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Au Revoir, Grandma Sophie

It’s been a good run, Sophie.

You may ask: why oh why did I kill off that sweet-and-salty, adorable kvetcher? Well, simply put…it was time.

Sophie was modeled (loosely) after my husband’s late grandmother. On one hand, she could be very sweet. On the other, she had a habit of nitpicking me behind my back. It was clear that I did not measure up to her domestic standards. I didn’t cook enough, I worked too much, etc. Basically, she was the stereotypical mother-in-law I never had (my actual MIL is low maintenance).

2017: a (slightly edited) look back.

This strip is from January 1, 2014, a little peek back at more boring times. In the grand scheme of things, how I miss “boring.”

Ah, 2017. What can I say? Well, I do have a few choice words, but I’ll keep ’em off this blog.

If anything, it was topsy-turvy. From a purely personal and professional standpoint, it happened to be one of the best years of my life. Pajama Diaries got nominated for a Reuben Award, Invisible Emmie made the best sellers list and continues to sell like hotcakes, I finished Book 2, and Pajama Diaries has been turned into greeting cards. 

Fun with genealogy

A few months ago, my husband and I took one of those DNA tests (aka “spit kit”). We were just curious. We already knew quite a bit about our families’ backgrounds, but we thought it would be fun to see if there were any surprises.

There were.

My husband, who we presumed was full-on Ashkenazi Jew (descended from Eastern Europe)…well, he was. Minus 7% Irish.

Amy’s college tour and other things I’m — I mean Jill’s — too young for

I just took my older daughter to my alma mater, and it all came flooding back. I was just there! Yeah, okay, 25 years ago, but still…

So here’s the story. My daughter is a high school senior and is actively looking at schools. We took a road trip to see if my college was someplace she’d like to apply to. The evening before our official tour and info session, we drove by the campus. I was marveling at both the familiarity of the old and the novelty of the new (mainly dorm buildings). Finally, we came upon my old home away from home — the fine arts building.

Rob’s 50th!

I’ve been a bad blogger. Apologies. My only excuse is…well, life. Too much of it lately (in a good way, for the most part).

Anyhoo, let’s talk comics. Latest update: Rob turned half a century old. BAM! And yes, his milestone is modeled after my husband’s, who forbade me to announce it or post anything online about it. Hello, doesn’t the dude know I have a syndicated strip? And a wayward drawing hand? Hey, I’m not responsible for the (digital) ink that flows from my pen.

The NCS Reuben Awards in Portland

Memorial Day weekend was pretty exciting this year for many reasons: first (the obvious one), because I was up for an award. Also, because it’s virtually the only time I get to schmooze with so many of my cartooning friends. Third, because there were some heavy-hitting speakers (Hello? Matt Groening and Lynda Barry!). And finally, because it was in Portland, OR, the “it” city I’ve always wanted to visit.

“Invisible Emmie” Book Tour!

(official obligatory author headshot)

I’m hitting the road for an Invisible Emmie book tour next week! And because I love the midwest, that’s where I’ll be. 10 presentations in 5 days! I’m trying not to think too hard about the math. I’ll be speaking at middle and elementary schools in Cincinnati, OH, Mount Vernon, OH, and Kalamazoo, MI. Then it’s back to Cleveland for the launch party & signing

The 2016 NCS Awards!

So pleased to announce that Pajama Diaries has once again been nominated for “Best Newspaper Comic Strip” by The National Cartoonists Society for 2016. Winners will be announced May 27 in Portland, OR, at the annual Reuben Awards banquet.

Congrats to all the nominees!

Who needs hair…and the ongoing “ET” saga

As you’ve probably guessed, the late March storyline was deeply personal. Many of you know I was diagnosed with a blood disorder, Essential Thrombocytosis, years ago. Well, it’s a relatively benign but progressive disease, and for the past few years, it’s progressed a lot.

In general terms, my bone marrow overproduces platelets. This can cause bleeding and clotting issues if not controlled. For a long time, I only needed a baby aspirin to thin my blood and a vitamin regimen to alleviate the side effect of migraines. That worked well until about two years ago when my overachieving platelets shot up into the millions.

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