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New Beginnings

I am not a stand-up comic Anyone who has spent a few minutes with me knows this. I didn’t know this. I desperately wanted to be one, to tell joke after joke and have people dissolve in belly laughs, the kind causing unacceptable liquid to fly out the nostrils, while you, the stand up comic… Read more »

Many years ago, I wanted to be a reporter, the kind that rushed to breaking news stories. I’d picture myself, microphone in hand in front of, say, a burning building and the news anchor back in the studio would ask me, “Joan, what do we know so far about this situation?” The thing is, I… Read more »

I adore eggs — I eat them, I collect them. I love what they symbolize — new beginnings. And every now and then I'll open a book or a drawer and an egg will be there. Not the chicken variety — the small ones I've cut out of paper and written on when I was… Read more »

I’m in Chicago, it’s Mother’s Day weekend.  I won’t be with my husband and daughter on Sunday, and my mom died a few years ago, I’m here for auditions for the reading of SQUASHED The Musical, the most fun new venture — a musical of my first novel, SQUASHED, the book that got me started in… Read more »

I had a dumb accident two weeks ago,  browning a chicken in a 450 degree oven; my wrist touched the heating element and…well…it was a bad, bad burn.  I iced, covered it with antibiotic cream, non stick bandages, picturing the scar that would come. Day after day I slathered it with ointment, kept it covered,… Read more »

The school shooting in Newtown CT happened to our kids, to our teachers.  The loss is too deep, it can’t be understood, but what we must do in their memory and in the name of rightness and reason is to draw a line in the sand and say, No More.  Everyone can do something.  People… Read more »

A bad storm like Sandy keeps coming long after it stops.  We're left with the wreckage and the clean up and the ghastly feeling, and all the while trying to hold onto hope.  I've always had a bone to pick with Emily Dickinson who said, "Hope is the thing with feathers…"  I suppose some hope… Read more »

I haven't been blogging.  It's been quite a while, actually, but I have been writing, some in entirely new ways.  I've actually started writing some songs, and it's all quite wonderful and crazy, because I used to do this when I was a teenager.  I taught myself the guitar and I wrote songs back then…. Read more »

A hydrangea that I thought had died pushes up in my garden.  A vine I thought wasn't going to make it began thriving in the last two weeks.  The age-old lilac tree that we were going to cut down because it never bloomed, flourished this year.  I took a tree class today with my neighbors… Read more »

I bought them at a large box store that begins with the letter C.  They were by the men's socks — the kind my husband likes — near the motor oil and the big book table, which was directly across from the towering cans of tuna fish.  I didn't need them, I didn't even know… Read more »

I have a shady garden and I've groused for years that I want one where I can grow peonies and roses and snapdragons.  You can't do that in the shade.  But there are wonderful plants that can only grow in the shade, like coral impatiens and ruby red begonias. I've learned these last years the… Read more »

There's a bakery I pass occasionally with a sign in the window that reads: YOU KNOW YOU WANT ONE. As marketing approaches go, it's brilliant because, of course, I do want one — actually, I want two or three. And the recognition of this makes me want one even more. So I stand across the street and have… Read more »

I don't have a to do list for the new year, I have a want to list.  For 2010 I want to learn to make things new.  I want a freshness in this year that I've not had for a while.  I want to look at old things in new ways.  I want to believe… Read more »

I remember a walk I took when my family and I lived in Connecticut. I had a great deal on my mind that day and I was trying to think through what seemed like a hundred things on that walk, and being a multi-tasker, I was also determined to do this while achieving a full… Read more »

My daughter Jean called the other day and said, "Mom, I have a metaphor for you." Instantly, my writer's heart was stirred because Jean doesn't mess around when it comes to a metaphor. She and her husband had just been to an exhibition of Japanese ceramics in D.C. where she learned of the "golden seams,"… Read more »

Max my dog is licking my hand like it's a popsicle, particularly interested in my engagement ring — it belonged to my husband's grandmother. I had to take the ring off when I had neurosurgery over twenty years ago after a man in a Volvo station wagon rammed into my car, injuring my neck and… Read more »

It's snowing here and I love the snow. I love to ice skate, love to wear big sweaters and boots and eat hearty stews and build fires. When I was little I always felt that snow signaled a fresh start because it changed the way everything looked and took boring, gray streets and made them… Read more »