The Matriarch

Well… My grandmother died today. She was just about to turn 95 years old. This is a weird one. My grandmother, Rhoda Brand, had been battling dementia. It is difficult to know exactly when it really took hold but I’d say it has been roughly 8 to 10 years where I can remember being able

Et Cetera

Today, Julianna turns 12. Every year, since she was 3, I’ve been publishing a post on this day. You can read them here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. These birthday posts have gotten harder and harder to write each year. I generally start thinking about them a few days in advance

Counting to 10

Today Chloe turns 10. I know what you’re thinking: Another exciting look into the future! I thought about doing that for Chloe like I did for Julianna but Chloe deserves her own thing, not some derivative nonsense. And so I’ve been thinking back to all that’s happened since her last birthday; all the moments of

11.

Today Julianna turned 11. This year’s birthday post might have ended up looking like this: This year, we talked to Julianna about sex. The end. That would have been a big enough event to cover the whole year. I then thought about what I did last year. Last year, I did a very clever “flashback”

The Talk

Disclaimer: This post might be considered by some to be “explicit” based on the subject matter, my apparent lack of understanding of it, or your potential belief that I should or shouldn’t have been part of the conversation. You can agree or disagree with our approach. This is just me describing our experience discussing an

From the Beginning to the Middle

5 years ago, Julianna was in Kindergarten. Her first day did not go well. She cried hysterically and for all intents and purposes had to be pried off of us and “guided” into school. It feels like in each day since, there has been a steady improvement. Last week, nearly 5 entire grades later, she

10.

Today Julianna turned 10. In previous years, I’ve written a summary of Julianna’s year; about her achievements. If you’re interested in her progress, you can read about it here, here, here, or here. This year, I thought I might do something a little bit different. To celebrate the single greatest achievement a 9 year old

Back to The Mailbox

Listen, I wasn’t ready to be an empty-nester for at least another 10 years. This is all messed up.  The house is oddly quiet.  We’ve been here without kids before but this is different. Cassie the Dog doesn’t know what to make of all of it.  She’s been sitting next to me, looking at the

Saving Up

Today Julianna turned 9. Quite a year huh? I’ve been writing these birthday blog posts for a bunch of years for each girl.  I’ve always found that its a nice way to reflect on the year as it relates to each girl; to think about the struggles they’ve encountered, the victories they’ve achieved, and the