Maria Stuart

Maria Stuart
Howell, Michigan, USA
February 17
Maria Stuart is an award-winning journalist and freelance writer. She lives in Michigan with her husband, their teenage son, and Ted, the hyper labradoodle who keeps her from sitting at the computer too long. You can check out her website at or Follow @mariastuart on Twitter.


Maria Stuart's Links
veniceI love coffee. Descended from a long line of coffee drinkers, I come by my caffeine addiction quite honestly, and I use it to my advantage. When I finish my work at hand, be it writing a piece or cleaning the bathroom or getting dinner in the oven,/…

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Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 23, 2012 12:29PM

Connecting via Words With Friends

photoMy father was a terrible speller. A voracious reader with a brilliant mind, he had some incomplete synapse in his brain that kept him from stringing together letters correctly to make words. If he were alive, he’d never, ever understand my affinity for Words With Friends.

ForRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 6, 2011 9:58AM

Steve Jobs made the earth move beneath my feet

I think back on the turning points in my life. Among the traditional ones — first car, first job, marriage, baby — I remember my induction into the cult of Mac, and I pay my respects to Steve Jobs.

At the time, I had no idea who Steve Jobs was.Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 7, 2011 8:11AM

'Imported from Detroit' ad rocks Super Bowl


The best Super Bowl ad wasn’t really an ad at all. At its heart, the beautifully filmed “Imported from Detroit” ad featuring Eminem, the Chrysler 200, and some of Detroit’s amazing art and architecture, is a love song for the city in which I was born.

 Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 4, 2011 8:22AM

I married a blue-blood

Mary, Queen of Scots-smallWhen I began dating the man who would become my husband, he corrected my spelling of his last name.


“It’s not S-T-E-W-A-R-T,” he said. “It’s S-T-U-A-R-T. The ‘royal’ spelling.”


Without anything more than a gut feeling, my husbRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 14, 2011 7:52AM

So many guns around town …

bogey“Are you going to ask if they have weapons in the house?”

My 11-year-old son was invited to the most important social event for sixth graders, a sleepover birthday party, and instead of being thrilled his mother is concerned about his safety, he is, instead, embarrassed.

Too bad… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 15, 2010 8:13AM

Like holding a tiny universe in your hand

geode photoWe’ve had a mystery rock in our house since my 11-year-old spent a week at my sister’s place Up North in Michigan

It’s not a rock, really, but a geode, an outer shell that’s hiding crystals and mineral formations inside.

The word “geode” comes fromRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 13, 2010 5:32AM

Chilean mine rescue: Little boys waiting for their fathers

minerbigEvery night that my husband works, my kid tries to finagle a later bedtime.

“Can’t I just stay up until dad gets home,” he always whines. Seeing his father before he goes to bed is important to Will, and he drives a hard bargain: “I’ll go to bed extra… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 11, 2010 12:58PM

Days like this are a gift to the unemployed

Fall1Days like today are the gods’ gift to the unemployed, for it is on days like this — days rich with light, color and texture — that those of us struggling in the wake of joblessness give thanks.

Days like this don’t come around often, and thatRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 20, 2010 1:48PM

Where do all the jobless people go?

There was a time in my life when I got every job I wanted, every single one. From scooping ice cream to waitressing to office work to writing, if I wanted the job, I got it.

I thought myself kind of special, talented for sure. It feltRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 7, 2010 7:39AM

The first day of the rest of his life


I admit it: I shed a teeny, tiny tear this morning as my only child rode his bike out of the backyard on his way to the new adventure in his life: middle school.

This morning, he actually told me he “appreciated” the breakfast I made… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 1, 2010 12:29PM

Grieving the loss of two 4-year-old boys

dominick-calhoun-02jpg-780d78450e5e3436_largePolice say 4-year-old Dominick Calhoun was tortured to death by his mother’s boyfriend in the spring. 

