a pile of boxes for what to pack for college

The Single Most Important Thing to Pack for College

Some of my friends are helping their kids pack for college in the next few weeks. It’s a busy and emotional time getting ready for drop off day. What is the most important and most useful item for them to take with them? Turns out, it’s not something you can order on Amazon. It’s confidence. Helping our kids feel confident and capable is the best preparation we can provide for their separation from us and their adventures on their own at college. If they believe they are capable of handling…

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Full Nest Empty Nest

The Fleeting Joy of the Temporarily Full Nest

Memorial Day weekend was the first time in six months that my partially empty nest was full again. My oldest came home to visit for the long weekend. I hadn’t seen him since he was last home in December. He lives in Wisconsin and we haven’t had a chance to go out there to visit him, nor has he had the opportunity to come home, until that weekend. We didn’t do anything exciting and that almost made it even more special. Just the normalcy of him being at home, along…

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scared of things that are out of my control

Trying So Hard Not to Be Scared

I had a meltdown yesterday. It was the release of a day’s worth of trying not to give in to anxiety and fears that had built up subconsciously. The tipping point came when I accidentally pinched my finger in the hinge of the closet doors. It closed so hard on my skin that it caused an instant blood blister. I saw stars in that first intense moment of pain as tears rolled down my cheeks. I sat down on the nearby toilet seat lid holding my finger tightly. At first…

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Someone you love is hurting

When Someone You Love is Hurting, You Hurt

When someone you love is hurting – your child, partner, friend – you feel the pain too. And you’ll stop at nothing to either make it go away or somehow figure out how to fix it. There is no greater urge than to protect our kids and loved ones. It takes root from love, but it grows far beyond and is an amazing thing. What’s also remarkable is how you forget about everything else when you’re on a mission to fix their hurt. I’m exhausted and coming down with something. Maybe…

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image of teenager for nagging your teen blog post

A Positive Perspective on Nagging Your Teen

If you still have a teen in the nest like I do, you will agree that life after fifty still entails nagging your teen. You are not alone. There is comfort in company and there are ways for you to look at these last few years of nagging your teen with a positive perspective. At the tail end of the blurry years of parenting, we’re in the home stretch! With a few tweaks to our perspective, we can survive it without giving up or jumping off the roof. My fifteen year…

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left for college

He Left for College; And Did I Die?

From the first day of his senior year in high school, it felt like a balloon was inside my chest and it was slowly inflating. That entire school year before my oldest left for college was so emotional and felt like one very long ramp leading up to D.O.D. (drop off day). It was exciting and also scary watching him apply for colleges in the fall. We listened as he expressed more and more of what he wanted to do and what his plans were for college. As the marking…

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