Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Trophies for everybody!

NFL player James Harrison recently returned his kids' participation trophies claiming the league was rewarding mediocrity.  His kids are 8 and 6. He was also arrested in 2008 for allegedly beating his girlfriend. This makes him, in my estimation, a complete and total asshole. But please, by all means, let's take parenting advice from this guy.

I recently signed my twins up for their second season of baseball.  They have March birthdays.  This resulted in them just missing the cutoff for another year of T-ball.  They had to play in "Mini-Minors" which effectively put my kindergarteners, who were preemies, in the same league with second graders who were easily twice their weight.

The season started when there was still snow on the ground.  They played with real gloves under their baseball gloves.  They played on Mothers Day, and their coach gave them roses to give to us (another reward for mediocrity? Do all mothers deserve flowers on Mothers Day?  Or should we only reward the ones whose children make it to the NFL, or become President of the PTO, or get into Harvard?  Is the final product more important than the effort?). Our baseball season ends in late June.  Those last couple of games were played in 90 degree heat with sunscreen dripping in their eyes and the kids each respectively begging for their favourite flavour of Gatorade.

Antonio is teeny-tiny, weighing barely 40 pounds at his sixth birthday. He was by far the smallest kid on the team.  What he lacks in size he make up for in enthusiasm.  He was often the first kid in the field to make it to the ball.  Hitting posed a bit more of a challenge for him, but by the end of the season, he got a few good hits in.  Maybe he could have qualified for Most Improved or Player Who Gives His All, but probably he wouldn't be the one and only kid deserving of the title of MVP.

Mariella on the other hand was initially reluctant to play. She would have been just as content to sit in the stands and be a spectator.  We talked her into playing.  Nevertheless, as she played, the smile never left her face. While she started off as one of 2 girls, the other girl on the team didn't finish out the season.  Mariella played through the whole season as the only girl on the team, and one of only a handful in the league.  She has a hearing impairment, which makes coaching her from afar difficult.  On occasion, the coach had to send someone out to right field, where she was picking dandelions, to inform her the inning had ended.  She would then go up to bat.  She was afraid of the ball, and would close her eyes.  This resulted in her swinging a full 5 seconds after the pitch landed in the catcher's mitt.  She was adorable, but would admitably never get an MVP trophy, even if she was primed to shatter glass ceilings. 

Thankfully our league rewards simple participation and gave both twins simple, stupid, participation trophies. And they loved them. I wouldn't dare to take them away, even if they do only reward mediocrity. 

Monday, August 3, 2015

Our Crazy Cross Country Trip South Dakota and onto California

We last saw our fair travelers in a corn field during some very severe weather.   

We did make it out of that corn field and back onto I-90, but we were still half a day behind where I wanted to be.  The original plan had been to see Mount Rushmore that afternoon, but it was unlikely we would make it there before dark, so the new plan was to see it first thing in the morning. We had our nice picnic lunch at Sioux Falls, where I had hoped to stay the night previous.  Sioux Falls is pretty, but a little smelly (I'm not sure why).

At this point the kids were starting to feel the trip.  My friend Moe suggested that I threaten to throw candy out the window as they whined.  I tried it, but then they started to threaten to throw each other's things out the window.

We quickly got back on the road, hoping to make up a little ground.  As we made our way through South Dakota and into the Badlands, I started my daily hunt for a hotel room.  Trouble is, we didn't realize the Sturgis Motor Cycle Rally was taking place.  Not one room was available on Hotels.com. We stopped at the Visitor's center by the Missouri River (really cool spot if you ever find yourself driving on I-90 in South Dakota) and their very helpful staff explained our predicament.  They armed us with several Penny Savers that had local numbers.

I started calling around and finally found a place with a room available. It was double the cost of anywhere else we had stayed, and had worst Continental Breakfast of any that were offered.  We did however meet some awesome bikers, one of whom encouraged the kids to try his bike out.


We headed off for Mount Rushmore.  First we needed gas, and also coffee.  We stopped at a gas station on the way up the mountain.  Leo pumped while I got coffee.  I came out to see my husband, in a polo shirt, pumping gas into our white minivan, surrounded on all sides by dozens of bikers.  I wish I had taken a picture of that! (Imagine the guy from the picture below, next to the minivan pictured above with about 100 extra bikes and beleathered bikers surrounding him)

We did make it to Mount Rushmore that day.  It is a sight to behold, though a bit smaller than I had imagined (Leo says it was way bigger than he imagined).  We got what is perhaps my favorite picture from our vacation.

