We had guests at the lake this weekend, yes, those crazy two “Roby & Rihanna” with their little munchkins. I love it when people visit. It means having an excuse to drink excessive amounts of wine, eat lots of good food, and watch our kids hang out with their friends.

We were a little concerned that the weather might not cooperate despite the decent forecast for the weekend. Gray skies and fog greeted us when we arrived on Saturday morning.

Undeterred, Rodney got to work mowing the lawn in his favorite lawn mowing outfit. Those would be sharks on his pink shorts. I bought the shorts for him in Nantucket one year and he looked at me like I was crazy. They remained balled up in the closet for years, but I kept the faith, knowing that one day he’d come around. Because quite simply, they’re awesome.


While Rodney mowed, I started prepping a few ingredients for the weekend. Sam, ecstatic that I’d bought him a new basketball, was incredibly disappointed to find out that these were in fact just really big beets. I’ve been such a vegetable pusher these days, I’m sure that he knew he’d be facing that thing on his dinner plate sometime soon.


Roby and Rihanna arrived and were greeted with a plateful of olives. It was the least I could do given that I didn’t have a gin & tonic waiting, as promised. Rodney nixed the idea because it would set the wrong tone for the weekend. I don’t know who he’s trying to kid, but that sets the exact right tone in my book.


continue reading


Stay in Touch




I’m pretty sure that Lauren is going to be a teacher one day. Or a school principal. Or as my sister has always predicted, a passport inspector at the border, potentially FBI, best case scenario Navy Seal.

She has an unmatched eye for detail and is a stickler for the rules.

Her first few words were “fuff” and “fedde”, fluff and feather.  She’d spot these with accuracy from her perch on the couch, tiny pieces of lint on the floor, or miniscule little feathers that had drifted down from our sofa’s down cushions.  She would pick them up gently, hold them up to the light, and investigate them like a detective.  It wasn’t long before she’d earned the nickname CSI.

Her rule abiding is even more impressive for a girl of her age. Even as a five-year old, she’s easily exasperated by bad behavior.

She recently found an old copy of US Weekly magazine, walked into the living room and pronounced “Ugh. This is unacceptable. This man is swimming in his underpants!”

Bathroom humor does not fly with her, period.  The other day Sam came running over to us and said “Mommy, wanna hear something funny? The chef cooks the poop!”  (Mom turned her head and snickered). 

Lauren: “Sam, that is NOT a funny joke at all.” 

Even her parents are targets.

After dropping her off at skating camp this summer, I urged her to go with her instructors.

“They’re not instructors mom.”

“OK, go with your teachers.”

“They’re not teachers either.”


“No, (eyes rolling), they’re Staffs.”

“OK, well I’m just going to wait for you in the changing room.”

“It’s not the changing room Mom.”

(Exasperated) “What is it Lauren?”

“It’s the club lounge.”

“Excuse me, but your club lounge has exposed cinderblocks and rivets in the wall.  I’ll wait for you in the changing room.”

But I love her with my whole being.  I still don’t understand how I’m related by flesh and blood to this little creature.  Me, the one who blurts out to strangers that I’m weaning myself off sleep meds, or has a little too much to drink at the office party.

How on Earth did I give birth to a rule-maker.  A rule-enforcer. 

But she’s a part of me, no doubt.  She loves me, and blows me kisses when I drop her off at her activities.  She makes my heart beat out of my chest.

We went apple picking the other day, and she was so happy to pick the crisp apples off the trees. 


continue reading


October Pump Giveaway_FeedMeDearlyI’m being serious here, let’s talk about breasts.  And breastfeeding.  Because it’s an important topic.  Men, you may want to avert your gaze, skip over to the post about naughty tomatoes. Or feast your eyes on these well-crafted nachos.

Or keep reading of course, because I’m giving away a pretty awesome gift to one of my lucky readers. And who doesn’t need a breast pump? Men included, not for yourselves of course, that would be frightening. But even if you’re not expecting or a new mom, most of us know someone who is having a baby and could probably use one of these pumps.

