My Letter To Ryan

by Jo-Ann Rogan

Jo-Ann Rogan's son IIDearest Ryan,

I have been writing you letters on your birthday since you were four years old. Wish I thought to do this when you were younger.  This year was about you blossoming.

You have grown so much this year. In early June you were on the tall side but had a little kid look to you with a roundness.  Suddenly in July you were what seems like four inches taller, broad shouldered, and had a decidedly young-man-look.  Your face is changing and you are wearing men’s sized clothing and shoes.  You have become a strong young man. You often volunteer to carry heavy things for me.

You started this summer as a little boy.  In July, your rapid growth had your brain chemistry thrown off and your behavior was hard to manage and you were just hard to reach.  August brought a new found calm.  When your Dad was away working on his big project you stepped in to be my right hand man.  Often when Aaron was melting down you were the one to take the higher road in your arguments. I was so thankful for your calm head. I enjoyed the time we had together in August and I adored our “summer bucket list,” which was a list of things we wanted to do this summer.  Last week, we crossed everything off the list with the time we spent at the beach. [Read More…]

Too Much Post-Halloween Candy? Never Fear, The Great Pumpkin Is Here!

by Melanie Elliott

Melanie Elliott Halloween IIIOur first Halloween with The Littlest E was easy breezy. He was 15 months old and didn’t really know or care about pumpkins, costumes, going trick-or-treating, or eating candy.  We stayed home that year and answered the door whenever the bell rang.

For the past few years some friends of ours whose son is The Littlest E’s age, have held a Halloween potluck.  They live in a great kid-friendly neighborhood with lots of children going door-to-door.  We starting going to their house when The Littlest E was a little over 2 years old.  That first year attending their party, we lasted 10 minutes trick-or-treating.  Our little guy was too scared of adults in costume and he didn’t even like being in his own costume.  It was all a bit too much for him. [Read More…]

Autumn Breathes

by Lori Pelikan Strobel

Lori Pelikan Strobel's barn

Colored magic and crisp whiffs whirl over wooded pastures

Summer sighs

Autumn inhales

Coolness dawns while Fall tumbles into me.


By |October 21st, 2014|Categories: Commentary, Daily Living|Tags: , , |0 Comments

7 Tips – National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

by Rosemary Lichtman, Ph.D. and Phyllis Goldberg, Ph.D.

For over 25 years, October has been designated National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. You’ll find races to run that raise funds for research. Stores will be selling everything from mixmasters to ipods in pink.

In fact, pink ribbons will be virtually everywhere. What does this focus on early detection and recovery mean to you?

If you are over 40, have regular screening mammograms and perform monthly breast self-exams. And see your physician for an annual breast exam and consultation about risk factors and additional diagnostic steps to take, such as MRI. With early detection, most breast cancers now can be successfully treated.

There are between 2 and 3 million American women living today who have survived breast cancer and are thriving. Yet, as many survivors have learned, the process of coping with any serious illness can take its toll – emotionally and physically. [Read More…]

The Perimenopausal Double Whammy

by Melanie Elliott

I became a mom, through adoption, at the age of 45.  I’ve been a mom now for a little over 4 years, which means I’m pushing 50.

Yikes and Yay!

I love being this age, even though I have a few more cricks and creaks in my body.  For the most part, I have a pretty level head, am grounded and comfortable in my skin.  Life is good with no major complaints.  There’s a bit more stress in my everyday world because we recently rescued a lovely dog, Pepper, so we’re all adjusting to the furry addition in our lives.  And, there’s an added layer of, well let me call it mishegas (Yiddish for crazy), in life due to entering the world of perimenopause. [Read More…]

10 Signs Your Teen is Developing an Eating Problem (Part II)

by Irene Celcer

99 tipsAt age 14, Chloe becomes interested in boys and develops a crush on Jason. But Jason has a crush on Amanda. Her friends comment, “Amanda is so pretty and so thin!”

A couple of days later, Chloe decides goes on a diet. Chloe has gotten taller since she turned 12. Her weight is on target. ‘Don’t eating disorders start with dieting?’ her mother thinks. “I will get you fresh and good quality food,” she says.

Chloe begins dieting intently. She loses weight. Friends and Aunt Dottie congratulate her profusely. Something starts happening for Chloe. Dieting becomes her most important activity. Deep down, Chloe believes that being thin will grant her admiration and, Jason.1

Does Chloe have an eating disorder? Not yet. As a parent be vigilant! [Read More…]

What Being a Mom Means To a Dad, Who Happens To Be a Mom

by Nicolas D'Ambra

6 A.M. Time to get up.

Where is breakfast?

Wait, back up.

Where is the food to make breakfast? [Read More…]

Now Is Your One Last Chance

by Tracy Franz

Having lived a number of years in Japan, I’ve often heard the Japanese phrase ichi-go ichi-e—literally, “one time, one meeting”—described by Japanese and Westerners alike as carpe diem, “seize the day.” Or, if you prefer the pop-culture version, “YOLO.” [Read More…]

A Mother’s Musings – Cannoli

Judith Lee Herbert

cannoli 1


“Cannoli,” you say,

your first word this morning,

sweet remembrance of yesterday’s taste

of creamy pastry, still on your tongue.

I laugh, delighted

by your bright smile,

warm honey-colored hair,

sturdy little legs.

You are two, and

I sing to you

in the mornings,

strangely happy to greet  the day

even before coffee. [Read More…]

By |October 10th, 2014|Categories: Commentary, Daily Living|Tags: , |0 Comments

My Top 13 Mommy Confessions

by Karen Osburn

I’m not typically a Mommy who worries.  Really. 

But I have my moments.  I have my doubts, fears, and insecurities like many Moms do.

Or do they?

Maybe it is just me?  [Read More…]

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