“The literary equivalent of a summer night, a good friend and a gin-and-tonic: Shannon is a deft writer; a natural storyteller with a wicked turn of phrase and frighteningly specific memory...”

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Does It Really Matter Whose Kid Is Smarter?

My kids are smart. They have a genetic pre-disposition. I was smart. Their dad was smart. We had high GPAs. We had high SATs. We graduated college with suma-cum-somethings. We were a parent’s dream. Until Henry graduated, couldn’t get a

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Why I Stopped Trying To Make My Daughter Be Pretty

My 10-year-old daughter Clare only likes to wear clothes from the boy’s section. Preferably a boxy, shapeless t-shirt with pictures of Spiderman or any other superhero on them. She always wears two braids. Always. Even to bed. Her hair is

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The Puberty Video’s at the end of the Year

Puberty is coming to my house.  I have a fifth grader and the puberty video’s at the end of the year.  But already things are happening.  I’m going to have to go to the training bra section of the neighborhood Macys.

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There will be no child actors here!

A star has been born in our family. Yes, yes, I know Bridget is my child therefore I’m partial. But this is not a subjective opinion, there is scientific proof that she is a star. There is the measurable charismatic

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I Both Want And Don’t Want To Be A Working Mom

I need to get a job because we need the cash flow.  My girls are 8 and 10 and I’ve had freelance writing jobs throughout their lives, but nothing that dominated my schedule in any meaningful way.  I was also

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What’s Tearing My Relationship With My Daughters Apart …

It’s 2:45 on Friday.  I arrive at their elementary school to pick my daughters up from 4th and 2nd grade. They approach, sluggishly, pinched faces, sullen expressions.I’m suddenly on alert. Def-Con 5. ME: (smiling like you would at crazed gunmen

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I’m A Benign Racist, But I Don’t Want My Kids To Be

We’re going to send our daughters to the public middle school. Don’t hold me to it. In a fit of helicoptering white-flight panic we might drive 5 miles away to the Pacific Palisades and send them to that middle school

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Breast Buds

We were reading in bed like we usually do. You were extorting me for tickles, like you usually do. Up came your Yankees shirt and there they were. The very beginnings of womanhood on your chest. No! I thought. Not

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How to Throw a Greek Mythology Party For Kids Without Becoming a Hydra!

First of all, don’t do it. Are you insane? But, if you must the very first thing you should do is to make the Grown-Up Nectar of the Gods which consists of Gin, Tonic, Limeade. Mostly Gin. Drink copiously. Ice cubes

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Over The Edge Death In Grand Canyon!

Over The Edge Death In Grand Canyon is the title of the book I’m reading since Henry, the kids and I set off for the Grand Canyon via train this morning. Maybe if we take the mule ride tour we’ll

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Wordless Monday in Sedona, Arizona

We’re on spring break.  There are no beer funnels.  No calling parents from a Oaxacan jail.  No tequila-induced tattoos of dancing Geishas on our bottoms.  There’s no girls gone wild.  Just girls (and Henry) gone child. We’re traveling the southwest

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“Run Like a Mother#@$%er!”

“Wow, your daughter’s got quite an arm!” says a dad sitting next to Shannon at Little League softball tryouts. “Oh I don’t know … I guess maybe she did inherit her grandfather’s eye-hand-coordination. He won the 1952 Little League World

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Do You Bore Your Kid?

“Friday Wrap-Up: Do You Bore Your Kid?” I have two daughters, 7 &9. One needs constant conversation and connection. The other is a day-dreamer who entertains herself with her own stories. The squeaky wheel is the one who gets most

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Sometimes You Gotta Put Your Boobs On The Table!

Wednesday Epiphany: Sometimes You Gotta Put Your Boobs On The Table Last night I decided to play Monopoly with my daughters instead of allowing them to watch A Dolphin’s Tale for the fiftieth time.  I was trying to be a

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Relish The Moment. This One. Right Now.

Wednesday Epiphany: Relish The Moment. This One. Right Now. This is not a funny one… 2011 has been a difficult year for us and our extended family. Loss, diminishment, permanent change. My elegant grandma Sue passed away in February at

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The Santa Con

Monday Sins is on hold until next week because I’ve been eating my weight in candy cane cookies and want to be in denial. Instead I feel compelled to plumb the labyrinthine depths to which our children will sink to

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What Happens When Harry Potter Is Just Too Scary!

I always forget that if my kids watch a scary movie this is where they end up! Thanks a lot Harry Potter!  

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Doesn’t She Know She Could Be In A Body Cast?

Friday Wrap-Up: Doesn’t She Know She Could Be In A Body Cast? I lay in bed beside with my 9-year old Clare at bedtime.  Something serious is troubling her.  We’ve had several in-depth discussions about it already, but apparently she’s

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I Hate Halloween!

9:11 p.m. Halloween Night… Sugar. No more sugar. Or corn syrup. Or malto-yickitomasmazoo. I am tired of costumes that are scratchy and too tight and cheap, and dirt and worms, and chocolate chocolate, drowning in chocolate and screaming witches and

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How To Get Organized aka The Pencil Mutiny!

Last night I had to kick some ass. There was mutiny afoot in our art supply cupboard. The f***ing pencils were A.W.O.L. and when they came back it was with broken nibs and worn down erasers. The markers were dry-air

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Why TV is Good For Kids…

I Love Lucy saved my life when I was a kid. My parents divorced when I was two.  Today I wouldn’t have it any other way.  I became fluent in diverse social situations; from drinking Roy Rogers in smoky jazz

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Will My Daughters Ever Love Each Other? aka Sibling Rivalry Ack

Clare and I were rolling around with our fat cat Marilyn Monroe on the bed I’ve been inhabiting with the flu for the last two days when Bridget came in to join us. Clare, “No, no!  You may not come

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Do You Really Know Your Kids? Because I’m Clueless.

Just when you try to pigeonhole your kids, they change. This is Bridget (7): If tortured on a bed of red-hot nails I might encapsulate her as: as an outgoing, chatty, Girly Girl who’s hard to get to know because

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My Last Post On Blogspot! aka Batwoman Says Good-bye

This will be my last post on Blogspot, (in case the title was ambiguous or you’re on crack and can only hear the high-pitched whistles dogs howl at). I have no feelings about Blogspot except it seems to have a

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Sweet Jesus, They’ve Gone Back To School!

Just look at ’em.  Two more wonderful, intelligent beings have never roamed the earth!  (thank God they’ve gone back to school).  Gaze upon their angelic faces, full of wisdom and empathy (The Hallelujah Chorus accompanies them as they go back

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