Wisdom through the Ages: Family Advice for the High School Grad

Last night our family celebrated Ling’s high school graduation with Peking Duck—a tradition my parents have instituted after big events.  I suggested we go around the table and give Ling a word of wisdom for college.  Here’s what folks said:Me (49):  My dissertation on “The Interracial Friendships of White and Asian College Students” found that friendships primarily form along proximity and shared activities.  In other words, the ability to spend a lot of time with folks is how you become fri … [Read more...]

Primping for Prom

“Henry, how long did it take for you to get ready today?” I asked Ling’s prom date last night as I drove them to the picture taking gathering.He snorted a little, “About 5 minutes.”“That’s what I thought.”Because as the mom of a senior girl, it didn’t take 5 minutes or even 5 hours, more like 5 days—5 full days of my life to get my girl ready for prom.Last September Ling announced that she was going to prom whether she had a date or not.  “If I don’t have a date, I’m going stag.” … [Read more...]

Last Wednesday Night: Parenting in Calculus, Crisis and Noxious Gas

Last Wednesday night, Kai woke me from an allergy/Benadryl induced deep sleep at 12:30 a.m.  “Ling’s wailing.  You better go check on her.”I dragged myself out of bed and Kai was right.  It was the week after Ling took 4 AP tests and 2 days from the last day of her high school career.  What could be so bad that my normally stoic child was reduced to sobs?3 take home on-line calculus tests.3 tests that students could use any books or online resources to solve--which means books and onl … [Read more...]

Kids & Core Sins

As my kids and I clustered around the kitchen, a child asked me what my core sin was.   Anyone who knows me knows I’m more than slightly addicted to personality tests—the Myers-Briggs, the DISC, and these days most of all, the Enneagram.  My kids have absorbed some of this language, including the Enneagram idea that each of the 9 types have a core sin—basically Dante’s 7 deadly sins:  Anger, Pride, Envy, Greed, Gluttony, Lust & Sloth plus Deceit and Fear.Before I could answer, the kids fi … [Read more...]

Put Down That Phone!

Last fall, Kai complained that all her friends had smartphones and she didn’t.  On one hand, she complained because she wanted one SO BAD.  On the other hand, she noticed that during lunch, rather than chatting or gossiping, laughing or telling stories—all the things one would hope to do with a gang of best buds—everyone was staring at their device.  She could only twiddle her thumbs in thin air.I suggested she say, “Hey guys, let’s put our phones down and talk.”  She looked at me like I was … [Read more...]

Chocolate=Lies, Sex=Truth

HAPPY 5TH BIRTHDAY PATHEOS!  Patheos has asked us to re-post favorite blogs from the past 5 years.  Here's one I wrote almost exactly 2 years ago--it's still true.What does it mean when you desire a hot fudge sundae more than sex with your loving, gorgeous, faithful, and servant-hearted husband?When I was still nursing my 2nd child, I attended a women’s conference with the goal of talking to friends about nurturing my marriage while having zero sex drive.  One friend, a former missionary … [Read more...]

A Scrambled Egg–Not All Yellow, Not All White, Mixed

Several months ago I blogged on What Cheerios and Kids Can Teach Us About Race, looking at some of the attitudes about biracial families.  Right after,  I wanted to post Ling's college essay about being biracial (with her permission of course) to present an inside view of what it's felt like.  But we worried it might mess with the college application process.  So I'm posting it now that all that's been decided! by Abigail Chuan-Ling Tuan MacLean A couple weeks ago my Mandarin teacher walked ove … [Read more...]

Decision! Colby College 2018

After what’s felt like an arduous 2 year process, Ling has decided to attend Colby College in Maine.   She posted her decision on Facebook Saturday night (181 likes so far), the acceptance form’s in our mailbox right now and the decision’s made 3 whole days before the final deadline!Whew!Can I say it’s been quite the ride?  After 20 some college visits (which apparently is a little out of control judged by the straw polls college admission officers have asked at admitted student days), an … [Read more...]