Posted by: unlikelygrad | January 31, 2009


I’ve been blogging over at Grad Cafe in addition to here. A commenter on one of my posts there wrote:

You’ll still have the babies in grad school too. It might have been a better idea not to mention the kids at all instead of acknowledging that having kids means you will never have the sort of time to devote to school that the next applicant will. There is evidence from your undergrad career that it has affected your commitment and availability. It is a matter of strategy, but I would have ignored the kid issue entirely.

Personally, I found the comment rather silly. True, having my oldest son affected my availability as an undergrad. But that was a long time ago: I graduated in 1993.

True, I still have all four of my children living at home, but they’re far older than they used to be. When my children were babies, they required nursing every two hours (or more), constant diaper changing, plus holding, entertaining, etc. Now that they’re older, they still require feeding, but only as frequently as I feed myself–and, amazingly, they eat the same food I do. So there’s very little extra effort that goes into that. They entertain themselves, only require occasional hugs, and go to the bathroom on their own. I do have to nag them to do their school work and their chores, but that’s a negligible effort; in return, I have children who wash the dishes, pick up and vacuum the house, and do their own laundry.

Needless to say, my life is a lot easier now.

Since this is my own blog and I can bore you with personal details, let me tell you a bit more about my children. I have four, all boys.

Boy #1, Al, is almost 17. He’s a freshman at the local community college. (The nice thing about homeschooling is that you can make transitions when your child is ready, not when society says you should.) He loves science (YAY!), sports, and singing.

Boy #2, Nate, is 14. He’s an avid reader of financial and investment books. His other hobby is repairing old computers.

Boy #3, Lew, is 11. He’s my incredibly energetic boy, always in motion. He likes non-fiction books (especially science–yay!), origami, and number puzzles like kakuro.

Boy #4, Will, is 7. He reads like crazy, and–unlike his older brothers–prefers fiction books. I call him my “menace with a screwdriver,” because if I see him with a tool in hand, it means he’s likely disassembled an appliance or something. Definitely an engineer in training!

The three youngest are still homeschooled, though my husband has taken over the job so I can go back to school.

The only other thing I have to say about my kids is that they are brilliant, cute, and very funny. But I wouldn’t be a self-respecting mother if I didn’t think that about my own offspring.



  1. I think you are bringing your boys up great. I think it is supercool that you are going back to academics. Never let anyone make you feel guilty about how you choose to live your life.

    Btw, I am 20. My boyfriend (20 too) is the youngest of four brothers. He reads like crazy, mostly science fiction and likes to work with mechanical stuff. Incidentally, he loves his mother like crazy. 🙂

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