Archives

  • …Family Abroad
    From my travel journal, August 7, 2007, Tel Aviv, Israel “Will get together with Zev and Zohara again on Thursday…will be nice to meet more of the family then, such good people…“ On our third night in Israel, we found Zev and Zohara, standing among the grave stones in the old section of the SegulaContinue reading “…Family Abroad”
  • Connecting With…
    Why is it that whenever a family member gets a whiff of a trip you’re taking – any trip – they feel compelled to give you the name of a long lost relative they want you to look up and meet?  It doesn’t matter if it’s your third cousin’s aunt once removed from the familyContinue reading “Connecting With…”
  • …Has its Rewards
    Day One of our weeklong stay at the retreat in Devon was a “light” day, mainly due to the Health and Fitness Assessments that took three hours to complete. However every day after began at precisely 5:45 a.m. It’s then we’d be awakened by a way too loud bell ringing three times, accompanied by JulieContinue reading “…Has its Rewards”
  • Changing Expectations…
    From my journal: March 23, 2009 London, England “Just received an email from someone with the initials JB…? It didn’t ring a bell at first…turns out it was from Julie from Devon!” After reading the email twice, it all came back to me…ah, that week in October of 2008. Overworked and needing some time away,Continue reading “Changing Expectations…”
  • Slurps Up!
    You’d recognize it easily by its sound, maybe even before it’s appearance, or it’s taste.  Born by “happy accident,” it was created by Omar Knedlik in the 1960s when one of his soda fountains broke and he had to save his sodas by storing them in a freezer. The result?  An icy cool drink peopleContinue reading “Slurps Up!”
  • A Special Summer Place
    The excitement would start to build about a week after school let out. By then, we had all adjusted to a new routine. Easy mornings in our pjs, my older brother, sister, and I would gather in the kitchen and play eenie, meenie, miney, moe with the mini Kelloggs cereal boxes on the counter. OnceContinue reading “A Special Summer Place”
  • Be Heard
    I met all the requirements. I had to be: at least 18 years old, a U.S. citizen, and have a valid CA driver’s license.  I had to be:  flexible, positive, and on time. I also had to be able to: follow directions, handle and resolve situations as they arose, and have a keen eye forContinue reading “Be Heard”
  • All Hail to the Squash
    First rooted in Italian soil, it made its way to America in the 1920s.  Cylindrical in shape, its firm glossy skin is often streaked green and yellow making it look striped. Mild in flavor, its soft and tender flesh can taste slightly sweet to lightly bitter.  I am definitely a fan, and what I likeContinue reading “All Hail to the Squash”
  • Color My World
    Yellow, blue, green, and pink, have each been my favorite color at one time or another. Yellow reminds me of a smile, like the smiley face first popular in the ’60s.  It also makes me think of sunshine and honey.  Blue brings to mind the vast sky, oceans, and blueberries.  When I think of green,Continue reading “Color My World”
  • Sew Much Fun!
    It was made of a white sheer cotton fabric embellished with small dots known as Swiss dot.  It had a rounded Peter Pan collar, short puffy sleeves, and a sash waist that tied prettily in a bow at the back.  This A-line dress was tea-length, skimming my legs mid-calf. A plastic tiara with attached veil,Continue reading “Sew Much Fun!”
  • Critical Questions
    It was Tuesday, April 20, 1999, when I was wrapping up my field experience at Four Peaks Elementary School in Fountain Hills, Arizona.  I had just met with my mentor teacher, Mrs. G. and was excited about this moment because it meant I was nearer to finishing my Post-Bac degree in Elementary Education, and IContinue reading “Critical Questions”
  • Wise Words
    The other day I was looking through a pile of notebooks, journals, and assorted magazines, searching for some inspiration. Something to spark new ideas, something to make me want to pull out my paints, inks, and markers. Funny enough, what I found was a handwritten list sandwiched between pages of a long ago purchased artContinue reading “Wise Words”
  • Tossed, Composed or Bound?