 After Mount Rushmore, we went onto see Crazy Horse. The thing about Crazy Horse, it costs 3 times as much as it does to see Mount Rushmore.  It is also unfinished. So we pulled up, saw it from the base, then turned right around and headed out.  We had time to make up anyhow.  That was not to happen however.  We opted to cut down some back roads to meet up with I-80 rather than head back north to reach I-90.  This was not the best plan.  GPS via cell phone is apparently not a thing in Wyoming. Back Roads in Wyoming are not the best labeled, so good luck even if you thought ahead and got those paper maps from AAA. There are barely any towns or even intersections to guide you. We just kept driving, heading South and or East, and hoped to eventually hit I-25.

We made it to Cheyenne for dinner, and having not had lunch (we should have paid through the teeth to eat at Mount Rushmore) we were starving.  We found yet another good Mexican Restaurant and ate ourselves silly.  We got back on the road, headed West on I-80.  We made it to Rock Springs and found an affordable and nicely appointed hotel this time (My Review Here), complete with working Wifi (Working Wifi is less common than you would imagine!) even if they did take away their breakfast at 9am on the dot.

Since we now had more than our phones and paper maps, and we were now a full day behind, we decided to reevaluate our route.  The original plan had been to visit a friend in Reno, then head to San Francisco and make our way down the Pacific Coast Highway. We decided to nix the trip to Reno (sorry Jasen!) and head instead to Las Vegas, which we could easily make the next day if we made minimal stops.  

We woke up to the most amazing vista.  We didn't get to see it the night before, as we had arrived after dark.  Armed with our new plan, we hit the road, and headed towards Salt Lake.  We caught the I-15.  Utah is pretty, and I wish we could have enjoyed more of it, but we booked through pretty fast, with promises of pools to the kids once we got to Vegas.  There were some lingering questions of why there was a great big Y and B on the mountain sides.   As we Reached Nevada, I was amazed at the scenery.  It is quite picturesque, different than any place else I've ever seen.

We did make it to Vegas in good time and before dark.  We decided to stay at Circus Circus, despite Mariella's fear of clowns, with hopes that it was one of the more family friendly resorts. The thing about Vegas in August, it is HOT.  We were at the point in our trip where my practical plan of one suitcase per night rather than per person had reached its end.  My husband had been quite spoiled by this one suitcase scenario, and fought me as I told him to take more than one into the hotel.  He wanted to unpack and repack into one suitcase in the 105 degree parking garage rather than take a couple of suitcases in and reorganize in the air conditioned comfort of a hotel room. Sometimes I wonder about him. We did make it to the pool, which was most welcome.  We swam until they kicked us out of the pool, then headed out in search of food.  The kids about fell asleep at the dinner table, and all 3 were passed out as we drove back up the strip, unable to appreciate all the glitter and glitz of Las Vegas.


I awoke on the 7th day to find my toothbrush, MY TOOTHBRUSH, uncovered and left in a pool of water on the side of the sink.  My loving husband then proceeded to call me a princess because I insisted on getting a new one.  It is clear that the trip was starting to wear on us both.  We did however get to visit the spot where we got married, just in a nick of time to remind us of our origin story.  We were up and out of the hotel by 8am (the crack of dawn by Vegas standards) and we headed to the Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel where it all began.

We then found some breakfast, and tried to do a little sight seeing, and souvenir shopping.  Mariella picked out a little snow globe with the Statue of Liberty (the New York, New York Casino's replica) in it, as she has quite the obsession with our lady in green (her brother would later destroy this beloved object and it would be replaced for double the amount plus shipping). The heat hit us and we hit the road.  One tip I will give you, if you ever drive from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, is to stop at the border. Stop even if you don't feel like you need to because there is little to be found on the road until you get to the suburbs of LA.  We encountered what may be perhaps the worst gas station bathroom I have ever seen somewhere between Baker and Barstow.  We got to LA in time for dinner on the 7th day.  And then we rested.  But not really.  Because vacation.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Our Crazy Long Cross Country Trip - New York to South Dakota

DAY 1 

We left on a Friday.  Our kids had day camp till 2pm, so we used that time to drop off our dogs, run some last minute errands and to pack the car.  We headed out on I-88 west, and had to make a stop for an early dinner at one of our favorite all time places, Brooks BBQ.  The nice thing about Brooks is they have a playground for the kids. Aurora had some fun with my decade old digital camera, but complained that the twins would not stay still for pictures.  Sister friend, welcome to my world.

