“Can you stay after school?” she asked. As a second grader, home wasn’t an especially happy place to hurry to. Dad’s drinking had worsened over the years and Mom had bigger worries than after school milk and cookies. “We’ll wait until the others are gone,” Sister Leodegard said. I was the teacher’s pet, so I…

I was about to cut off her head when I stopped. The faded flower’s bloom had enough life left to share some wisdom before she landed in the compost pile. “Pay attention!” I had substituted my morning meditation with time attending to my flowers. I set my intention to focus only on what was directly…

She gave a short cry of shock. I turned around to see her mouth open in amazed confusion and her arms outstretched, a cup in one hand. When she selected a cup from the shelf for her morning tea, she did not expect it to shower her with coffee. Her coral shirt that looked beautiful…

I awoke early. I set an intention of ease. My Saturday started with my weekly stroll to the farmers market. I had twelve whole hours to get ready. There would be no rushing. List in one hand, two bags in the other, I took my time perusing the stalls for the perfect ingredients.  After tasting…

A weekend on a Mediterranean island could have been mine.  Relaxing on the beach.  Admiring the mountains.  Perhaps a palace tour or a walk among the Moorish remains. It could have been mine, had I said yes. All of my friends were going. I was in the middle of my semester as a Spanish student…

The sun is shining. The sky is blue. The warm wind blows over me in my convertible with the top down. This is my charmed life. Grigio—named after his beautiful shade of silver—has two seats, a tiny trunk, and limited leg room.  He’s Italian, and for my season without children to shuttle or mulch to…

My mother was patient and kind. She knew how to wait. For buses in the middle of winter. For one of her eight children to call on a Sunday afternoon. For a lifetime of prayers to be answered.  I did not inherit her patience gene. I’m more prone to precrastination than procrastination. I like to…

“I’d like to see him.” In between my sips of cabernet and the passing of crispy blue cheese potato bites, my words surprised me.  At happy hour with my girlfriends, I learned that Gary had entered hospice.  I have not seen Gary in a couple of years. Maybe three. While I’ve asked others how he…

Some people I love keep secrets from me.  Despite knowing I care deeply about them, there’s something they don’t want me to know.  Sometimes they hide the reason they did not respond to my calls and texts. Sometimes they hide that they have been in the hospital for days…again. Sometimes they hide that the police…

The framed photo in my office to remind me of what mattered most needed an update. Before our era of instant cell phone selfies, a trip to a photography studio was in order.  It would replace the one that included my children’s father, from whom I was now divorced. Photographers Joe and Judy Johnston had…