Joie d’Eve

Thankful and Sad

  It’s been a hell of a week. I suppose that can be loosely said of every week we’ve had since March 13, all of which kind of blur together into a hellscape smoothie, if you will, but this past…

‘Tis the Season?

  It was the receptionist at my dad’s doctor’s office who gave me my first clue. “We’ll call you back right away,” she assured me. “In the meantime, have a wonderful day and happy holidays!” “Oh, uh … yeah ……

Living Blue in a Red State, Part 2

  I wrote this four years ago after Donald Trump was elected president. I was hurt and angry … but I hoped we could work together as a nation. Now, four years later with a different outcome in the latest…

Election Days Gone By

  I love voting. I registered at the DMV when I switched my residency to Missouri for college, just after my 18th birthday, and since then, I have voted in almost every single election, whether it’s a big one for…

2020 Vision

  It’s funny the things you learn about people when you’re suddenly spending completely uninterrupted time with them. Even your own husband. Even your own children. For instance, although I certainly knew that Georgia had ADHD, it wasn’t until I…

Halloween During A Pandemic

  There are, of course and unfortunately, many serious and tragic consequences of the pandemic and resulting quarantine: not only death and illness and grief, but also mental health concerns, social isolation, and economic impacts for so many families. There…

Out and Proud

  Sunday was National Coming Out Day, and I chose that day to publicly celebrate my older daughter, who came out to me about a year ago. (With her permission, obviously; I would never out her publicly without her consent.)…

Autumn Enthusiasm

  It’s no real secret that I think fall is overrated, but mostly, it’s just a grudge left over from my very first “real fall” in Missouri more than 20 years ago. At first, I thought it was beautiful –…

The Days Are Slow; the Years Are Fast

  The well-meaning older women in the grocery store line would always tell me it went by so fast, and I’d smile thinly while seething inside because it definitely didn’t seem to be going quickly. My baby was only 3…

Getting Back to Normal?

  I think I’ve forgotten whatever social skills I once had – and I’ve always been an introvert, always the kind of person who heads straight to the bar immediately upon arriving at any large social gathering because I need…

Watching and Waiting

  It’s a strange feeling, waiting for a hurricane that may or may not come. Time is lived in between the track/intensity updates at 4 a.m., 10 a.m., 4 p.m., and 10 p.m., time in which your plans keep shifting…

Required Halloween Viewing

  It used to just be my peers that I’d horrify with movies I hadn’t seen. “You haven’t seen Casablanca?” my husband yelled at me once, and then immediately made me stop everything to watch it. “What?! How have you…

A Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day

  I’ve really been trying to be positive lately. Last week, I was upbeat about not losing power; last month, I was looking forward to restarting virtual school; six months ago, I was desperately hoping for a quarantine because it…

Calm Between the Storms

  I still remember Hurricane Cindy. My now-ex-husband and I were in town for the Fourth of July holiday in 2005, and it had been decent weather outside when we borrowed my dad’s truck to drive Uptown to visit a…

The Dishes Are Done, Man

  I still remember the day that my child-free-by-choice friend came over, looked into my kitchen, saw my sink piled high with dishes, and exclaimed, “My God! How long has it been since you did your dishes?” I side-eyed him…

Southern Fried With a Side of Ice Cream

  I don’t necessarily think of myself as deeply Southern – although I have worn a hoop skirt, eaten fried okra and black-eyed peas and all manner of greens, and have a decided fondness for seersucker and monograms – but…

COVID Fatigue

  It’s safe to say at this point in the pandemic (a phrase I never really expected to write), I am both weary and wary. I’m weary of … well, all of it. I’d really love to hug my friends…

Finding a Bright Side

  “Don’t even bother reading the paper,” my dad told me on the phone yesterday. “It’s all bad news. The coronavirus is everywhere. No one cares about teachers, as usual. And on top of it all, some kind of snails…

Getting Schooled

  On March 13, while driving home from our last normal day and staving off panic, I told Ruby, “This is all going to be fine; we just need a good, solid schedule.” The next day, while my kids slept…

The Things We’ve Baked

  When Ruby left to spend the summer with her dad five weeks ago, Georgia and I spent about an hour moping around the house. Then, to cheer ourselves up, we got drive-thru Taco Bell and took a walk at…

Room for Argument

  There are a lot of things that I think are fun to argue about. Some of them are incredibly low-stakes and yet still get me fired up. For instance, a couple of years ago, I was in a Facebook…

Worry Spiral

  As the anxious mother of two anxious daughters, I try to share as much hard-earned wisdom and life tips as I can. One of them is that dreading something is almost always worth than the actual thing itself. When…

Back to Work

  I’m writing this on Monday night, but by the time you read it, I will have been back in my office for the first time since March 13 (except for the time I briefly ran in, probably mid-April, to…

Amplifying Other Voices

  There are, clearly, more pressing issues in the world right now than my usual topics of baking, parenting, and grammar. Trying to write about summer camp or cupcakes or semicolons seems embarrassingly trivial in the face of what’s happening…

Graduation Reimagined

  It’s entirely possible that you’re not as crazy and neurotic as I am – for your sake and the sake of the wider world, I certainly hope so – but when deciding on a name for my children, I…

Birthday Bust

  Georgia turned 7 on May 30, 2019. On May 31, 2019, she began planning her eighth birthday party. This, I think it’s safe to say, was not part of how any of us planned it. Back when the lockdown…

A Big Step Forward

  Change is hard. No one can deny that. But change can be good and exciting. Right now I’m taking a step forward in life and I’m hoping it will be a great new experience. I’m not going to lie…

Quarantine According to Milo

  I’m all about the quarantine trends – I’ve either embraced them, have always done them, or plan to do them soon. Sanitizing, hand-washing, bread-baking? All in. Sourdough starter? Yep, bubbling away happily in the back room, started it six…

Pandemic Ethics

  The highlights of my week – and this is sad but true – are thus: I found a completely addictive and fun color by number game that I can play on my phone while I supervise my younger daughter’s…