Saturday, July 26, 2008


Dear ones, I knew I could count on you! I am compiling your recipes, and will report back as I try them. All those casseroles are always so appealing to me, the ones that are topped with a couple grated pounds of cheddar. Mmmmm. Seriously.

Okay, Michael turned 40, there's loads to tell you and ask you about, and we are leaving to camp on the Cape, oh, approximately minus 20 minutes ago. . . but I didn't want to leave without thanking you and telling you that new columns at wondertime are here and here.

Have a wonderful week! And think of us every time you hear a crack of thunder.



  1. Happy Birthday, Michael!

    Have a wonderful trip to the Cape. Can't wait to hear part two of the zucchini report!

  2. Happy Summer, Catherine! It's me, one of your number one Stalkers! hey, we all need to form some kind of fan club!

    The Cape! Again! More memories for you 4!

    I finally have a google name, so no longer Anonymous. I am the reader who mentioned awhile ago that I, yes, I admit it, everyday when I go online, there are a few sites I check each and everyday, and Catherine Newman's blog is one of them! And you can imagine my surprise when I see a NEW blog entry! ha ha ha ha! I feel like some kind of fun contest winner that I get to be the SECOND reader to post here! I need to really get some kind of LIFE! ha ha ha!

    Love and hugs to you and the kids and Michael as you venture out for your summer fun. You'll probably read all our posts when you return, dirt covered, and happy.

    To show how much you are in my psyche, now when I see bug bites on my kids' legs, I think of YOU and your great article in Wondertime about camping and bug bites on your kids' legs, and it makes me smile, a happy smile.

    I'm one of the readers who has been reading you since my "baby" was a baby, son now 5 1/2, and my other "baby," girl now 3 1/2. Time flies, sister.

    You cracked me up with the clementines boob comment on your last entry.

    Okay, I better not write any longer, or the Stalker Police will come after me.

    Thank you, again, for sharing your life, your thoughts, your feelings, and your beautiful words, with all of us. We are grateful.

    Michael is 40! Welcome to this side of the "hill," friend! I'm 43!

    Okay, seriouslyyyyyyy, I could not love you guys more! I feel so silly saying that, until I read posts from your other fans, who also say that they somehow feel like you and Michael and Ben and Birdy are like "family" to us.

    Happy Zucchini-recipe-trying to you.

  3. Hey Catherine! I am way envious of your camping on the Cape! I haven't done that in over a decade. One of my goals is to get my three kiddos out there before too long.

    I don't know if you remember, but a couple of years ago I mentioned the loss of my son in a comment on your Babycenter blog. I never thanked you for the card that followed. You really have no idea what that meant to me, thank you so much.

    And to 2kidslife, I think the same way when I see bug bites too! My almost six year old, Connor has one on his shin that has swollen so much he laughs and calls it his "'nother knee."

    Oh, and Catherine, since I'm finally dragging myself out of the Lurker's Corner, I'm going to chime in with everyone else...

    Write another book! =)

  4. It has been one thunderous summer this year in New England, so much for the "passes to the town pool will pay for themselves" theory.

    I hope you have a great time at the Cape, I too will be looking foward to the zucchini report as well as your tales from the Cape.

  5. Holy crap. I am suddenly so glad that I don't know you in real life, because I would act weird around your husband. And then I would be your fat weird friend.
    Great posts. I'm going to see if I can remember how to log in so I can comment on them.

  6. OMG - your husband is a greek god!! Lucky girl.

    Have fun camping and don't forget to check for ticks. You know what I mean...

    I'm goin' to Fairy Stone State Park this week. Fairy stones... hmmmmm... can't wait to find them.

    btw: 2kidslife and I could be co-presidents to that stalkers club. Your writing is fantastic and so much fun to read!!

    As Arnold would say - I'll be back!

  7. Anonymous10:12 PM

    Hi Catherine :o) did you purposely post a sexy pic of Michael to tease us all?? I mean, yes he's Daddy of the Year, yes he looks young for 40, yes he's fabulous partner guy ... but does he have to be so hunky too???

    I was PMSL at the Intepretation of Dreams column - I had an awful teeth falling out dream the other night - and now I've laughed about it.

    Thanks for sharing.

  8. We just got back from a glorious week at the Cape. Have a great time!!! Can't wait to hear about it when you get back!

  9. Happy Birthday Michael!
    Have fun on the Cape.

  10. Anonymous9:10 PM

    You family is absolutely beautiful.

  11. I showed this picture to Justin, to remind him he needs to look--oh, he asked me to add to STILL look ;)-- that buff when he turns 40 in two years.

  12. I just finished reading your camping article in my beloved Wondertime, and I laughed out loud when I read the line about the raccoons stealing your marshmallows and then throwing them down at you from the trees. Now we know why they have those little bandit masks. After all those camping tales, I will have a clear vision of your trip to the Cape.

