The irony of writing parenting articles when the world is collapsing is not lost on me.
At the back of my mind as I draft articles on breastfeeding, weaning, homeschooling, and other evergreen topics, I wonder how evergreen they can truly be if the earth itself no longer is.
Right now, I’m comfortably typing this away while enjoying a simple lunch of sundried fish and tomatoes. It’s a rare moment for me as a home-based mom to a toddler and a grade-schooler. Two-year-old Joaquin is making a mess of cookies that he’s eating and playing with. To buy time for…
I woke up early today to try to get some work done. Though I’m on leave from my teaching job — which I left to make it up to my children — every now and then I still get paper submissions for incomplete grades, and the occasional assignment to write something.
The thing is, whenever I wake up early, like when I used to get up early for class, two-year-old Joaquin senses that I’m up and will get up, too. The only way for him to get back to sleep is for me to lay myself down on the bed…
The first pandemic school year had come and gone. And what a school year that was!
I’m a college professor whose courses were abruptly moved to online when the lockdowns began in March 2020. At my daughter’s primary school, classes were suspended, exams were canceled. Teachers fumbled with sending parents quickly put-together home learning kits.
Eventually, after consultations with parents and teachers, everyone agreed to just add up what grades were already made and cancel the rest of the school year. For everyone’s much needed relief.
But at the university where I taught, classes carried on. On the job, I…
When shooting photos of an appetizing, beautifully plated dish, your goal is to make the photos look as close as possible to the real thing — that is, what the dish looks like to the naked eye. To begin with, of course, the dish must already look (and smell! and taste!) really good. However, due to a myriad of factors like bad lighting or bad angling, the photos that we take sometimes don’t give the dish aesthetic justice.
This simple guide is intended for the casual photographer who won’t invest (yet) in paid photography lessons and expensive camera and lighting…
You see it all the time. You may be guilty of it yourself. Hundreds of photos of the same child in the center of the frame, with that same infectious smile. With every photo, only the background or location changes, but it’s the same smile, the same pose. Every. Single. Time.
If this is you, and you’d like to make your photos less staged and more spontaneous, the good news is that you can simply begin by paying more attention to “composition” (others call it “art direction”). …
Hi. My name is Ivery. I’m a chef’s wife.
Days before our city was first placed under lockdown, my husband Francis was about to begin restaurant improvement for a consultancy client. He was reviewing kitchen work flow and drafting a staff retraining program.
Just another way at work.
The month of March had just begun, in the year 2020. Nobody had the faintest idea of what was to come: a pandemic that will drag on for a year and on, claiming lives and livelihoods.
It’s been over a year now, but the pandemic is still far from over. Francis’s restaurant…
Going through my journals (I love rereading back entries), I’m surprised by how I managed to get any writing down through postpartum brain fog. I was back then a breastfeeding mom to a noisy, willful, and expressive baby boy who fed every 2 to 3 hours. Nights were sleepless, days even more so. I don’t remember being capable of thinking at all during that time and yet, there they are, glorious journal mini-entries that chronicled that hard but happy part of my life.
My son is two years old now. And still as noisy, willful, and expressive.
Anticipating the fourth season, I watched Stranger Things again. Setting aside for a while the sci/psy-fi aspects of the series, it strikes me now how apt the Demogorgon is as a representation of a toxic person.
Like the Demogorgon, toxic people are predatory. They feed on your energies and leave you depleted. They live in their own parallel universe that’s exactly like our world except that it’s dark, empty, and miserable. They’re not content to live in it alone. …
I am hopelessly, irreparably, and flagrantly not a creature of habit. Though I celebrate that about me, it can sometimes feel like an affliction.
I thrive in novelty, variety, and a regular dose of imbalance. The moment I settle into a routine, I can’t help breaking it — just because.
I can, however, stay long-term in a place or a job for up to five years, then I’ll move on. With my current job as a college instructor, I survived for 15 years only because it allowed me to take up to two years of leave without pay. Leaves like…
I’m an avid notetaker. And I keep three kinds of notebooks.
The first is the journal for freewriting whenever I feel like untangling my thoughts. I usually don’t know what I’ll arrive at after a period of freewriting. This makes writing, for me, a process of self-discovery.
The second is a huge notebook for research notes. Whenever I find an excellent book, article, document, or artifact, I copiously take notes as though I won’t be able to access it again.
When you’re dealing with loads of research material from various locations, you wouldn’t want to keep on looking for the…
Beach mom. Chef's wife. Literature prof and lyric essayist.