For the Love of Teenagers

The following is the talk I gave at last week’s Landscape Architecture Foundation Symposium in Washington, D.C. You can view the recorded talk here. During fifteen years working and living in Los Angeles I’ve visited, studied, and helped to design landscapes for at least two dozen LA Unified School District public schools. For twelve years, […]

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Restorative Landscapes for Restorative Justice

During over a decade of personal and professional experience with Los Angeles public schools, I’ve struggled to understand the impacts that school landscapes have on our children’s hearts, minds, and bodies. So, I was thrilled to be selected as one of four Fellows for the Landscape Architecture Foundation’s first Fellowship in Leadership and Innovation to advocate for changing school […]

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Bimini

The constant gargle, whether crashing or calm, gloriously filling your ears against small or faraway sounds. At the ocean, it is just you and it. The broken sunlight forever chasing its changing surface, cloistering its depths from we outsiders. The bobbing lightness of standing shoulder-deep just beyond the break, rising on tiptoe in each swell, […]

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Love the Where You Are

Love the where you are. There will always be things we don’t love about the places we live. Maybe it’s the traffic, or the trash, or the loneliness, or the violence. Maybe the graffiti gets you down (not everyone sees it as art). Or the broken sidewalks. Or the vacant businesses. Or the thriving businesses. […]

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Nowhere … but Somewhere

AMTRAK DAY EIGHT November 28, 2014 I fall instantly in love with places. These eight days on the train I have given my heart to the mesquite-laden hills around Austin … the sun-drenched center of Forth Worth … Saint Louis’ sorrowful elegance the night after the non-indictment … a distant Illinois farm house friended on […]

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A Search for A Place

Twenty-two years ago, I had just married, was graduating college, and on a search for a place to live. I imagined myself settling into family life and raising children in one place, wherever that place might be. Instead, I moved through six communities as I raised three children, went back to school, divorced and began […]

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To The Sea

Twenty-eight feet never looked so small. On our third day in Costa Rica, we went deep sea fishing, me battling my life-long fear of the ocean to spend a day at sea with Jacob and Jasper. The young man who we purchased the tickets from had a shared history on North Carolina’s Outer Banks where […]

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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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The Nature of a School Landscape

Think back to your childhood school … what is the first image that pops into your head? I have two distinct memories of elementary school.​ One is of me swinging next to Katie Coffee on the big metal swing set the day after Jimmy Carter was elected President.​ The other is of a big maple […]

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