Soccer. It’s in Our Blood.

Soccer. It’s in Our Blood.

I didn’t play youth soccer for long, but I made a huge impact. I played just one season when I was five or six, but my unique style and flair is still widely talked about. By my mom, mostly, but still, talked about.

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An England Adventure - Part I: Knott in a Rush

An England Adventure - Part I: Knott in a Rush

The line snaked around in front of us, chasing its tail slowly. It was like the queue for Disney ride but the reward for making it through was confusion about where to go next. We assured the kids it would move quickly but we were lying. It was slow. Slower than slow.

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My Daughter Threw Up in Walgreens and Now I’m a Drug Store Nomad

My Daughter Threw Up in Walgreens and Now I’m a Drug Store Nomad

I had just picked out my purchases when my daughter coughed once, hesitated for a moment, and emptied the contents of her stomach onto her tulle (maybe?) skirt and the linoleum floor

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Maybe Dirt Isn’t My Parenting Kryptonite Anymore

Maybe Dirt Isn’t My Parenting Kryptonite Anymore

Change is an inevitable part of life. Time makes you bolder. Children get older. The soreness you experience after playing a tennis tournament lingers for several extra days. On the other hand, things that used to bother you, suddenly don't seem so important anymore. Like dirt. In particular, your children's fascination with it.

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Do I Have Time for This?

Do I Have Time for This?

This year I've taken a new tact when my kids are arguing with each other or whining to me. I say to them in my most serious voice, "That's enough. It's 2019. No one has time for this!"

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Exorcising Chuck E. Cheese Demons

Exorcising Chuck E. Cheese Demons

You might find this hard to believe, but I wasn’t a big fan of Chuck E. Cheese even when I was a kid. There was just something about it. I’m not sure what. Perhaps the fact that it’s a life-sized petri dish filled with every strain of virus and bacteria known to man? Yes, that’s probably it. Fun fact: There are a couple of bacterial strains that exist only inside Chuck E. Cheese. The “E” stands for Escherichia.

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The Importance of Finding a Park Beside a Railroad Track

The Importance of Finding a Park Beside a Railroad Track

I’m sure things like having an important job and fancy cars and a lot of money are nice, but they certainly pale in comparison to finding a park that is right next to a railroad track.

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The Art of Making My Son’s Bed Without Being Found Out

The Art of Making My Son’s Bed Without Being Found Out

Well, sure, there are many things you have to hide from your children, but making beds isn’t one of them, right? Wrong.

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The Art of Taking Pictures in Front of Other People’s Decorations

The Art of Taking Pictures in Front of Other People’s Decorations

You might remember that one of my children’s shared passions used to be wandering around the neighborhood looking at children to stare at. Well, we’ve taken our game to the next level this holiday season. Their new passion? Wandering around the neighborhood after dark and stopping to pose for photos in front of other people’s decorations.

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A Walk in the Woods

A Walk in the Woods

Around these parts, school is out for the entire week of Thanksgiving. Kids have it so easy these days. Back in my day, we got Thursday and Friday off. That was it.

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Reconnecting with My Mountain Roots: Day 2

Reconnecting with My Mountain Roots: Day 2

Our second day in the mountains started with me picking sopping wet trash off the gravel driveway and placing it in a fresh trash bag. Apparently, we had a visitor during the night. The entire wooden container that housed two trash cans was turned over on its side. After I had cleaned up the trash, I went to flip the container up off its side, but it didn’t budge.

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Reconnecting with My Mountain Roots: Day 1

Reconnecting with My Mountain Roots: Day 1

The kids had a couple days off for fall break last week, and so, because we are rugged people, we made a dash to the mountains of North Carolina.

Having grown up and lived almost my whole life in Florida, you might not expect me to be a mountain man, but I most definitely am. In fact, many years ago when I went away to law school in Virginia for six weeks, I bought a pair of hiking boots, which still sit in my closet under a pile of pillows to this very day. It’s not so much that you live in the mountains, it’s that the mountains live inside you.

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Driving by Houses in Cars: Passing Down a Favorite Pastime

Driving by Houses in Cars: Passing Down a Favorite Pastime

One of my four-year-old’s favorite activities is driving by houses of people we know. Not going to their houses, of course, just driving by casually. Peak drive-by time can vary, but it is typically right before or after school.

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I’ve Never Juggled Bowls While Riding a Unicycle, But I Do Have Children

I’ve Never Juggled Bowls While Riding a Unicycle, But I Do Have Children

An acrobat known as Red Panda has been a staple of basketball halftime shows across the country for more than twenty years. I once saw her in person at an NBA game years before I had children. I was stunned by her simple in concept, yet seemingly impossible in practice, act. In short, she rides a very tall unicycle, places an increasing numbers of bowls onto her foot and leg, flips the bowls into the air, and catches them in a stack on her head.

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A Tale of Two Treasure Hunts

A Tale of Two Treasure Hunts

My six-year-old made me a treasure hunt to complete one afternoon recently. Making a treasure hunt is the kind of thing you do on hot, stormy afternoons in August when it’s impossible to go outside and your dad finally makes you turn off the TV and electronics for a few minutes.

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Waiting is Overrated: A Day at the Beach

Waiting is Overrated: A Day at the Beach

There are two primary seasons in Florida: wet and dry. This year, the wet season descended upon us with fury. It rained every day for more days than I can remember.

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Dirt is My Parenting Kryptonite

Dirt is My Parenting Kryptonite

My children do plenty of annoying things, but perhaps the one that quickens my pulse the most is playing in the dirt. I have no idea why this is. On its face, it is a relatively benign activity. No one is in danger of getting hurt (for the most part, more on that later) and I don’t have to do anything until the fun is over. They have never once asked me to join them in their filthy games, which is a true blessing.

It is inexplicable why this mundane activity is my parenting kryptonite, yet here we are.

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A Good Walk Toiled

A Good Walk Toiled

I went for a walk around the neighborhood with the kids yesterday because it was such a beautiful day. As is always the case, it began with high hopes. All three started out riding scooters or bikes. What a lovely outing! Soon enough, though, things regressed to the mean. We made it to the farthest point in our loop, about half a mile from the house, and the youngest two ran out of steam.

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Kids are Right: We Should Celebrate the Little Things

Kids are Right: We Should Celebrate the Little Things

We had a birthday party this week. No one in our household has had a birthday recently, but that doesn’t matter. We were cleaning out the garage for probably the first time since we moved in three years ago and underneath all the lint from the dryer (our dryer vents into the garage, which is fantastic and I highly recommend it) we found an old cardboard box full of decorations from our now 6-year-old Jacob’s second birthday party. Inside the fuzzy box there were unopened packages of yellow and red paper plates, a birthday sign, napkins, whistles (awesome), Sesame Street party hats, and several bugs.

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It's Almost Laundry Time

It's Almost Laundry Time

I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for the kids to be in bed tonight so I can pop open my dryer, grab huge armfuls of warm, fragrant clothes, toss them into a huge pile on my bed, and get to folding. I live for laundry.

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