I’ve teamed up with Evenflo to bring you the latest hospital-grade breast pump on the market. Because I wouldn’t be encouraging people to get their kids to eat their greens if I hadn’t tried my hardest to start them on breast milk.

Breastfeeding didn’t come easily though. As I touched on in a previous post, I was sick as a dog when Lauren came into this world. Pneumonia was kicking in, my mothering instincts hadn’t yet taken a seat at the table. Not a great combo for your first job as a mother, which is at the bare minimum, to feed your baby a thimbleful of milk.

Exhausted and barely able to move, I could hardly think of giving an ounce of energy to the little being who was wheeled in regularly to my room, swaddled within an inch of her life, eyes half-open looking for someone to latch onto.

The nurses encouraged me to try feeding her, but I lacked the strength to even hold her in my arms.

I could see the sideways glances. The secretive conversations as they left the room. It wasn’t long before I was swiftly introduced to the machine: the industrial strength breast pump that I’d be attached to for the next few days to make sure that my supply didn’t disappear before I got home.

And so began a 4+ year relationship with a variety of pumps and contraptions that would get me through a combined 18 months of nursing 3 separate children.

continue reading


starkrimson 037

According to a site called Melissa’s, the organic Starkrimson pear is known for its “deep red exterior” and “high juice content”. Both descriptions were on the mark. I initially bought the pears for their bright red color, but once I took a bite, it was easy to see that they’re a step above your average pear. Like an in-season peach from the farmers’ market, the pear was so juicy, it dribbled down our chins. The kids loved them, so we’ll definitely pick up a few more of these sometime soon. I hope you’ll try them too.

ME: Guys, what is this one called?

LAUREN: A red pear.

ME: Yeah, but it has a funny name…it’s called a “Starkrimson” pear.

LAUREN: AND, it could be called a red pear too.

ME: What do you think it’s going to taste like, a regular pear or different?

LAUREN: I think kind of different. Maybe in the middle of the both of them. Kind of different and kind of the same.

SAM: Is THIS an orange?

ME: That’s an orange, that’s not mystery food right now.

ME: What does a pear taste like?

LAUREN: I forgot.

ME: Sam, do you know?

SAM: It tastes like that! (Pointing at the pear)

LAUREN: Well, we don’t know what it tastes like yet Sam.

SAM: Can I try?

ME: Yeah, let me cut them into little chunks for you guys.

LAUREN: But first we have to say what it smells like, looks like…

ME: Oh yeah, sorry guys, I forgot!

continue reading



This was quite the weekend, I must say. We had a snap of warm weather which made us all a little more adventurous than usual in late September.

We started things off with a visit to our local farm in Northern NJ to go apple and pumpkin picking. As soon as we’d raided the apple orchard and pumpkin patch for some choice fruit & veg, we were off to bigger and better things.

First off was pony racing where Emma decided to be the first in line.

“Who are you going to race?” I asked, confident that she was going to pick her brother or her sister.

“That guy”, she responded, pointing at her handler.


“That one, over there, the one with the….


I don’t know what was more shocking, the fact that she knows the word “mustache” or that she knows how to use it in a sentence. And a sentence that involves thrill-seeking no less.  This one is going to be a handful as a teenager, I can see it already.

Next, we headed over to a contraption spotted earlier, otherwise knowns as the “Eurolaunch.” And it did  exactly what you think something with the name Eurolaunch would do . It gave each kid a massive  wedgie and launched them, screaming and begging for mercy, into the air.

Lauren was up first, showing off some of her gymnastics moves by entering into a frightening sequence of flips:


And then Emma was back in there, yanking on my sleeve to do it too. So I gave in. Her response….


You would think that our family’s adventures ended there. But no. Feeling nostalgic about the end of the summer season, Rodney encouraged us all to get in the boat for one last waterski. And in case you’re wondering, the answer is yes, the water is no longer a balmy 75 degrees.

There we were, acting like a bunch of Yahoos with no wetsuits. To remind our neighbors that we are not, in fact, degenerates, I tried to fall as gracefully as I could.


continue reading