This Happened. We Were Here.


That highway heading out of town used to be a country road. A mile past the county line sat the little white house with the screen porch facing west. It was my great Aunt Willie and Uncle Ossie's house, the ones I called Bill and Oz. My dad parked the station wagon--dirty from the drive-- next to the pine tree that laid a carpet of needles on anything that stood still. There was always barbecue on buttered buns, and deviled eggs we'd been warned against. There were hugs and conversation in … [Read more...]

Ditching the Pacifier: Why I’m Not in a Rush


It's two am and like clockwork she appears at my bedside. By now I'm accustomed to this routine: the creak of the door, the sound of her footy pajamas shuffling down the hall, and then, arms raised, she whispers Mama. Mama, I want you. Without a thought I hoist her body over mine, and soon she's a tiny bird between us, settled, roosting. The only sounds in the world: the whir of the fan. The tug of the sheets. The rhythmic in and out of the pacifier that pacifies me. My middle child was … [Read more...]

Living a Plan B Life

My daughter is an artist. She finds joy in drawing simple circles and colors outside the lines. While I have to nag my boys to make birthday cards for their friends, she does it willingly, generously. Making art is happy work. We sit at the kitchen table making swirls and curlycues. More purple, Mama, for the stars. She asks me to draw her favorite things: kitties and babies, and finally, me. Instead of my usual stick figure I draw a line. It dips and dives, rises high on the page. And … [Read more...]

How to Dream Big


What is it about the start of a new year that allows us to dream big? We proclaim to the world that we're finally ready to reach our goals: pounds will be shed, projects completed, old habits conquered and new habits formed. Or maybe we write the words in a diary kept in a bedside drawer, bound in leather and expectation. We don't merely tiptoe toward change each January 1st...we dive in head first. So what makes the new year a time of transition, of starting over, of letting go? Is it … [Read more...]

Advice to Writers: Listen


Last February I placed one hand over my eyes and for the first time, clicked Publish. I started My 3 Little Birds to write about my family, share my insights as a mother, and give myself a creative outlet in the midst of so many laundry piles. I wrote about recipes and tv shows, my cluttered kitchen and the projects I intended to do around the house. It was fun. A hobby. But it wasn't me. Sure, I was the one at the helm of the keyboard, clicking and commenting and linking away. But … [Read more...]