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West Side Stories

A Tosa resident for almost 20 years, Karen is a mom and freelance writer, addicted to playing tennis. When not on the tennis court, she spends the fall and winter in the stands at Green Bay Packer and Marquette basketball games.

Karen is the author of “Grab a Bite,” a dining out column and the former community columnist for the Wauwatosa NOW newspaper.

Still Blogging After All These Years


I recently stumbled upon this factoid which says that approximately 95% of all blogs are eventually abandoned. As a sometimes prolific but more often challenged blogger, this did not surprise me. (It still makes me a little sad to think about those poor, motherless blogposts hanging out there with no hopes of a follow-up.)

This month is the 5th anniversary of my adventures in blogging. I started out as a humble, stay-at-home mom, who had an itch to write and - true confession - vent a little about the ups and downs of being a mom. That was how Momhood got started. I found it very liberating to be able to put fingers to keypad and say something that my 4 or 5 readers would appreciate. I had dreams of one day being discovered, but alas, I decided that not sitting in front of the computer all day long would be more beneficial to my momhood AND my marriagehood. Nevertheless, I kept it going…barely.

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Dear Brett Favre,


Dear Brett Favre,
It’s been a while since I’ve written to you. Last time was several years ago and it was an unabashed fan letter. You see, I have this thing I try to do – when I think something nice about somebody, I try to make it a point to tell them. Because, really, what’s the point of thinking it if you don’t share it with that person? Back then, I often thought: “Gee, that Brett Favre seems like a good guy – honest, hard-working, unselfish – total team player both on and off the field.” So I wrote that. I think it was over a year later, you sent me a cheesy mass-produced postcard with a picture of your family and something printed on it. Gee, thanks. But no big deal – I expected less.

Back then, when I was your biggest fan, I believed every word you said. I didn’t know then about your own personal dressing room and how you never dressed in the team locker room. Gee, what a team player. How very Barry Bonds-like of you.

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Behind the Scenes at American Idol Auditions

TV, Personal

Sunday night, in a hotel room in Chicago, my daughter and I watched the movie He’s Just Not That Into You. Somehow, this sub-par movie, about clueless people wading through adventures in relationships, became a metaphor for our own adventures about to unfold. You see, the next morning, she and I were just two of the more than 12,000 people at the United Center for American Idol Season 9 auditions.

We’ve watched all eight seasons of American Idol. When it all started, my daughter was only 9 years old and we were only fans. As time went by, the show became a cultural phenomenon and my daughter became a singer. As she developed into a more seasoned performer, people would often ask: “So, would you ever audition for American Idol?” Her answer was always, “Yes, I probably will.”

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