Sam Part IV

Before you begin,  here’s the Sam series, in order, with an important note about ballet in there:

Sam Part I,

Sam Part II,

Beauty and the Beast

Sam Part III

Sam Part IV (this one)

Fix You


So, the last time we saw Sam, he had just jumped out of my car, and the family was headed for Wit’s End Lane really fast. As an emergency measure, the psychiatrist prescribed a mood stabilizer, Risperdal, and we hoped for the best.

The results were sudden and stunning.

For the first time in a year, we saw our son. The funny little guy under all that anger, the creative thinker hidden under all the frustration.… Read the rest


The ballet down here really tries to use kids in its productions. It actively seeks ways to incorporate young people into its works. This summer, Caroline got to be in the cast of Giselle. There is a summer program for older kids (older than Caroline) and at the end of their run, they put on a show. But the ballet draws from its younger set, and Caroline was chosen to participate. She has been in the Nutcracker. She knows how to handle herself onstage, and she has an idea of what’s expected of her during ballet.

She came home from the dress rehearsal wailing, “I can’t be in the show if I don’t have eyeliner.”

So we stopped and bought eyeliner on the way home.… Read the rest

Noise pollution

“Turn it down.” Scott’s face loomed as my door swung open.

“I had that closed.”

“We can hear you in the kitchen.”

“Yeah, Mom, it’s too loud.” Caroline poked her head under her father’s elbow.

“You’re only complaining because it’s heavy metal. If I had the Beatles up, you’d be in here dancing.”

“You’ve got Beatles? I want the Beatles!” Sam joined the fray with enthusiasm unreasonable for someone who should have been zoned out in front of the TV.

I clicked around until my desk stopped shaking with the gunshots of “For Those About to Rock, We Salute You.”

Scott rubbed the back of his head.… Read the rest

No (It’s too damned hot, dog)

Dear Chewie,

The kids beat the heat in lots of ways. They spend a couple of days building Lego vehicles.

Lego City Firetruck

Here’s our progress after day one (roughly two hours) of building

And playing with them.


Which meant dinner was late, since the kitchen table was his playing surface.

He played with it for a good two hours.










Daddy reads them books.

Read with Daddy

Here, Caroline, how about a book or ten?

I take them to the pool.


Seriously. It was 104 in the sun at the pool. But his lips were blue just before I shot the photo.

Read the rest

Ballet camp 2012

For the second consecutive year, my kids participated in the Montgomery ballet’s Fairy Tale Ballet Camp. It’s a compromise between doing summer lessons and skipping ballet over the summer, and it’s one Sam and Caroline both enjoy. It buys Scott and I a good measure of sanity, because Caroline’s age group meets three times a week (M-W-F from 9-12) and Sam’s meets twice a week (Tu.-Th. 9-12). Although it means having to have a kid up there every single day for three weeks, it also means a morning spent with only the other child at home all morning.

Also, they put on an adorable little performance at the end.… Read the rest

To be a Daddy


These two pictures hang above my desk. They say an awfully lot without my needing to interpret them for you, but let me talk awhile anyway. My husband is not just a father to our children. He’s their Daddy. Sam, who is a Mama’s boy, has lately started demanding his Daddy-hugs at bedtime again and saying, in a worried little voice, “I like Daddy best.” He doesn’t yet understand the ebb and flow of a parent-child relationship, and he worries that he’s hurting me. He always seems surprised by my delight. I tell him, “That’s wonderful. I love you, and sis, and Daddy best.”

Sam’s a carbon copy of Scott.… Read the rest

Humane Society Volunteer

Doot-doot-doot-doot-doot. My daughter’s first impression of volunteerism was sheep plop. I took her to the humane society for her orientation into the junior volunteer club. It was supposed to be an hour of paperwork followed by a short tour. However, about half of the regular club didn’t make it, so the new members were invited to watch the presentation that the regular club had come to attend.

And seriously, who wouldn’t want to meet sheep? We sat down in the floor of the volunteer office, listening all the while to the mewling of a couple of litters of kittens in need of foster homes.… Read the rest

Oedipus, Oedipus, Mom

Until I get my new theme installed, this refuses to show big enough.  Just click the picture a couple of times to make it work. Sorry.

Read the rest

Beauty and The Beast

Sam’s Saga starts here:
Sam Part I,

Sam Part II,

Sam has had a rough year. A rough, rough year. He loves ballet, but he nearly rejected it because he went through a phase of hating everything. And when things were at the utworst, when I thought he was going to have to stop dance, the ballet reached out to him. This was late last year.

They were making a calendar. They needed a little boy to be in a picture, and would Sam please come. OK, let me be clear. They did NOT need a little boy for a picture.… Read the rest

Down the years

When the doorbell rang at 5AM, I bolted awake from dead sleep. I jumped out of bed and took off running hell for leather down the hall “Oh no! Oh something is terribly, terribly wrong! Come fast,” I said to Scott.

As if he wasn’t pelting along behind me.

All I could think was Sam, Sam, Sam. He’s a flight risk. We’ve considered documenting him. He seems to be settling down, so we haven’t gone through with it, but, Sam, Sam, Sam, when that doorbell rang, I wished we hadn’t dithered and delayed.

I barely looked out before I threw open the door.… Read the rest