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Gwen Rockwood

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Oh, Captain, My Captain: When a good girl eats bad cereal

I turned 45 last month, and Tom gave me a gift right after I dropped the kids off at school. Waiting for me on the kitchen counter was a birthday card and a box of cereal bearing a familiar face I hadn't seen in the kitchen since my 20s -- Cap'n Crunch.

Doesn't mean we should

Multi-tasking lowers IQ points

In an ironic twist, it turns out that the hardest thing to do is one thing at a time.

Every move you make

The phones are watching you

I saw something the other day, and I'm still trying to decide if it's cool or creepy -- or both. Perhaps you can be the judge.

Doing the spring thing

Clean two closets, call me in the morning

Today was the first day of spring, but no one told the sun. It was an overcast day whipped around by a cold wind, so I stayed inside and did what people are supposed to do in spring. I cleaned.

No need to drive

Mother of teen stuck in neutral

The night before I turned 16, I was so excited I could barely sleep. I knew that when I woke up the next morning and got ready for school, I'd pull out of the driveway and cruise into a new life -- one in which I'd never again need to ask my parents or older brother for a ride. It felt like I was on the verge of something big and important.

Cooper the Corgi goes crazy

After house training comes testy teenager

Here's a little fact I didn't know until today: Puppies -- like the one we brought home last summer -- turn into "canine teenagers." It can happen as soon as 4 months of age and can sometimes last until 18 months of age, depending on the breed. Do you know what that means? It means I now have THREE male teenagers in my house, as well as one girl hovering in the "tween" stage. Lord, help me.

The stroke he forgot

Good moments are wonderful gifts

Today, I told my dad -- for what is probably the 20th time -- that the reason he's having trouble talking is because he had a stroke. It happened on Feb. 10, but he doesn't remember. He also doesn't remember the trip to the emergency room or the way a team of doctors and nurses descended on him to quickly assess what had happened to him during the night.

Truth comes out

The year I meddeled an election

Today I confess a secret I've kept for more than two decades. In 1991, when I was co-editor of my high school yearbook, I rigged an election -- sort of.

Parents get slimed

Teen defense mechanisms similar to those of hagfish

About seven years ago -- before I had teenagers of my own -- I got an opportunity to interview a child psychologist for an article I was writing. During the interview, I asked the doctor for tips on how parents could better relate to teenagers. What he said stuck with me: "Parents need to remember that almost all teenagers have the same No. 1 fear, and it influences nearly everything they do and say."

Full-grown toddlers

Why are we so angry?

Those of us who have survived the toddler years know a thing or two about rage because we've seen it up close and personal. Even though my kids are tweens and teens now, I still vividly remember that tricky stage of development. It's not called the "terrible twos" because of its healthy spirit of cooperation. It's called "terrible" because you're basically dealing with toddler tyranny.

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