Things I Love Lately

An Open Letter to a Nursery-School Mom from a Sixth-Grader’s Mom: This piece by Catherine Newman, oh my God.  I love every word the woman writes (in fact, many years ago I shared some of her words with the not-ambiguous title of The Great Catherine Newman).  But this piece, oh.  Oh.  It gutted me.  I’ve often looked at the pre-K and K parents at school, marveled at how I was one of them moments ago, at how I looked at the parents of the Big Kids and had all the same questions.  They seemed glamorous and tired and old all at the same time.  And now I’m one of them (mostly tired and old, not so much glamorous).  Read this piece now.

Hope Floating: This raw, painful, beautiful piece by Robin Schoenthaler on Full Grown People made me weep.  I’m privileged to know Robin, and I love her work, every word of it, but this is among my favorite pieces I’ve read by her.  “Lying there laughing, I feel them like a flash flood, the raw and precious lives that led us here...”  Simply extraordinary.

The Definition of Hell for Each Myers-Briggs Personality Type: Thanks to Hilary for sending this to me.  Oh, so hilarious.

In a Mother’s Library, Bound in Spirit and in Print: Jessica sent me this marvelous piece, which I read shortly after the similarly-themed and likewise lambent A Mother’s Cookbook Shares More than Recipes (thanks, Randye Hoder).  I have my grandmother’s Silver Palate Cookbook and absolutely adore the record of her handwriting, so familiar it almost aches to read it, in the margins.  My father’s habit is to inscribe his books, in his fountain-pen script that I know as well as my own, with the date he bought them and where, in the frontispiece.  There is so much in the paper pages of books, whether cooking, novel, or nonfiction.  I love these two pieces for evoking that.

Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies: I love chocolate chip cookies.  So much that we had them at our wedding, in fact.  I bake them a lot.  I made these this past weekend and they are without question the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever made.  Not exaggerating. I used a combo of regular chocolate chips and bittersweet chocolate chips.  I think the salt flakes on top are crucial. Thank you Nina Badzin for drawing my attention to this recipe.  Go, make them now!

I write these Things I Love posts approximately monthly.  You can find them all archived here.

What are you reading, thinking about, and loving lately?

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  1. Posted May 20, 2015 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    As I finished reading this and the tears were running down my cheeks, my neighbor walked down the sidewalk outside of my office window, pushing her newborn baby in a stroller. Truly. Baby heads…there’s nothing better.

    As much as I envy the preschool mom, I envy the sixth grade mom too. With two in college and one headed to 10th grade far too soon, I’d like to stop time.

    admin Reply:

    I would like to stop time too. Part of my angst in every moment is knowing how much I’ll want to be back there when it’s over.

  2. Posted May 20, 2015 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, dear one. I’m excited to click on these links of my lucky co-. . . co-what? Conspirators! xo

    admin Reply:


  3. Posted May 20, 2015 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    Oh, I loved Catherine Newman’s article too. As a mom of a 3 and 7 year old I feel a bit as if I’m straddling the line of new mom / vet mom (definitely not glamorous!). I suddenly realized that I’m not the mom of babies. I’ve graduated and that is bittersweet.

    Also, the NYT article about inheriting a mother’s library touched me deeply. I have some old notes of my mom, and her phone book (when people wrote them out!) plus some of her books, and I am grateful to touch the same pages that she did and see her handwriting.

    As for those cookies, I’ll be checking them out asap!

    admin Reply:

    3 and 7 becomes 9 and 13 before you can blink!! xoxox

  4. Posted May 21, 2015 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    Thank you for sharing these-I loved Robin’s piece. So utterly real.

    admin Reply:

    Me too! xox

  5. Posted May 21, 2015 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

    I’m a latecomer to Catherine Newman’s work (been following her RS column lately, and about 20 people have told me to read “Waiting for Birdy”), but this article is great! And I love the MBTI definitions of Hell. I could talk Jung all night long, he’s my favorite.

    admin Reply:

    I think you’ll love Waiting for Birdy. I think Catherine is my favorite writer, ever. xox

  6. Posted May 22, 2015 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing these. Always enjoy your lists. I saw those cookies on Nina’s post and was drooling. 🙂 Loved “The Definition Of Hell…”