How I Became a Blended Family Star-Seeker

I'm standing on our front walk,  shivering in the night air, dressed only in my nightie. I'm waiting for the dog to say his final goodnight to the yard, a process that involves sniffing every bush and marking his property repeatedly. Like most things with dogs and small children and the elderly, the ritual takes [...]

By | 2017-06-26T14:30:58+00:00 June 26th, 2017|Other Musings, Our Life Together, Our Story|

What You Learn When You Can’t Go Home Again

The hot pavement blisters my feet the instant I step out of the car. I always kick my sandals off about an hour into the long ride, and in my hurry to get into the house, often leave them forgotten on the floorboards. The children stream out of the car, noisy and excited, running in and around [...]

By | 2017-06-15T09:36:52+00:00 June 15th, 2017|Divorce, Other Musings, Our Story|

A Love Letter to All Stepdads (and Especially My Husband)

I see you, you know. I see you watching my sixteen year-old son, waiting for the right time to offer your help. He's at our kitchen table, hands woven through his curly hair, struggling with an advanced math problem that would be easy for you. I see you carefully weighing the value of that help with [...]

10 Things I’ve Learned About Being a Divorced Mom

10. Grief wallops you in the grocery store. You think you're safe in the frozen food aisle, or presenting to a client at work, or chaperoning a field trip with your child, but you're wrong. Grief doesn't care where you are or what you'd prefer to be doing. It arrives on its own schedule, brought on by [...]

By | 2017-06-06T08:25:24+00:00 June 6th, 2017|Coparenting, Divorce|

To The Woman Who Called Me Sanctimonious and Lustful: Thank You (Yes, Really)

Last week, I finished a client session, returned to my desk and found this letter waiting in my inbox. "Dear Kate, You may love your kids more than you hate your ex, but please, do not allow yourself to be sanctimonious about it. Some people divorce because their spouse becomes physically abusive to them or [...]

By | 2017-06-04T12:30:09+00:00 June 2nd, 2017|Other Musings|

How We Survive Summer With Six Kids (in 5 Easy Steps)

It's coming. The children are gleefully counting down the days and parents everywhere are white-knuckle bracing for the same. Summer is almost here. With six children in our busy household, summers are epic. Epic for the children in that they involve long lazy afternoons at the lake, firefly chasing in the evenings and endless dripping popsicles. Epic [...]

The Secrets I Keep and The Battle I’m Fighting

It happened again recently. A woman approached me after hearing me speak and said, "I know my situation is much worse than yours was, but..." She went on to describe a situation that closely mirrored one Gabe and I faced last year.  This well-intentioned woman assumed that because I hadn't addressed that specific issue in the [...]

Our Top Five Blended Family House Rules

When we first decided to marry, blending our two families of four into our tribe of eight, we read every book possible. Each of them recommended we establish house rules as a couple, sit down around a table for a family meeting to share the rules, and ride off happily into the sunset. We didn't do [...]

How My Father’s Blunder Reminded Me We’re All Beginners

There's a rumor about me swirling in our small town. It's not the first time, of course. As you can imagine, when people realized my second husband is a man I'd known while married to my first, tongues wagged. I was ready for it then, and was comfortable that the people who mattered knew the truth and [...]

By | 2017-06-13T15:42:32+00:00 May 19th, 2017|Coparenting, Divorce, Our Life Together, Stepparenting|

How Changing My Headline Changed My Life

I was furious. Billy and I had just had a particularly tense custody exchange and while we didn't talk much, he'd managed to push every single one of my buttons. Every look, every sideline glance, every loud "your mother..." spoken to the kids landed just as it was intended, and I lost my cool. I [...]