What does your bookshelf say about you?

It's almost my birthday, and my mother needs ideas for a present. She loves books and book-shopping, so I go straight to my Goodreads list, thinking, Easy! I'll just grab two or three titles and email them to her.  There are currently 98 books I've earmarked as “Want to Read” on my virtual bookshelf there.... Continue Reading →

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Music Lessons

My dad introduced me to music. Starting when I was a tiny kid, my father, who grew up fantasizing about being the next Buddy Holly, would sit cross-legged with me on the gold shag carpet in the den, acoustic guitar in hand, and teach me the songs from his generation, the songs he loved, folk songs.... Continue Reading →

One Hour ’til Christmas

My husband and I just finished watching It's a Wonderful Life while sipping eggnog infused with calvados while the dogs snored on top of us, on top of a down blanket on the couch after having dined on our favorite local pizza. We then took the pups out for their final walk, all of us... Continue Reading →

Pink and Blue

A couple of weekends ago, my husband and I drove to Connecticut to visit our niece — formally his niece, mine by marriage, but also mine by long-time adoration (I've loved her for more than 20 years, since she was a young teenager) — plus her husband, their two sons, ages 6 and 3, and... Continue Reading →

Feeling the Most

“When he's free soloing, it's when he feels the most..." Honnold's mother starts saying to the camera and pauses, so that I think something else is coming: ...the most alive, the most excited, the most successful. “It's when he feels the most,” she then reiterates, and leaves it there. “How can you take that away... Continue Reading →

Storm Surge

There’s something inherently Houstonian to me about living through the ritual disaster of multiple hurricanes. Maybe it’s the same for kids anywhere along the coast. During my childhood, I spent several occasions taping huge Xs across window panes with rolls of masking tape, ensuring flashlights had working batteries, and filling up the bathtub with water,... Continue Reading →

Bad Math

David would have been 56 today. A photo of us, my head resting on his right shoulder and our brother Tommy sitting at his left, pops up in my Facebook feed as a “memory”—as if I would forget this birthday without this visual reminder. The photo is from a restaurant in Houston called Julia’s where we... Continue Reading →

No Simple Gifts

Ah, holidays. They are thorny for most people over the age of five on some level, I imagine. Between family and travel and scheduling, there are many pitfalls. Today, despite the fact that my husband and I made a deliberate decision to avoid all of these potential stressors and decided to stay home and relax,... Continue Reading →

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