MONROE, Wis. - For more than 80 years, Eileen Wagner kept a secret from her children. She thought it was the best way to protect all of them - not only the two kids she raised with her husband, but also a third child, whom she had given up for adoption in 1933 when she was a teenager.
DELRAY BEACH, Fla. - As a young child, he played on military trucks freshly back on U.S. soil after World War I. As a teenager, he says he shared the Yankee Stadium baseball diamond with Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. As an adult, he spent a decade as the official printer for the U.S. Supreme Court.
My granddaughters' calendar is such that, at times, I feel as if I need to make an appointment to enjoy their company. Their commitments require the organizational skills of experienced social secretaries.
Q: My girlfriend and I were invited to a friend's Seder dinner for the Passover holiday, but the invitation fell through. My girlfriend has met my former wife several times and they appear to like each other, so she asked if we could go to her home for Passover dinner. I figured out a comfortable way to ask and she welcomed us.
Q: What should I do if my 13-year-old son is constantly taking my clothes without telling me? It happened this morning with a pair of jeans. Even my teenage daughter sleeps in my long-sleeve T-shirts, and my 11-year-old son has hijacked my supply of white T-shirts. I'm a frustrated dad.
Dear Mr. Dad: I'm a divorced mom, and because of my past substance abuse issues, my ex-husband has primary physical custody of our children. I only get to see them on weekends and we miss each other terribly. I've been trying to make it up to them by filling every weekend with outings and activities. But I think I've made a mistake. More than anything, I want to just hang out with the kids, but every time I schedule some downtime, they complain that they're bored. What can I do?
There is a good chance you've not been to Marion, Ind. It is north of Indianapolis, past Elwood, but not all the way to Etna. Like the rest of our state, it is what people on the coasts call flyover country - towns and cities bordered by corn and wheat fields that look like checkerboards from an altitude of 36,000 feet.
Dear Angie: I recently bought a house with a furnace that was installed improperly in 2002. My building inspector identified this as a safety hazard during the purchase process. The HVAC company now says that because the previous owner didn't have the initial work inspected by the city, they're not legally responsible. Is this actually the case?
FORT WORTH, Texas - There's a famous painter whose name is known by all, the impressionist Claude Monet, who despite all his innovative and highly valued paintings, pronounced, "My masterpiece is my garden."