We’re happy to share things we’ve tried that worked well, or even sort of well. We’re not mental health experts or counselors, our experience is gained personally from blending our large family.

Can’t We All Just Get Along? Yes, Yes We Can.

This house is a constant, wild cacophony of dart gun wars, impromptu karaoke and teenage meltdowns. Gabe and I sometimes forget that most "normal" families don't have a matched set of Bigs, Middles and Littles, three boys and three girls in nearly perfect stair-stepped order. Most families don't consume three gallons of milk a week [...]

By | 2017-09-19T10:12:13+00:00 September 19th, 2017|Blended Family Tips, Our Bunch, Our Life Together|

Yes, Sometimes I DO Want to Run Away. Here’s What I Do Next.

Yesterday, during that witching hour between dinner and bedtime, I walked out the back door and into our yard. I sat in an old faded plastic lawn chair, stared out into our too-long grass littered with foam arrows and bubble wands and wet sidewalk chalk, and thought about running away. I thought about what would [...]

By | 2017-09-05T20:12:05+00:00 September 5th, 2017|Blended Family Tips, Coparenting, Divorce, Other Musings|

The Back to School Tradition Our Kids Love

It's not often the children agree on something lately. From age 8 and 3/4 to 16, their interests range from Taylor Swift's latest single to the reproductive habits of protozoa to anything-that-doesn't-involve-my-parents; it can be hard to plan activities that everyone enjoys. Even still, we have one late summer family tradition that the kids clamor [...]

By | 2017-08-25T16:18:31+00:00 August 25th, 2017|Blended Family Tips, Holidays and Traditions, Our Life Together|

On Happiness and Grief and Babies in the Sand

It was well past midnight when my phone dinged urgently from the nightstand next to me. I debated not checking it: the kids were tucked safely in their beds upstairs and my work rarely requires an immediate response to client issues. I'm not a live organ transplant surgeon, after all. No message I get after [...]

By | 2017-08-24T09:58:23+00:00 August 23rd, 2017|Blended Family Tips, Coparenting, Divorce|

We Tossed Our Shared Custody Schedule Out. Here’s What Happened Next.

Our summer schedule was bananas. B-A-N-A-N-A-S, bananas. My children's father, Billy, took a three week trip to Europe. Our son Simon was away for six weeks working as a camp counselor. Our son Caden left home for the first time to attend a three-week Zoology sleep away camp in another state. We started the summer [...]

By | 2017-08-17T09:24:34+00:00 August 15th, 2017|Blended Family Tips, Coparenting, Divorce|

How to Coparent After Betrayal and Heartbreak

Dear Kate, My husband of 11 years left me for a coworker while I was pregnant.   I have very traditional views in terms of family and divorce, so I've been reading and receiving professional help to try and get through this time. I've been told to let it go. I'm nervous that if I do [...]

By | 2017-08-17T09:26:29+00:00 August 8th, 2017|Ask Kate, Coparenting, Divorce|

How I Learned to Coparent Alone

The word coparenting is a lie, really. Coparenting is generally defined as a parenting situation where two or more adults work together to raise a child even though they are not necessarily the biological parents, living together or in a romantic relationship. This implies a kind of rosy glow over the group and kindly includes [...]

By | 2017-08-17T09:30:51+00:00 July 31st, 2017|Blended Family Tips, Coparenting, Divorce|

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 [...]

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 [...]