The Bear, Two Years Later

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Theo has been sick for several days and spent quite a bit of time in the master bedroom, watching tv. Everything was fairly low key with his illness, until he said the words “Mommy, I barfed.” He held his arms away from his body, indicating his now-soiled clothes. And I needed to strip the bed. Continue reading

Her Birthday

I had it all planned out. I knew that I would be meeting some people for the first time today, in a professional context, and when asked “How many children do you have?” I would answer honestly, the way that I always answer in my head. “I have five children. I have three at home and we lost two.” It is Iris’s birthday today and what better way to honor her than to say those words out loud. As I drove to the meetings, I practiced the scenario and the words over and over in my head. Continue reading

Traditions Old and New

Christmas is always a magical time for me.  Our home growing up was always richly decorated for the holidays.  The Rotary Lights display in my hometown area was always a must, boasting millions of magical lights throughout Riverside Park.  Lefse, Chex mix, Lora’s Sugar Cookies, and rosettes were always staples.  We had Advent calendars to open and there was an Advent wreath in the center of our dining table; every night we would light the purple and pink candles and do a reading.  We would gather at my aunt’s house for an oyster stew dinner on Christmas Eve.  On Christmas Day we would be greeted by my dad blasting carols through enormous speakers connected to a reel-to-reel and opening presents by a fire in the woodstove. Continue reading