Browsing All posts tagged under »Family«

Joan Larsen’s Sleigh Full of Holiday Ideas: Turning Your Selection of Christmas Gifts into Lifelong Memories

November 29, 2017

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by Joan Larsen   Aren’t the feelings of warmth, of joy and laughter .  .  . but, most of all, of love – what the holidays truly are supposed to be?  Shouldn’t the element of togetherness be forefront in this season?  I think we are all nodding yes.  I am sure you are. But instead, […]

Joan Larsen’s Thanksgiving at the Lake House: Sharing My Private Thoughts the Weekend After

November 26, 2017

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By Joan Larsen You have caught me lounging  . . . not planning to get up anytime soon. Outside, out that big window, I can almost watch the ice, no longer near the shore, creeping onto the main body of the lake. Flocks of geese, perhaps the last of them, vie for places in what […]

Joan Larsen’s Warm Welcome: Thanksgiving at the Lake House

November 22, 2017

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It’s Thanksgiving at the Lake House and the gathering of family is always equated to love overflowing and the feeling of closeness . . .   A warm welcome to our family Thanksgiving!!       The greatest fun is coming early and working together to make decorations for the house   As the children […]

Teen Pregnancy: The Old, Old Story

August 14, 2017

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It is the old, old story. Young love, flaring passions, secret, unprotected sex… an unintended pregnancy… and life-changing consequences.  Adolescence instantaneously ends, and two young people are flung, unprepared, into adulthood. Here is a glimpse backward at how things once were… A far cry from how they are today. Just some food for thought. A […]

Joan Larsen’s Life Stories: A Father’s Quest: Finding Debra

June 14, 2017

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By Joan Larsen So often it is just a single moment in time that will change our lives forever.  Many of us have had such moments as we have traveled the road of life. But a true fairy tale ending as this story has? I would call it rare. I would call it a miracle […]

The Unsanitary Swim Diaper: Not in My Pool, Please!

May 22, 2017

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Time for Lila’s annual public safety and health announcement:  even the manufacturers don’t claim that “swim diapers” will contain a mess. Memorial Day is fast approaching, and that means the neighborhood pools will soon be opening for business.  As we wrote last year, the whole concept of a diapered child in a communal swimming area […]

Joan Larsen Writes: No Stiff Upper Lip – Prince Harry Speaks Candidly and Emotionally About His Life Struggles

April 19, 2017

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By Joan Larsen In a voice that is both moving and articulate, England’s Prince Harry has only now come out to the world – to us – about his severe emotional problems following the death of his mother, Princess Diana. Still struggling in his late twenties – almost two decades after losing his mum – […]

Joan Larsen’s Life Stories: The Child and the Robbers

January 25, 2017

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By Joan Larsen I have a story to tell, a tale that lies within me, waiting to come out… a seemingly improbable story that happened in my own family… a story that has marked me, marked my family.  Like it or not, TV and the media have made us voyeurs in the most horrific stories […]

Joan Larsen’s Sleigh Full of Holiday Ideas: Turning Your Selection of Christmas Gifts into Lifelong Memories

December 14, 2016

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by Joan Larsen   Aren’t the feelings of warmth, of joy and laughter .  .  . but, most of all, of love – what the holidays truly are supposed to be?  Shouldn’t the element of togetherness be forefront in this season?  I think we are all nodding yes.  I am sure you are. But instead, […]

The Cat’s in the Cradle and the Silver Spoon: Slow Down, Parents

December 5, 2016

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Andrea Petersen recently wrote a Wall Street Journal article, “A Nanny Who’s Always On Vacation.”  Far from being on vacation, these specialized nannies make their livings by accompanying families on their vacations, to attend to the children while traveling and to give the parents their “adult time” sans kids. I’m not sure what I think […]

Joan Larsen Thinks Outside the Christmas Box: New Ways to Make the Holidays Last Year-Round

November 30, 2016

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By Joan Larsen   All right. . . I am going to be honest with you this Christmas season. I have been an inveterate gift giver all my life, almost racing – as the days get close to the holidays – to fulfill the dreams of all my friends and family. I am sure you […]

Joan Larsen Presents: Thanksgiving at the Lake House

November 23, 2016

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It’s Thanksgiving at the Lake House and the gathering of family is always equated to love overflowing and the feeling of closeness . . .   A warm welcome to our family Thanksgiving!!       The greatest fun is coming early and working together to make decorations for the house   As the children […]

Joan Larsen Presents Katrina Kenison: This is 55

October 5, 2016

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“To really value life is to know this:  the best moments are often the ones we might miss altogether if we weren’t paying attention.” Katrina Kenison As we too become immersed in the latest chapters in our lives, there is something so reassuring to know that we are not alone.  And so it is as […]

I Never Wanted to Be a Mommy

September 12, 2016

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I ran across this really excellent article by Jessica Valenti in The Atlantic:  “Not Wanting Kids Is Entirely Normal.”  Thank you, thank you, thank you Ms. Valenti.  Everyone needs to read this.  It exposes the dirty, secret truth about parenting:  there are a lot of mothers out there who regret becoming parents, who didn’t know […]

The Gritmobile: My Dad’s Toyota SR-5 Turns to Treasure

July 18, 2016

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Keep something around long enough, and magic can happen. Way back in 1983, my sixty-something-year-old Dad casually announced that he would be trading in his somewhat plain gray sedan and getting, for the first and only time in his life, a pickup truck. “Whatever for?” I wondered. “I just like it. Something different,” said Dad. […]

The Unsanitary Swim Diaper: Not in My Pool, Please!