    I had never heard of the Association for Dressings and Sauces, nor that they’ve been around since 1929. I was also unaware of their annual conferences in which attendees discuss topics such as: “No Two Acidulants are the Same”, “Sensory Science and Flavors” and the wildly popular “Natural Preservatives: A Peek Behind the Curtain”.  ButContinue reading “Tossed, Composed or Bound?”
  • Your Next Stop
    Shot in black and white, the 156 episodes were written, narrated, and produced by a man who used ideas inspired from his dreams, and news events from the 1960s to create them.  Unique to this series are the genres the episodes were based on. Science fiction, fantasy, horror, suspense, psychological thriller with a little darkContinue reading “Your Next Stop”
  • Lessons in Learning
    When I was teaching, May was one of my favorite times of year. It’s when there was a short breather before sprinting to the finish line and wrapping up the year with a big bright bow. It was right after spring break when we were assessing our students, taking pleasure in their progress. It wasContinue reading “Lessons in Learning”
  • It’s Good For You
    Scrolling through a list of programs and movies streaming on Amazon Prime recently, we were looking for something lighthearted and humorous to view. That’s when a Canadian version of a show called “Last One Laughing” appeared. Have you heard of it? First off, the name alone made me smile. I mean it’s initials are LOL!Continue reading “It’s Good For You”
  • A Breath of Fresh Air
    I have nine magazine subscriptions.  When my hard copies arrive, I put on the kettle, gather them up, and plunk myself down in my retro teal twill swivel chair and get ready for a Peruse Fest!  After I flip through the pages, I make a note of articles I want to read in further detailContinue reading “A Breath of Fresh Air”
  • Playing with Others
    It was a case of you don’t know, what you don’t know, until you know. I was aware maybe the fourth time we gathered around the glass table in their Tustin backyard under the pergola, sitting in aluminum chairs tucked in close.  All materials lay before us just waiting for the challenge to begin.  TheContinue reading “Playing with Others”
  • The Soundtrack of My Life
    From my journal: May 21, 1988 Redondo Beach, California “Heard “I Want to Hold Your Hand” on K Earth 101 this morning…I couldn’t help but smile…” Songs are powerful.  They can transport us to a time and place when we first heard a particular song, or they can bring up memories of an event, fillingContinue reading “The Soundtrack of My Life”
  • There’s a Holiday for That
    From my journal: December 21, 2001 Thousand Oaks, California “Never went to work in my pjs before!  Pajama Day at school was fun!  Wearing pjs made the day very relaxing.” There are many things I miss about teaching; the students, creating new ways to teach the same subject, and the sense of community.  I alsoContinue reading “There’s a Holiday for That”
  • Art in Crafts?
    I’m seeing myself in a whole new light these days, as I recently learned that all the time my family and friends complimented me on being artsy, they really should have been referring to me as craftsy.  This notion has been bothering me, but I’m not sure why. I mean, is being an “Artist” moreContinue reading “Art in Crafts?”
  • Waiting Just Outside
    Thinly slicing sweet Fuji apples to bake on parchment-lined trays recently, I happened to glance out our kitchen windows into our backyard. There before me I saw an amazing flurry of activity. A breeze was ruffling the pale triangular jagged-edged leaves on the limbs of our white birch trees. A pencil-sized bumpy gray lizard layContinue reading “Waiting Just Outside”
  • Here’s to Women!
    From my journal: March 6, 1986 Redondo Beach, California “Wish I could see her more often and that we lived closer. She’s so down-to-earth, fun to be around, honest, humorous and expressive…Three thousand miles is a very long way away.” Although I wrote that about my mom more than 35 years ago, I still feelContinue reading “Here’s to Women!”
  • How Do You Spell Fun?
    I love a good challenge.  And when I learned this one involved words, I was intrigued. And when I found out you get multiple tries to win, I was ready to start! As I brought up the app on my phone, I was feeling confident.  How could I not win at this game? Afterall, IContinue reading “How Do You Spell Fun?”
