New Doctor -

I went to a new doctor today. I brought Thorin because I didn’t have childcare. It was a ten minute talking visit not a cringy-watch-your-mom-get-an-examination-visit.

The medical assistant asked, “Is he your grandson?”

That didn’t offend me I am old enough to be his grandmother.

“No I’m his mother.”


She was incredulous. That bothered me. As a medical assistant she must hear actual shocking things everyday

“How old is he?” she asked looking at me

I looked at Thorin, “How old are you?”

“Seben”, he said.

“Seven!” she said, “He’s so small!”

I wanted to ask her what isn’t shocking to her?

She smiled, “He seems good.”

I smiled, “He is good. Everyone who’s seben is good.”

Me and him

Me and him

After she left I was glad she didn’t know he was adopted or that my husband was fourteen years younger than me.

The doctor came in. First she completely ignored the fact Thorin was in the room. Then she didn’t.

“You’re very patient”, she said looking at him.

That was harmless.

“How old is he?” she asked looking at me

I looked at Thorin, “How old are you?”

“Seben”, he said.

“Does he go to school?” she asked me

“He does”, I said.

“Is it a special school?” she asked

“You mean like the kind that has wizards and unicorns?” I said

Bottom line: I need a newer doctor.



5 Things My Old Man Taught Me About Being a Parent -

My dad died 15 years ago this Father’s Day. He dropped dead of a heart attack while he was dying of cancer. I felt robbed having prepared myself for saying good bye over the coming months and instead he was just gone. please read the rest at  Huff Post Parents.

My Life as a Dog –

Well, it’s actually our kid’s life as a dog.



Today someone dropped off a Walt-like* stuffed animal on our porch today. No note just the dog waiting obediently.

“Someone got Thorin a Walt-dog!” I said

Ward being from New Jersey said, “What if some creep dropped it off?”

Me being from Wisconsin, “What kind of creep leaves stuffed animals?”

“The creepiest kind. Leave it”, he said as he walked in the house.

Thorin and I lingered.

“I think we should take it in”, I said.

“Yesith!” offered my co-conspirator.

Of course it was from good neighbor, Clara, who is a fan of Thorin and Walt.

This experience and my post from last week reminded me of a period in Thorin’s history I never wrote about. Thorin pretended he was a dog. His name was Little Walt, a self-chosen name.

He would chase me around the kitchen nipping at my heels begging for treats. Of course

Little Walt

Little Walt

the real dogs loved this because they would get them, too.

He would crawl in a circle before lying down. He slept at the end of his bed. Kisses were licks on the face. He (tried to) drink out of the water bowl on the floor. He barked at dogs passing by the window with the “other” dogs. He peed outside before I could stop him. I have to ask here is there any male who hasn’t?

Back then, one of the pre-school teachers –who knew nothing of his alter ego — shared with me that Thorin was running around on all fours and barking at school.

“Oh, he is being Little Walt”, I said, “He likes to pretend he’s a dog!”

There’s that Midwestern enthusiasm!

She looked at me in that worried teacher way, “That might not be a good idea”.

I wanted to ask if she was from New Jersey. **

“It’s play”, I offered, “Nothing wrong with play, right?”

Little Walt and Coco

Little Walt and Coco


“I wouldn’t encourage it” she said.

“Sounds good”, I said.

I had decided at some point some times it’s better to “Yes” people. I can’t fight all these senseless battles.

When he and I were in the car I said, “Little Walt, I have something to tell you”.

He nodded his head solemnly from the back seat.

“Just be Little Walt at home, Ok?”

“Yesith”, he said.

Little Walt disappeared when Thorin decided he should as it should be.

*Walt is our German Shepherd with almost identical coloring.

** To be fair Ward was a huge fan of Little Walt and peeing outside. Is that a :) or a :(.