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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Home & Family

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Hurt Children – Hurt Puppies

Occasionally, we have a child or two who demonstrate the hurt and trauma fallout from their past. Well, maybe change that to frequently…. Most everything irritates them, bothers them, and frustrates them. They think you’re overbearing, they think you’re aloof. They sneer and make snake eyes at you, while asking what you’re buying them for…

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My Son, the Model

I refer to my second son, long and lean, attractive and not-so-bright. Possibly perfect model material. Friends have mentioned in passing that he would have what it takes. Question is: what does it take? It’s either this, or back to the hot dog stand idea…. Good looks are not enough. Fitting into a 40R might…

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Monday Mottoes – #82

Recently, I’ve perused quotes and opinions about balancing the many aspects of life. They range from suggesting we give up before even trying to balance the disparate parts, to encouraging that we give it our best shot because all of it matters so very much. Each of them in some way makes sense to me….

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Texts Gone Astray

The other day I sent a text message. That very fact says a lot considering that I really didn’t send any maybe six months ago. Now I’ve expanded from texting two people to ten or twelve. Woo-hoo. However, it can backfire. When texts are sailing back and forth, fast and furious, I can get confused…

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What to Do Without College

I often consider our second son, Pasha. As an older adoptee with definite signs of Fetal Affects Syndrome, I wonder if college is in the cards for him. So far, high school has proven hard enough, so that would look like a no. What can he do with his life, then? I’m not the kind…

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Why Do Families Homeschool?

On a bad day, I wonder that myself. It would be so much easier to plunk them down on the school’s doorstep and entreat, “Do something with them.” Unfortunately, I think that my kids may be lost forever—educationally, emotionally, spiritually, or socially if that were to occur. Don’t get me wrong. These are not hothouse…

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Travels with Mama

I’m going on a roadtrip, not by myself and not with the whole family. This is where it gets tricky. This time, I’m taking the oldest (18.5) and a family friend in his early 20s. “Mama, does he know how we travel?” our other teens (18, 16.5, 14) ask. “How do we travel?” I echo…

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The Art of Marriage

I’m sitting in a marriage seminar as I type. As a matter of fact, I’m helping to lead the series of six meetings, which we’ve spread over two action-packed nights. Truth be told, not a lot of couples have time to focus on their marriage. Until there are issues. Problems. Kids. Bills. Sickness. Careers. Differing…

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Monday Mottoes – #78

Are you a dropout? Not necessarily from school, but from certain aspects of life? Do you find it easier not to engage with a spouse, a boss, a child, so you avoid them? Do you stay away from certain social settings? Have you lost a job and then, after repeated rejection, given up even looking…

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Monday Mottoes – #77

Food is a funny thing—can’t live without it, sometimes can’t live with it. Every other physical dependency one can kick either gradually or cold turkey. Food—not so much. It always amazes me concerning the regional proclivities of foodies. If you’re around the Boston area, there’s a Dunkin’ Donuts on every corner. In the southwest, you…

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