  13. Anonymous9:12 AM

    Others may be looking forward to the zucchini report (I kinda don't get that vegetable, I do like cheese though), but I am hoping your next Wondertime post will be about your trip. "Naked Crabs" is one of my all time favorites. --Cathy K.

  14. Anonymous5:31 PM

    I loved the column about the ideal you want to create for your kids: sounds like me but it is a difficult balance: I want them to share my ideals and I want to parent them accordingly but I don't want them to be the freaky kids who have never seen a popular TV show, lecture other kids about dinosaurs and the KT boundary and smell like the cod liver oil...

    So, this summer we are doing a lot of gardening and started raising chickens so that I can preach about a "cause" (healthy food, etc) but it can still be fun...

    Anyway great writing as always!!

  15. Anonymous9:15 PM

    We just got back from 8 days camping (
    yurting really so we were cheating what with having electricity and heat) and I used your camping checklist to help me get ready because we had only done 2 nights with the kids before. Let me just say: Thank you, thank you! There are a few things that we crossed off (guitar, tent) and a few we added (binoculars, scooters) but we were so much better off having used your list, I shudder think of the time I would have spent driving into town to buy a cutting board, foil, a clothesline, etc.

    I happened upon your camping article and checklist by luck on the Wondertime site and am hoping that you will post links to your magazine articles in addition to you blog entries. I want to see everything!

    Hope your trip is as wonderful as ours was!

  16. Anonymous9:16 PM

    I love the column about the blue popsicle dilemma. That is so my life. I have tried really hard to make my daughter's world a safe haven of authenticity and wholesomeness, a whole-grain bread world with occasional french fries and gumballs. It can be very hard when all the other three-year-olds at the tres chic preschool all watch Disney movies and stay up till 10 and eat at McD's six times a week, but I think it's important to fight the good fight as long as we can. I think it boils down to age appropriateness, and saving some things for later in life when Mommy has already built the foundation of wholesomeness the best she can on this sandy American ground. Too much control can (and will) totally backfire later in life, but just enough control says, "I love you, and I want you to be as healthy and happy and strong as you can, so I'm going to make some choices for you until you are old enough to make them for yourself." Most importantly, you don't have to buy in to what the popular culture says is an appropriate childhood. You can create it yourself. That said, you're right that a blue popsicle on a summer afternoon never really killed anyone. Carpe diem. :)

  17. Anonymous9:21 AM

    This came to me today in my inbox thought you might like one more that's not cheesy but instead had gooey icing!

    SERVINGS 18-24
    METHOD Baked
    PREP 20 min.
    COOK 20 min.
    TOTAL 40 min.

    3 eggs

    1-1/3 cups sugar

    1/2 cup vegetable oil

    1/2 cup orange juice

    1 teaspoon almond extract

    2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

    2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

    2 teaspoons baking powder

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    1 teaspoon salt

    1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

    1-1/2 cups shredded zucchini


    1 cup packed brown sugar

    1/2 cup butter

    1/4 cup milk

    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    1-1/2 to 2 cups confectioners' sugar

    In a mixing bowl, beat eggs, sugar, oil, orange juice and extract. Combine dry ingredients; add to the egg mixture and mix well. Add zucchini and mix well.
    Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack.
    For frosting, combine brown sugar, butter and milk in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla. Cool to lukewarm.
    Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until frosting reaches spreading consistency. Frost cupcakes. Yield: 1-1/2 to 2 dozen

    Hope you like it.....Love your column!

  18. Anonymous4:36 PM

    Hi, Catherine:
    I'm an editor with a parenting magazine called PB&J; we've been trying to contact you with a writing proposal for our winter 09 issue. Can you please contact me at this e-mail address for more info?


  19. I need to say first that I can see how it may be a little, well, obsessive that I am moved enough to log on at 11.52 at night to comment on vegetables.
    So I'll just say this: yes, yes, YES.
    to the hiding vegetables debate in Wondertime.

    Stealth Vegetable Smackdown

  20. In response to your Wondertime column... My son starts Kindergarten in a few weeks. I am sure my nights before will be filled with anxiety ridden dreams where I have lost him. Or he is calling my name and I can't get to him. Or, hell, where I drop him off in front of a building, with a strange teacher, and DRIVE AWAY!!?? I don't know how he got so old so fast! I am a loyal reader and am constantly reminded of various posts of yours. When my son turned five I was reminded of the picture you posted of Birdy holding up all five fingers. Now when someone asks him "how are you?" he just silently holds up that whole hand and smiles the biggest smile. Thanks for all the posts. Don't ever quit!

  21. Anonymous5:37 PM

    Firstly, Happy Birthday Michael!

    Secondly, I completely get what you're saying in the latest Dalai Mama about wanting to be honest with your kids, but treading the line of maybe being too honest. I think kids can tell if you're not being honest with them about their abilities, and it makes them feel like you don't care enough to really know them.

    Ultimately, I think your honesty is something that your kids will value from you because in being honest with them and truly seeing them, you are also letting them see the real you. That's really not a gift that every kid gets.

