Of Daughters and Better Songs

I am sixteen going on seventeen I know that I’m naïve. Fellows I meet May tell me I’m sweet And, willingly, I believe! Richard Rogers, from “Sixteen Going On Seventeen” We begin our morning with music. Not always, of course—I’m no Mary Poppins. I’m imperfect in practically every way. But today, songs were a scheme…

Of Board Books and Birthday Questions

We have a lot of board books. If you have no children, perhaps you can’t appreciate what “a lot” of board books looks like. It’s not ten, not twenty. It is, in fact, a whole crate of cardboard-paged little books. They are glossy and brightly-colored, often rhyming. Only a few of them tell stories, most…

Re-Discovery

Long ago, a bunch of friends and I spent a Saturday moving all of my roommate’s and my things from one part of Seattle to another. It was a pretty typical move, complete with trips to the dump in someone’s borrowed minivan, and furniture crammed in someone’s borrowed truck. The crowning achievement, at the end…

Honest Doubt

          You say, but with no touch of scorn,           Sweet-hearted, you, whose light-blue eyes           Are tender over drowning flies,  You tell me, doubt is Devil-born.  Alfred, Lord Tennyson, from “In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 96” I’ve never been a huge fan of Mom Blogs. (Yes, I know that they’re…

Stolen: A Diaper Bag

It took us almost two weeks to realize that the diaper bag had been stolen. In Seattle, apparently having one’s car broken into is a rite of passage, an initiation into the club of people who really live here.  And a few weeks ago, we finished our transformation into full residents. We’ve taken the bus, endured…

Rolling Over

A newly-engaged Timmy and Kristi, February 2013 Six years after I got engaged, I’m awake before dawn in a too-bright room, in a house I just moved into last night, listening to a baby roll over. To be accurate, I’m listening to my daughter, who is both proud and a little annoyed that she’s just…

An Eclipse and An Inauguration

My daughter wakes up at 9:00 PM. I hear her upstairs, stirring, waking up from what she must assume is a nap, in her pajamas, in the dark. Someday, I’ll put her to bed and she’ll just stay asleep. But not today. Oh well. Anyway, I’m hardly busy. I’m literally lying on the couch in a…

What Mary Didn’t Know

Though I stand by what I wrote in this post from two years ago, “What Mary Knew,” it’s not the whole story. Read that, if you haven’t, then come back here to the follow-up, as I explore one of my least favorite Christmas songs, about one of my favorite women ever.  And His father and mother…

Of Purple Parties and Fitting In

“The people you love will change you The things you have learned will guide you And nothing on Earth can silence The quiet voice still inside you And when that voice starts to whisper Moana, you’ve come so far Moana, listen Do you know who you are?” from Disney’s Moana The dining room windows are dark,…

Using the Car

I’ve never much liked driving. I realize that this probably puts my American citizenship at risk—a dangerous thing to do at the moment—since automobile affection seems stitched into the fiber of our national being. We’re the nation of the Model T, of giant parking lots and the infinite chain of interstates, of drive-ins, drive-throughs and…