Spring harvest time

In between knocking on doors and meeting people in my township, I have been busy in the garden.  Building on lessons learned from last year, I have already had some early successes.  These include lettuce, spinach, radishes, and peas.   I recently started putting in my summer veggies:  tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and green beans.  The longer than usual cool spring weather helped extend the lettuce.  I had so much lettuce I have been giving it away by the armfuls.  The spinach is about done and going to seed, which is good because I need the space for zucchini and cucumbers.  I found a local source for high quality compost, and learned about the value of covering plants, organize means to battling pests, and growing in bags. Continue reading

On the road in the Highlands of Scotland

I have been quiet lately.   After returning from our trip to Scotland life took over.  Since late last year and the tears and the depression, I got back up and into the game.  I volunteered for an organization that I care deeply about and have been on their fundraising committee for their big event of the year.   It was hugely successful and thankfully now in my rearview mirror.  Did I also mention I’m running for local office?  That was another of my post-election decisions.  If you want to have an impact on your community, you have to step up and get in the arena.   I have been knocking on doors and meeting lots of people and listening to their concerns.  More on this later, but first I want to take moment to remember the beauty of Scotland. Continue reading

Ringing in the New Year: looking ahead in 2017

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We rang in the new year quietly with a mildly alcoholic drink and a movie.  No late night parties for us or big celebrations in a bar or hotel ballroom.  Maybe it’s because we’re not in our twenties anymore or just that we enjoy being at home with our canine friends.  Whatever the reason, we were satisfied with our quiet evening at home.  We are at the point where we didn’t even have to explain to each other why we spent our evening at home.  Our priorities had changed.   Continue reading

Pink pussy power: a hat to warm them all

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I hope my readers will forgive me using a certain word in the title.  It’s actually taken from a website and a hat initiative called “pussyhat project” which can be found here:  pussyhatproject.com.  I am a knitter and lately a bit of an activist, so this project appealed to these two interests.  I came across the project on Ravelry, a social network for knitters.  Last week I ordered 18 skeins of pink yarn when my favorite yarn store offered free shipping.  On day four I’ve completed three hats.  I keep coming across more and more people who want to attend the Women’s March on Washington — website here —   and who need a warm pink hat.  Because baby it’s going to be cold outside!

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Now on the American menu: hate as the new normal

A softball dugout In Wellsville, N.Y. spray painted with a swastika.   Photo from The Huffington Post’s US edition.

I have been struggling with this post for a week now.  It has been written and rewritten a dozen times.  I am torn between expressing the anger and disappointment I’m feeling and a contrary pull to wait and see.  In the end the need to speak out won in my internal battle.  Some of my readers will agree with me, while others will not.  This is not a political missive.  It’s a call for decency and tolerance.

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Making a difference

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As we recover from the past few months of intense emotions and inflammatory speeches, we wonder what the future holds.  Larry and I both worked as volunteers for the Clinton campaign, knocking on doors and talking to people about the candidates and getting people registered to vote.  Now it is over.  The financial markets have settled down, but we remain numb.  We spent long days with like minded people who believed and gave up their time and energy to get the first woman in the White House.  Now we have to pick up the pieces and move on. Continue reading

Women and the workplace: the journey to full equality

Anyone who has been watching or reading the news knows that there has been a lot of talk this year about sexism and assault of women.  One event that is likely seared in many women’s minds was the light sentence meted out this year to the Stanford University student after being found guilty of sexual assault.   Most women have experienced some kind of harassment from men, sexual or otherwise.  We endure it, we tell our friends about it, sometimes we report it, and often it feels like the system is unfairly tilted against us.    I wanted to take a moment to reflect on what it’s like to experience harassment.  First I’d like to share my own story with you.

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Absence makes the heart grow fonder

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There is an old adage that says absence makes the heart grow fonder.    I was thinking about this recently because my husband is away for a while.   When he travels he says that I don’t miss him, while he misses me.  That isn’t exactly true.  What happens is that I adjust to him being away, which in my book means that if I think too much about missing him I have a harder time during the separation. Continue reading

All the Light We Cannot See

 

Used with permission from freedigitalphotos.net

Last month a larger and more enthusiastic book group met at my local library.  The two person book group had grown with the addition of most of the knit group and a few others into  a fourteen person group with standing room only.   We read “All the Light We Cannot See.”  For anyone who hasn’t yet read it, I highly recommend it.  Yes, it’s about Nazi Germany, but it’s also about the strength of the human spirit and relationships and the will to survive.  The book is redolent with metaphors, starting and ending with the title.  The hero is a blind French girl.  The story mostly takes place when the Germans are occupying France and imposing their brutal will on the population.  Not much light, eh?  Yet, the book is full of hope.  The young French girl, Marie-Laure shows everyone around her that she sees everything, even without eyesight. Continue reading