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About: Elizabeth A. McKenzie

Elizabeth is a stay-at-home mother of three children, ages eight, six and three years. She lives in Boulder, Colorado with her husband, children, a dog and two cats. In her (very limited) spare time she likes to garden, hike, read mysteries and write. She has written three books for children and is usually covered in paint splatters. http://eamckenzie5.wix.com/thespunkybookworm

Recent Posts by Elizabeth A. McKenzie

NYC–Here Comes Mama!

Photo Credit: E A McKenzie

Photo Credit: E A McKenzie

You’ll never guess where I am as I sit and type this, completely uninterrupted with a pleasant white noise humming in the background and my water bottle and a few snacks sitting at my feet. I’m on a plane…(drumroll, please)…and I am all by myself! On Friday I flew direct from Denver to New York City for a quick trip and it’s the first time I have flown without a child in over nine years.

Living in Colorado but having all of our extended family and childhood friends on the East Coast means we have spent a lot of time flying back and forth across the country. Those with family closer by might do extended road trips, like I remember as a child.  Several times a year we would drive from Vermont to Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania or New Jersey to visit family … Read More

I Want the Purple Bowl!

Photo on 2-23-15 at 6.48 PM #3

“A tantrum or temper tantrum is an emotional outbreak, usually associated with children or those in emotional distress, typically characterized by stubbornness, crying, screaming, defiance, angry ranting, a resistance to attempts at pacification and, in some cases, hitting. Physical control may be lost; the person may be unable to remain still; and even if the “goal” of the person is met, he or she may not be calmed.[1][2][3][4] A tantrum may be expressed in a tirade: a protracted, angry, or violent speech.”—Wikipedia

I have to admit, I chucked as I read Wikipedia’s definition of a temper tantrum because it’s so spot on. My favorite part is “even if the goal of the person is met, he or she may not be calmed.” This pretty sums up the inexplicable, incomprehensible, mind-bending and exasperating part of dealing with a child who is having a fit. Whether I am in the middle … Read More

The Cave Woman and the Epidural

I make no secret of the fact that I’ve had three c-sections and zero vaginal births. Sure, I made a valiant effort to push my first daughter out “the old fashioned-way,” as I jokingly call vaginal deliveries, but the fact is, were it not for modern medicine, both Lauren and I would have died in childbirth. Had we lived in the 1800s or early 1900s, maybe one of us would have survived at the expense of the other. This is why I offer you some retorts to anyone who talks about childbirth, labor, epidurals, cesarean sections or even breastfeeding in anything less than a respectful and tolerant tone.

“Women have been giving birth for thousands of years without pain meds or epidurals.”

This is true. You can’t deny it. And yet, those cave women also didn’t have a choice. You can’t speak for the cave woman who after three … Read More

Pathogens, Microbes and Bacteria–Oh My!

Yesterday, after I noticed Cooper licking a very public bench, I started to think about things like germs, viruses, bacteria, pathogens and infectious microbes. Imagine that.

Though today parents are often armed with an arsenal of hand-wipes and hand sanitizer and are strict enforcers of the hand washing rule, it’s only been since the mid-nineteenth century that we had any idea at all how illness was spread. As I did some research for this blog, I was surprised to learn that all of the advances in modern medicine in the last several decades have had less of an effect on the spread of disease than changes in human behavior.  Hand washing wasn’t even a common practice until after 1847 when Hungarian doctor Ignaz Semmelweis noticed that many more new mothers were developing life-threatening infections and high fevers just after giving birth if his students took part in delivering their … Read More

Food Allergies, Food Dye and Four Year Old Festivities

In just three weeks Cooper turns FOUR! Because we’re in the process of selling our house and moving to the suburbs, we’ll be celebrating a week early. His two sisters, three cousins and two best buddies are the only guests at his birthday party this year. And that will feel like plenty of kids, I’m sure! We’re going with a dinosaur theme since dinos are his newest obsession and pretty easy to pull off. I’m opting out of making a dino shaped cake and doing cupcakes instead–easier to make and easier to serve! I’m planning the party for one o’clock on a Saturday so that the kids can come with lunch in their bellies and I won’t have to worry about my kids not eating “healthy food” during the party because when there are that many other kids around, my kids don’t stop moving unless it’s for sugar, flour, eggs … Read More

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