Small Talk

When clean becomes a dirty word

As the years pass by and I look back on the first five years of my children’s lives, I suppose my memories will soften, but if I were asked right now to sum up life with toddlers in one word, that word would be “sticky.”

Aging gracefully tricky business

After being one of her fans over the years, I was shocked to read several bitter and sullen quotes from the longtime editor of Cosmopolitan magazine, Helen Gurley Brown. It seems the immutable laws of life and time had finally stolen her endless energy and sex appeal, or at least she thought so, and she […]

Animals that steal your heart

It was a pretty tough day, almost 20 years ago, as we returned from having our 6-week-old, all-gray, cute-as-a-button dwarf bunny put to sleep.  The experience not only made me profoundly sad, it also exposed me as a fraud.  I don’t think I ever regained my tough-guy status with my kids.

Consider names carefully

Names. Shakespeare pondered them. Spoiled heiresses make the most of them. But surnames aren’t the problem. The real challenges are the given names — first names, rather than last.

The dress is found, altered and pressed

It seems a few of you have been wondering how my aforementioned search for the perfect mother-of-the-groom dress has gone.

Minding your Ps & Qs in Boston

There are, of course, so many reasons to love living in laid-back Southern California, but I have begun to appreciate it from an entirely different perspective, since my son moved to Boston.

Spring has arrived in North County

I don’t remember what Punxsutawney Phil had to say on Groundhog Day, but there is no doubt that spring has arrived in North County.

Never trust anyone under 45

As temperatures plummet to crazy-below-zero back east, I have realized that the only thing worse than living in that climate is having your child living there.

Tales of war and treasure

As Russia rattles its saber in Eastern Europe, I was reminded of one of my favorite stories that came from where I least expected it. It came from a neighborhood mom, a friend whose kids went to my school. One day in fall 2003, she mentioned that she and her family had gone to Latvia […]

Making those credit cards smoke

Not long ago, a syndicated columnist best known for her political commentary wrote a wonderful column admitting all the reasons she just loves to Christmas shop.