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Writer. Wife. Mom. Runner. Crocheter. Cancer patient in a pandemic.

But it might be ugly

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“There is always a way out of a situation. Might be ugly. Might leave you feeling like the earth has gone and shifted under your feet. But you are never trapped, Alice. You hear me? There is always a way around.” — Margery O’Hare, The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes

Twelve years ago I left a job I loved. I left after a year of daily tears and gaslighting by the administration. …


MCPS teachers raise concerns that there are too many holes in the reopening plan

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Photo credit: Deb Sullivan

On February 9, 2021, the Montgomery County Board of Education approved their reopening plan despite many teachers still scrambling for vaccinations. Discrete special education classes will be offered a chance for in-person learning beginning on March 1, 2021. All other programs will begin phasing in on March 15, 2021.

In his briefing on January 21, 2021, Governor Hogan reminded Marylanders that in August, Maryland authorized schools to reopen. He does not mention that schools were authorized to reopen on August 27, 2021 after abdicating responsibility for creating reopening standards to the districts.

Four days after Maryland authorized schools to open…


When did we stop valuing them?

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Twelve years ago I stepped out of teaching and entered stay-at-home motherhood. It was a decision I never regretted. But a part of me always thought I’d find my way back into the classroom. And I did. I volunteered extensively in my children’s classes always finding a way to use my reading specialist skills to support the teacher’s curriculum and teaching students. It was perfect way for me to stay in the classroom doing what I loved, while still being fully available to my children.

This year my youngest was entering kindergarten and I had been putting together my resume…


I don’t want you to fix it; bring me tea and honey instead

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Do you remember that scene in the Pixar movie Inside Out where Joy realizes that in order for Riley to find Joy that she also needs to have Sadness? Joy realizes that while she kept trying to keep Sadness in a tight little box, muting her importance, Sadness was a key member of Riley’s identity.

As Joy tries to find happy memories for Riley, she stumbles upon the importance of Sadness. It is Sadness who lights the way to show others when Riley needs help. It’s through Sadness that Riley is able to find Joy. …


And I Feel a Little Guilty About It

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I think we can all agree that it’s been a strange year. My kids have been learning virtually for the last 11 months because our school system in Maryland has, until recently, not deemed it safe enough for teachers and students to return to the building.

While I have missed the traditional first day of school outfits, pictures, and send offs, I have enjoyed having them home full-time and knowing that they have been safe and healthy during the pandemic.

I know that we are also one of the lucky families because even though there are four kids ranging from…


He shows me every day

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My husband and I will be celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary in July. 20 years. But early in our relationship, not one for what he calls “Hallmark Holidays,” my husband set the bar low for Valentine’s Day. He stubbornly refuses to acknowledge Valentine’s Day as anything more than a commercial holiday. One year for our anniversary, he bought our kids a playset which he had fun putting together. While the kids loved it, I was hoping for something a little more romantic . . .

It’s 20 years later and I don’t get my hopes up for Valentine’s Day. I…


The best of the worst

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“The most beautiful words in the English language aren’t ‘I love you,’ they’re, ‘It’s benign.’ — Woody Allen

At one time, I understood that quote by Woody Allen but didn’t appreciate it. Now, I appreciate it and wish I didn’t know what it meant because I didn’t get to hear those words from my doctor.

A year ago, my doctor told me that I had invasive ductal carcinoma in my right breast. Invasive, because the cancer had spread out of my milk duct and into the surrounding tissue.

Later, after the lumpectomy, I would find out that it hadn’t spread…


While Still Making Time for Your Kids

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“If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it.” — Lucille Ball

It doesn’t matter if you are a stay at home, a work away from home, or now in the midst of a pandemic, a work from home Mama. Hands down, moms are the busiest people on the planet. They take care of everyone and do all the things. If you look at any volunteer committee, it’s probably made up of a bunch of moms. Why? Because moms are superheroes without capes. They know how to get things done.

They are the first ones up and…


All you need is 60 seconds a day to make a difference

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Yes! 60 seconds is all it takes to change your life for the better.

Let’s face it. It’s the beginning of a new month and January’s resolutions are already a memory. But it’s still early in the year.

Here are one minute habits that will change your life. You don’t even need to incorporate all of them at once.

Choose one for the month and make it a habit. Choose another one the following month to add to the first one and you’ve got two new habits. All it takes is a minute of your day. Literally. Try it!

1. Get out of bed right away

Get…


Because I’m still here

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My pre-teen daughter looked at me incredulously, “We’re celebrating the day you were diagnosed with cancer? Isn’t that weird?”

Today marks the one year anniversary of the mammogram that confirmed my HER2+/ER+/PR- breast cancer.

It’s a weird day to note on the calendar. It’s been creeping up on me like a two-ton elephant. I’ve been watching the calendar and noting the weeks, counting down to my cancerversary, the anniversary of my breast cancer diagnosis.

I was supposed to have my 6-month checkup on Monday, but due to the impending snowstorm (Woohoo! I love a good snow day!), …

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