May 23, 2016

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Time for Lila’s annual public safety and health announcement:  even the manufacturers don’t claim that “swim diapers” will contain a mess. Memorial Day is fast approaching, and that means the neighborhood pools will soon be opening for business.  As we wrote last year, the whole concept of a diapered child in a communal swimming area […]

On Single Parenthood

May 16, 2016

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It’s not progress. Some time ago, a favorite website ran a feature celebrating single mothers who have helped to change societal attitudes toward single parenting.  Certainly, there was a time when having children out of wedlock carried a definite stigma, divorce was frowned upon, and widows and widowers were objects of pity, and generally expected […]

Another Misleading Internet Meme

April 4, 2016

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I’m getting tired of seeing certain Internet memes like this one making the rounds.  Golly, life is so hard and unfair these days.  A 40-hour-a-week job just doesn’t support us anymore.  You know what?  Life IS unfair, but this is not why.  This is something you can actually fix, if you want to.  Yes, there was […]

Lauriate Roly Remembers: They Laughed When I Sat Down to Play

March 14, 2016

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I don’t know how I learned to play the piano. It’s such a ridiculous history that I’m having trouble writing about it.  But, ridiculous as it may be, I’m going to try to tell you, as clearly as I, in my senior of senior years, may relate the story and attempt to put all the fatuous […]

Joan Larsen Encore: Thanksgiving at the Lake House

November 25, 2015

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It’s Thanksgiving at the Lake House and the gathering of family is always equated to love overflowing and the feeling of closeness . . .   A warm welcome to our family Thanksgiving!!       The greatest fun is coming early and working together to make decorations for the house   As the children […]

Joan Larsen Thinks Outside the Christmas Box: New Ways to Make the Holidays Last Year-Round

November 18, 2015

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By Joan Larsen   All right. . . I am going to be honest with you this Christmas season. I have been an inveterate gift giver all my life, almost racing – as the days get close to the holidays – to fulfill the dreams of all my friends and family. I am sure you […]

Why Child Care May Never Be Well Compensated

November 9, 2015

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It’s because of the limited availability of parental dollars to pay for the service. Marketwatch published an interesting chart this week, showing how those who care for our nation’s children are compensated at a lower rate than bellhops, car cleaners, and even parking lot attendants. Why is this? Child-care workers are entrusted with our nation’s […]

Teen Pregnancy: The Old, Old Story

September 21, 2015

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It is the old, old story. Young love, flaring passions, secret, unprotected sex… an unintended pregnancy… and life-changing consequences.  Adolescence instantaneously ends, and two young people are flung, unprepared, into adulthood. Here is a glimpse backward at how things once were… A far cry from how they are today. Just some food for thought. A […]

Dorothy Stewart McElhaney: Best Obit EVER

August 17, 2015

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A friend pointed out this obituary, which appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch last Tuesday. We have written previously that what matters in life is what you can pack into that little dash that appears between your birth date and your death date. Well, what a jam-packed dash this lady had, and what wit and humor! […]

Lauriate Roly: A Back-Handed Compliment?

July 27, 2015

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By Lauriate Roly   My wonderful daughter Madeline does so many things for me. She and her wonderful husband Larry have lived with Frances and me since they were joined in happy matrimony, when they decided to come and live with us in our oversized house. They’ve always been so supportive in so many ways.  If […]

Ten More Turns: The Little Gold Watch

June 22, 2015

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By Lauriate Roly She probably played with this lovely watch many times.  Trying to set the time or trying to wind it so it would keep running, or watching to see that it is wound enough to keep running until to-morrow. How many times a day should it be wound, and how many turns of […]

Joan Larsen: Finding Help to Leap the Chasm Between High School and Life

June 3, 2015

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By Joan Larsen As we watch our own children and grandchildren heading into those final years in high school, more often than not we see kids who are ‘betwixt and between’, still too young and unsure of which of the many roads that spread out ahead of them to lay claim to.  Remembering back to our […]

Baltimore Riots: “Mom of the Year” Wouldn’t Be, Under Other Circumstances

May 4, 2015

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It is not lost on me that under other circumstances, the famous Baltimore mom might be in jail for child abuse.   By now you have seen the headlines praising Maryland mom Toya Graham for her smackdown of her masked 16-year-old son who was among the rioters in Baltimore, throwing rocks at the police. “Baltimore […]

Explain: How is Remaining Childless “Selfish”?

April 20, 2015

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Back in February, Pope Francis reiterated the Catholic Church’s position on child-bearing: “Not to have children is a selfish choice.” Ummmm, really? Adjective self·ish \ˈsel-fish\ :  concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself :  seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others (Merriam-Webster). Amazingly enough, childless people are not always […]

Joan Larsen Encore: Spending Christmas in Antarctica

December 24, 2014

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By Joan Larsen At this season, as another Christmas draws near, we find there are moments when we look back — back at a lifetime of memories of Christmas past . . . many times wishing they could be the simpler times we once had   I speak for all of us, longing – I […]

Joan Larsen Encore: The Child and the Robbers

December 17, 2014

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I have a story to tell, a tale that lies within me, waiting to come out… a seemingly improbable story that happened in my own family… a story that has marked me, marked my family.  Like it or not, TV and the media have made us voyeurs in the most horrific stories of break-ins, robberies […]