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The Boston Globe


A young couple caught up in the middle

Randy and Jessica Wood didn’t want it all, just for the old American equation of hard work and opportunity to work for them as it had for generations. But, as for so many, the good life remains just out of reach.

NORTH ANDOVER — The fenced backyard is a bounty of suburban splendor – wisteria-shaded arbor, Weber grill, a 16-by-32-foot swimming pool. “They’re ready,” ­Jessica Wood calls as she sets a platter of strawberry soy milk smoothies in plastic tumblers on the patio table.

In the mind of her 4-year-old, the moment calls not for refreshments but for whacking his sister with a pool noodle.

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