How to Approach Someone with a Disability 101

I have an immediate distrust for people who either say they loved pregnancy or middle school. As for the latter, tweens/teens that age are constantly comparing and contrasting themselves to those around them. Am I better looking or less popular than him? Are my shoes cuter or uglier?  The daily calculating, measuring and assigning worth […]

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Hit the road, Jack

I am not an expert at many tasks. My desk is in constant clutter, my fashion sense leaves much to be desired, and my ability to decorate cakes is on par with a 7-year-old. But traveling with children? Solo? For thousands of miles? For a month? I’ve got you covered, baby. Just call me the […]

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Five tips for working with special needs parents (plus a bonus!)

I was asked a few years ago by one of my daughter’s previous teachers for some tips for those who teach and work with our special needs children. Since then, many have shared this with other educators, therapists and administrators. Though this isn’t a typical post at TPIL, I thought it was worth sharing. I’d […]

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Ode to music teachers everywhere

I would make a terrible motivational speaker for the simple fact that they often inspire others with words like “The sky is the limit!” or “No dream is too big!” and I find myself rolling my eyes and muttering “Good luck with that.” Not that my life is perceptibly awful or I feel like a […]

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Life hacks for new grads.

I met Teresa my junior year of high school while waiting in the cafeteria. She invited me to sit with her and since I had no friends who had lunch that period, I accepted. She had blond hair, a mischievous smile and was one of the friendliest people I had ever met. So, for the […]

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Middle school: basically Dante’s 7th circle…

Recently, I overheard three teenage girls talking and their entire conversation was comprised of steadily putting down other girls in their peer group. One after another, I heard the negative comments: Her hair is too frizzy. Why doesn’t she stop blow drying it? I can’t stand being around her. She wears the weirdest clothes. I […]

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Who’s the teacher here?

Most days I forget how the world sees my daughter: a cute twelve-year-old who walks with a strange gait, who most-often is drooling and who uses a communication device to speak. I forget that she resembles a broken marionette that has snipped her strings and says so much with a smile. Yes, she is beautiful […]

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Skiing vs. Marriage

My husband’s dream ever since we started popping out babies was to have our entire family on the slopes. “A family that skis together stays together” was his burning mantra. Up until this year I had ample excuses to send him and our oldest up the hill together for some father-daughter bonding time: “I can’t […]

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Time Machines and Kanye

Time travel is a popular theme in books, movies and television. The plot is frequently this: the protagonist realizes there’s a key problem that needs to be resolved and if they’d only known____ or did____ in the past, it all could have been avoided! Lincoln and Kennedy would be alive a bit longer, the Challenger […]

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Dead Celebrities vs. NBP (Normal Boring People)

I watched American Idol years ago and thought, “Why did God give so many people the same gift—it seems a bit unfair” and I suppose it would if you thought life was just one big mad scramble to the top of the heap. So if someone wants to produce Idol meets Survivor—that’d be some great […]

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