  • A Presidential Visit
    While I had visited several times when I taught 5th grade, my first trip there “sans students” was just three weeks ago.  My brother, Ray and his wife, Meghan were in town and when she suggested this outing, I was thrilled!  Located about 14 miles northeast of our home in Newbury Park, it took usContinue reading “A Presidential Visit”
  • My Happy Place
    My earliest memory of visiting on my own, happened on a frigid blustery weekday afternoon in January, just after I turned eleven. With books in my knapsack, my blue puffy parka zipped to my chin, red stocking hat with a pompom on my head, matching mittens on my hands, and brown rubber boots on myContinue reading “My Happy Place”
  • Just to Say Hi
    When was the last time you went to your mailbox, not your email inbox, but the physical one most likely posted outside your front door, then tugged down its handle, and inside you found an envelope with your name and address handwritten in pen right there  – smack dab – in the middle of it,Continue reading “Just to Say Hi”
  • Hello Sunshine!
    Welcome Back! It makes me so happy to know that you are taking time out of your busy day to read my blog! It’s readers like you who make my digging through hundreds of journals and photos each week to find just the right topic to expand upon…you…you make it all worthwhile. To those ofContinue reading “Hello Sunshine!”
  • Never Forget
    We were in Munich to enjoy Robert’s Golden Apple Club winners trip and had one day left to explore the city before the Awards Banquet that evening and our homeward bound flight the next day.  It was early May of 1990 and we were standing outside of the Hotel Bayerischer Hof hailing a taxi toContinue reading “Never Forget”
  • A Recipe Handed Down
    As kids, we called them Padoggies. I never questioned their proper name, until I learned my dad made up words. For example, he called pajamas, naugies. I didn’t even know naugies weren’t what other people called them, that is, until I invited kids over for a Naugie Party.  Imagine that? Parents of my young friendsContinue reading “A Recipe Handed Down”
  • What I Would’ve Said
    From my journal: January 3, 2022 Newbury Park, California “I was so overwhelmed, I know I thanked people, but I don’t remember what I actually said.” Had I known this past Sunday that Robert had been planning a birthday party for me for months, I would’ve been prepared. I would’ve written a framework for aContinue reading “What I Would’ve Said”
  • Sixty Years Old
    Yesterday as I turned 60 years old, I wasn’t thinking of what people have said to me about starting my 6th decade of life, which includes some humorous, but not-so-humorous thoughts on aging, usually passed down by my slightly older, well-meaning friends and family. Things like, “It’s the beginning of the final chapters of yourContinue reading “Sixty Years Old”
  • No Respect Cake
    My sister Donna reminded me just recently, I am the only one she knows who likes what many people claim to detest and make fun of, calling it a door stop or unpalatable loaf.  I’m not so sure I even like it, but when we were young kids visiting our grandma Jadwiga over Christmas break,Continue reading “No Respect Cake”
  • Season’s Greetings 2021
    With the pandemic still lingering And our nation’s political and social unrest Our beliefs, thoughts and behaviors Have been certainly put to the test. We’ve adjusted to new ways of traveling Testing, masks and vaccinations Fortunately, we were able to get away on A few greatly cherished vacations. While all destinations were scenic Back east,Continue reading “Season’s Greetings 2021”
  • Fill in the Blanks
    I guess there are worse things to be addicted to, but in the last four years I’ve been getting up quietly around 5:30 a.m. and with slippered feet, I make my way to my studio office.  There with the plantation shutters still closed, I turn on my computer and carefully type in my Password.  WithinContinue reading “Fill in the Blanks”
  • Learning About Hanukkah
    I know from teaching that learning anything new comes with mixed emotions. Surprise, confusion and awe, as well as discomfort and even fear. I also know understanding and even appreciation come only after being immersed in whatever one is learning, over time. Uneasy and anxious is what I mostly felt, on that late December afternoon,Continue reading “Learning About Hanukkah”
  • Soup’s On!
