• 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 resident 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”
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