I can’t be the only one….

I wish I had writer’s block.

If I was experiencing a creative stall, then there would be a plethora of ideas and strategies I could try. Just googling “cures for writer’s block” brought up twenty-two million results. Twenty-two million! The odds are that at least one of those suggestions would have helped me get restarted.

But I don’t have writer’s block. On the contrary, I have plenty of ideas of what I want to say. My problem is writer’s flop. But when I googled “cures for writer’s flop”, I got zero results and cures for writer’s block showed up instead…

Or, how do we know what to keep?

I used to save everything my children brought home. And I mean everything. Not just the laminated work, special art projects and progress notes. I mean everything.

A piece of paper with a few scribbles made in preschool? Yes, how else would I be able to see their growth?

A drawing that even the artist couldn’t explain what it was supposed to be? Yes, because what if after I tossed it, they realized it was important?

Every report card from each marking period, even though the final report of the year included all of the others from that year? Of…

No, It isn’t babysitting!

My first job after finishing graduate school with a Masters in education, was as a preschool teacher. The children in my class were adorable, my colleagues became my closest friends and the director was an incredible mentor. Yet at the end of the school year, when a position opened up as a kindergarten teacher, I jumped at it. I was “moving up” as I thought of it.

After a year in kindergarten, I settled in happily as a third grade teacher and added another advanced degree to my resume, an M.Ed in Special Education. …

a very large, rock but still…

My grandmother owned a vacation house upstate. It was a red, wooden house at the end of a country road where the woods picked up as soon as the road ended. It was quiet and isolated and when we finally got there after hours in the car, it always felt so good to have arrived.

A little ways into the woods, there was a rock, or what seemed to me as a young child, a giant boulder. My brother and cousins and I would head straight for the rock as soon as we were allowed to go off and play…

it’s best to know the truth from the beginning….

When I was pregnant, people advised me to get plenty of sleep, as once the baby came, I wouldn’t be sleeping much. I assumed they meant for a few months, maybe even for that first year. Twenty-one years later, I now understand what these well-intentioned friends and family members were really saying. They were warning me that mothers never get to sleep again.

Let me explain why.

Sleep deprivation during the baby stage…

This was what everyone should expect, after all, a baby’s sleep is unpredictable. They sleep when they want…

But I really didn’t mean to

“Bess” and I met at work when we were in our twenties. After a somewhat rocky start to our professional relationship, we became friends. Good friends.

We came from completely different backgrounds, Bess having grown up in South Africa and me on Long Island. Our childhoods and the education we had received were so very different. Originally, it seemed like we had nothing in common.

Yet, we actually had many shared interests, and once we began to respect and learn from each other, we moved on from being colleagues to true friends. Friends that spent holidays together, friends that visited…

The Advice I Wish I Knew Back Then

The first time you’re pregnant, everyone has advice for you. Between the books, friends, the mothers, and the mothers-in-law, everyone has something to tell you. While some of it might have even been worthwhile, much of it, in terms of what was best for you and your baby, you had to figure it out on your own.

I remember feeling like I had figured it out. My daughter and I were in a happy routine during our days together, and as a family, we really did know what worked for us. We were rocking life as a family of three…

(truly, not the ones you’d expect)

I entered college planning on being an English major with a focus on writing, and I graduated four years later with a degree in psychology. My inner critic got the best of me and I put away the dream I’d had since I was a young girl. Instead, I went on to pursue a career in education and writing became my secret hobby.

I kept many notebooks and journals where I’d record my thoughts; some pages were filled with rants and rambling observations, others with starts of stories and occasionally a poem or two. …

I just had to buy it

I wasn’t planning on it. I wasn’t even thinking about buying another journal. But it was off season with most stores on Martha’s Vineyard closed, and yet, Bunch of Grapes was open. So I just had to go in. The truth is, I don’t think I have ever walked past an independent bookstore and not felt the pull to go in.

Independent book stores smell different than other book stores (different being in a good way). They often have nooks and crannies, filled with unexpected treasures. …

Response Letter Contest

From the puppy you said you desperately wanted

Hi Mommy,

Thank you for taking one look at me, realizing that I was completely irresistible, and deciding to give me a home. And please know that I do appreciate that you have controlled your somewhat bizarre desire to punch cute puppies in the face. We’ll get along much better in the future if you can continue to control yourself and restrain from giving in to your over the top, emotional fits of passion.

(BTW- there is a company that makes lifelike pillows of pets. …

Sandy Gold

I’m an educator, an advocate for inclusion, an avid reader, and a mother struggling to adjust to being an empty nester. IG:@outofturnspeaking

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