                It’s unfortunate that I used to associate this versatile, easy to make, enjoyable any time of year, warm deliciousness, with being sick.  Maybe like me, growing up, the make-you-feel-instantly-better go-to was a bowl of Campbell’s Tomato Soup. My mom would serve it on the coffee table in our living room, while I’d lay onContinue reading “Soup’s On!”
  • Honorable Mention
    I’m not sure how long our local paper “The Acorn”, appropriately named as we live in Thousand Oaks, has held the competition, but I’ve entered it at least three times.  Each time I write and rewrite my story over and over, tweaking a word here and changing punctuation for more impact there.  I make sureContinue reading “Honorable Mention”
  • …and Thirty-Two Years Later
    We hoped our getaway to Kauai this past April would work out. It was our first travel experience since the pandemic began. This time, it wasn’t as easy as booking two tickets to paradise. To board our American Airline flight, we had to have CO-VID tests given by a specific health care provider.  Results thenContinue reading “…and Thirty-Two Years Later”
  • A Trip to Paradise, Then…
    An LA Checkered Cab idled in the driveway of our Southern California home at 7 a.m. I was in the back seat within minutes. During the half hour trek to LAX, the driver and I talked about vacations, weather and our mutual love of San Francisco. Once at Departures, I handed my overstuffed suitcase toContinue reading “A Trip to Paradise, Then…”
  • The Kindness of Strangers
    In just under five hours, we were transported from East Twickenham, a chock-a-block London surburb jammed with people, cars and noise to the sparsely populated Welsh hamlet of Tal-y-Llyn, dotted with sheep, farm equipment and birdsong. Danny, his wife, Sinead and their young daughters, Eleanor and Hannah greeted us with smiles when we knocked onContinue reading “The Kindness of Strangers”
  • First Fall Fun
    Growing up in western Massachusetts, fall was ushered in on cool chilly breezes. When the leaves on the maples were vivid hues of auburn, copper and gold we knew we were in the thick of it. There was so much to look forward to then. Especially, the first holiday of the season which we’d payContinue reading “First Fall Fun”
  • …Let the Good Times Roll
    So..if it’s called Oktoberfest, why does in start in September? Good question! You may have been wondering that too, so let me explain.  The first Oktoberfest was indeed held in October, on the 12th to be exact.  The year was 1810 when Prince Ludwig of Bavaria married Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen. (Phew! With a lastContinue reading “…Let the Good Times Roll”
  • When in Munich…
    From my journal: September 21, 2009 East Twickenham, England “Loud vibrating music, off-key singing, packed in like sardines… even dancing on tables!” This oh-so-not-my-kind-of-adventure started like any other… with Robert playing up the positives. But in this case, I wasn’t convinced there were many. Still, I heard him out. We had experienced this craziness before,Continue reading “When in Munich…”
  • Sweet Autumn
    It was usually a chilly misty Saturday morning, sometime before Halloween, when we’d drive down our street, head to West Street, turn left at the Lipton Mart Convenience Store onto Merriam Street, then right onto Housatonic Street, then left onto Barker Road driving past Friendly’s Ice Cream, then onto Swamp Road, past the Pittsfield MunicipalContinue reading “Sweet Autumn”
  • Just a Number
    From my journal: April 14, 2015 Thousand Oaks, California “When did we become the oldest people in the room? Took a rock climbing class at Boulderdash…us.. and a group of kids!” I was reminded again of our age on our most recent trip.  Aboard the Windstar, we were headed for the Greek island of SantoriniContinue reading “Just a Number”
  • Also Known As
    They’ve been around for a very long time, as far back as the early 14th century! Then they were called ekenames. Eke meaning also or in addition. At some point ekenames morphed into nekenames then became what we know as nicknames. A few that I’ve had over the years include: SharBear, Bellhead and PenWiz. FromContinue reading “Also Known As”
  • British English
