A Stranger’s Hands . . . Touching Me?

17_fashion_spa_stock_photo_170415My friends and I were pretty stressed out from the whole college application thing.  Between filling out endless financial aid forms and nagging our kids to write their application essays, we were exhausted and needed a boozy night to decompress.

So one of my good friends offered to host a small cocktail party where we could share information, compare notes, and let’s be honest, complain about our kids.  After inserting a drink into my hand and making the rounds, our lovely host told us that she had hired a masseuse friend of hers to provide free mini-massages to help relieve our stress.

“Oh that’s, fantastic!” I said, lying through my teeth.

In truth, just the idea of getting a massage made me even more stressed out and instantly uptight. I’m not sure why, but I’ve never enjoyed getting massages from strangers.  I guess I just can’t relax, and any pleasure I feel is offset by my overwhelming angst.
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Filed under culture, gender, health, humor, new age, parenting, Uncategorized, women

I’ve Been Translated!

Hey, I’m big in Germany !

My 10 Parenting Tips The Experts Won’t Tell You column was on Huffington Post Parents and then got translated for the German version of Huffington Post.  For some reason I find this thrilling!

Check it out here -

And the English version here

Also – I wrote a piece for LitFactor  - about trying to get published.  It’s called “Writers Write and Other Lies”  Check it out here!

After this post, I promise not to jaw on about writing anymore and actually do some.



Filed under parenting, Writing

Writers’ Roundtable

I was asked to participate in a Q and A about writing by the good people at WordPress.

Check it out here!



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Filed under Writing

10 Parenting Tips You Won’t Hear From Experts

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I’m not a psychologist, pediatrician, or child development expert, but I do have three kids, one of whom is almost an adult. Over the years I’ve read a ton of parenting books, often desperate for insight or answers. But what I found is that most parenting advice is just trite hooey.  I mean, if we could all magically just nod off and “sleep when our baby sleeps” or “find ways to make time for ourselves,” then we wouldn’t be seeking advice in the first place.

I’ve made my own discoveries along the way.  Here are a few practical pieces of advice, things experts won’t tell you.

1) You don’t need to videotape every second.

Sometimes it’s nice to simply enjoy a school performance, soccer game, or birthday party without the burden of videotaping.  Besides, it’s better to videotape every day moments like your kids playing dress-up, building a fort, or having a conversation with their grandparents. They’ll mean a lot more to you in twenty years than some barely watchable clip of your kid standing behind 100 other kids singing, “Wacky Weather.”  Oh, and don’t bother getting cutaways and insert shots thinking you’re going to edit the video later. Trust me, it ain’t gonna happen.

2) Don’t volunteer during hectic months.

Arrive early at back-to-school night so you can have your choice of party signups. Pick the lesser holiday parties, like Valentines Day, Columbus Day, or even Arbor Day.  Don’t be stupid and sign up for the “Winter Holiday” party, because when December 18th rolls around and you haven’t started your “Winter Holiday” shopping, and your older daughter has a “Winter Holiday” choral performance that night, and your son needs help studying for his semester finals, the last thing you need is to suddenly remember that you signed up to bake twenty-five cupcakes for the fourth grade “Winter Holiday” Party. Continue reading


Filed under Children, comedy, humor, kids, parenting, Uncategorized

The FAFSA – New and Improved!

coins-blurgEveryone hates the FAFSA college financial aid form.  It’s a pain in the neck to fill out, and for middle class families it seems like a big waste of time  - they won’t qualify for need-based aid anyway.

As usual, the government is quick to respond to complaints and is working on revising the form.  And thanks to the kids in my ten-year-old daughter’s “Learn to Code” class who accidentally hacked into the government’s website, I have an early version of the new, improved, FAFSA form.

Will it help middle class families?  Judge for yourself:


1. List sum of your parents’ assets plus the fabricated income they listed on line 7 of their federal tax return.

2. What about parents’ “other money” like what they’ve hidden in shady Cayman Island offshore accounts or under the names of dead relatives?  Also include change from sofa, coin jar in laundry room, and that wad of cash they have in the  top drawer of their bedroom dresser where every burglar knows to find it.

