Suburban Scrawl

I am a wife, mom, writer, dog owner, Chicago native, and a total control freak. I am a co-Producer of Listen To Your Mother Chicago, and a Social Media Researcher for BlogHer.

I am the author of the children's book Remembering Ruby: For Families Living Beyond the Loss of a Pet, and the Chicago travel guide for families with older kids, Chicken in the Car and the Car Won't Go: Nearly 200 Ways To Enjoy Chicagoland with Tweens and Teens. My sons are now nineteen and twenty-one, which means I have experience dealing with all kinds of crazy on a regular basis.

You can read my random ramblings about parenting teens, fitness, motivation, and anything else that pops into my mind at my blog, Suburban Scrawl. Come and visit; you'll make my day! 

Follow me on twitter @melisalw.

Read, Share, Listen.

I find myself unable to think about writing anything this morning other than a post about the current racial tension in America, while at the same time I can’t seem to locate the words to do that. I thought I’d go ahead and provide some links to posts written by people who are much more eloquent than I. Please read and share ....more

Auto Awesome = The Next Level Of Awesome

Like most people, I use my phone to take pictures much more than I use my actual camera these days. I have it set up to backup my pictures to “the Cloud” (oy, so mysterious!) but it occurred to me that maybe I should back them up to Google+ as well. I started that process a few days ago ....more

Sunday Reading

After getting through my personal crisis yesterday (thanks, Internet!), Jim and I took the evening off and then spent much of today tying up the rest of the pre-Thanksgiving loose ends that needed attention. Roxie spent today doing the same thing she did yesterday, which was pretty much this: Sigh, what a life. Anyway, here’s some Sunday Reading for you ....more

Reason #829 Why I Love The Internet

The internet is pretty awesome. Okay, it is awesome if you set aside the ways in which it sucks. I’m focusing on the awesome today ....more

Friday, I’m In Love

I had a really good day today. The funny thing is, it was almost identical to any other day as far as my activities were concerned: – I went to The Dailey Method for my class. – I did some grocery shopping ....more

Couch Potatoes.

Ten days after J was born, Jim started his first civilian job after fulfilling ten years of service in the Navy. The new job was about ninety minutes from our house in Wisconsin and so in order to avoid the commute in his first weeks of working long hours he lived away from us Monday through Friday and came home on the weekends. This lasted for seven months—much longer than we originally anticipated—due to the fact that it took us that long to sell our house ....more

Just Noh.

I’m in a mood this afternoon, because I scheduled a workout for 4:30 p.m. and one of my least favorite things to do is drag myself away from whatever I’m doing to go take an afternoon class. I used to do my workouts mostly in the evening or at 5:30 in the morning almost exclusively, so it’s not like I’m new at this, but I’m a creature of habit and changing up my schedule today hurt. I’ve grown quite accustomed to doing my 8:30 a.m. class and then being finished for the day ....more

Survival Skills

There’s a saying about how Chicago has only two seasons, winter and construction*. My little corner of my western suburb has been experiencing construction year-round for nearly two years now (even through the winter months), thanks to a gutting and extensive reconstruction of a major state route that happens to be one of the few roads that runs through my entire town from all the way north to all the way south. By the way, that state route happens to border my subdivision ....more

Return To The Chicago Food Swap

Yesterday, as my title indicates, I returned to the Chicago Food Swap. I used to attend monthly, but it’s been literally a year since I could get my schedule to mesh with the monthly weekend. Yes, it’s a weekend commitment for me ....more

Sunday Reading

I’m super happy it’s Sunday for many reasons, not the least of which is that today being Sunday means that tomorrow is Monday, and Monday is the day Roxie finally gets her stitches removed so we can put the Cone of Shame away. It’s been a long week and a half. As much as I wanted to give her breaks from her post-surgical collar, she couldn’t last longer than thirty seconds before making attempts to lick where her stitches are ....more