How Much is Too Much for Holiday Giving to Kids?

Three perspectives on why holiday gifts and giving traditions need to be thoughtful, meaningful, and tweaked in a way that makes sense for the particular blend of personalities and histories that make up our unique families. [Read more...]

All Good Things (& Christmas Trees) Come to An End

The sight of a Christmas tree strapped onto a car roof awakens all kinds of anticipation for me; at this time of year, even the mind-numbing routine of driving my kids around is made delightful by the sight of lighted trees and electric candles in people’s windows, and strings of lights adorning outdoor trees and [Read More...]

On Three-Parent IVF and the Act of Begetting

Every few months, a story pops up about a new frontier in reproductive medical technologies: so-called “three-parent IVF.” NPR recently reported on efforts in Britain to allow embryos created via this technique to be transferred into women’s uteruses, while a New York Times Magazine cover article last summer focused on whether the Federal  Drug Administration would approve human clinical [Read More...]

Not All Pain is Gain


Not all pain is gain. Pain is not always fixable. This is the truth. But it is not a hopeless truth. [Read more...]

Bittersweet Bedtime Stories

My two younger kids were feeling nostalgic the other night. While they have long been in the habit of reading on their own at bedtime, last night they pulled a few favorite picture books off the shelf (The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton, Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel, and a falling-apart-and-taped-and-retaped copy of Richard Scarry’s Busy Busy World that was [Read More...]

Let the Kids Keep Their *@$%#^ Halloween Candy!


This is an updated version of a piece originally published as an op ed in the Hartford Courant in October 2008. As the voices clamoring for the annual theft of Halloween candy from kids grow louder and more self-righteous, I decided to dust this off and run it again. I was emboldened by the New [Read More...]

Do I Still Think Overscheduled Kids are a Myth? Yes…Sort Of

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A little more than a year ago, I wrote that I believe the prevalent notion of the “overscheduled child” to be a myth. It’s not that children aren’t overscheduled; many of them are (at least in suburban and wealthier urban communities where children have many extracurricular opportunities and parents can afford them). The myth, I [Read More...]

The Radical Hospitality of Learning to Live with All My Kids’ Stuff

I am taking the week off from producing any new writing. Instead, I am doing a top-to-bottom clean up and clean out of our house. As we move into the season of colder weather and lots and lots of celebrations (all three kids have birthdays between now and January), I’m pining for a little more [Read More...]