    From my journal: December 10, 2007 E. Twickenham, England “Received a packet of letters from my former students…they’re now in 6th grade! How fun!  Can’t wait to read them!“ Robert had been living in London since early January of 2007.  I wanted to finish out the school year, but when spring break rolled around, IContinue reading “British English”
  • …Leads to Another
    We did end up with a few souvenirs from our trek up to Healdsburg before heading home from our long weekend in Napa.  A tee shirt for Robert and one for me. A cookbook, too. And…more. A whole lot more. Ross’s friend Johnny met us at Mugniani Imports, Inc. on Grove Street just as theyContinue reading “…Leads to Another”
  • One Thing…
    Our long weekend away started like any other. This one was just a hop, skip and jump north to Napa Valley. Our itinerary there always includes a stay at a B&B with bike trails nearby, a visit to wineries we’re members of, and a list of restaurants we’ve yet to try. This time we alsoContinue reading “One Thing…”
  • Diving Rules
    From my journal: December15, 1993 written from Barbados “Slept off and on…reread the instructions in my diving book…hope all goes well today.” The sun had been up at hour when Robert and I were on Route 1 again. Just past Bridgetown we found The Dive Shop Ltd. at the bottom of Carlisle Bay. This wouldContinue reading “Diving Rules”
  • Island Rules
    It was just after sunset when we arrived in St. Peter’s parish on the northern side of the petite pear-shaped island, about 1600 miles southeast of Miami. Known for its soft tropical weather, this independent British Commonwealth nation boasts 3,000 hours of sunshine each year, long stretches of white sand beaches and sparkling clear bays.Continue reading “Island Rules”
  • Strangely Familiar
    From my journal: July 26, 2011 writing from Copenhagen, Denmark  “At the Library Bar tonight… dark wood, leather chairs and books, books and more books!  And that plaid carpet…just love it! Only one more day here.” On the last leg of our Western European trip, we were enjoying our final days in Copenhagen, Denmark. AfterContinue reading “Strangely Familiar”
  • Let Him Eat Cake
    From my journal: August 7, 2008 East Twickenham, England “Went to St. Margaret’s tonight to toast to Robert’s birthday although it’s officially tomorrow…bought him a Harley tee. Asked if there’s anything special he wanted for dinner. He said an angel food cake – yikes!!” Living as ex-pats at the time, I panicked at Robert’s requestContinue reading “Let Him Eat Cake”
  • Bringing Out the Best
    Not wanting to make the same mistake twice, from the second night on, binoculars dangled from one of our necks anytime we left our hotel room.  Our fourth night out, we were back at the Olympic Saddledome. There we watched as The Soviet Union crushed Czechoslovakia in ice hockey.  The final score 6-1. It wasContinue reading “Bringing Out the Best”
  • In the Olympic Spirit
    From my journal: February 15, 1988 Redondo Beach, California “In two days we leave for Calgary to see the XV Winter Olympics!….Can’t wait!” We arrived at the Calgary International Airport on the fourth day of the 1988 Winter Olympics and were bussed into the city center with a dozen of other Apple Computer folks, whoContinue reading “In the Olympic Spirit”
  • Suits Me to a Tea
    I can count at least twelve brands and twenty-nine varieties of Camellia Sinensis and tisanes in our pantry right now. Why so many?  Why not?  Each kind is unique and offers a different experience. Whether it be Oolong, Rooibos, Puerh, Green, Black or White… the square, round or pyramid shaped fiber filled sachet packed withContinue reading “Suits Me to a Tea”
  • A Restless Evening
    We moved to Rolling Hills Estates, a city located about 20 miles southwest of Los Angeles in the spring of 1993. Feeling overwhelmed, this was our fourth residence in just three years. We initially chose this area for it’s location to work and family. With the exception of the proliferation of squawking peacocks, it turnedContinue reading “A Restless Evening”
  • Just As it Should Be
    There’s really only one thing to do when you make a wrong turn and end up going in a direction not intended….and that is stop…and turn around.  Sometimes, however, it is easier said than done.  Pulling a U-ie, my dad gave the rotary another try. Then, another. My mom snapped off the radio just asContinue reading “Just As it Should Be”
