Limbo Season

Most days, time does what you expect. It goes by in a predictable way, and you can count on it to link up with a pattern of meals and work and sleeping. Then we hit holidays with the family and all the sudden you’re up to watch Spidey at dawn or assembling a Cozy Coupe in the basement during dinner prep. A moment of a toddler calling “Nonna Nonna Nonna!” expands to fill a lifetime, and a big guy with an axe splits wood that flies across freezing air toward… Continue reading

Mothers and Daughters

Four Generations

While I normally devote my blog to writing and bookish matters, we’ve had something so special happening in our family that I feel compelled to mention it. My lovely daughter had twin girls four weeks ago, and they have been a blessing and joy ever since. The babies are fraternal, not identical, though it’s easy to confuse them, especially in the middle of the night when passing them around for clean diapers and burping.

Holding a small, warm baby close to the heart is one of the most… Continue reading

Magic in the Darkness

Version 2

Magic shines in the darkness of these long nights. We look for the sparks, and light our own, and the winter wind spins the wind chimes on the porch into a merry tinkling.

I hope you’re somewhere warm, with family nearby. If you have a good book, too, all the better.

Summer Family Reunion


Log-rolling nieces.

We meet every July on a lake in northern Minnesota to pass the sunscreen and rediscover how we are a family. We played volleyball (10 vs 10), barefoot soccer and Ping Pong, swam, canoed, log-rolled, paddle boarded, water-skied, water-tubed, jigsaw puzzled, ate scrumptiously, read books, wrote in the log, sang around the piano, and played ukulele, guitar, and chess. The kids organized the annual harrumph, which in our family is not an expression of disapproval, but rather a show featuring magic tricks and musical performances. Families took turns… Continue reading