My Boy Since Cancer

Since my six-year-old son Jack was diagnosed with Leukemia in January, there have been both sweeping changes and little changes in our life. Some are harder to describe than others - some more subtle while others are glaring. Sometimes aspects of his personality that were there before might come out in a more noticeable way, or they might be more hidden, protected. Jack is still himself, of course, but the version of him we are living with now isn’t as steady or balanced. I often wonder how much of him is changing permanently because of this experience....more

Wake up calls

 So it's now been a little more than a week since my mother-in-law, heretofore known as Hurricane Jane, moved in with us after being essentially kicked out of her assisted living apartment north of the lake for needing too much assistance. Really? Has it only been a week? Gosh, I thought it was at least a month. Or more. I guess it just feels that way because of the time change and all. We gained back a whole hour of our lives, right? (Or did we lose one? I forget.) ...more

Are Nannies Entitled to Paid Time Off & Benefits?

I recently discovered a caregiver blog that I am totally in love with. MaryP is a Canadian caregiver, like me, except that she runs a daycare and has done so for over 14 years. She’s got a fresh, funny style that I really love, and she’s really informative. Not only is she a culinary genius who cooks all the kids’ meals from scratch, she also has many wry, funny stories that I find myself nodding and laughing along to. So nice to find a blog from another Canadian who really knows her stuff. Her stories are funny and sometimes bittersweet....more

Days of Love and Cancer

July 7, 2006 Is it better to tap into memories of your mother when you’re sad, or serene? I don’t remember the details of my mother’s last 22 days the way I wish I could. The way I feel I should in order to fully memorialize her. Part of me feels like a bad daughter – perhaps there when she needed me but not fully present enough to remember the conversations, activities, or emotions that would have compelled me to ask the important life questions of those you love. When they needed to be asked. When time was running out. But was time really running out? I had no idea. ...more

5 Insights On Communicating With Caregivers

The Elizabeth Hospice...more

Time deficit

I realized today that there are 3 weeks until Thanksgiving. I have to admit that knowing that freaked me out a little, ok… a lot. This morning I was updating my calendar and as I flipped through each week I saw how busy our days are. I guess you could say I’m still adjusting to managing my mom’s schedule, next week will be two months since she came home from the hospital after her stroke, and managing all her appointments can be a challenge some days. Currently she has acupuncture, physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy on a weekly basis....more

Nanny Admissions: I'm an Emetophobe

One of the things you deal with as a nanny is sickness. Specifically, vomit. And I’m someone who doesn’t deal well with vomit at all. In fact, I’m emetophobic, and it goes beyond being grossed out or not liking vomit (who honestly likes vomit?). Emetophobia can be a debilitating phobia that has at times incapacitated me mentally. It stems from a childhood incident that I’ve subconsciously never forgotten, and has made an impression on me my entire life....more

Self-Imaging: Are You Opting Out of the Bigger Picture?

We were bombing along the twisty, narrow dirt paths that meander through the scrubby brush of Nantucket in our rented jeep. Vacation off-season. Fabulous. With the island practically devoid of fellow “tourons,” we truly felt like castaways. O.k. maybe we felt like castaways on the set of a Nicholas Sparks movie, but even so, the landscape coupled with the perfect stretch of warm, October days exceeded our expectations. I was in my shutterbug element....more

Return to Professor and Piglet!

I had the opportunity last night to care for Professor and Piglet, my first babysitting charges in Toronto. It seems like forever ago since I came to the family on a beautiful fall day to look after 4-year-old Professor and 14-month-old Piglet. Now they’re big kids of 8 and 5 and they’ve changed a lot. Piglet is no longer a Piglet. She’s a tall, willowy girl of 5 with long blonde hair and a beautiful smile. Professor hasn’t changed much in the way he looks, but his eyes have gotten older and wiser and he’s now up to my clavicle (though I’m not very tall!)....more

Nanny Support: Dealing With a Sometimes-Tough Job in a Tough Time

It’s hard to even write a post like this. It’s hard to think that anyone could do such a despicable thing, to kill children, to even hurt them. And yet, this has to be said -– it has to be talked about, especially in the nanny community. Because the woman charged with this crime is one of our own....more
This is a timeless post on a subject that unfortunately won't go away. Thank you!more