So I said to myself…

So I was thinking to myself “Self, you know what a small, echoing space filled with children really needs? RECORDERS FOR EVERYONE.”

But then I said to myself “Self, if you give every kid in that unit a recorder to play, it’s possible it will be a race to see which of your co-workers kills you first, and by what painful method they will bring about your demise.”

And then I put the recorders back on the display and said to myself “Self, I choose LIFE.”

And I walked away and bought a big bag of candy instead.

#howtolosefriendsandalienatepeople #recordersmakemyearsbleed #nothankyouichooselife

The keeper of things

I am the keeper of things.

I am the wimpy assed, scardy cat, holder of the bags at amusement parks. Every group needs and has one of us. In fact, the world as we know it depends on us.

We are very important to the community. We keep phones dry and wallets from getting lost, backpacks close, and other items of great import. All hail the bag holders of the world!!!!

Somewhere quiet and soft

Loud. It’s so loud. All around me it’s so damn LOUD. All the time. No quiet, no hushed voices, only children talking or yelling as though a field separates each of them and me.

A cacophony of voices calls my name constantly from every direction as I try to type quick notes, hold two thoughts together and attempt to make comprehendible statements that others will read later.

“Ellie I need you!”

“Ellie when will you be done?”

“Ellie, are you gonna play with me?”

“Ellie you said you were almost done!”


“Ellie can you open my bathroom?”

“Ellie can I have a snack?”


“Ellie I need to show you something!”

“Ellie he’s saying bad words at me again!”


I answered every question gently and patiently while I typed, assuring everyone I would get, do, find, watch, help, listen, take care of, and play as soon as I finished .

One of my teammates kept laughing and saying all anyone ever hears on the unit is a chorus or “ELLIE!S”, and how it drives them crazy when the kids pepper them the same way they pepper me, and how am I always so calm and sweet and smiling when they know a thundering headache pounds just beneath the surface, waiting to break like a wave?

I explained that years and years of


have made me almost bulletproof.

Almost….. I dream longingly of someplace that is quiet and soft. All I have to do is to hold on just a little longer. Long enough to melt into my couch, stuff ear plugs in my ears and pull a mask over my eyes and pretend three dogs aren’t jumping and barking on top of me, excitedly waiting to walk in the thousand degree heat of the afternoon. Five minutes.

Five minutes alone to sleep and recharge. I only need five minutes somewhere quiet and soft. Ok. Maybe ten. Or twenty. I’ll just slip into something comfy. Half an hour tops. I swear.

Let’s be honest and just call it a night!

Might fine booty

Proudly flying the Jolly Roger since the first kid I popped out raised a stick sword and swore an oath that he would make me walk the plank unless I hung his flag. Every child that followed took up eye patches and hooks and made me proud to call them mine.






The hell of bells

Bells…the last hour of my day (one of the hottest so far) was spent in an echo chamber of children armed with two bells a piece for the first time ever, trying to learn a song while simultaneously talking loud enough to be heard over the cacophony of madly ringing, town crier sized bells. My brain hurts. I’m fairly certain it’s irreparably puddled between my ears. It’s a miracle no one died.





Father of five

Father of five

Dale was born to be a daddy. His heart and soul live for his children. He knew I was pregnant before I did almost every time, and I was pregnant a lot so that’s really saying something! He could see the small changes in me within weeks, and start hopping like a kid who’s turn it is to open a present. He would grin from ear I ear and fall all over me with sweet little things like hand picked flowers, ice cream, cannolis from Mike’s in the North End, and build me nests of pillows for my growing belly.

He would get home in the early morning hours from the restaurant and spend an hour talking to each child inside of me while I slept, feeling the tiny elbows and heels as they responded to his voice and pushed back.

He was tirelessly devoted to walking the floors with children “resisting a-rest” (his favorite way to describe reluctant sleepers) even if he had just walked through the door from a 12 hour day. He just loved holding his children. He still does, and it brings tears to my eyes to witness our bear sized, bearded “men” openly pull their dad into their own arms and hug him long and hard every time they see him.

He gifts each of us with his deep love and devotion, his quiet counsel, his endless enthusiasm, and yes, the awful “dad puns and jokes” he is famous for. We are blessed beyond measure with this amazing father of five.

Happy Father’s Day to the man who made it all possible and wonderful!

Hangry and tired Ellie

Hangry and tired Ellie

My day has been a marathon at work so the first break I could grab was 7 hours in.

I forgot my lunch at home so I had a great big plate of absolutely nothing, with a bottle of water and for dessert I had a very decadent ice packed second bottle of water.

I’m driving directly from work to pick up my daughter from her lacrosse practice so I can trade her at home for the son I am then going to drive three hours round-trip to stay with one of his friends for the weekend. But I get to sit in the back seat with the dogs the whole way.

It’s national donut day and all of you are posting pictures of gooey and amazing donuts and I just want to point out that water and ice taste absolutely nothing like donuts no matter how hard you try to pretend…