Grateful In November


“I am beginning to learn that it is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all.” – Laura Ingalls Wilder.

For most of my life, I wasn’t really a fan of November.  Of course I love Thanksgiving, but I dreaded the shorter days and cooler temperatures and the lull that set in after Halloween.   Then I got married in November and my boys were born on December 2nd, so the month evolveded into a time of anticipation.  This has only been amplified over the years, with four kids getting excited about Christmas.   November is now busy, busy,  busy.  At times it seems to be all about preparation, but still, there’s much to be thankful for!

“Love today, for these are the good old days.” – Anonymous.  Continue reading Grateful In November

Chick Lit Plus Book Review


It Would Be Wrong to Steal My Sister’s Boyfriend 

by Sophie Ronald


This is a story that perhaps takes sibling rivalry a bit too far, as suggested by the title of Sophie Ranald’s funny British novel.  Ellie is the stereotypical ugly duckling sister who has lived in the shadow of her younger and more glamorous ster, Rose – but this isn’t a story about pent up resentment or sibling rivalry.  Ellie and Rose love each other, live together and, most of the time, get along fine. Ellie is enamored when she meet’s Rose’s boyfriend, Oliver.  Continue reading at Chick Lit Plus.


My Girls

“I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson


These are my girls, Marcie and Michele!  This picture was taken a few weekends ago, in St. Pete Beach.  1386I was there with two of my kids, who also happen to be their Godchildren.  Marcie and Michele came to see them, and to be with me as I said yet another goodbye to my brother.

My brother Edmund and his wife Kelly were married on the beach in St. Pete.  That weekend, eight years ago, was the best weekend – so much fun, so much joy.  Kelly’s family fell in love with the area and they often return for a huge family reunion.  Kelly’s big family is the best kind, because they all get along.  I love them and they always make me feel like I’m one of them.  This trip had been in the works before Edmund’s passing.  Kelly decided that since we’d all be together, she wanted to spread Edmund’s ashes on the beach he so loved.  We had a memorial service for him with poems, champagne, toasts and lighted Chinese lanterns.  Oh, and lots of wind!  It didn’t quite turn out as we’d planned, and I know my brother was laughing from above, as we all chased the lighted fireballs down the beach.  Continue reading My Girls

This Is Ninety

Ninety Years, Country Strong


The year 1923 was not short on exciting events.  The first transcontinental airmail service had begun.  Time magazine published its first issue.  Firestone first put inflatable tires into production.  The US Attorney General actually stated that it was legal for woman to wear trousers – anywhere (yes you read that right).  Yankee Stadium first opened (although Fenway had it beat by eleven years).  The first ever country music hit was recorded.  Vice President Calvin Coolidge became president, after the death of President Harding.  The first nonstop transcontinental US air flight was successfully completed.  Lou Gehrig hit his first Major League home run.  Disney Cartoon Studios was formed.  Ethyl gasoline was first marketed to the public.  The traffic light was invented.  Radio waves were transmitted for the first time, which lead to the first presidential address made by radio.  It was also the year that brought the world Bob Barker, Peter Lawford, Charlton Heston, Estelle Getty, Ann Miller, Ted Knight, Aaron Spelling, Allan Sheppard, Rocky Marciano, Roy Lichtenstein, Hank Williams, Jean Stapleton, Ed McMahon and Margaret Elizabeth McConnell Garrett.

Margaret, or “Mammaw”, is my husband’s grandmother, my children’s great-grandmother.  She was born during prohibition and in her time on this earth has witnessed changes that few could have even imagined in 1923.  The Great Depression.  World Word II.  The invention of television, computers and robots.  Space travel.   The rise and fall of the Soviet Union.  Man walking on the moon.  The Korean War.  Kennedy’s assassination.  Vietnam.  Civil Rights.  Feminism.  Watergate.  The Cold War.  The fall of the Berlin Wall.  The evolution of technology.  9-11.  A black man overwhelmingly voted to the office of president. Continue reading This Is Ninety