Barbara Kantrowitz

Beating The Clock

FAMILY-FRIENDLY EMPLOYERS AND changes in public policy can help ease the household-stress overload, but individual ingenuity is still the critical survival skill for two-career families in the 1990s. "There's no such thing as routine parenting anymore," says Bennett L.

Off To A Good Start

Science confirms what wise parents have long known: kids need lots of time and attention IT IS A MOMENT YOU never forget--the first time you hold your baby in your arms.

Modem Moms

SO THE 2-YEAR-OLD THROWS A zillion-decibel tantrum in the supermarket, the 4-year-old refuses to go to bed before midnight and the 6-year-old redecorates the living room in a peanut-butter-and-jelly motif.

Gay Families Come Out

THERE WERE MOMENTS IN Claire's childhood that seemed to call for a little... ingenuity. Like when friends came over. How could she explain the presence of Dorothy, the woman who moved into her Chicago home after Claire's dad left?

A Woman Of The World

AT THE WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENTS' dinner in 1993, Barbra Streisand was seated next to Pamela Harriman, the U.S. ambassador to France. Streisand asked Harriman the question surely on the minds of many women in the room: ""What's your secret?'' In Reflected Glory (559 pages.

The Jargon Jungle

IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR WHEN DAZED and confused parents of school-age children try to find their way through the jargon jungle. Portfolio assessment, critical thinking, multiple learning styles, metacognitive skills, whole language--after a few classroom conferences, parents must begin to wonder whether some of these teachers ever speak standard English.

Standing Room Only

IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN A DAY FILLED with promise; instead, Jose Barahona was full of frustration as he waited with his daughter Elizabeth in the auditorium of PS 149 in Queens, N.Y.

Gifts For The Digitally Aware

ARE THE HOLIDAYS GIVING you the urge to finally chart that family tree? Remap the vegetable garden? Send out some slick New Year's party invitations? Maybe even make your own stack of 150 Christmas cards? (Well, OK, you can skip the cards.) Whatever your creative impulse, Visio Home 3.0 can probably make the job more fun though not necessarily more sophisticated, given the coloringbook tone of some of the images.

Tinkerer's Paradise

A major problem with translating books into CD-ROM format it that some stories are best told in print; the electronic versions just look silly. Fortunately, that's not the case with the Dorling Kindersley version of David Macauley's popular "The Way Things Work." The disc, like the book, is an explanation of dozens of machines and inventions.

Browser Buys

ANYONE WHO'S HAD THE luxury of full Internet access knows the World-Wide Web is great browsing territory. But for those who want to wander the Web and don't yet have access through a SLIP or PPP connection, there's now another way in: it's SlipKnot, a shareware browser ($29.95) that lets you do almost everything Netscape and NCSA Mosaic do-just at a slightly slower speed. (For information, send a blank e-mail message to slipknot@micromind .Corn).

Deck The (Virtual) Halls

Dear Santa: For Christmas, I would like (1) some money to give to charity, (2) a Christmas tree that won't shed all its needles by New Year's, (3) a rough idea of what Rudolph likes to snack on, (4) an instant response to this letter.

In Search Of The Sacred

Rita McClain's spiritual journey began in Iowa, where she grew up in the fundamentalist world of the Pentecostal Church. What she remembers most about that time are tent meetings and an overwhelming feeling of guilt.

Calling All Couch Potatoes

NICK WEST, a researcher at New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program, produces a public-access show, which he says is "interactive television for Joe or Jane Six pack." All you need is cable TV and a phone. "Yorb: The Electronic Neighborhood" (Thursday at 11 p.m.

Virtual Votes

REAL-TIME Politics are coming soon to an Internet node near you. From now until the Nov. 8 election, political junkies can follow California gubernatorial, Senate and other statewide races from World-Wide Web and Gopher servers at Digital Equipment Corp.

Meet Mr. Simcity

An earthquake tears the ground asunder. Torrents of water flood the streets. Fires race from block to block. It's a full-fledged disaster -- the kind of calamity only SimCity fans could love.

Colorless, Odorless And Deadly

By the look of the room, Vitas Gerulaitis never knew he was in danger. When a maid discovered the 40-year-old former tennis star's body lying on the bed last week in a poolside bungalow in Southampton Village, N.Y., the television was still on.

Dirty Dancing

Fasting and dancing until the vision is altered and the body weak -- that's a ceremony. But when 27 Native American dancers at last month's Gibson Sun Dance in Idaho fell ill with vomiting, lung disorders and blackouts, tribal leaders ended the three-day rite early.

War Games

Although U.S. diplomats say a Haitian invasion appears likely, Gen. Raoul Cedras, the leader of Haiti's military junta, apparently still thinks he can make Bill Clinton back down.

Big Crystal

The world's largest rhodochrosite crystal -- so valuable it's been nicknamed the Mona Lisa of crystals -- has been uncovered in a mine in Colorado. A slew of museums, including the Smithsonian, want it, but the man who found the rock has made a deal for it to go on display at the Denver Museum of Natural History.

Negotiations Edition

Labor Day has the CW in the mood for productive negotiations--but the world isn't always obliging. If the IRA and the PLO can make peace, why can't the baseball owners?

Summer Recess Edition

Health care put on hold, much to the relief of an anxious CW. But Bill did a lot of other bills through, didn't he? So give him a break and let him stop laboring on the Vineyard.

Long Distance E-Mail

One of the most exciting THINGS ABOUT THE INTERNET is that it allows people in remote locations to keep in touch. Consider Coast Guard Cmdr. Mike Powers, who is stationed on the USCGC Polar Sea in the Arctic Ocean.

Jump Right In

EEEEEW! Thanks to the folks at the University of Virginia's Instructional Technology program, you can relive high-school biology class via the Interactive Frog Dissection on-line tutorial.

New Message

The Clinton administration may be preoccupied with Cuba, but this week it will send an unmistakable signal to Haiti's military leaders. Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott and Deputy Secretary of Defense John Deutch plan to fly to Jamaica Tuesday to meet with Caribbean leaders.

On A (Bed) Roll

Who knew that truckers needed anything more than hot coffee and bad chili to keep them happy? Facing a chronic shortage of drivers willing to bunk on the road for weeks at a time, major trucking companies have borrowed a solution from independent drivers: bring the comforts of home along.

All In A Name

EARLIER THIS YEAR, THE ANIMOSITY between the nation's largest standardized-test-preparation companies Stanley Kaplan (owned by NEWSWEEK'S parent company, The Washington Post) and The Princeton Review hit a new low.