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Ode to Boy

The jutting chin. The inscrutable eyes. The shock of unkempt hair. It’s all there in the alabaster bust of Ludwig von Beethoven sitting just outside the door to the violin shop. We’d caught his brooding gaze many times before as…

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Dad vs. Universe

June is here! The end of school is nigh! Run for your lives! OK, maybe that’s my take on summer break. Maybe you actually look forward to mosquito-bitten days of tedium and kids bored to petty crime. Or, maybe you…

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Farewell to the Fourthies

The call comes just as I am trying to pry open her stuck bedroom window. It’s almost time for dance class, and she’s forgotten her jazz pants. They’re in the bottom drawer of her dresser, she says. And can I…

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The Long Run

Wisdom comes in the shape of my son’s size eleven running shoe. Several weeks ago I had foolishly challenged him to a hundred-yard dash. Now, as he runs easily away from me, his foot strikes tap out a message with…

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Dad Packs the Lunch

It seemed like a good idea at the time. And how hard could it be, anyway? A sandwich, some cookies, a nice, ripe piece of fruit. A whimsical mix of the bedrock food groups, all prepared by my loving hand…

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Essential Sledding

It is the day after a beautiful snowfall. The skies are clearing. The wind in the high pines unspools snow like tulle. I am supervising the outfitting of my two sons as they prepare to hit the sledding hill. “Have…

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The Tent of Our Dreams

Sleeping bag? Check. Long underwear? Check. The waterproof boots from L.L. Bean I’ve had since college? Well, in need of new laces, but also check. Now if I could only find my old tent. Must be around here someplace. But…

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A Story of Good Will

Ah, December. The month when fall rounds the corner, stubs its toe on a discarded turkey bone, and careens towards winter. The month when autumn’s fiery foliage dims to dull brown husks collecting on our lawns and in our gutters.…

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Mouse In The House

She’s sniffing. And pacing. And pawing the corner where the carpet meets the wall. C’mon now, girl, what’s the matter? Uh-oh. I think I know. The dog always figures it out first. There’s trouble brewing within these walls, a crisis-in-the-making…

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How Now, Bart Starr?

It’s been forty years since I last laid eyes on him. Now here he is, tumbling out from between the pages of an old book I’ve brought down from the attic. Untouched and undisturbed all this time, my old Bart…

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