Things That Helped Ease 2020

The year 2020 will go down in history as a tough one for so many people. It seems like everyone I meet has a difficult story. Some people have lost jobs. Others have lost loved ones. Still others live alone and feel the loneliness and lack of in-person contact, while some people working at homeContinue reading “Things That Helped Ease 2020”

A year of doing nothing

People have experienced so many losses this year: Huge losses, including jobs, loved ones and lives, and things such as gatherings, hugs and routines. Some people appear to have weathered quarantines and shelter-in-place orders by learning new languages, training for marathons and purchasing puppies. But those of you who found yourselves looking for a reasonContinue reading “A year of doing nothing”

Cutting back to grow

Many fruit and vegetable plants become more productive with pruning. This seems counterintuitive. How do you get more produce with less plant? The secret: Plants left to their own devices will continue to grow shoots and leaves and stems, but they won’t produce as many fruits and vegetables. They grow, yes, but it isn’t productive growth.

Dear Younger Me

Dear Younger Me, I am standing outside the apartment building in Washington, D.C., where you lived 27 years ago. You had just turned 25, and you were young and married and looking for your first job. You had been working in D.C. for about nine months, in internship positions. You had two cats in theContinue reading “Dear Younger Me”

The Tree

Every now and then when I am outdoors walking down a random path, a branch will catch my eye and remind me of my Tree. I haven’t seen this particular tree in almost 45 years. I remember few things about the catastrophic illness that nearly took my life, and it is possible that the treeContinue reading “The Tree”

2018: A year of questions

“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.” — Zora Neale Hurston For me, 2018 has been a year that asked a lot of questions. My husband Curt and I changed jobs, moved across the country, lost his father to a stroke and said goodbye to two beloved pets. We joke that theContinue reading “2018: A year of questions”

A moving story

When you move, you shed things. Furniture, clothes, dishes, weight. Knick-knacks you’ve kept but don’t remember why. That souvenir that seemed so important at the time, but you haven’t looked at since. Books you have read and know you will never read again. When you move, you find things. Old report cards. Fourth grade artContinue reading “A moving story”

Rescue

She was found wandering the streets of Gainesville. She had probably been on the lam for months. More than half-starved, she was also pregnant, the babies eating her alive as she unsuccessfully sought food. Someone brought her into the shelter and the veterinarians did a hysterectomy to save her life. That’s what they told usContinue reading “Rescue”

Mentors can teach hard lessons

I pick up the phone and a voice takes me back, three months before to a sunny day on a lake in northern Idaho. On that day, a group of graduate students and I, the lowly undergraduate, had meandered up winding roads to an A-frame summer house in the woods owned by Jim and hisContinue reading “Mentors can teach hard lessons”