After I had kids, my digestive system changed. Meaning regularity couldn’t be counted upon, and no amount of fruits or vegetables helped. But I wasn’t ready for Metamucil, so I decided to take magnesium instead. It seems to work, and for now, I can’t complain. I’m no longer backed up when it comes to my…

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Dear Melina, Back in March, when we celebrated Daddy’s birthday quarantine-style, I’m not sure I really understood that we’d be celebrating your birthday in a similar manner. But here we are, 107 days (!) later, and we’re choosing to shelter-in-place as much as possible. I personally haven’t found the quarantine all that disruptive to my…

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A new website means a new way of doing things. Which isn’t what this habitual person likes to think about. New ways? I might only be in my forties, but honestly, I’ve been set in my standard protocols since I was born. Okay, there might have been that period of time right after the doctor…

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Father’s Day. 2012. A trip to the grocery store. Me. The man behind me in line. He and I spoke for two minutes before I left the store, headed to my car, and drove away. I thought about that innocent conversation for the time it took to drive home. And then, before I could even…

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Many years ago, when my twins—who turned eighteen in January—first discovered The Magic School Bus series, I remember thinking, “When I grow up, I want to be Ms. Frizzle.” Ms. Frizzle is the hilarious, knowledgeable science teacher who makes learning fun and takes her students on fabulous adventures (to the ocean floor, inside the human…

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Writing communities are vital to the health and well-being of an author and their works. One of the most robust writing communities lives here in the Dayton area: the friends, supporters, attendees, and faculty of the Antioch Writers’ Workshop. Shuly Xóchitl Cawood has been a part of that workshop, as attendee, speaker, and supporter. And that’s where…

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Checking in almost midyear (well, spring, really) isn’t something I normally do. After all, we’re all busy, and talking about that busy is boring. So I won’t do it. But I made a promise to myself in January, before all the rigmarole of COVID-19, when I said that I was “taking hold of this new…

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Dear Diary, People told me to start writing to you earlier. “You’ll want to remember these times,” they said. “You can keep track of all that happens, capturing a you that’s never been seen before.” One historian made a great case for journaling during a pandemic, and my son’s history teacher sent emails saying, “You…

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Jeanne Oates Estridge began writing in third grade, when she crafted her first short story about bunnies who named their many children in alphabetical order. That same year, she drew a picture of her future self dressed “in a floor-length, crayon-blue dress, sitting at a typewriter.” It may have taken a bit of time, but…

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To see parts I, II, III, and IV of this story, click here, here, here, and here. Caroline had always had poor vision, but the fog and the low-hanging street lights made it very hard to determine whether or not Adam was still standing at the church. But then, a gust of wind tugged his…

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