NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

PortWatch

May 7, 2014

Taking on 'The Mother Load'

Longtime columnist turns favorite pieces into book

While most families chronicle their lives through photo albums, Nancy Crochiere has taken that a step further: She has everything written down.

As a columnist for The Daily News from 1997 to 2011, the Amesbury resident shared countless memorable moments and anecdotes about her husband, Paul, and two daughters, Danielle and Rebecca.

Now, she has compiled 66 of her favorite columns for a book, “The Mother Load,” published in December by Nevertheless Press.

“One of the big reasons for doing this book was to collect everything and have it be there for my children,” said Crochiere, 55.

One morning back when her children were 5 and 9, Crochiere was unsuccessfully trying to get them into the car to go to school.

“They were doing what they always did on trash day — checking out the barrels at end of our driveway to see which of their treasures I might secretly be trying to throw away,” she said.

This particular week, they fixated on a broken plastic laundry basket, insisting they could still use it to build forts or to make hats. The experience led Crochiere to pen “Let’s Talk Trash,” her first piece for The Daily News.

“If the waste basket contains a ratty, one-eyed, stuffed dog hidden in a Sears bag shoved inside a shoe box and covered with three layers of dryer fuzz, my children will excavate it with more determination than archeologists digging for the lost city of Pompeii,” she writes in “Let’s Talk Trash,” which also appears in the book.

Although the column has fun with her children’s trash-picking, it was also “about how we tend to value things most when we’re in danger of losing them,” Crochiere said.

“Over the years, my columns basically followed that same model,” she said. “They were written to be amusing but often had a sort of larger point, too.”

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