I refuse to worry about what my kids eat for dinner.

boy eating beet for some reason

Today, I'm making Zuppa Toscana. When I share recipes I'm trying, people often ask, "Will your kids really eat that?" The answer is: some of them, yeah. Some of them, no way. A few of them, maybe. And I am fine with that. I have two goals when I serve a meal: at least half the family should eat it, and mealtimes should be reasonably pleasant.My policy is: I decide what to cook, and they decide whether or not to eat it.We don't have food battles (or food cold wars). We don't save plates … [Read more...]

Happy two weeks, baby Corrie!

photo (47)

Two weeks old!Here is Corrie having a little snuggle and a big yawn: A moment of deep thought: and a little bit of friendly hazing: Listening very carefully to everything I say: And a schnoogly woogly woogly nap: Oh, those baby lips! Oh, those hairy werewolf ears! Here we decided to see who could do the best Corrie face. Entry 1 (The Seeker After Truth): Entry … [Read more...]

O mother, what is it to be a man? Sex ed at the Fishers


On the way home from a Scooby Doo birthday party, my punky little daughter suddenly says, "Mama, how do wimmin get preg-a-nent?"She is kid #7, and I honestly can't remember how much she already knows, so I start vague: "Oh, well, when a man and a woman love each other very much [shut up, that's a fine way to start this conversation!], one way they show each other that they love each other is they can put their bodies together in a very special way, and if the timing is just right, then the … [Read more...]

Mom, we’re out of salted butt.


I finally got around to taping a note pad to the refrigerator, so people can let me know when we run out of stuff, and I can buy more. So this is what I get:   SALTED butter YES! pencil lead red beans Salted Butler Salted Butt you're a butt -yes- And here I thought that butt was the one thing we had plenty of.  Also worth noting: some of these items are in my husband's handwriting. … [Read more...]

Epiphany, you’re on your own.

AS0000101FB16 Christmas, babies, children and family

"Keep that tree up until Epiphany!" they keep saying. "It's still Christmas, you know! Don't take down that tree yet!" they keep saying. They are imagining something like this:O, Holy Night!Whereas what hulks in our living room is more along these lines:Oh, holy crap.Epiphany, you're on your own. … [Read more...]

How to make your Halloween magnificent!

We never did find out what Wish Bear was so angry about. I thought she looked magnificent.

Our founding fathers didn't die face down in the mud of Vietnam only to see my children struggling through the night with only Mary Janes, Good and Plenty, nameless lollipop blobs, and Bit-o'- Chicken to sustain them, like I did when I was a kid. Those were dark times. We can do better.Read the rest at the Register. … [Read more...]

These 3D printable masks could save Halloween.

mask tiger

Halloween is in eight days.  So far, I have (a) ordered one light blue hoodie from Ebay and (b) yelled at everybody.  Since we have to come up with nine costumes -- or 17, really, since the older kids always pick a trick-or-treating costume that would be inappropriate for school, and so we have to come up with a second costume that won't trigger an automatic lock-down. Thank goodness we're terrible Catholics and quietly ignore All Saint's Day, except for going to Mass, or we'd be looking at eig … [Read more...]