  22. "there's loads to tell you and ask you about"

    What? What is there to tell and ask? Looking forward to your next post as always.

    (also just returned from the Cape)

  23. Ooh! Look at this zucchini recipe!

    White beans add heartiness while chopped zucchini adds crunch to this delicious vegetarian salad.
    Serves 4
    2 cans (15 1/2 ounces each) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
    3/4 pound zucchini (about 2 small), trimmed, quartered lengthwise, and thinly sliced on the diagonal
    4 ounces green beans, trimmed and thinly sliced on the diagonal (3/4 cup)
    2 ounces fresh Parmesan cheese, crumbled (1/2 cup)
    1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
    Grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    Coarse salt and ground pepper
    In a medium bowl, place cannellini beans, zucchini, green beans, Parmesan, basil, lemon zest and juice, and oil; season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine.
    Helpful Hint
    Small zucchini are sweeter than larger ones, especially when used raw.

  24. Anonymous7:53 AM

    Happy Birthday Michael! It was just my husband's birthday too (the 20th) and he turned 46.

    Hope you guys have a wonderful trip.

    I just got the Alabama Stitch book from my library and have been busy making the printed t-shirt corset from an ancient "Viva Cuba Libre!" t-shirt a friend gave me 15 years ago, plus a yellow jersey pillow case that never fit any of my pillows. Love the results so far! I also have a question for you Catherine re. the skirt pattern - did you just use the x-small pattern to make Birdy's skirt? If so, did that fit her round the waist okay, or did you have to scale it down further? My daughter is the same age and I would like to make her a Christmas skirt using a gingerbread man cookie cutter as a stencil.

  25. Hi Catherine,

    I apologize for leaving this as a comment on your blog, but I'm interested in using one of your essays in a course packet this fall. Do you have an agent I need to contact for this? Please send me an email and let me know. emandermay at gmail. Thanks so much!

    Your blog is wonderful, by the way!

  26. Anonymous3:39 PM

    Hi Catherine - Here's a delicious zucchini recipe to try: ZUCCHINI CORNBREAD CASSEROLE. This is the only way I can get hubby & 5 y.o. to eat zucchini!

    4 cups shredded zucchini
    1 onion, chopped
    2 eggs, beaten
    1 (8.5 ounce) package dry corn muffin mix
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    8 ounces Cheddar cheese, shredded

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 2 quart casserole dish.
    In a large bowl mix together the zucchini, onion, eggs, muffin mix, salt and pepper. Stir in 4 ounces of the cheese. Spread this mixture into a greased 2 quart casserole dish; top with remaining 4 ounces of cheese.
    Bake in a preheated oven for 60 minutes.

  27. Anonymous3:23 PM

    If you're not too busy, would you mind writing another book?

  28. Okay, this isn't really about zucchini! Sorry. I actually just want to know if you have another book headed our way. Weary and inquiring minds want to know! I am always refreshed by your writing.

  29. Anonymous9:50 PM

    Catherine --

    We were on the Cape at the same time that you were -- I think. We had so much fun -- and again -- just to be completely stalkerish -- I thought of you very specifically twice on my trip. (You know -- like you are one of my actual real life friends.) I thought of you when we drove by the zooquarium -- and remembered your funny post about Ben's overwhelmingly positive reaction -- and you and Michael finding the whole place a bit grim. And then there was one beautiful sunset that we watched over the Bass River. The sky was all warm and yellowy, orangey, pinkey in the most delicious way ... and my three girls and my hubby were all sitting with me on the deck. The girls' hair was still damp from swimming and was pulled back gently from their faces which were nicely warm and a little pink from the sun and the fun of a day at the beach. Everyone seemed so peaceful and quiet and reflective. I was so breathtakingly happy and I thought of your words from a post (maybe the same one?) where you wrote something like -- these are the times when you really hope your memory holds.

    Happy times for you and Michael and Ben and Birdy on your visit to the Cape. I hope have lots of new happy memories!!!

  30. Catherine, that last post made me finally come out with my stalkerish thing, too:-)

    When we were at the cape a couple weeks ago, we went to Zooquarium twice! It was the same lame place, except the seal died, so there wasn't even that anymore. But, my kids absolutely loved it! They were enthralled. But, this will tell you something. They didn't even get anything at the gift shop. That's how lame it was. But, I was glad to go and my 2 1/2 yr old still asks to "go see animals?". So sweet. Hope you had a great time!

  31. Anonymous8:10 PM

    Hmm, this is going to seem apropos of nothing... But I stumbled across your BabyCenter column today while researching the wonders of first trimester vomiting (ugh), and quickly got hooked. One thing you mentioned somewhere in those pieces was that Michael does some grant writing--which I had started researching yesterday as a good job for a pregnant writer who wants to work from home. I guess I'm looking for someone to ask simple questions of; if, by some stretch of the imagination, that would be okay, could you ask him to email me at

    Thanks--especially for the descriptions of this nausea. I laughed so hard I almost forgot to throw up. ;)