With our bellies full of yummy BBQ goodness, we were back on the road.  Till they needed a potty break.

All of my lovely Bingo games had been played out. As darkness descended we brought out the movies.  From the back seat, Aurora asked if we are going in circles.  She kept seeing McDonald's golden arches every 5 minutes or so on I-80 and wanted to be sure we weren't lost.  We assured her we weren't.

This was our first go around booking a hotel room.  We decided not to book out our trip ahead of time.  We instead used Hotels.com to book as we got close.  That first night, I picked up a Penny Saver and saw the rates were cheaper than on Hotels.com.  I called a few of the hotels to be sure one of them had a room available, but didn't think to ask the rate.  When we arrived, we were told the rate in the Penny Saver wasn't available on weekends.  Being that it was one of the few hotels that said they had available rooms, it was past midnight, and we were pretty much in the middle of nowhere, we took it. Lesson learned, trust that on the day of, Hotels.com has the best rates going.

DAY 2 

We woke up not to free breakfast, but kids free breakfast.  The kids were all thrilled to get hot chocolate and pancakes, except for Mariella.  Usually she is a happy little soul, but she did not seem to enjoy being taken out of her routine at all whatsoever.

We had found out that we would be passing near to Twinsburg Ohio where there is a large festival of twins.  I figured it would make a great pit stop.  What I did not figure was that there would be a large thunderstorm passing just as we got to the gates.  So we go to see the festival, but did not go in.  We did however get this great Shaggadelic picture.  (The theme of the festival in 2014 was Twinstock, so all 60's all the time baby).

We continued on our trek after a quick lunch at Dairy Queen.  The thing about Ohio, it is flat and there are a lot of tolls on I-80, a lot of dime and nickels here and there, but they have the most fabulous rest stops.

We popped up into Michigan for dinner, just to add to our state count and Leo wanted to drive through the mitten.  There we found some awesome Mexican food (Who knew?)

We bedded down for the night, this time in my Hotels.com find, the Hammond Indiana Super 8. It was cheap and  my review can tell you all you need to know.

DAY 3 

The next morning we headed to Chicago.  Leo always wanted to visit Downtown Chicago, especially since I got to go without him once. It was just like he dreamed as he grew up with Architect and Engineers and it showed quite the majestic buildings and such. We and brunched at the West Egg, home to the famous Mister Mister and then took a jaunt over to Navy Pier.  As I bought our tickets for the Big Ferris Wheel, the girl behind the counter spied my St. Rose ID.  She too was an alum. Who have thought over a thousand miles from home, I'd run into another Rosebud?

The Ferris Wheel is what eventually brought Mariella around.  I think she finally realized why we were doing this trip.

As fun as Chicago is, and I'd have loved to stay longer, the road was beckoning.  We got stuck in a lot of traffic near the airport, the roads under construction throughout the Chicago metro area, and there were a ton of tolls getting out of there (and not nickels and dimes this time).

It was smooth sailing once we got to Wisconsin however.  It was a little sad that we missed my dear aunt, who had lived there for years, but had just moved back to the east coast a few months prior.  I did take her advice and hit the Wisconsin Dells for dinner.  My goodness is that place a trip, it is so Wisconsin's Vegas, in the middle of nowhere for no good reason, but to separate tourists from their dollars. It does have a good atmosphere though, family feel for sure.  For those that are familiar with Lake George, multiply that by a factor of 10.  We had dinner at a great little spot complete with Gluten Free pasta for me (YUM!).  The kids would have loved to explore, but we had to make up some ground lost to the Chicago traffic.

We crossed the Mississippi River at dusk.  It was quite breath taking, even in the almost dark. What was even eerier to see in the dark was the windmills, thousands of them spread across the prairie, like monuments of technology upon the grasslands of mother earth and what not.

We stopped after a long day.  I had hoped to make it to Sioux Falls, but playing tourist and the traffic  (did I mention the Chicago traffic?) delayed us more than we had planned for.  We did find a wonderful little hotel this time with one of the friendliest staffs that I have ever encountered.  This hotel got a pretty good write up from me. The hotel offered laundry, which was clean and right by our room, so I took full advantage.  The pool, or lack thereof, was the only down side as it was closed for repairs.

