News Flash: Great-grandpa on the Way

We were sitting around the dinner table on a warm Topanga evening looking very much like the family of cops on TV’s Blue Bloods, digging into the best Irish stew ever served in America, when suddenly Nicole, still chewing, said, “Guess what? I’m pregnant.” Everyone gulped down their food simultaneously except for Nicole, our granddaughter, who seemed to float in a space of serene detachment. The moment was still-life for a tick in time. No one knew how to react. …

For Father’s Day, Give Your Children a Gift

When it comes to gift-giving, Father’s Day ranks in last place among holidays, generating $7 billion less in spending than Mother’s Day. Of the average $113.80 spent on gifts, much will be for boring stuff from ties to lawn trimmers. Try giving Mom a gift like that for her day! Perhaps that’s not surprising, considering the pop-culture image of fatherhood. In movies, dads are often goofballs like Adam Sandler and Vince Vaughn. On TV, the popular sitcom “Modern Family” stars …

Tightening the Family Ties

Sometimes I feel like an in-house publicist for my three adult children: a text to the middle son asking him to give his sister a call; an email to the oldest telling him about his brother’s time on a half-marathon; a phone call to the youngest suggesting she check in with her brothers. Why persist in trying to tighten the sibling bonds? Because adult children are often at different stages – and locations – in their lives so it takes …