Tuesday, December 30, 2008


They gave a young mom a success label that was far too heavy to hold. Years went by, each with a growing weight of brokenness.

I clearly remember the sweet smile of the daughter she killed.

I reconnected with a former colleague and friend whom I hadn't spoken to in about 5 years. We worked together in 2 different jobs in 2 very different industries. There was a young woman we knew- she much better than I- who graduated from a program which employed us. This young mom went through easily, learning what needed to be learned and experiencing a great deal of success in the process. She was a poster child. A success story.

Yesterday I learned that 10 years after I knew her, she poisoned and killed her 2 children and tried to kill herself.

Sick. Sorrow. Sadness. Oh, my.

Monday, December 29, 2008


Your burgeoning interest in photography is a beautiful thing, and your slide show warmed the wintry barn. It documented only the happiest parts of us.

You're close enough to fit, but different enough that you can't.

Thanks for reminding me that I blog, Nance. Not sure what happened.

Over the past week I've spent some time with my family- my bigger family. There was a lot of goodness and fun in those moments.

Family members, like no one else, have the power and ability to inflict doubt and pain. It's a power that should be harnessed for good, not evil.

I know I'm not alone when I recount my mother raising us to the repeating mantra: If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. Does that bring up an internal struggle for you? Are we teaching the Punks to subdue their thoughts and opinions or are we teaching them to be thoughtful and kind when communicating?

What do you think? And how've you been?

Monday, December 08, 2008


When you were so small you laughed with my dad on the porch of your first house. You pointed, eyes on him. Erupting in laughter each time he responded. It's not a bee, it's a hook.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

36x365x126 and Last Night

You endlessly do for the ones that you hold. Searching for ways to strengthen and deepen and magnify that connection. I hope they can see what you offer and respect what you want most.

I do.


Last night Aidan and I attended our local Chamber Singers event. It was too late for the younger 2, and it's become a tradition for A and I to go. I love to watch him watch, and it is beautiful stuff. This video was from a different performance last winter, but you'll get a feel for what we saw and heard:

Capathia Jenkins also performed with the high schoolers last night. She was wonderful and what I loved watching most was the way she was connecting with the kids in the Chamber Singers. And the smile that energized the entire place.

Daniel Strange (2001 graduate) also performed, accompanying some of the songs and playing a captivating instrumental version of We Three Kings with other former graduates Adam Frederick and Andy Robbins. These guys come back to do this concert every year. I'm not sure if they've played every show since they left, but I believe they've been there for the past several years.

It's inspiring to see so many people- young kids (the Boy Sings of Maine also performed- youngest members being 8), older kids, younger adults, and uh, more seasoned adults, who are so driven by their passions. So much a part of the community. So talented and so dedicated to sharing their talent and spreading inspiration.

It was lovely.

Pictures- OPK

I took some pictures of other peoples kids today. A few came out pretty cute:

Jameson B&W






Cute kids.

Friday, December 05, 2008


I rode my big wheel down your practically vertical driveway. A precisely parked car prevented me from plunging down into the ravine. Ouch.

You were hard on your kids. Now, you display photos with genuine pride.

Today is my father's birthday. I wrote about him already, and my rules are that I only do one x365 per person. I could write about my dad for x365. I wrote about him at GNMParents today, too.

He would have been 78. Wow. 78. The age grandfathers should be. The age dads should be. He should be grumpy and irritable and impatient and a big pain in the butt to deal with. He should be telling stories and making me laugh and making me cry.

My Lucy has my humor, which comes to me from both of my parents. Or maybe my mom appreciates my humor the way she appreciated his. In any case Lucy like to say things like:

Your dad died, right Mom? (giggle)
Papa's dad died too, right Mom? (giggle, giggle)
You're gonna die really soon, right Mom? (GIGGLE, giggle, giggle)
Aidan's gonna die before me! (Guffaw)

It's not freaky to me, although it is to many. She's been lucky- we've been lucky these last 4 1/2 years. She has no concept of death. This is part of figuring it out.

Thursday, December 04, 2008


You called my son "Little Bird" the day he was born. At 9' 11", "Big Bird" might have been more apropos. Did you think that then?

Your huge Italian name made you seem even more petite.


I love and hate this time of year. I look forward to celebrating Christmas with my family while still dreading the travel and lists and many obligations that blanket us.

This is neither unique nor particularly interesting.

9 years ago this month I was expecting Aidan. I remember sitting on our couch, watching an MTV special about John Denver. Tears were pouring down my face and Rob was trying hard not to laugh at me.

We laughed a lot. We talked a lot. We walked a lot. Our anticipation simmered just below the surface. It was a quiet holiday. It was the only holiday I can remember not traveling.

And you? What's on your mind?