny Milestones

Persistiny Milestones

I often become focused on my lists and calendars and living into the future so much so that I often do not notice what I have accomplished. Felicia is, amazingly, more guilty of this than I am. What she can accomplish in a set amount of time is mind boggling.

So when we decided to start a business, it should have been obvious that we would have a collective blindspot when it came to keeping track of, stopping to recognize,  and celebrating our accomplishments.

Nope. Read more

My baby graduates from college

My Baby Graduates from College

I talk about my older son a lot. He claims it is why he doesn’t read the blog. I think he doesn’t read the blog as a favor to me because if he did he would be obliged to send me a cease and desist order. I am, and have always been, a pretty embarrassing mom. I talk loud, I give lots of kisses and I own something called a VersaCart that I walk with (in public) to my local supermarket. My younger son does not yet realize how embarrassing his mother his. My older son knew from a very young age but he is adept at the art of Humoring Mother. Read more

Bail Reform

Bail Reform

Google and the Koch brothers walk into a Washington D.C. conference room… The beginning of a weird, wonky beltway joke? Nope. It actually happened. On Tuesday, May 8th 2018, these two often diametrically opposed groups announced their joint endeavour to agitate for the overhaul of the for profit bail system that exists in the majority of states.

No matter who you are in America, the bail system impacts your life. If you or someone you love has been arrested then you know first hand how financially devastating the for profit bail system can be. If you have enough money to post bail outright then maybe it isn’t as much of a hardship but very few families can absorb that kind of an expense. The vast majority of American families must turn to a bail bonds company of one kind or another. No matter if you or yours are found innocent or guilty, you are on the hook for the fees and generally high interest loans needed to post bail. Read more

Carving out time to be businessy

Carving Out Time to be Businessy

I’m supposed to be writing about carving out time to be businessy because I spend a lot of time complaining about it to Aileen, or really anyone who will listen to me.  I’ve been a stay at home mom for the last 17 years. I consider it my job and I’m really good at it. I have lots of experience and according to most metrics, I’m successful.  I also love the work that I do, but I often describe it as having terrific benefits, with lousy pay and long hours. Read more

the care and feeding of humans part 3

The Care and Feeding of Humans: Part 3

I am the last of four kids and, by the time I came along, my mom was done in the kitchen. None of us went hungry but she had zero interest in cooking. When I was dumb enough to ask her what was for dinner, she would say, “Close your eyes, what do you see?” And I would roll my eyes and say, “Nothing.” And she would nod and say, “That’s what’s for dinner.” All this usually happened without her looking up from the book she was reading.

To this day I think that was hilarious. I thought it was funny at the time but I didn’t tell her. Parental shenanigans should not be encouraged. Read more

Am I funny or just rude

Am I Funny or Just Rude?

Different families prize different traits. Some families value intelligence, others praise adherence to the familial faith. My family prized being off-kilter. If you were too much like other people we had very little use for you. We weren’t total lunatics, we paid our taxes and my dad spent a lot of time yelling at a tree in our front yard that refused to grow. Turns out it was a foothill pine. I know that your dad yelling at trees doesn’t seem normal, but in the 80’s dads were much weirder than they are now. Also, he smoked and had a tattoo of a skull and crossbones on his forearm and looked alarmingly like Hunter S. Thompson. Although there were a variety of reasons I wasn’t popular with the boys in high school, my scary dad didn’t help matters. Read more

Fueling the fire

Fueling the Fire

I’ve had a tough time writing today’s blog. This week we’re talking about self care and the importance of refueling ourselves, so that we can continue to tend the fires of those we love. Like most people, my fuel tank is incredibly low. There has been a lot happening in the world over the last months and I haven’t been great about keeping myself grounded. My tank ran dry and I’ll tell you, it was not pretty.

Sometimes having your tank run dry is unavoidable. Modern life is stressful and beating myself up for not keeping myself calm seems counterproductive. But now that I’m somewhat on the other side of this particular episode, I’ll reflect on what self care strategies work best for me.

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