• Screenshot 2023 11 07 at 9.34.24 AM
    Something That Could Change Your Life,  Best Thing Ever,  Blessings,  Childhood Memories,  Proud Moments,  Travels

    A Gratitude Story, 40 Years Long

    Part 1: June-July, 1982 and 1983 Starting in the summer after 8th grade, I was part of a student interchange program from CISV International. (“CISV was founded in the belief that peace is possible through building friendship and mutual understanding, starting with children.”) In 1982, a delegation of about a dozen German kids from the Frankfurt area came to America and stayed for a month in the homes of about a dozen Knoxville-area kids. The following year, we Americans went to stay with our interchange partners in their homes for a month. The idea was that the hosting families would both participate in large group activities as well as take…

  • Amazing People,  Best Thing Ever,  Fun in Chicago,  I've Got Mad Skillz,  My Friends Have Mad Skillz,  Pretty Pictures,  Proud Moments,  Shameless Promotion,  Something That Could Change Your Life,  Spreading the Bloggie Love

    About Last Night

    I’m having a little trouble. I can’t really wrap my head around the whirlwind that was LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER CHICAGO last night. I can’t keep using the word “amazing” and expect that 1. People will continue to take me seriously 2. People will believe that yes, I’m a writer …but the fact is, everything about this experience (well, not everything: there were a few snags in the planning process but everything shook out in the end) WAS amazing. I tend to be long-winded (or whatever that is in terms of writing), and although I can think of thousands of things to report to you about last night, I think…

  • Amazing People,  Blessings,  I'm Apparently Old.,  My Kid Has Mad Skillz,  Proud Moments

    Hey, Nineteen

    THIS BABY? The one who HATED how grass felt on his feet that first spring? The one who used to chew on my dirty shoe laces whenever he could? IS NINETEEN TODAY. Despite a babyhood that left Jim and me wondering if we’d survive parenting him (the aversion to grass, the shoe lace-chewing, oh, and the fact that he cried for most of his first year if he wasn’t in the same personal space with me), THIS KID has grown into such a wonderful human being, way beyond our expectations (which, admittedly, were still pretty high even after that first year) and still pleasantly surprises us on a regular basis.…