  • Summer Fun
    School had just let out for the summer.  I had nothing to worry about and nothing to do. Because ten, yes ten glorious weeks of “Saturdays” lay ahead. With the exception of just one. From my diary entry June 22, 1973 Pittsfield, Massachusetts “We’re going to the Cape to see Uncle Jimmy and Aunt Bev…can’tContinue reading “Summer Fun”
  • Remembering Dad
    I knew something was wrong as soon as we pulled up in front of my brother-in-law and sister-in-law’s house and parked at the curb.  Normally our niece and nephew would fly out the front door and run over the grassy front lawn to greet us. This time it was their mom who stood there onContinue reading “Remembering Dad”
  • Dog Gone
    It was our second Sunday there. Just eight days earlier, moving vans deposited our belongings into a two-story white painted house on a quiet cul-de-sac in the Silicon Valley. Our third move in less than two years, we felt like pros.  Our furniture was arranged, our clothing and wares were put away. Even the boxes thatContinue reading “Dog Gone”
  • A Remembrance
    From my journal: May 27, 1994 Rolling Hills Estates, California “Looking forward to the long weekend…will be going to Ella & Ralph’s for a cookout.”             I have to admit that in the past I was always happy when Memorial Day rolled around. But… it was more about having the day off, getting together withContinue reading “A Remembrance”
  • The Next Steps
    Our initial meeting included our match specialist, her mom, and grandmother. Wearing cowboy boots, jeans and a spunky attitude, my Little Sister answered questions easily.  A scientist or race car driver is what she wanted to be. And her all-time favorite animal? A cat!  Really?  One criterion for matches is common interests.  So I’d haveContinue reading “The Next Steps”
  • The First Steps
    The application was daunting.  Eight pages of questions.  Some were basic such as name and address, while others called for some thought, like: “What are you afraid of?” I could’ve answered “clowns” or with a more philosophical response, “Not living up to my full potential”. Which type of reply were they looking for? What wouldContinue reading “The First Steps”
  • Keep Moving Forward
    From my journal: July 19, 2020 Thousand Oaks, CA “Feels surreal, like being in the movie“Ground Hog’s Day”…when can we stop worrying so much?” Only four months into the pandemic I, like everyone else in the world, was wondering when life would return to “normal”. Anxious and fatigued, the hours seemed to meld into daysContinue reading “Keep Moving Forward”
  • A Tribute to Moms Everywhere
    Way back in Ancient times, the Greeks and Romans were on to something when they held festivals to pay homage to their goddesses of motherhood, Cybele and Rhea. These annual spring get togethers included food, dancing and singing. The French call it “Fetes Des Meres” and set aside the fourth Sunday in May as theirContinue reading “A Tribute to Moms Everywhere”
  • Unexpected Visitors
    From my vacation notebook: May 21, 1984 Moorea, Tahiti, French Polynesia “Off to find the “cascades”…our waiter told us that it is a secluded place only the locals know about…can’t wait!” We had driven from Haapiti to Afareaitu and followed the directions exactly as they were written down. Did we miss something, we wondered asContinue reading “Unexpected Visitors”
  • Express Yourself
    Standing in front of 20 other 6th graders in Room 8 without notes, I took a deep breath and began repeating aloud the words I memorized while trying to convey just the right mood, tone and meaning of Robert Frost’s classic poem.  After each stanza, I reminded myself to pause for a beat.  I thoughtContinue reading “Express Yourself”
  • Keep in Touch
    First, I’d like to thank…Persian Queen Atossa!  According to the historian Hellanicus you were the first – so Mamnoon to you!  Second, I’d like to give a shout out to Benjamin Franklin whose efforts cut the travel time in half, so Ben I’m sending a mighty – Thank Ye! And cheers to my mom whoContinue reading “Keep in Touch”
  • One Potato, Two Potato….
