Phil and I finally canceled the newspaper subscription. We did it months ago, yet still the paper appeared at the end of the driveway. It was part of the morning ritual for Pepin to "retrieve" it. Some days the sections were strewn across the front yard, leaving Phil to collect the mangled pages. But often [...]
Woman Sees Passage of Time in a Tree
Slough. Shed. Fledge.
Slough. (slŭf) n. An outer layer or covering that is shed or removed. Humans continuously slough skin cells, millions every day. Sometimes I speed up the process by using a little abrasive cleanser to smooth the rough spots, or get a facial at the spa to peel away the tired, dead cells. It feels good [...]
Air Water Earth
Phil and I have been on several weekend road trips lately--to Chisholm for a family memorial service, to Leech Lake for a reunion with dear friends, along with frequent trips to our cabin in Herbster. We like to listen to audiobooks along the way, carrying our minds to distant places, instead of the highway beneath [...]
Grow Your Whole Life Through
I learned a lot about life stages from my friend Jean. She developed several important developmental affirmations over years of study and collaboration with partners in parent education. The affirmations fit all stages of life from infancy to death and have been used by people all over the world. Here are a few: I love [...]
Just down the shore from our cabin an Arctic Loon was spotted and recorded for the first time in Wisconsin. The South Shore of Lake Superior may not be the place to see birds in great numbers, but often has interesting and rare species. Ryan Brady, an expert birder who works as a conservation biologist for [...]
Tree of Life
Portrait of a Matriarch
Today as I ride along the familiar route to Abbott Northwestern Hospital, I think of all the times I have bumped along the potholes of 28th Street, turned left on 10th Avenue, entered the ramp and circled the dark floors to park, find the floor and suite where we were expected. There was a Tuesday [...]
Am I a Modern Elder?
"With the words, You are a grandmother... I became something different than I'd ever been before." Anna Quindlen from Nanaville: Adventures in Grandparenting by Anna Quindlen At Orchestra Hall with Louis to hear Cantus sing with Sweet Honey in the Rock, 2017. For the first time, my husband (aka Papa) and I (Didi) took care [...]
My parents died of cancer, mom (in 2017) just 8 weeks after diagnosis and Dad (in 2014) after being sick for a year. And over these last few years, I have been a student of grief, hungry for ways to express it in a healing way, to seek out others to give me a “how [...]
One of my little rituals while at the cabin is to fill three small vases with the blooms and greens I gather from my first walk. I grab my scissors and walk the yard, driveway and road ditches. I guess you could say I forage for flora. Flora is the plant life of a particular [...]
Sorrow to Joy in Line at Trader Joe’s
An Earlier Spring
Life keeps rolling, and the kids are out in front, it’s me that has to catch up.
I’ll Take Grace Too
January. The month for getting organized, eating right, hitting the gym and starting something new. I thought I was ready to skip the paper and rely on my iphone to keep my important dates, even send little reminders and be in electronic sync with others. I also read about "bullet journals" a hybrid between a [...]
Seeing the Forest, for the Trees
Phil and I travel Hwy 13 on our way toward Herbster, WI, (our cabin’s address) a scenic byway that cuts along forest and farms, gives teasing views of Lake Superior. There are a few openings that you see water before Port Wing, that give clues to the season. After a heavy summer rain, the lake [...]