A Christmas Story about Advocacy and Failure and Kittens

A cat had kittens in our building about a month ago. We were alerted to this by our neighbor. The cat is fiercely protective, constantly foraging for food and growling lest one of us gets too close to her precious offspring. There are three kittens - two jet black and one with some orange stripes … Continue reading A Christmas Story about Advocacy and Failure and Kittens

A Life Overseas – ‘Tis the Season of Incongruity

Deck the halls with calls for charity! Fa-la-la-la-laaa, la-la-la-la! ‘Tis the season of incongruity! Fa-la-la-la-laaa, la-la-la-la! #CottageChristmas or starving children? Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la! My heart is caught and I cannot win this thing! Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-laa. I don’t know about you, but I can’t do this. The sense of incongruity is overwhelming me this Christmas. I go from essays … Continue reading A Life Overseas – ‘Tis the Season of Incongruity

A Black Girl, A White Girl, and a Lemonade Stand

My subway stop in Cambridge is Central Square. I've written a bit about Central Square before, but the truth is, it's difficult to describe this area. While Harvard Square boasts history and sophistication and Kendall Square hosts Massachusetts Institute of Technology and nerdy innovation, Central Square is a cacophony of chaos. The community of homeless … Continue reading A Black Girl, A White Girl, and a Lemonade Stand

How Long?

Earlier in the week, Boston could not shake the heavy fog that lay heavy in the air, covering the tops of buildings like thick grey smoke. It dulled my mind and all I seemed able to do was trudge through life. How long will this fog go on, I wondered silently, the weather deeply embedded … Continue reading How Long?

#OnlytheGood – Christmas 2017

It's Friday and I'm sitting by our Christmas tree. I could sit here all day, just writing, thinking, dreaming, and reading. I know that December 25th is a constructed holiday, that most probably the birth of Christ did not happen in winter, yet I am so grateful that we have this joy to brighten days … Continue reading #OnlytheGood – Christmas 2017

Thanksgiving for the Broken-hearted

Robynn and I were recently texting about Thanksgiving. This year both of us will fill our houses and hearts with people who are hurting. These will be the tables of the broken-hearted, chairs of the grieving, glasses of the bewildered, and dessert plates of the deserted. What do we do when our tables are filled … Continue reading Thanksgiving for the Broken-hearted

The Funeral Cocoon

November has come and the golden-red hope of Autumn is rapidly turning to bare trees and chilly winds. It is a cold time to lay a coffin in the ground. We sat in a small chapel at the Massachusetts Veteran’s Cemetery in Winchendon, Massachusetts.  Winchendon is the town where I was born, where I took … Continue reading The Funeral Cocoon

Until Then….

Early mornings are the best. Those dawn hours when the sun has broken over the horizon but the world is still sleeping; the hours of slow wake-up, sounds of birds breaking the silence of night. It is early morning and right now it is easy for me to believe that someday this will all be redeemed.  … Continue reading Until Then….

Lenten Journey – On Forsythia and Hope

"You can cut branches of forsythia before they bloom and bring them inside and they will bloom quicker."  It was Western Easter a few years ago and we were at my mom and dad's. Large branches of forsythia were in a vase on the windowsill, bright with yellow blossoms that defied the remains of winter outside. I … Continue reading Lenten Journey – On Forsythia and Hope

New Lives and Portable Memories

Every time I leave home, I'm struck by the fact that I have that choice. I'm not being forced out by violence, persecution, or a crooked landlord.  I choose when to go. I choose how to go.  I choose what to take.  An article in the NY Times called "In a Refugee’s Bags, Memories of … Continue reading New Lives and Portable Memories

Scanning the Horizon 

We took off from O'Hare Airport in Chicago in the early morning. On the ground the weather was cold and rainy, but as the plane ascended we flew above the thick grey into golden sunshine. It was beautiful. It's an old cliche -- that beyond the clouds is sunshine. But it's true. The sun may … Continue reading Scanning the Horizon 

Election 2016 Detox Plan

No matter where you live, you are probably completely fed up and exhausted by the U.S Election 2016. If you are a U.S. citizen, you are even more tired of it, even if you were on the winning side. So it's time to purge and detox. Like a colon cleanse, this list is designed to … Continue reading Election 2016 Detox Plan

Good Stories Behind Bad Headlines

The headlines chase us down, taunting us with their urgency, telling us to how to respond. They never stop. We may sleep, but the headlines don't.  And they don't want us to - not really. The person who is first to share or tweet a story gets the prize. Behind the bad headlines are some … Continue reading Good Stories Behind Bad Headlines

Evil is Not the Final Word

Note: due to a WordPress error, the post looks like it was published on February 3rd. It was, in fact, published on the morning of March 28th. On Easter Sunday evening, a suicide bomber targeted a busy park in the city of Lahore, Pakistan. Boasting a water area and a playground, Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park is a … Continue reading Evil is Not the Final Word

The More I Learn, the Less I Know

I have the extraordinary privilege of being in Lebanon and just returned from a trip to Bekaa Valley.   There are thousands of refugees in the valley and we are with a group called Heart for Lebanon. Heart for Lebanon is working with 1300 families in 13 different camps. We visited the largest camp today.  … Continue reading The More I Learn, the Less I Know

The Darkness is Not Winning – A Life Overseas

I'm at A Life Overseas today where I quote my brother and sister-in-law! I read these words from their newsletter yesterday morning and immediately asked permission to use them. These are words that reflect a future and a hope. "The darkness is not winning! "The truth is that wherever the news on television has been particularly bad … Continue reading The Darkness is Not Winning – A Life Overseas

Living Out the Nike Mantra – Just Do It!

The morning starts poorly. I miss my bus. It's not a long walk, but today it feels so. Today all of life feels like a long walk. I pass by evidence of a world that is not as it should be. Weekend trash is everywhere, a homeless couple is fast asleep under a blanket - … Continue reading Living Out the Nike Mantra – Just Do It!