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Stories by Gwen Rockwood

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The Rockwood Files: Mother struggles to answer kids' question

Mother struggles to answer the kids’ question

Subscriber onlyDear Kids, You asked me the other day what I thought of the stuff we see on the news about the presidential race. As someone who makes a living with words, this is hard for me to say: I just don't know. This time around, the words fail me. Continue reading...

The Rockwood Files: Absence makes heart grow fonder

Absence makes heart grow fonder

Subscriber onlyLast night I slept better than I have in a week. There was no sleeping pill involved. No meditation. No hot bubble bath or glass of wine. All I needed was the peace of knowing my ducklings are back home where they belong. Continue reading...

Skip the new car, keep the house cleaners

Skip the new car, keep the house cleaners

Subscriber onlyTomorrow will be a good day. Because by early afternoon, the kitchen and bathroom counters will be clean, the floors shiny and there'll be fresh vacuum cleaner tracks throughout the house. Every other Wednesday by 2 p.m., life is good and orderly and smells like lemons. It's wonderful. Continue reading...

The royal we: Queen of the castle explains pronoun usage

Queen of the castle explains pronoun usage

Subscriber onlyAfter you become part of a couple or get married, "you" become a "we," and "we" is a powerful pronoun. Continue reading...

Rockwood Files: Mom grapples with the literal part of growing 'up'

Mom grapples with the literal part of growing ‘up’

Subscriber onlyFor months now, 14-year-old Adam has been asking: "How about now?" Continue reading...

How to Talk to Women, 101

Not what you say, but how you say it

Subscriber onlyWe women have an obligation to the young men in our lives. We must teach them how to keep their manly feet out of their big mouths while talking to women. Continue reading...

New kind of adventure begins

New kind of adventure begins

Subscriber onlyEighteen years ago, I got a call from my best friend, Jennifer. I was sitting at my desk in the newsroom, surrounded by the chatter of other reporters, ringing phones and humming computers. Continue reading...

Short and sweet?

I blame you, Daisy Duke

Subscriber onlyAs a mom of three, part of my job is to buy clothes for whichever kid happens to be in the midst of a growth spurt. Right now it's 9-year-old Kate, who will probably be another inch taller by the time you finish reading this column. Continue reading...

Police: Suspect in Virginia bus station shooting dead; 3 others hurt

RICHMOND, Va. — A gunman shot a Virginia state trooper Thursday at a busy bus terminal in the capital city of Richmond before he was shot dead by two other troopers, police said. Two civilians were hurt, though it was not clear if they had been shot. Continue reading...

The Rockwood Files: The value of making mistakes

The value of making mistakes

Subscriber onlyChocolate chip cookies, the Slinky, Play-Doh, Post-It notes and potato chips. The one thing they all have in common is this: They're losers. Continue reading...

Rockwood Files: No good hospitality goes unpunished

No good hospitality goes unpunished

Subscriber onlyThere's a bird chirping outside my office window today, announcing the start of spring. I've gone to the window to see if I can spot her -- and to make sure she keeps her distance. The last time I let a bird get too cozy, I got burned. Continue reading...

The Rockwood Files: Three steps to cure a Monday

Three steps to cure a Monday

Subscriber onlyI knew it was a Monday when Tom woke me up with two words: "We overslept." We sprang out of bed and flew around the house, rushing three groggy kids to dress for school in record time. Five minutes into the morning chaos, the youngest kid arrived at our bedroom door to announce she had no pants, triggering a frantic search through jumbled laundry baskets to find a pair. In the end, she settled for leggings and a long sweater. Continue reading...

The Rockwood Files: Pay as little attention as possible

Pay as little attention as possible

Subscriber onlySurprised. That's how I look in my new driver's license picture. I laughed when the woman at the local office of the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration handed me the new card because that happy yet slightly startled look on my face is exactly how I feel about turning a year older tomorrow. Continue reading...

The Rockwood Files: Three things I learned at theme park

Three things I learned at theme park

Subscriber onlyAs I mentioned last week, Tom and I recently drove our three kids 18 hours to the happiest place on Earth, where we spent four days vacationing ourselves to the point of exhaustion. Why? Because Disneyworld is not cheap, and therefore, "vacation math" must apply. Continue reading...

18 hours: Driving to Disney, family style

Driving to Disney, family style

Subscriber onlyEighteen hours. That's how long it took to drive to the happiest place on Earth. Do you know how much you have to love your kids to drive 18 hours so they can experience Disney magic? Answer: A lot. Continue reading...

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