As I mentioned in Monday's post, we spent Ezra's birthday weekend in the Poconos, at the super-family-and-kid-friendly Woodloch resort. (This is not a sponsored post. I was invited as a travel writer for AlphaMom, where a proper review-type post will appear soon. Woodloch comped our room and meals, but beyond that I'm not being paid for this post, or nor am I obligated to post about the trip at all. But like I would EVER pass up a chance to bore y'all with a bunch of my vacation photos, lololol.) (I bet they knew that, too.) ANYWAY, the boys had a ton of fun. There were: Bumper cars! (Not pictured, me, who went on them one whole time!) Go-karts! (Not pictured, Ike, who was like naaaahhhhhh don't think so.) (This was more his speed.) An indoor pool! And hot tub! And waterslide! And Halloween costumes, characters and bonus treat-or-treating! (Ezra went as Calvin [and Hobbes], Ike as Woody and Not-Pictured-Noah was Marty McFly again.) (And yes, that last one is indeed David! S! Pumpkins!) A petting zoo, pumpkin patch and painting... And ham. So much ham. (That was us "practicing" our scared faces just before I took him on his... Read more →


When someone else gets hurt -- be it a skinned knee or bruised feelings -- Ezra feels it. And I mean feels it, physically, to the point of tears. He then rushes to fix things, to make things feel better. Ice packs, Band-Aids, some candy, a dollar, a promise to always be your friend. His best friend in the entire world is a little girl who lives up the street. We took a trip to the Poconos this weekend for his birthday and he spent almost all of his birthday money to buy her something from the gift shop. He likes buying presents for people. "I feel their happy," he says. One time she went away and brought him back a snow globe. He accidentally dropped it on the bus and it broke. His heart shattered right along with it. "It was so beautiful," he wept into my shoulder. He's stopped ordering off the children's menu (unless there are corn dogs; he really loves corn dogs) because he wants to eat things that look more like what he sees on cooking shows. (Obviously he's a big Masterchef Junior fan.) Helping with dinner isn't enough anymore, he wants to makes things... Read more →


*Please note that in today's performance of DIY, the role of "Yourself" will be played by "Your Husband" because Yourself has had bronchitis for over a week now and feels like shit, but really, You know Yourself would've come up with some other excuse anyway. So when we last left off with the Saga of the Bathroom That Absolutely No One Cares About Except Me, Deeply, this was the state of things: (A reminder that all this chaos was self-inflicted fallout from a simple leak in the shower door. We were completely fine with this basic-ass, late-90s bathroom until a new shower door turned into a new shower and ZOMG, the new shower is so nice! And now everything else in the room looks like hot garbage! Like me, in every group photo ever. I feel you, basic-ass bathroom.) We forgot to take any official "before" photos, so here is a suspiciously elongated one from our house's real estate listing: (Oh yeah, sure, you literally keep nothing on your sink counter except a jar of decorative seashells and I totally didn't unplug our toothbrushes and dump them in the next room along with the half-empty handsoap and my hairspray for... Read more →


Yesterday morning I dropped Noah off at his school and watched him head inside, wheeling a suitcase behind him. He's off on a two-day, two-night field trip to an outdoor adventure camp by the Chesapeake Bay with his classmates. All 300 of them. Who decided all these tiny babies were suddenly ready for this shit? Who decided the grownups were? It was nice to see that most sixth graders are still willing to publicly hug and kiss their parents goodbye, and that this was a Big Deal for plenty of other families -- some cars were packed with moms and dads and grandparents and siblings to wave off their newly official Super Big Kid Who Takes Suitcases Overnight Now. Other kids were clearly sleepaway camp veterans, bouncing out of cars with an overstuffed duffel bag because maybe they have a better understanding of what "several changes of inner and outer clothing" actually looks like for two days at one of these places -- I just kept adding stuff until there wasn't anymore room for stuff. What if his sweatshirt gets muddy? What if all his socks get wet? ("It'll dry! It'll be fine!") Electronics of any kind were strictly prohibited,... Read more →


