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Diane Stark

A Silver Lining Day

By Diane Stark

A Silver Lining Day

It hadn’t been a great day. I’d woken up that morning with a plan, but nothing had worked out the way it was supposed to. I’d made plans to meet a friend for coffee, but I’d had to cancel when the school nurse called and asked me to pick up my son from school. I’d […]

A Fire in My Heart

By Diane Stark

A Fire in My Heart

For most little girls, growing up in the ’80s meant Cabbage Patch dolls, slumber parties, and Molly Ringwald movies on Beta tapes. But for me, all of those things were set aside in 1984. That year, something else took center stage in my life. Mary Lou Retton had won the Olympic gold medal for gymnastics. […]

Max, Lucy, and a Mouse Named Mouse

“Mommy be careful!” My three-year-old son, Nathan, exclaimed. “You almost sat on Mouse!” My mouth dropped open. “There’s a mouse in here?” He nodded. “Of course. He’s sitting right there.” He pointed at the chair I’d been about to sit in just moments before. I turned around and looked at the empty chair. “There was […]

Expecting Decadence

By Diane Stark

Expecting Decadence

I grew up in a large family where family vacations were a big deal. We went somewhere every single summer, but because there were six of us, we drove everywhere we went: In our green station wagon with the wood paneling on the sides. One summer, we drove from Indiana to New Mexico to visit […]

A Better Version of Myself

“I can’t believe the summer is almost over already,” my kids and I lament every August. “And we didn’t do anything we wanted to do,” we say. Somehow, year after year, the summer months just seem to slip through our fingers, and we’re left feeling like we should have had done more, seen more and […]

Comfy in the Country

By Diane Stark

Comfy in the Country

“Are you sure about this?” My friend Erin asked me when I flashed my new engagement ring and announced that I would be moving from the Chicago suburbs to a rural community in southern Indiana. “You’re really going to move to a teeny tiny town nobody’s ever heard of?” “Why not?” I said with a […]

A Good (Enough) Moment

By Diane Stark

A Good (Enough) Moment

“Nathan, be careful when you open that,” I cautioned my five-year-old son – three seconds too late. “Uh oh,” Nathan said, holding an empty chicken nugget box and pointing to his lunch, which was now on the floor. He grimaced. “Sorry, Mommy.” I sighed and bit my tongue. I’d just picked Nathan up from preschool […]

More than Words

By Diane Stark

More than Words

“Four tickets to Return of the Jedi, please,” Mom told the movie theatre clerk. “It’s nearly sold out,” she said. “You probably won’t be able to sit together.” “That’s OK. My son is going to see this movie even if I have to stand up in the back of the theatre.” The clerk smiled. “You’re […]

Summer Camp – for Grown-ups

I was 15 and utterly miserable. I had devoted my entire summer to becoming a counselor at the Christian summer camp I’d attended as a child. It was something I’d always wanted to do, but before I could become a counselor, I had to spend three weeks at the “camp” across the lake. It was […]

The Amazing Invisible Mom

“I could hardly believe it when that lady nearly backed into us in the grocery store parking lot,” I griped to my children. “I have a million things to do today, and I did not have time for a car wreck.” The kids nodded, but I could tell they weren’t really listening. They were sitting […]

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