DAY 4 

The breakfast at this hotel did not disappoint. Not only was it free, there was bacon, eggs, bacon and biscuits in addition to the cute little boxes of cereal the kids so enjoy along with bacon. The waitress was super sweet too and she kept bringing the bacon.

Before getting on the road, we stopped at Walmart for the makings of a picnic lunch.  They were out of ice to fill our cooler (and I had not thought ahead to take ice from the hotel) so I went into the attached Subway, offered to buy a drink to get ice, but the girl wouldn't take my money.  Love that Albert Lea, Minnesota.

It is true what the say about Minnesota. There are 4 seasons: Almost Winter, Winter, Still Winter and Road Work.  We encountered plenty of road work.  At one point we were diverted off the highway and literally into a corn field, during a thunderstorm, like that movie TWISTER, Dorothy the robot was hanging out our trunk ready to take some weather readings.  We were all thinking "this is how it ends."

Will our fair travelers make it out of the corn field? Will they live to tell the tale?  Find out in the next installment. . . 

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

We may be peanut free but are we nut free?

I was one of those people who used to roll their eyes a lot.  I think this whole ordeal may be Karma, or God laughing at me.

I worked at a summer camp a long time ago.  The second summer I was there, the director had decided to go totally nut free.  I used to joke that the camp may be peanut free, but there were more than enough nuts floating around the place.  I was the camp secretary, and all around whipping girl.  I did some of the purchasing, so I had a quick crash course in the peanut free market place.  Lots of stuff that you wouldn't expect has peanuts in it.  It can be "traces" or peanut oil, so you have to read carefully.  Baked goods and candy are especially problematic.  Planning events for school age children is not much fun if there is no candy or baked goods.

Fast forward 10 or so years.  My eldest daughter started preschool.  There was a child with a severe peanut allergy in her class.  Snack days thrust me back into the peanut free mindset. No peanut anything was allowed in the classroom, even in a personal lunch.  Being that Rory could not have any peanut butter in school, she would always ask for a PB&J on the weekends.

One fateful day, she decided to share her sandwich with her little sister, MJ.   Hives and vomiting quickly ensued.  There was a frantic call to the pediatrician, and a debate over whether or not to go to the ER.  I was also scolded for letting a 14 month old have peanuts.  Hey - I didn't give it to her, my 4 year old did.  I was just happy they were sharing nicely.  I wonder if this person has more than 1 child.  Seriously - who are they to judge?

I did call the pediatrician back that week, and discussed the whole ordeal some more at our 15 month appointment.  I was not quite happy with the answers they were giving me.

A.  Keep her away from peanuts (DUH!)
B.  Do you really want to put her through allergy testing?
C.  She is too little for an Epipen

Thankfully, she was also under the care of an ENT.  We had ear tubes put in just after her 1st Birthday. In addition to ENT, they also do some allergy stuff.  I called them for a second opinion. They informed me that no skin testing was necessary. There is a blood test they can do.  We were all over that.

A week after the blood test, they called me.  The nurse called with the news that MJ indeed has a peanut allergy.  She was also allergic to eggs.  The egg allergy was not as severe as the peanut allergy, but something to watch.  They also gave us a Rx for an Epipen Jr.

To that point I did not think I had seen an egg reaction.  She had an MMR and a Flu shot with no repercussions.  Then I started to think back.  I had a text conversation with my husband as proof.  The first time I ever gave her pancakes, she vomited all over the excersaucer.  I detailed for him the joy of cleaning all of the nooks and crannies of the plastic monstrosity. I realized then that all of her seemingly random vomiting was likely a result of her egg allergy.

Things went along fine for a while.  She eventually grew out of the egg allergy.  We had a peanut challenge, and it took her quite a bit to react, so we don't worry as much about accidental contamination as we used to.  I lightened up and let some peanut butter back into our house, which is when we found out Antonio has allergies of his own.

Read more about that ordeal if you wish.

Cross Country Trip Preparation

     As you may know, we had decided to embark on a cross country trip.  The planning for this type of undertaking is by far the worst part.  It all fell to me, as my husband was putting in as many hours as possible in preparation for taking the 3 weeks off from work. Anyhow, he tends to be more spontaneous.  For him, packing is throwing an extra pair of undies and a clean t-shirt into a grocery bag.  The logistics of a cross country trip with 3 kids involve a little more forethought than he would generally give a vacation.

