The Oregon Battle of the Books encourages kids to compete in teams at the school, regional and statewide level. Run by school librarians, it creates an arena where kids like mine can join their love of armed conflict (aka competition) with their passion for reading.read more
Lately I have Rihanna on the brain. Even when I’m not alone in my car with the volume cranked up to 17, her voice follows me through my day. “This whiskey got me feelin’ pretty,” I sing in the shower, “so pardon if I’m impolite.” And, “Didn’t they tell you that I was a savage?” under my labored breath as I’m hiking up Mt. Tabor. Very motivating. And of course, “Work work work work work work,” is my automatic refrain as I plant my backside in the chair at my desk, before diving into my current gig.read more
I never had to change schools, leaving my friends behind. As the mom of a (rising) fourth-grader, I’m finding it interesting just how invested I am in my son’s happiness, one month after moving to a new city. This morning, he started a week of soccer camp about three blocks from where we’re living, and right next to his new school. “Will there be other kids there my age?” he asked over breakfast. I had a sudden, panicky feeling. What if there weren’t? How would he survive the week?read more
We’ve just moved back to Oregon, my home state, and I’m having some serious high school flashbacks.
And though we’ve moved to Portland, three hours north of Roseburg, where I grew up, it’s my hometown that dominates these flashbacks, these subconscious offerings.
And following on the heels of my Joe Hacker post (“The Hacking,” July 30th), regarding less-than-compelling writing that fails to “sell” its product, could someone let the writers of Lego books know that there are almost no moms and dads who read books with their kids who would willingly steer their off-spring towards theirs, because they are so unbearably dull for grownups to read. Kill me now. Kill me with a tiny Lego Chewbacca crossbow.read more
It was Creative Writing, in a real sense, that plea for money all my contacts received. You see, I was hacked. Humbled. Set spinning through the hairy realms of my internet accounts. I’m still working on the last arena of havoc. No idea how I’m getting all those Contacts back (about half, apparently my most-used).read more
What a great time to be a kid. I’m a bit jealous. Oh, to be a 9-year-old boy on a long road trip. Bored of your parents? Read. Boring stretch of road? Read. Not bored, but dying to know what’s going to happen next in your book? Yes. Read.read more
And speaking of Kid Lit, oh no! This afternoon my son came back from the outhouse near our campsite with a funny smile on his face.
“Why do people write that stuff on the walls?” he asked. “I saw 37 cuss words.”
July 3rd. 2016. At last, we’re in the big in-between, our 12-day road trip from the San Francisco Bay Area to Portland. After the rush-rush-rush of packing up and clearing out, it’s a change of pace, sitting in the car watching the world go by. The mind rewinds, replays. Did I remember to say goodbye to my neighbor with the sweet old dog that can barely walk the length of the block? Did I forget anyone else?read more
Saturday, July 2nd. Driving out of town on Day 1 of our trip was a creeping slog through traffic. Not a day to head towards the coast from Berkeley, CA. When we reached the corner of San Pablo and Central, seconds from the highway, we paused at a stop light. One last smooch as Bay Area residents (groan from the back seat), in our last seconds in the East Bay.
Except that those seconds turned into minutes as the traffic light turned green, and then red again.