Thursday, October 9, 2014


Can't get enough of these snappy, snazzy, spicy stems. Orange you glad it's October?

Friday, October 3, 2014

I found this gem on the website for National Poetry Day, which was actually October 2. Makes me want to grab my camera and start snapping some poems. 

Poets are Photographers

by Paul Cookson

Poets are photographers
Capturing moments in words

Snapshots of humanity
Pinpoints of reality

Poets are photographers
Capturing images in language

Articulators of feelings
Mirrors of experience

Poets are photographers
Capturing memories on pages

Seekers of the common ground
Sharers of the everyday

Poets are photographers
Capturing the elusive

Scribes of the wondrous
Chroniclers of the mundane

Poets are photographers
Poems are their pictures

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

an ad for autumn

In advertising-speak, orange and gold is the official color palette of October and the scarecrow is its brand ambassador. The brand promise is that this month will make you glad to be alive. Its essence is exhilaration. Core attributes include: crisp temps, changing leaves, the crackle of a wood fire, a bucket of candy. But the trick, the treat and the truth is, October can't be packaged and is not for sale. It's a gift. Thirty-one days of sights, smells, sounds, tastes and textures evoking extreme joy and morphing into glorious memories. All you have to do to open the gift is open your heart.   

Thursday, September 18, 2014


A rocking chair, a circle of love and a window of time to mull what matters most. Some refer to this as a retreat. I simply call it a treat.

Monday, September 8, 2014

book love

I'm Italian so I do adore a good hug. Giving and getting one. That's why I'm all about Hug A Book Week, except seven days is not nearly enough time to wrap my arms around all of the books I love. And all of the ones that have loved me back so unconditionally with their words and information and ideas and inspiration. A nearly lifelong lovefest it's been, as passionate today as when I turned that very first page.

Saturday, September 6, 2014


Maybe the only thing keeping you from writing by hand is having a tool that evokes the joy of ink across page. I couldn't agree more with this wonderful article from today's Wall Street Journal that it must be a fountain pen. Mom gave me a simple Sheaffer model (and accompanying cartridges) when I was eight years old and I've loved them ever since. In fact, that simple act may have been my writerly genesis. Thanks, Mom!
Image: 1. LAMY Studio; 2. Sailor's 1911 Large Collection; 3. Namiki Pilot Vanishing Point Metallic; 4. Faber-Castell Loom; 5. Varsity Pilot; 6. Faber-Castell Ambition; 7. Uni-Ball KuruToga Roulette F. Martin Ramin/The Wall Street Journal, Styling by Anne Cardenas

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

3 R's

While attempting to organize my desk area over Labor Day weekend, I went through a stack of magazines and made a little pile of visual ephemera into a collage. It represents how I want to feel this fall, what I want to concentrate on. My three R's: reading, reflecting, reaching out. Just naming them put me in a different place. Try it yourself.

Monday, September 1, 2014

flowery thoughts

Stories read to us as children can stay with us all our lives, says Ted Kooser in his weekly poetry column. He makes his point with a wonderful poem about one of my favorite books and maybe yours, too. Remember Ferdinand? He was the bull who loved flowers, not fighting. It was so good to catch up with him again today after too many years. So good to reread those familiar old lines. With new wonder at just how special they are.  

Saturday, August 30, 2014


If you want to experience the almost-imperceptible-while-it's-happening shift in seasons, a farmer's market is the place. There are still piles of peaches and tables covered in tomatoes, but a man has brought apples down from the North Carolina mountains today. The eggplants are irresistible. You'll notice how hydrangeas have given way to a palette of pink and orange dahlias. It's a degree or so cooler, sun the golden hue of local honey. A tattooed young guy, so kind, sells the best bread you can imagine. Take some home.

Thursday, August 28, 2014


I was that girl too excited to sleep the night before school started. Who would rather shop for school supplies than clothes. And who will always consider a classroom sacred space. So when the school bell no longer tolled for me, it felt emptier than a playground after recess. Too many echoes, too little activity. No one blowing a whistle signaling what to do next. Commence the existential drift. Until one day I realized that I could make an appointment with my (inner) guidance counselor and put in for a schedule change. I could cherry pick the things I truly loved about school (being in a routine, being with friends, reading, writing, learning, experiencing, growing) and adapt them to adult life.

This is why, as summer ends, I'm stocking up on Sharpies at Target, signing up for a printmaking workshop and have added a yoga class to my routine. I'm penciling in writing blocks and walks with friends. I've scheduled chunks of fresh air time throughout the day and a weekly library spree. I've got nutrition covered, too, with my sister's homemade granola recipe, Farmer's Market apples and a cute Bento lunchbox. There's a plethora of podcasts and an online course I want to partake, lectures I'd like to attend around town. You can enroll, too. Anytime. There are no exams, no grades. Except E for enthusiastic and engaged. And energized.