     My first order of business was to get a AAA card. I then contacted them for help planning our route.  May I just say, AAA was great.  They sent us tons of maps, one for each state, and every big city we would pass through, all for free.  The membership cost was more than paid for just in maps.  Not to mention I locked my keys in the car several days before we left.  Money well spent for the membership (I just hope we don't need it again for a while).

     One thing we didn't do was make reservations at hotels.  This again, is my husband's spontaneous side.  He prefers to drive, see how far we can get, and then book hotel rooms from our phones along the way.  I did sign up for the Hotels.com rewards program, so we should end up with a night free at the end of all of this.  (edited to add we did, but still have yet to use it 10 month later)

     As we got closer to our departure day, I made a spreadsheet.  The list was quite extensive. I made a check off box for each of our sets of shoes, and for the sum total of suitcases, to be sure nothing got left behind.  One trick I learned a while ago is not to pack a suitcase for each family member, but pack a suitcase for a day, with one set of clothes and PJ's for each family member.  I had 4 small carry-on size suitcases, so I was able to do 4 days worth.  I then packed 2 bigger suitcases, one for the kids and one for myself and the hubby, with our nicer wedding clothes, and extras of everything for our week long stay at our eventual destination.   I had all of our bathing suits in one bag, and sweatshirts and rain gear in another, in order to be able to quickly grab for everyone at once when they were needed.

DVD Player

Game Boys

Lap Top


In Van

In Van
In van

Cutting Board & knife

Cork Screw & Can Opener

In Van
Advil & Tylenol
In Van
Epi pen

In Van
Sunburn Stuff

Bug Spray
In Van
Rain Ponchos
In Van
Sweat shirts
In Van


Laundry stuff
In Van
Insurance cards
Coloring books
In Van
In Van
Maps from AAA
In Van
First Aid Kit
In Van
In Van
Paper Towels
In Van
Kids Maps
License Plate Print Out
In Van
Duct Tape
In Van
Toilet Paper



Contact Stuff





In Van

Flip Flops


Dress Shoes


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Emily Rose (The Little Peach) – A Mother’s Day Update, 2015

My Darling Emily Rose,

(Or should I call you “Peach” like I usually do? Even your grandmothers, brothers, and six-year-old cousins call you that. Maybe we should all face the facts. . . .)

I’m no rookie at this whole mom thing. Not anymore. And you would think by now that I’ve seen it all, and yet you find ways to surprise me. Every day. I wish I could say it was always in a good way. But you’re two-and-three-quarters this month. Need I say more?

Don’t worry. I will say it all anyway, because that’s my way. . . .

In the years since your birth, you’ve matured into a beautiful little girl. As of now, you’re still a blonde. How did THAT happen? You hair is pin straight as well and what’s cute, you twirl it in the back when you’re thinking or distracted by something. My hair–a wavy, deep brown, slightly auburn–is the lightest and “straightest” in my Irish/Italian family. Your father–a medium ash brown–facetiously blames the Swedish milkman (Hmmm. . . ? Nope, couldn’t have been. I would have remembered.). But he has more blonde relatives than I do. And what about your blue eyes, the ones you use to manipulate everyone with? Those I take credit for.

You’re welcome. :)   

And, Little Peach, it’s amazing how much you’ve grown. No, really. It’s amazing! Because you eat nothing. You’re doing fine, but even so. There are one year olds out there who look like they could swallow you whole. So could you do us both a favor and broaden your palate beyond bread and cheese? Someday? Please? Great. Thanks. (You’ve inherited your dietary habits from your father, too, by the way. I wasn’t nearly so picky.)

Okay, now it’s time to get serious (because I’m a serious writer now and I do this for a meager living). So where would you like me to restart your story, Emily Rose? Should I tell you how much we’ve both changed in three years? Share what we’ve done? And where we’ve been?

Throughout my life, my dear, I’ve tried my hand in many places–cities, small towns, and even smaller towns, and now we’re officially living in the suburbs. And it’s all right, I guess. I’ll compare it to beige wallpaper–hard to get jazzed up about it, but after a while, you get kind of used to it. It makes things easy and fades into the background, allowing you to focus on other things.

