Our House

Things are a just a little bit thrilling at the Stevenson household these days. I suppose it isn’t obvious on the surface. On the surface, daily life is what we’ve got: the boys to school every day, Emma to school every day, Bill to work. Soccer practice and games and a chorus concert for Emma; … More Our House

It’s Okay to Ask

Time spent teaching is never lost. I spent an hour in a 9th grade classroom yesterday. The first time in nearly five years. This was at a public school, Durham School of the Arts downtown. The place where my daughter now spends her days, where my middle son used to spend his. And we’ve lived … More It’s Okay to Ask

Field Day

It has always been the field at the bottom of our neighborhood, the backyard of the community pool. Earliest memory finds us there with baby William at his first Easter, eight months old and unable to walk and sitting in the sand that is the volleyball court. We were late for the egg hunt, but … More Field Day


She has a full day of work ahead and a forty-five minute commute. Her three children will be at school all day, after which two will have music lessons and one hockey practice. Her husband is out of town on business all week. She posts a picture of her alarm clock: 5:45 AM, and the … More Perspective

New for a New Year

Putting a book together is interesting and exhilarating. It is sufficiently difficult and complex that it engages all your intelligence. It is life at its most free.  I started in earnest on a new book today. It wasn’t one I’ve been meaning to write. For some time now, the list of what I’ve been meaning … More New for a New Year

No Boat

Above the sofa in my living room is a painting that once belonged to my grandfather. A picture of the sea: everywhere water. Peaks and troughs fill more than two-thirds of the frame, all done in deep greenish blues with paler blues for foam and spray. Whitecaps curl and spread on a crest far off … More No Boat


Up North, they make fun of the way Southerners handle the snow. They say we can’t handle it–which definitely seems true. Our whole world shuts down: this is our third morning and I haven’t seen a soul outdoors yet today because it’s 8 degrees, because everything froze again last night and still is frozen, because … More Snow