    At first glance there was no indication we were in the right place.  But when we walked through the main door we saw a poster hanging from the ceiling. On it was the image that first enticed me to choose this particular museum to visit and there it was…in all its glory…the “hot potato” welcomingContinue reading “One Potato, Two Potato….”
  • For the Love of Spuds
    From my journal: September 18, 2009 London, England “Off to Munich next week…we’ll be there for just a few days this time…want to find something a little different to do or see…” There’s always something new to explore no matter how many times you’ve visited a place.  Looking for suggestions, I began with our muchContinue reading “For the Love of Spuds”
  • Words on Folded Pages
    The first letter arrived in our mailbox in early July of 1973.  Smiling, my mom handed me the envelope. I don’t know who was more excited or relieved, me or her.  Sometimes adults get busy and can’t find the time to write, she said. And although I wanted to believe him when he said he’dContinue reading “Words on Folded Pages”
  • We Can Do Anything
    If you’re an owner of a stocky bodied, flat snouted, roll around in the mud animal, this is your month to celebrate. Fans of the edible marshland plant high in fiber that adds a crunch to salads will also have cause to jump for joy now. It’s March. The month that honors National Pig Day,Continue reading “We Can Do Anything”
  • Below the Surface
    A few reasons considered “good” were: to experience a sense of absolute freedom, to become more in tune with nature and to interact with marine life. The one answer Mike stressed was NOT a good reason – to overcome the fear of water.  After our instructor tossed that out to our group sitting in aContinue reading “Below the Surface”
  • What’s There to Be Afraid of?
    Coulrophobia, Veloxrotaphobia and Aquaphobia have been three of my greatest fears! Only one, I’ve successfully overcome.  And ironically, all of these aversions began in childhood. That happy, care-free, no-stress time of life when the sun seemed to shine on us, despite the actual weather, every single moment of each and every day. I like toContinue reading “What’s There to Be Afraid of?”
  • The Long and the Short of It
    Sitting in the styling chair staring at my face in the mirror, my thin wavy auburn hair was parted in the middle and hung down to my shoulders. Standing behind me was my brother’s friend’s older sister. “Who do you want to look like?” she asked.  Laura was a hairdresser who worked in a beautyContinue reading “The Long and the Short of It”
  • A Lesson in History
    From my journal: February 4, 2016, Newbury Park, CA “Lee’s mom called and asked if she could come in and talk to our class this month…will be great for what we’re studying.” Never hesitant about parents coming in to speak to students, I was happy that I could work her presentation into our Social StudiesContinue reading “A Lesson in History”
  • The Big One
    Which sports game took place on Sunday, January 15, 1967 at 1:00 pm at the LA Coliseum in Los Angeles, California?  If you said the AFL – NFL Championship football game, you’d be correct!  Now known as the Super Bowl, the name was suggested by the late Kansas City Chiefs owner, Lamar Hunt. Although CommissionerContinue reading “The Big One”
  • Helping Hands
    Newsletter Writer, Youth Mentor, Art Creator Assistant, Beautification Committee Worker, and Things to Do Researcher are just some of the titles I’ve held in my spare time.  What started as a “Need to Do” as a teenager, has become a “Love to Do” since then. Not old enough to apply for a paying job atContinue reading “Helping Hands”
  • Hope and Unity
    Although I have yet to attend one in Washington, DC, I am a faithful follower.  Every four years after an election, I am tuned in on January 20th to witness the events unfold before me. I’ve now seen 11 Inaugurations and am still amazed by them.  Whether it be a Democrat or Republican who officiallyContinue reading “Hope and Unity”
  • Fits Him to a Tee
    My journal entry April 5, 2012, Thousand Oaks, California. “I don’t know why it bothers me so much that Robert has so many tee shirts.  I guess it’s because I can’t stuff anymore into his drawers…(ha!).” I’m not much of a tee shirt person, but over the past year I’ve acquired four.  Soft and colorfulContinue reading “Fits Him to a Tee”
  • Still Learning
