Mourning Your Marriage after Divorce

I sat in the filthy gym bathroom stall and cried today.  It was the first time I have cried about my divorce, the first time I have felt anything beyond palpable relief and a sense of having escaped an angry rhino. It might have been the yoga class- blame it on the tadasanas and the soothing south asian chanting, or the hot room and smell of primal human energy.  In any case, I left deeply sad.  I felt the loss of what was.  I felt the loss, and my responsibility for that loss. Its easy to look at our former…

Mommy’s First Dick Pic

I woke up this morning to a conundrum.  What is worse, I was forced to decide at the ungodly bag-eyed hour of 6:15am: To receive an unsolicited dick pic, or to receive an unsolicited dick pic, that was intended for someone else? The owner of the member in question is one of the few guys that was an absolute no in the first five minutes.  He was truly one of my most disappointing Bumble dates.  Disappointing, because I really had a good feeling about him and I had gotten my hopes way up.  In fact, the only thing more up…

7 Reasons to Skip Iceland

You may be feeling left out because all the cool people you know are posting National Geographic shots from Icelandic waterfalls.   Good for them. Don’t be sad that you are not going, too.  Let me explain why, in 7 reasons.   It costs the earth If I am going to spend $500 on a hotel room, it needs to at least pretend to be the Four Seasons.  Not, as I recently experienced, a blah guesthouse with shared bathroom in a nondescript, frozen Icelandic outpost.  There are much cheaper ways to feel bitter and taken for granted, if you’re into…

Toxic Marriage, Served with Contempt

My daughters gaped, open-mouthed, at the histrionic couple dining at the adjacent table. We were in France, at an auberge in the Dordogne during my annual single-mom summer trip. The intimate dining room overlooking an ancient mill was frigid with cheerless couples purportedly enjoying celebratory anniversary and birthday dinners of foie gras and duck confit, but each unhappier than the last. Kids are sponges, soaking up tidbits of relational distress. They are not above gawking at fighting couples, nor are they immune to the subtler cues of relational frigidity; a husband’s pontifications about a wine’s terroir- tedious and unappreciated. His…

On Family Vacations, Build Boredom into the Itinerary

Rain slashes the windows and the cloudy French sky is heavy with foggy mist.  Our planned horseback ride through the Dordogne countryside is out of the question today, so my two daughters and I are cuddled up in our little 3 bedroom camping chalet near Sarlat la Caneda, each to her own quietude. One girl is facetiming with a friend in California, the other is cozied up in her bed, listening to an audiobook and drawing.  I am enjoying an unexpected pause in our nonstop 6 Week Single Mom European Adventure.  We could be busy exploring myriad castles, prehistoric cave…

Every Mom Needs Sexy Selfies

Before my divorce, sex was the last thing on my mind.  My body felt deflated after babies, and my sexuality became wrapped in the sags, dimples and aging flesh- without my firm 25 year old pre-baby body, was a still a sexual being? Did I deserve intimacy, and would anyone ever desire me again? I shoved these questions to the back of my psyche and soldiered on through mommyhood. Sex was irrelevant, anyway. Such a chore- it took too much mental energy to climb from the pit of my own self doubt. The forest of good sex is watered with trust…

Where to Stay on the Costa Brava, with Kids

The Costa Brava is a glorious morsel of Spanish coastline, stretching 85 miles from the French border down almost to Barcelona. Dotted with tiny, picturesque fishing villages, quiet calas, and peaceful, rocky coves, it is an ideal Spanish family travel destination.  However, the most beautiful and interesting section is the 35 miles between Begur and Tossa de Mar.  All of my recommended family beaches are here, as well as the gorgeous seaside village of Tossa de Mar. Book your hotel or Airbnb within this stretch.  I made the mistake of staying way up in San Pedro Pescador, which is close to…

Staying Sane While Single Mom Traveling with Kids

It’s the end of week two of my six week Europe trip, and I started going a little nuts today.  I realized I hadn’t had an adult conversation in days, except for hijacking my daughter’s facetime session with her friend in Melbourne so I could talk her mom, who is a dear friend of mine.  We couldn’t really talk, because both of our daughters were squashed against us, trying to get into the video.  It’s been a little lonely. Texting, calling, sexting needs to happen when you are traveling as a solo mom for 6 weeks.  Like, seriously.  You will…

Best Costa Brava Beaches for Families 

(Cala Sa Tuna, Begur) The Costa Brava stretches for 85 miles along Spain’s north eastern coast, all the way to the French border.  Yes, its beautful, but there are a few spots that are exceptional for a family beach day. There is an algorithm for the ideal family beach.  It must have access to a clean bathroom, and gorgeous beachside restaurant or tasty snack cafe.   Quiet protected coves are great, with some shady options (just say no to roasting your kids in the baking mid day Mediterranean sun, even if the Spaniards do it). Also, it needs reasonable parking,…

Barcelona is a Disappointment for Families. But the Eating is Good!

This blog shares the good, bad, and ugly of travel with kids, so I’m going to write my unvarnished opinion of Barcelona as a family destination. I moved to Granada, Spain as a 17 year old, and have fond memories of visiting Barcelona on weekends.  I wanted to share Barcelona’s highlights with my kids: the famous paseo of La Rambla, stunning Gaudi Park, and the quirky Sagrada Familia Cathedral. The past two days disappointed. 17 years ago, La Rambla was a charming, flower filled market with interesting wares, brightly colored birds, and fascinating street performers.  Now, it is lined with…