Sure, we don’t have breathtaking mountain views anymore and we can’t stroll off the front steps and get spicy Thai food ten feet away, but our grass is green(ish)–though keeping it that way costs a pretty penny and is treated in our area like a competitive sport–and there is a Target, a Home Depot, a Panera, etc. a five minute minivan or SUV drive away (since we’re totally hip, we’ve opted for the latter).

And people are “nice” here. Kids come over and shoot hoops with your brothers. They don’t need permission or an invitation. Cars drive around meticulously slow, and if they don’t, we have a neighbor who yells at them (God, I love New York! And missed it all those years away!). Otherwise, neighbors chat with each other about their jobs, their kids’ accomplishments, or the weather. Why, just the other day, one of the neighborhood’s most sought-after mommies (her family’s grass is REALLY green) powerwalked by and we had at least a thirty second conversation about whether the good weather (like how I made that distinction?) would hold. For me? The perpetually misplaced lone-wolf introvert? That ain’t half bad! But after that, she strutted on and didn’t look back. She likely had “grass” to tend to and I was left wondering why I couldn’t make myself care about the green stuff, hers or anyone else’s.

At times like these, I’m forced to come to the same conclusion; there may not be a right “fit” for me, not here or anywhere, or with any particular social group. I don’t like isolation or crowds, and I can’t find my place among the hardcore smarties, the disgruntled lefties, the overachieving mommies, the hungry go-getters, the free spirits, or the godly.

There’s no such thing as Utopia, Emily Rose, especially when you consider the needs of every individual in this family. Like your father, for example, needs constant motion, an adventure, a challenge, a goal to achieve every day. He sits still about as well as I adjust to unfamiliar surroundings. In other words, not well. Because I need peace, stability, warmth, and good conversation. And your brothers need fun, freedom to be who they are, and plenty of other kids to rabble-rouse with in a parent sanctioned sort of way.    


So we did the best we could. We tried to establish roots between the tufts of grass we inherited from our lawn lackadaisical predecessors (he was more into flashy cars and his “man cave” than that gosh darn grass!). And I hope you like it here, Little Peach. I think you will. If you don’t over-contemplate your existence, what’s not to like? You have your own room with your Disney Princess bed and you can toddle around your quaint little piece of America, and I don’t have to worry too much about you, even if you accidentally stumble into the road (thanks to resident-only traffic and our New York loudmouth street-vigilante neighbor). And you’ll have your mother home with you for the foreseeable future. That’s a good thing. We’ve both realized the hard way that there are no substitutes. I’m flattered . . . really. But could you cut Grandma some slack every once in a while? Your tantrums, though rare, are truly legendary and usually have something to do with “unjust” abandonment. Your very best work is usually performed for crowds in public places where those highly effective “time outs” aren’t even an option.

I love you, Emily Rose, and I genuinely enjoy snuggling away the day with you–in between “pee-pee in the potty” breaks every ten minutes, snack attacks, and beverage runs–but I do occasionally need to go the dentist or spend some time alone with your father. It keeps him happy. And since he funds this mommy-and-me endeavor by an insurmountable margin, you should really do your best to share me once in a great while. I know I’m asking a lot. From day one, you thought I was yours and yours alone. At the same time, I’m aware this attachment won’t last forever. Someday, when I’m not ready for it, you’ll stretch too far and break away. And I will miss you when you’re gone. For now, though, I’ll take all the “big smooshy hugs” and “mommy hold me’s” I can get . . . while they last. . . .

So, for this Mother’s Day, Emily Rose, I’d like to thank you for making me a mother a third (and final) time. Thanks for the life experience I wouldn’t have gotten with another boy. I now know how to trim bangs, put on little girl swimsuits with confusing criss-cross straps, and I understand better than ever that tears sometimes have nothing to do with physical pain. I appreciate the earlier-than-three potty training and the pleasant manners–the sweet “thank-yous,” “you’re welcomes,” and the situation appropriate “sorry mommies.” Catastrophes large or small, it’s hard to get too upset with you when you play on my weaknesses like that! Best of all, Little Peach, thanks for giving me a sense direction. I may be lost in other ways, but I’m certainly meant to be with you.  

With much, much love,

Your Mother

Read it again or for the first time on
http://nesmalltownparenting.blogspot.com or Wattpad: 

Emily Rose: A Pregnancy Story