My daughter started high school three weeks ago, and I was flooded with emotions that came unexpectedly out of nowhere. This is coming from a highly emotional person. That’s to say, I know my feelings, I feel my feelings, and I’m aware of the highs and lows that I am capable of. And yet, this new phase of my older child’s path took me completely by surprise.

To be clear, I knew high school will be an adjustment — new building, new friends, new teachers, new schedule, and so on. What I did not expect was the breadth of all…


“I’m 42 years old,” I told a friend, “and I’ve found one of the biggest joys I’ve ever experienced just now!” She nodded, “That’s wonderful!”

For as long as I can remember, I’ve dreamt of ice skating. I’d imagine myself gracefully gliding across the ice as I drove in my car to pick up kids from school. I pictured myself doing fancy, energetic loops on the smooth surface to pumping music and audience applause, while I labored on presentations for work. In the back of my mind, for a long time, there it was — ice skating, always ice skating.


The past year shook families, testing parents as they worked and taught kids from home, debated about how close to stand to grandparents, deliberated over wiping down groceries and other health concerns. Parenting during a pandemic was an unexpected breakdown of all the norms families have come to rely on. Having no guidebook to go by, most parents have had to make their own roadmap and figure out what works for their family.

When the pandemic began, the initial concerns seemed to center around health.

Michelle Stein, a mother of two in Dunwoody, recalls scolding one of her kids last…


Vita Lemberg — Johns Creek

My mom lost two things last year — a younger brother and 60 pounds. One, forever. The other, for as long as she wants to. My mom’s 51-year-old brother (my gorgeous, life-loving uncle) passed away unexpectedly last April, at the peak of a global pandemic. We grieved for him separately, not allowed to hug each other, each hollowed out by our own tears and memories of him.

The other loss was more wanted. For most of her adult life, my mom carried around extra weight. Her amazing body that bore two daughters, stands on its…


“I’m 42 years old,” I told a friend, “and I’ve found one of the biggest joys I’ve ever experienced just now!” She nodded, “That’s wonderful!”

For as long as I can remember, I’ve dreamt of ice skating. I’d imagine myself gracefully gliding across the ice as I drove in my car to pick up kids from school. I pictured myself doing fancy, energetic loops on the smooth surface to pumping music and audience applause, while I labored on presentations for work. In the back of my mind, for a long time, there it was — ice skating, always ice skating.


It was a well-oiled machine, this COVID vaccine location. In a nondescript government building, only five minutes from my house, was the haven we have all been waiting for. I drove up with trepidation, adjusting the mask on my face as I pulled into the parking lot. A young female attendant with kind eyes (which is all I could see of her, of course) asked if I have an appointment and guided me to the parking area. I could see a small, controlled line of people snaking outside the door. I parked, walked in, and followed the staff's explicit directions…


Over the years, teachers have told my daughter she talks way too much, one even calling her “too inquisitive.” But I’ve learned my 13-year-old’s love of conversing is one of her greatest qualities.

My daughter talks up a storm. She talks excitedly, fast, and often, ideas emitting out of her like lava from a volcano. She bubbles over with excitement, hurrying to get it all out before she’s stopped, interrupted, intersected.

Teachers over the years have told my 13-year-old girl that she talks a lot, raises her hand much too frequently, and asks too many questions. …


My daughter talks up a storm. She talks excitedly, fast, and often, ideas emitting out of her like lava from a volcano. She bubbles over with excitement, hurrying to get it all out before she’s stopped, interrupted, intersected. Teachers over the years have told my 13-year-old girl that she talks a lot, raises her hand much too frequently, asks too many questions. On a feedback form in 6th grade, one of her teachers commented: “She is very bright, but too inquisitive and likes to talk.”

As if being “too inquisitive” is possible.

They say my daughter talks a lot. She…


My daughter talks up a storm. She talks excitedly, fast, and often, ideas emitting out of her like lava from a volcano. She bubbles over with excitement, hurrying to get it all out before she’s stopped, interrupted, intersected. Teachers over the years have told my 13-year-old girl that she talks a lot, raises her hand much too frequently, asks too many questions. On a feedback form in 6th grade, one of her teachers commented: “She is very bright, but too inquisitive and likes to talk.”

As if being “too inquisitive” is possible.

They say my daughter talks a lot. She…


Year after year, it doesn’t get any easier to parent Jewish children in December. Christmas overwhelms our kids, especially those of them in public schools, particularly in the American South. During the month of December — and often much earlier — my two daughters, like all of our kids, are barraged daily with Christmas movie commercials, Christmas songs on the radio (all of which we love!), …

Alla Umanskiy

I’m a mother, a wife, a passionate writer, a lover of sweets, a very amateur runner, an avid reader, and an aspiring ice skater.

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