She didn't have on the right swimsuit. She wasn't wearing a swim cap. It was her first swim team session, and I was waiting for a thumbs-down sign we agreed on in the car, which would have me come over and tap her out. Endurance, the coaches agreed before she got in, would have to come in time.
As I headed over to the wet metal bleachers, ...Read more
When I met my husband, he was amused that I would tell him, "Take off your shoes; stay a while."
I'm not as fervent as those in other cultures who immediately switch to house shoes, but I am a proponent of bare feet. I like feeling the ground where I stand and would horrify hikers in my 20s by tromping through the desert in Converse because I...Read more
I paced the outdoor pathway around my apartment complex. My husband was fixing something on our old car outside, and I wanted him in sight for emotional support. I placed my hand on my third-trimester belly, trying to calm my nerves as I dialed the number I had received from the private investigator. I would be speaking to my uncle for the first...Read more
I wanted to dye my hair when I was about 13. I was admiring the rave scene that was all around me in Europe, where we lived at the time. I begged for blue hair, negotiating down to perhaps just a strand, then down to temporary colors, then hitting the floor with an offer of just watercolors. One night I got a green light, so I took watercolors ...Read more
The movie theater is a particular type of magic. It's ritualistic, with ticket stubs handed over to gatekeepers and the aroma of buttered popcorn announcing a time when food rules might be relaxed. Dinner might be a perfunctory hot dog, a side for too many Red Vines and Milk Duds.
The online reservation for seats was made for all four of us, ...Read more
This is my favorite time of the year. I don't mean the turkey on Thanksgiving or the tree for Christmas. I mean these strange days between Christmas and the end of the year. It's an awkward time. Ask anyone in an office between Monday, Dec. 26, and Friday, Dec. 30. It's a time-bending malaise that would work well as a pause, a natural recharge ...Read more
I don't know what chased me up the ladder first, but somewhere along the way, I became the house's resident Christmas lights putter-upper. Inspired at first by the novelty of climbing a ladder and adding illuminated cheer to our young family's traditions, now I tend to be more Grinchlike, figuring out how long I can push putting up lights before...Read more
My daughter sat up to look. Like a princess in a carriage, she peered backward and down at the person in the wheelchair, which was burdened with hanging bags. The man wore bright yellow grippy socks, the ones you get in the hospital, and was eyeing both ways on a neighborhood intersection.
After I dropped the kids off, I came back around to the...Read more
The game had led us down a county road with no lights and with a different name than the GPS stated. I hit the brights on our truck and saw a home with extra cars parked on the street. I told my daughter we'd turn back around if I started to get a funny feeling.
In my town, there is an online community scavenger hunt. The anonymous host posts...Read more
There was a sale on potatoes, and it seemed like everyone in the family decided to pick up a bag. At one point, I opened the pantry, and it smelled like my grandparents' cellar, the one side room that they filled with potatoes in a pile higher than I was tall.
Back in my memories, there is a small version of myself sitting in a field where my ...Read more
A flat, smooth trail runs alongside the Rio Grande, which is mostly dry at this time of the year. The trail can be part of a longer loop, but we rode it as an out-and-back and ended up returning with an extra passenger found along the way.
Since I'm biking, I'm wrangling everyone who will take me up on the offer to go with me. I am slow, I ...Read more