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Birthday Reflections through the Years

Spoiler alert: Today’s blog is one of the Stroll-Down-Memory-Lane ones that evokes the song, “Sunrise, Sunset,” from Fiddler on the Roof. It has to do with milestone birthdays. Like 13, when you become a teenager, and 20, when you stop being one. Like 16, when you can get your driver’s license, and 21, when you’re officially and legally an adult. And then, before you know it, you start getting mail from AARP and Senior Living facilities, and all of a sudden your Medicare card comes [...]

Problems go beyond the pale

Their hair and eyebrows are pale yellow or platinum blond. Their skin is whiter than mine, although they are African and their parents and other relatives have black hair and skin. They are albinos, and several hundred of them live in the Nakivale Refugee Settlement in southern Uganda. We visited with many of them during my recent trip to Uganda, and most of what I learned about them is heartbreaking. As you might guess, they have problems protecting their skin from the hot African sun. [...]

By |June 1st, 2018|Columns, Family, Making a Difference, Travel, Uganda|0 Comments

It’s planting time in Georgia

I know it isn’t like this yet in all parts of the country, but here in Georgia everything’s turning lush and green. The weather isn’t as warm as it should be by now, but it’s been warm enough for me to get outside, start cleaning out the herb garden, and filling planters with potting soil and baby plants that will decorate the deck and – hopefully – give me a bounty of produce later in the season. I don’t have a green thumb, and am [...]

By |April 13th, 2018|Columns, Family|0 Comments

A road trip brings a new train of thought

106. That’s the number of railway cars there were in the freight train we got stopped by during a recent two-day drive to Chicago. We arrived too early to check into the hotel where we were spending the first night, so we drove around for a bit. It was a small town, much like the one I grew up in, and it took us only a few minutes driving down Main Street to get to the edge of town. We enjoyed noting the various types [...]

By |April 6th, 2018|Columns, Family, Travel, Values|2 Comments

A simple solution to a Christmas dilemma

I was on the treadmill at the health club the other day. Two women near me were talking about their holiday plans and preparations. One of them was going through the list of people she still needed to buy gifts for, and saying how difficult it was to figure out what to buy for her young nieces and nephews. Plus, she had to ship some of the gifts, and she wasn’t looking forward to standing in line at the post office. “That’s why Thanksgiving is [...]

By |December 22nd, 2017|Columns, Faith, Family, Holidays, Values|0 Comments

It’s Christmas Cookie Time

I’ll be spending much of this weekend on one of my favorite activities of the holiday season: baking Christmas cookies. The tradition goes back to one of my fondest childhood memories – being in the kitchen with my mom and sisters, rolling out the dough, then cutting, baking, frosting, and decorating the cookies. And eating them, of course. I don’t do cutout cookies anymore. I don’t have the patience for all that work, although I have no problem spending hours at a time in the [...]

By |December 15th, 2017|Columns, Family, Holidays|0 Comments

Practice gratitude every day

For all those who are celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday this weekend, I hope you’ve been having a wonderful time with family and friends, and that you have taken the time to recognize and acknowledge the many things in your life for which you are thankful. Gratitude is not something to be acknowledged on just one day or weekend during the year, of course. So I hope you will also take this opportunity to begin, right now, a practice of expressing gratitude every day – to [...]

By |November 24th, 2017|Columns, Faith, Family, Holidays, Values|0 Comments

A glimpse of heaven

“This must be what heaven is like.” It was in the middle of our book club meeting that one of our members made this comment. She wasn’t actually talking about our book club – although I certainly consider it heavenly to spend an afternoon or evening in thoughtful conversation with people whose company I enjoy and whose opinions I respect. However, her comment related to an excursion with an elderly relative. At one point during our meeting, our discussion led into stories about caring for [...]

By |November 18th, 2017|Columns, Family, Values|0 Comments

That’s the way the cookie crumbles

It seemed like a good idea at the time, but now I’m not so sure. I’m hosting our neighborhood book club meeting next week, and the book we’re reading this month is one I wrote. It includes 30 of my columns from the Chanhassen Villager – most of them dealing with nuggets of insight and inspiration that can be found in everyday life. Our book club meetings begin with lunch at noon, followed by the book discussion. Since several of my columns mention different foods [...]

By |November 10th, 2017|Columns, Family, Values, Writing|2 Comments

A surprise visit – or two

I have often read that even if you work from home, you should get dressed every day as if you were going in to the office. How you’re dressed changes your attitude, your attention, and even your voice when you’re talking on the phone. And I know this to be true. A “Decluttering” website I used to subscribe to takes this premise even further, saying you should get dressed all the way to your shoes, which should have lace-up ties or buckles. No slip-ons that [...]

By |October 6th, 2017|Columns, Family|0 Comments