At the end of March, Dominick’s 25-year-old mother moved with him and his 8-year-old brother into the apartment of her boyfriend, a 24-year-old ex-con who was a couple moRead full post »

I sat outside with a cup of coffee last week, soak
ing in the early summer sun and pondering the greater meaning of the not-so-perfect perfect baseball game pitched by Detroit Tiger Armando Galarraga. For those of you unfamiliar with the baseball call heard ’round the world, Galarraga&rsquRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
MAY 18, 2010 8:54AM

Life after Newspapers: Groove is in the biscotti


Cranberry orange biscotti



I lost my newspaper job a little over a year ago. It was a job I loved, but a job that could, at times, leave my psyche stressed and my shoulders sore. Cradling a phone on one shoulder and hunching over a computer on deadline wreaks havocRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 18, 2010 6:57AM

If only my dad could see King’s dream come to life in Obama

My dad is out there, somewhere.
My dad is out there somewhere in the crowd.
As I watched the 2008 election returns, my thoughts naturally turned to my father, who died two years earlier.

“If only my dad could be here to see this,” I told my husbandRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 14, 2010 9:14AM

Growing up in the time of Viagra

viagra“Da, da, da, da-da, da-da-da,” my 10-year-old son sang the other night as he played with his Legos on the dining room table. His singing was a counterweight to detailed work, a pleasant way to add a constructive distraction to the task of building a tiny rebel spaceship out of… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 23, 2009 10:22AM

Oh, tidings of crankiness and oy

When the new year dawns, it will be nine months since I lost my job.

Nine months.

I’m moving forward, really and truly. I put one foot in front of the other every morning, and I shuffle through my days. I am busy, busier than I ever felt whenRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 2, 2009 9:09AM

Afghanistan, war and 10-year-old boys

On the night before President Obama’s speech at West Point, my 10-year-old son, Will, padded downstairs long after he should have been asleep.

“What’s the matter,” I asked as he sat beside me on the couch.

“I keep having bad dreams,” he said. “I dreaRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 19, 2009 2:04PM

‘Hit the Bitch’: Has an anti-violence campaign gone too far?

It’s hard to believe anyone would think an online game in which you must hit a woman repeatedly until she’s lying on the floor, bloodied and in tears, is a good way to teach that violence is wrong.

But that’s theRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 11, 2009 3:04PM

Springsteen robbed of spot on NPR's 50 Great Voices list

images-3Bruce Springsteen got snubbed. So did Bonnie Raitt, Elvis Costello, Elton John, Patti Smith, Nancy Wilson, Helen O'Connell, Tom Petty and Grace Slick.

These amazing artists didn't make the final list of nominees for National Public Radio's project to explore what listeners and music experts… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 10, 2009 9:55AM

Keeping migraines off the menu

After scrubbing up like a surgeon and donning an old apron to protect his clothes, my 10-year-old son is ready for action. He’s pounded the chicken and beaten the eggs and he’s ignited the gas stove with a little help from me.

He’s ready to cook.

Me? I’m enjoyingRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 29, 2009 10:23AM

Lessons of Halloweens past

Will, then 2, follows his Poppy on Halloween Night, 2001.I sat at the dining room table, stitching together the King Tut toga I had promised my kid for Halloween, when I burst into tears.

We bought the Egyptian pharaoh hat at the King Tut exhibit in Indianapolis this summer on one condition: that it be Will's Halloween… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 19, 2009 11:04AM

Life after newspapers: My new job

I found myself having to explain to my son the difference between being “fired” and being “laid off” after I lost my job on April Fools Day. (Some corporate overlord has an ironic sense of humor, eh?)

“You get fired for doing a bad job,” I told him. “Don&rsqRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 21, 2009 4:11PM

How John Edwards spoiled the Dave Matthews Band for me

There isn’t enough room to keep a lot of CDs in my car, so I rotate them in and out. My musical whims are like Michigan’s mercurial weather: they change from moment to moment, mood to mood.

Whimages-5en I was purging my household for my annualRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 6, 2009 9:43AM

Life after newspapers: On the public dole

These past few days have been mostly dedicated to getting ready for my yard sale, the culmination of the purge of my household. Surrounded by stacks of things to be tagged and sold, I had to take time out to file for unemployment.

I’ve been laid off from my newspaper job since… Read full post »