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Latest from Daryn Kagan

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COMMENTARY: Is it possible to donate too much stuff?

Posted: 6 days ago

I realize now that nothing, no one, was safe. Not in the path of the crazed madwoman — who happened to be me. I shared last week how, after years of procrastinating, Husband and I finally attacked, emptied, donated the contents of a storage shed we’d been renting for more than five years. The task was every bit as unfun and unpleasant...
Why my family Christmas card is fake news

Posted: 20 days ago

It’s pathetic, really. Sure, it looks pleasant enough. This year’s family holiday card. I managed to herd all four family members. Everyone combed their hair. Put on a clean sweater. There we are gathered around the Christmas tree, smiling our bright smiles. I could almost post “#winning.” Except for one thing I need...
DARYN KAGAN: Figuring out if you can do it yourself

Posted: 27 days ago

A better mother would’ve come running. You could make the case. The scream, after all, was rather blood curdling. From the other room. I, however, did not flinch. “Come quick!” one of our girls pleaded. “Please!” I didn’t move a muscle. I know the scream. It was The Bug Scream. “Please come kill this...
DARYN KAGAN: The new crush who moved into my neighborhood

5:00 AM Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017

There’s a new crush in my neighborhood. I walk by just about every day. Sure, I make it about stretching out my dog’s walk an extra block. But really, who am I kidding? It’s to get a glimpse. An extra look. To check if they are as attractive in a different time of daylight. They are. Not that my crush knows I’m alive...
To spouse or not to spouse? That’s the class reunion question

4:00 AM Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017

This was not in the book. Not in the book about marriage — the one with 276 questions you and your intended should ask each other before you say, “I do.” So you really know each other. Your true wishes and desires. How you go about things. Almost like you’ve known each other all your lives — instead of the months...
When things aren’t working out like they should

4:00 AM Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017

“There she is.” The young woman from the back seat of my rental car pointed out the window. “That’s her again,” my daughter agreed. And with that I begin to share the moment I didn’t expect to get on a recent visit to see Daughter at college. It’s been six weeks since she launched. Since she started...
Life lesson found in a bowl of candy

4:00 AM Wednesday, Sep. 20, 2017

We can’t avoid this any longer, you and me. While this tends not to be a space for divisive issues, I need to call this out. There’s no avoiding it. I know you’ve seen it, had an involuntary reaction. Frankly, I know mine. There’s no middle ground. So, let’s have it. I want to know where you stand on candy corn...
When one goodbye is not enough

4:00 AM Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017

I delivered the extra goodbye this week. It was my honor and my responsibility. Like thousands of parents around the country, my husband and I dropped our daughter off at college for the first time. I’ll confess there were plenty of early cries in the week preceding, And on the drive up. “These are happy tears,” I assured...
Daryn Kagan: Baby bird preps to leave the nest

4:00 AM Wednesday, Jul. 05, 2017

Greetings from a trip that has one question ringing in my brain. “Whose idea was this, anyway?” While you’re on a beach or a lake or enjoying a picnic in a park, Dear Reader, I’m hours from home with my daughter experiencing something they call “freshman college orientation.” Apparently, this is now a thing...
DARYN KAGAN: About the wish that never came true

4:00 AM Wednesday, Jun. 28, 2017

My daughter spotted it first, as kids are apt to do — though she probably didn’t realize exactly what she was seeing, or just how enormous it was. This is the story of how innocently standing in line at our favorite burrito joint, with nothing more than guacamole and a margarita on my brain, there it was — my unanswered...
How America’s most unromantic man brought his wife to tears

4:00 AM Wednesday, Jun. 21, 2017

Don’t take my word for it. John Reilly will tell you he is “The Most Unromantic Man in America.” “I’m a chronic and habitual underachiever when it comes to birthday/Christmas/anniversary gifts for my wonderful wife,” he confessed to me in an email this week. Vacuum cleaner for Christmas? “Oh, I&rsquo...
The fear my puppy won’t pass the test

4:00 AM Wednesday, Jun. 14, 2017

It’s that performance anxiety dream. The one where you’re in class and you haven’t done all the work. You’re not going to graduate. You’ll be the laughing stock of the class. You’ve had that dream, Dear Reader? The good part is when you wake up and realize it was just a dream and everything is fine. But...
Considering the moment before your forever

4:00 AM Wednesday, Jun. 07, 2017

I wasn’t expecting this. My future to come screaming from my past this week. You know those reminders Facebook surprises you with on a regular basis? “Daryn! We thought you’d like to look back on this memory from seven years ago!” They can bring on a smile. They can also bring on pain, When someone who has passed or...
When a mess becomes an unexpected gift

4:00 AM Wednesday, May. 31, 2017

No one is claiming responsibility. It’s possible they were scared off by my rather loud verbal reaction when I came upon the scene of the crime. A crime, I admit, that probably started with a relatively good intention. Last weekend, someone — a mystery someone — got the inspired idea to compensate for a lack of cold sodas...
Preparing for failure at graduation

4:00 AM Wednesday, May. 24, 2017

It’s possible I’m a terrible mother. I have a crisis of confidence in my girl. She’s supposed to graduate this weekend. Between you and me, I’m not sure she’s going to make it. I scroll through Facebook seeing photo after photo of students boldly holding up their diplomas. “Look at what I’ve done!&rdquo...
How this baby touched the lives of millions

4:00 AM Wednesday, May. 17, 2017

This week’s story begins at the end — with an idea that might sound devastatingly sad, at first. Yet, it has come to give me much comfort and acceptance in recent years. Everything ends. Every job. Every relationship. Every life. The thought comes flooding in as I have the good fortune to visit with a woman who, chances are, has...
What will Mother’s Day be like without Mom?

4:00 AM Wednesday, May. 10, 2017

This is to be Mother’s Day? It doesn’t feel like it’s supposed to go like this. I’ve read countless posts about daughters planning to celebrate with their mothers. About bountiful brunch feasts. About women so thankful to hold their children close. Then, I look around and think about my holiday. This year. This Mother&rsquo...
Why now is the time to reach out to that one special person

4:00 AM Wednesday, May. 03, 2017

Uncle Bill has been on my mind all week. This might seem odd considering I don’t actually have a real Uncle Bill. Though, it turns out, we all do. You might remember last week’s column. I shared the story at the request of my former colleague, Tim. He’d lost his 89-year-old Uncle Bill. Uncle Bill was a man who influenced...
When sending flowers just won’t do

4:00 AM Wednesday, Apr. 26, 2017

Flowers. Don’t send them. My former colleague, Tim, lost his beloved Uncle Bill this week. People sent flowers. That’s what they do at times like these. Tim says don’t do it. Not because he didn’t adore his uncle. Oh, how he adored him. Still does. “He’s the man who influenced me to become a journalist...
New puppy brings surprising lessons

4:00 AM Wednesday, Apr. 19, 2017

Puppy School. The 24-hour academy launched the moment we brought home our Bluetick Coonhound-Beagle-dachshund rescue pup. We call her “Butter.” The first thing we’ve learned is that the learning never stops. Ever. Let me be clear, though. It’s Mama, not the puppy, getting schooled. I’m getting schooled on things...
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