    After decades of making the same new year’s resolutions – “cut out all carbs, lose five pounds, moisturize daily” –  I’ve decided to begin each year instead by learning something new. Sometimes it’s something I’ve never tried before and sometime’s its something I want to learn more about. Several years ago it was training withContinue reading “Still Learning”
  • The Things We Keep
    New Year’s Day signifies the beginning of a brand new year.  For us, it also means taking down our holiday decorations and stowing them all away. The red and blue woolen Christmas stockings embroidered with our names in gold that we bought our first holiday together, Robert’s silver menorah his parents gave him when heContinue reading “The Things We Keep”
  • Good-bye, Hello
    As this New Year’s Eve approaches, I’m doing what I always do. I’m thinking about what has happened this year, to me personally, in the lives of our family and friends, and also what has been going on in our country and world. I usually feel a sense of relief on December 31st as theContinue reading “Good-bye, Hello”
  • Happy Holidays 2020
    This year has felt like a lifetime With more challenges yet to come Perhaps the worst is now behind us As we strive to become one. Robert finally left the workplace With plans to golf, see people and roam Two weeks after he retired Came the order to Stay-At-Home. With so much time on hisContinue reading “Happy Holidays 2020”
  • A Hanukkah Gift for Christmas
    Growing up, Christmas was magical. It was that one time of year, besides our birthdays, that we were given a few presents and we were assured that we’d get that “one” gift we really really really wanted. When I was 9 years old that gift was a pair of white figure skates and it wasContinue reading “A Hanukkah Gift for Christmas”
  • Sending a Little Cheer
    The last twenty! 103..and counting! In an assembly line, I laid out my boxes, poems to include, colored pens, return address labels, address book (yes, I still have one!) and stamps. That was three days ago. Using our dining room table, I spread the items out in preparation for one tradition that I truly enjoyContinue reading “Sending a Little Cheer”
  • The Same, But Different
    This Thanksgiving was unlike any other.  What was different was that we stayed at home.  We gathered online with family on Thursday.  Perhaps the same was true for you.  Zoom has become the backdrop to many of our get togethers since March. What was the same this Thanksgiving was pretty much everything else.  Robert andContinue reading “The Same, But Different”
  • Around Our Table
    Thanksgiving Day table setting in our London flat My favorite holiday is just days away! When this week comes along, I always reflect on what I am grateful for. At the top of the list is our families and friends. I am also reminded of past Thanksgiving Day celebrations.  A few of my favorites areContinue reading “Around Our Table”
  • A Responsibility
    I have voted in 10 presidential elections since my first in 1980.  While I thought of voting as a right, even a privilege, I didn’t think of it as a responsibility until I heard my mom say, “You can’t complain about who is elected, unless you voted.” In the United States, we are so fortunateContinue reading “A Responsibility”
  • The Right to Vote
    The year was 1980 and the candidates vying for the Presidency of the United States were the Incumbent, Democrat Jimmy Carter from Georgia, Republican Ronald Reagan from California and Illinois Independent John B. Anderson. At the time, I was a sophomore in college and just the thought of being able to vote made me feelContinue reading “The Right to Vote”
  • Things to Do and Places to See
    North Street in downtown Pittsfield, Massachusetts Like any travel article, Things to Do and Places to See were listed in that particular article I read so long ago. I was puzzled because I didn’t consider the things mentioned as special.  Hiking at Monument Mountain in Great Barrington, touring the Normal Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, andContinue reading “Things to Do and Places to See”
  • Where It All Began
    My childhood home The first time I read about “The Berkshires” as a vacation spot, I was sitting in a doctor’s office in Southern California flipping through a magazine. Surprised at the familiar pictures, it was the first place I had ever known. It’s where I went to school K-12, where the neighborhood kids wereContinue reading “Where It All Began”
  • A Journal Journey
    Read my weekly blog.
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