Hummingbirds and Home

“He’s ready.” The hospice nurse had woken us a minute before. I sat in an overstuffed chair at one side of the bed, my mom on the other, the morning my grandfather died. He breathed in one last rattled breath and let go. As I looked across the bed to my mom, a movement behind […]

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Skipping

I missed it: skipping. Skipping stones … skipping sisters … skipping heart beats. I showed my kids how to skip. We used to skip often down sidewalks … across lakes … into the ocean. Then we stopped. Because it embarrassed them, and I embarrassed them. These things that once made us smile, they were gone for […]

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On Weed(s) and Teens

  We pulled them out. The unwanted weeds. Brought by wind and in free city mulch. From who knows were. They took up residence in the pavement cracks and the bare dirt, and the gravel. We deemed them undesirable. Despite their wild beauty. Despite their many (medicinal and edible and material) uses. Germinated by winter […]

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Rain and Teenagers in Los Angeles

Los Angeles Deluge Part One You’ve probably heard, or been in, the rain this weekend. After months of no rain, we’ve had a deluge in Los Angeles. In a record low rainfall year – the last I heard was 3″ – we got that much in a 48-hour period. For Southern California, that’s a big […]

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What is Winter?

Last year I toured several environmentally focused schools to learn how innovative programs are addressing Nature Deficit Disorder: the growing issue of children (and adults) lacking enough access to nature and its restorative qualities. At one of the public elementary schools, remade with native gardens, fruit orchards and vegetable gardens, I sat in on an […]

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Appalachian Reunion

Twenty years after moving to the Appalachians and eighteen years after leaving them, I had the chance to visit for Thanksgiving with my cousins. All the beauty, charm and isolation came rushing back … with none of the loneliness. I recalled the closeness to nature I felt during my two and a half years in […]

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