Jessie's Blog

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Wait, Am I Nagging or Motivational?

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Hello Tracy, 

One of the incredible side effects of owning a dog in the time of AirPods is that I get to walk Aspen, our super-athlete in the form of a German Shorthaired Pointer, while listening to podcasts and Audible. As in life, some are better than others. And some are so timely, helpful, AND informative that I feel that I need to share them. This is one of those. 

One of my go-to podcasts is called "Tests and the Rest." Amy Seeley and Mike Bergin, colleagues and hosts of said podcast, re…

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Give Yourself Permission to Hit the Pause Button

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Sometimes what you most need to do... is stop


I was reminded recently of how ceremony, ritual, and tradition can be just what we need to take time for reflection, time to feel, time to stop the relentless adherence to the almighty to-do list in our burnout culture. Milestones – great and small and in-between – arguably deserve more of our attention.

Our daughter’s path to attend medical school began years ago; preparing for and applying to med school is akin to an extra year-and-a-half of co…

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The Back to School Churn Is In the Air

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Hello !

Do you ever experience feelings of Back to School churn or am I the only one? (I tell myself I can't be alone on this.)

When July's long summer nights start to shorten and get cooler as we slide into August, the churn gathers energy. Forms, physicals, new notebooks, and whatever is left on the summer bucket list — it all has to go on the calendar now lest I find myself again in a shoe store over Labor Day weekend trying frantically to find a pair of school shoes that even fit my teen. …

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Sometimes School Sucks, But Thanks Mom & Dad

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Recently I had to re-establish a hard boundary with one of my brood. It hasn't been easy or pleasant, nor do I expect it to be moving forward. However, as I have wryly observed before, parenting is not for sissies. I am not going to go into the story here because I am just don't have the bandwidth nor the energy at the moment, and to be uncomfortably transparent, I'm still not sure I'm handling the situation appropriately and I'm still muddling my way through, as so many of us do. 

This latest …

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How to Boost a College App Over the Summer

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Hello Friend!

We field variations on the following questions ALL OF THE TIME: "What's the best way my teen can spend their time over the summer?" and "What activities will help my student boost their application?"

In this short video, I share one of my favorite go-to services offered by Give3600. Teens are paired with a volunteer opportunity that aligns with their interests, whether they have two weeks or ten months. The Give3600 College Application Spotlight package is reasonably priced at ab…

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Can We Just Take a Hot Second and Talk About the Admissions Timeline?

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Can we just take a hot second and talk about time?  As in, timelines and everything that needs to get done when you have a budding college applicant in the house.

Our third, Aaron, is a high school junior. I  just booked his first official college visit that is not virtual!  I was so excited by this accomplishment that I sent a screenshot of the confirmation to the family group chat. (I usually ONLY send pictures of Aspen, Buxy, and Bella because I'm the crazy dog lady in our tribe.)

You may —…

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Happy New Year! Here's to Finding More Sweet in 2021

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Receiving Christmas and Holiday greeting cards this year brought me significantly more pleasure than in years past. No one was more surprised than I was by my feelings of authentic delight when the first card arrived, nevermind that it was from Chewy.com! I even put it on display, tucking it under a window frame where everyone would see it – “everyone” being my immediate family since no one else was coming – and I made sure to point out to each of them the very FIRST greeting of the SEASON (cue …

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The Essential Self and Right Fit

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What Do the Essential Self and the Right Fit Have in Common? 

The short answer: Everything.

The long answer is, well, longer than that, but we think it’s worth reading about, thinking about, and considering seriously.

Sociologist Martha Beck proposes that each of us has two selves that form the basis of our operations: a “social self” and an “essential self.” In Finding Your Own North Star, Beck lists the behaviors of these selves: The “social self” is avoidance-based, conforming, imitative, …

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Make America Grateful Again — Tracey's Wish

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Two days after Christmas last year, I hitched my belt and realized that I had to go out a notch further than usual. And then my inner critic stepped to the front of the stage. 

I’d know that voice anywhere; the one that is very good at making me feel like sh*t about myself, and today she picked up the mic and started in on one of her favorite routines: the "you need more self-control," finger-wagging, body-shaming litany. "How hard is it for you to enter your consumption into your My Fitness …

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"It Must Be Hard to Be a College Admissions Consultant Right Now"

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Saturday, I was volunteering at our local ski area, handing out awards for the kids’ costume race. (Thing 1 and Thing 2 had performed a smashing dance, tapping away in their ski boots. My Cat in the Hat was concussed and sullenly left for home to avoid bright light.) That concussion, and the admissions scandal… plus another dozen or so other things that had come up that week had rattled me. But it was the scandal that really stuck, especially when another parent approached me to half-jokingly sa…

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