3. List amount parents stole from their fellow Americans in government handouts, bailouts, or other entitlements.

4. State the current value of your parents’ home using 2014 currency and assuming that home is listed for sale with the most shark-like real estate agent in town, or, what it’s worth on Zillow. Continue reading


Filed under college, education, humor, parenting, Uncategorized

What Are You Wearing?

People that work on Award shows have to dress up too – or wear “show blacks”

But they clearly don’t expect people to ask them about it:


Filed under beauty, culture, entertainment, fashion, humor, style

What’s Your Real Hair Color and Other Nosy Security Questions

** Check out the full post on Huffington Post Comedy – click HERE

Those website security questions used to be so easy and straightforward like, “What’s your mother’s maiden name, high school mascot, or favorite pie?”

But now they’ve gotten strange. Either the website designers are trying hard to foil the hackers or, as I suspect, they’re just really, really bored. What else could account for these bizarre actual security questions?

What was your favorite game to play as a child? 

Good Lord, who on earth would remember such a thing? And do they mean board game like Dream Date, or like kickball or hide and seek? I need some clarity here.

What was your dream job as a child? 

When I was a five I wanted to be a mermaid. I wonder if that counts as an actual job.

What was your favorite place to visit as a child?

Okay, really people, let’s think about this for a second — if I can’t remember my password, one I created only a month ago, why do you think I can remember what games I liked to play, or what I thought or felt like back when I was a child, so many eons ago?

What was the name of your first pet?

Sandy. Uh, darn. Now you all know it and now I can’t use that.

Where is your great grandmother buried?

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Filed under comedy, technology, websites

Too Saggy for the SAG Awards?


** This is featured in the Huffington Post Style section!  Check it out here:  (comments welcome)

This morning I had a few minutes to spare, so I thought I’d try on my old black crepe suit to make sure it would be okay to wear backstage at the Screen Actors Guild Awards this Saturday.

When you work on the crew or on the production team of an award show, you’re supposed to dress to blend in. The production companies generally rent tuxedos for the men who might be caught on camera, but the female workers are expected to wear an awards-show-type dress. You know how so many of us have those lying around.

Well actually, from my years of working behind-the-scenes on awards shows, I do happen to have a small collection of semi-formal wear lying around. But the problem is that most of these items are getting a little old and tired, much like their owner. Continue reading


Filed under Academy Awards, aging, beauty, entertainment, style

The Hazards of Computer Parenting

imagesI often feel badly when I have to work late especially if I miss seeing the kids before they go to bed.  What’s worse is that sometimes I can’t call home because it disturbs my co-workers.  As a solution I set up an instant messenger program that lets me “chat” from my office computer with the kids on the home computer.  This way, if they have a question for me or if I need to nag them to do homework, we can just type each other a quick note.

But sometimes they take advantage.  Big time.   That’s clearly what happened when my eleven-year-old “I.M.’d” me the other night.

Sam: When are you coming home?

Me: Not for a couple more hours, I’m sorry.

Sam: Oh.  Did u say that I get my phone when Sabrina gets hers? Continue reading


Filed under Children, computers, Family, parenting, Uncategorized, women, work

I’m Sorry I’m Thin and Irksome

holiday meal-2012

How do you stay so thin?”

That’s a question I’ve been asked many times in my life, often followed by, “You better enjoy it now because once you go to college/get married/have kids/turn forty, you’ll wish you had.”

Well, I’ve passed those hurdles and yet I remain thin, much to the annoyance of pretty much everyone. When people ask about my weight it’s never meant as a compliment. Rather, it’s an irritated demand, like, “Why the hell do you get to stay a skinny bitch when the rest of us have to count every calorie? Continue reading


Filed under culture, Family, food, health, holidays, humor, Uncategorized