(I always feel the need to hedge Posts Like This [mundane, complain-y, privileged AF] during Times Like These [seriously, how many national emergencies/tragedies/horrors do we have deal with right now?] and be like: I know. I know! I'm really upset and distressed about it all too in real life. But here is where I come to try and be kind of funny on the Internet. So Imma do that. Hugs for everybody.) Once upon a time, several blog posts ago, I revealed the secret shame of the demogorgon shower sludge, and our less-than-super-adult approach to doing anything about it. (At least anything that would cost us more than a tube of Denial Caulk.) But finally we had a plan and an contractor and things started happening: Demolish-y things! Gateway to the demonscape things! We decided to bump the shower out to the edge of the wall and tile up to the ceiling, and replace the shower basin with a mosaic tile floor. We had three and half boxes of tile leftover from our kitchen/foyer remodel, which wasn't going to be quite enough. Which at first was a big old ARGH because we'd bought discontinued tile (discounted to only $1.50 a... Read more →


If you ask him how middle school is going, he'll say: "It's fine. It's long." And yet he still auditioned for (and was accepted into) the afterschool jazz ensemble, which he says "flies by so fast" because he likes the "jazzy music" and because his saxophone "is like, the main character of jazz." He's tall and lanky and huge and handsome and at least a couple girls have noticed, but he's not interested, no, ew, stop. (But don't you dare say things like girls can't game or code or use "throw/play/scream like a girl" as an insult because you will get an earful.) The kid who couldn't stand Halloween is now begging to go on ghost tours and jump-scare haunts. Next week he's going away on a two-night, outdoor education field trip with his class and I'm the only one who's even remotely stressed about it. "It'll be fun. All my friends are going." He still asked for a Lego set for his birthday, but probably mostly because he hasn't realized he can ask for gift cards to Steam yet. The Lego obsession is slowly giving way to video games and drawing comics and YouTube, though he still likes to... Read more →


I've been on a bit of a purge-and-organize closet bender around the house lately -- what most people would probably consider "spring cleaning" except it's now September because I'm not a slave to your calendars, man. This place has a legitimately amazing number of closets and built-in storage options, but of course the downsides to all that storage means you can simply wall up all your crap for years, out of sight and mind like the Tell-Tale Heart, until one day you open a door and BLAM. You are dead under a pile of regifting candles and suitcases and board games nobody likes. So I've been waging the War on Crap one closet at a time. Lesser victories (aka ones I forgot to take a "before" photo of, like wow it's almost like I've lost the compulsion to share every minute of my day with the Internet or something) include the boys' bookshelves and a linen closet: (Note that I separated and organized sheets by SIZE! And added corresponding labels to the shelves! And made SEVERAL attempts at properly folding the fitted sheets as per YouTube demo instructions before saying fuck this and balling them up into a semi-flat wad... Read more →


Hello! And welcome to my home. Please ignore the demonic horror-movie sludge growing through the wall in the bathroom. It's not yet fully sentient so you should be okay. So siggggghhhhh and bleeeeeearrrrgh and welcome to homeownership. The shower door in the master bathroom started leaking over the summer and like good responsible adults we immediately did the following: 1) Ignore it. 2) Google it. 3) Caulk it. Just...caulk the shit out of it. 4) Watch it. 5) It's getting worse, isn't it? 6) Like a lot worse. 7) Honey, I don't think the caulk did the trick. 8) MOAR CAULK!!1! 9) Ignore it some more. 10) ALL RIGHT FINE WALL, YOU WIN. We're about 90% sure the leak is limited to the shower door frame (and there's no mold, for the record, just mildew and run-of-the-mill water damage that hasn't spread beyond that spot). But since there's really no way to know for sure without ripping out all the drywall and wall tile (and since replacing the door isn't exactly cheap on its own and wow, that would suck to replace it and then be all, OH LOOK THE DEMON SLUDGE IS BACK), we are redoing the whole shower.... Read more →