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Family Time, by Diane Chase

Releasing the pressure of a dedicated Mother’s Day

Another Mother’s Day has passed, and I feel the weight of expectation lifted off my shoulders. I’ve written about the evolution of Mother’s Day for over 10 years. So this may be a repeat for some of you. I always felt a few holidays were put on the calendar to sell greeting cards or ...

When a child comes home to roost

There are so many stages of raising a child. For most of their growth, they are completely dependent on their parents. It isn’t a power trip or exerting authority over these wee ones. Babies actually can’t survive without an adult. Yes, Yes, I’m sure you grew up with someone raised by ...

We don’t need to place faith in the youth

Last week I wrote about Earth Day and looking for various options to ease our dependency on plastics. I appreciate all the people that reached out to share information. I believe that is how conversations need to be, courteous and helpful. I am grateful for the feedback. We appreciate thanks ...

Earth Day resolutions

It can seem challenging to overcome a pandemic while being environmentally friendly. We’ve been debating which product is safe for the environment while also effective at killing a virus. We’ve narrowed our choices to plain soap and water for washing/cleaning and rubbing alcohol for ...

Online security

A few years ago, we sent my nephew a high school graduation gift. He left for college with a fistful of gift cards and checks. Apparently, he was just making it rain. What he didn’t take into consideration were all the bank accounts tied to those checks he managed to scatter haphazardly ...

History of April Fool’s Day

I always breathe a sigh of relief when I’m able to pass April Fool’s Day relatively unscathed. As my children become more wily, the antics become more alarming. It’s to the point now where I’ve had to ask that we no longer include death or destruction as part of a prank. I’m not sure ...

Maneuvering the firsts and lasts

When my children entered each new school, they were greeted with numerous celebrations. They attended the last elementary school dance bookmarked with the first middle school dance. The first concert for one became the last concert for another. The first match was someone else’s senior rose ...

Signs of spring

When my children were young, no matter how much I tried to convince them otherwise, their first sign of spring was the hot dog guy on the corner by Paul Smith’s College. Neither a round of robins nor a patch of spring bulbs replaces the idea that a guy selling meat from a metal cart alongside ...

Minding your Ps and Qs

On a trip to England to the prerequisite pub visit, I learned one version regarding the history of the term “minding your Ps and Qs.” There are numerous theories, so let’s go with the 1700s pub version addressing the number of pints and quarts consumed. It is said that back in the ...

Taking on Dr. Seuss

Before you all start burning books or buying up the last copy of “And to Think that I Saw it on Mulberry Street,” I want you to take a deep breath. I’ve collected children’s books most of my life. My bookshelves are filled with old “classics.” Some of those books aren’t good. ...

Mind your manners

For many years I had a variety of jobs while I put myself through college. The jobs ranged from server, hostess, bartender and retail. Each job provided me with skills I could apply to any other position. In our house, the running joke is that if I were to ever run for political office, the ...

Don’t forget teachers

Do you remember back in the day when the world first shut down? To jar your memory, it will be a year this March. If you are a parent or caregiver with children in the home, do you remember wondering how in the world you were going to juggle kids, teach school and earn a living? Do you remember ...

Are our children being robbed?

I’ve heard more than a few people using the term “robbed” regarding children during this pandemic. Though mine may not be a popular opinion, I have to disagree that my child is being robbed of anything. Nothing has been stolen from children, though everything has changed. To me, ...

Signing up for a COVID vaccine

I want to start with the fact that I love my mother. Now everything else below will be a rant on how ill-prepared I am to take care of anyone. Don’t worry about elder abuse here. I’m fine. I felt the same way when I was handed over each of my children. How in the world does anyone feel ...

COVID shaming

It was just a matter of time that I’d have to come back to the reality of living life during a pandemic. I just wasn’t expecting to do it as a statistic. (I’ve asked permission to share this journey for anyone thinking I’d release private information without someone’s knowledge.) ...

Learning when to take advice

When my children were growing up, I have to admit I took a few cooking shortcuts. I didn’t question if there would be long-term consequences to any hastily prepared meals. I had to get food into mouths. Sometimes meals were eaten in the car. Gasp! (I understand it isn’t healthy, but it ...

The one-upmanship of animal infestation 

We live in an old farmhouse, and somewhere listed in our deed I’m sure to find a sentence indicating that our space will be shared with wildlife at one point or another. Wildlife can be loosely defined as any undomesticated animal, right? No, I’m not talking about my family.  I ...

Where do we go from here?

I’ve been wondering for a while if it is too late to love thy neighbor? Have we truly reached the point where we can’t even agree on what is right or wrong? Is it all about the payback? Social media has never been a factual place to receive news, so please bear with my thought process. ...

What is essential?

Since the beginning of quarantine in March, the word “essential” has been tossed around by government officials, businesses and individuals. People and their livelihoods were labeled either essential or not. People lost jobs because they were not essential. Other people felt belittled ...

Goodbye to 2020 … please

My family and I have been fortunate. I count my blessings every day and that includes a headcount. I’m not meaning to sound cavalier, but since the beginning of this pandemic, I knew it was just a matter of time before my circle would tighten, interweaving with those affected by this virus. ...