December 2015 Issue

December 2015 Issue

Dec 2015 CoverIllustration by Cathy Nichols

Table of Contents


Essay: The Real Mother

By Teri Carter

I’ve barely been at this stepmother thing six months, but I’ve already learned an important lesson: there is always someone to remind me who I am not.

Essay: A Drowning

By Alisa A. Gaston-Linn

Illustrated by Ruth Sora Lee

It is not my dogs who are in danger. I am the one sinking to the lower-density stratifying waters, the upper surface trying to freeze while I am trying to prevent the hardening. There is something wrong with me. I feel it through the tips of my nerves,

Essay: Found in Translation

By Annika Paradise

Summer has come to Boulder, Colorado when we return home from China in June 2010. My two biological children are in the garden, barefoot finding the irises, peonies and helping weed the vegetable garden. Lucy screams from the doorway. She cries when the tall grass touches her arms, cries when any dirt gets onto her clothes. As we look through the photos from the orphanage, we realize that her world had been paved.   The playground was cement, the courtyard tiled a…we conclude that she has probably never touched grass in her life.

Essay: Explorers

By Alicia Rebecca Myers

Because pregnancy requires the ultimate relinquishing of control, because I had suffered three early miscarriages, it made sense, this need to wrangle my labor into the Platonic ideal of labor.

Fiction: What Good Moms Do

By Marie Anderson

“My mother,” Francesca was saying, “helped me make most of those ornaments on the tree. When your sister’s older, I’ll teach her how to make ornaments like my mother taught me.

Debate: Did You Choose Traditional Names For Your Children?

NO   I Gave My Children Uncommon Names, By Dina Relles

YES   I Gave My Children Traditional Names, By Antonia Malchik

Motherwit: To Do

12:24 PM Try and act normal in front of the ridiculously hot pharmacist. Maybe he doesn’t know that the prescription is for worms. He totally knows. Ask if you should give the medication with food. Laugh inappropriately loudly and suggest you could always hide the tablet in peanut butter ‘like we do with the dogs’.  Stare at the counter in horror.

Book Review: On Becoming an Adolescent

So how can we prepare our children, and ourselves, to handle these bodily and life changes with grace? Four books help show us the way, all with a different focus but in the service of helping adolescents develop a healthy relationship with their own bodies and with others.


Illustration:  Cathy Nichols

Cathy began her career as a young artist in Venice, CA where her heartfelt encaustic work showed on Abbot Kinney Blvd. and charmed collectors such as Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson.  After moving to New York in 2005, Cathy continued to exhibit her work Cathy currently lives in the artsy, mountain town of Asheville, North Carolina, where she paints her colorful “stories in wax” to a soundtrack of her boyfriend’s music and children’s voices.

September 2015 Issue

September 2015 Issue

SEPT 15 Cover 2

Table of Contents


Editor’s Letter: New Beginnings


Essay: When We Were Two by Dorothy Rice

There’s no reliving those days when the clock stopped at midnight and I left my kids, now as old as I was then, to the care of others, while I pounded out analyses for legislation long forgotten or superseded, flew through the capitol’s hallowed halls as if I owned the place, bantered and bartered with a cast of characters who thought no more of me than I did of them. It was the price I believed I had to pay to get ahead.


Essay: Pieces of Him by Sara Tickanen

The nurse was still talking, but I hadn’t heard a word. “The pill that they put inside of you is basically telling your body that it’s time to go into labor. Your water should probably break soon, but if it doesn’t they will break it manually. Things will progress like normal labor… Our son was dead, but I still had to go through labor.


Feature: Postcards from the Sandwiched by Amy Yelin

I’ve been spending the last two years both helping my parents move out of their house while helping my exceedingly anxious 18-year-old daughter get her brain around that she’s going to college. We went to look at schools and she had a panic attack. It’s been a tough process. And I feel like I’m constantly bouncing from one anxiety-ridden thing to another.


Fiction: Losing Hart by Hannah Thurman

“Did you know Elsa is the first Disney princess not to be a teenager?” Hart says, twisting her thumb out of the glove so she can scroll down the screen. “She’s 21. And she’s only the second princess to have magical powers.”


Debate: Should Kids Have Homework in Elementary School?

NO! By Stephanie Sprenger

YES! By Sarah Rudell Beach


Nutshell: Oh, Nuts by Charlene Oldham

The simple answer is that we don’t definitively know why food allergy among children has risen at such a dramatic rate.


Poetry: In the Absence of My Son, By Christine Poreba


Poetry: How to Love Your Teenage Daughter by Jennifer L. Freed


Poetry: The Photograph by Laura Snell


Motherwit: Warts & All by Sharon Trumpy



Cover art: By LuLu Blaquiere

“The symbolism of elephants is magnificent and strong. I wanted to depict the special relationship between mother and child through this symbolism.”