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Be Aspirational

Posted on August 25, 2011

A few years ago, five or six I think, we conducted focus groups for a project. The goal was to create an identity for a place. We invited people from all industries and varying levels of authority. Arts leaders and waitstaff, retirees and college students, people we’d never met and people we’ve known all our lives. The conversations were spirited and the opinions were not always the same. We were in maybe the 4th focus group and someone sat forward in their chair and said, “I don’t really care about the specifics of what it looks like or which area it may be most closely related to, all I ask, no, all I beg, is that it be aspirational. Make this about where we…

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Posted on August 24, 2011

I’ve been moving at fast-forward like speed for years. Every once in a while I see comments from people who look like they are never ruffled, and realize that we are all white-knuckling it at certain moments. Tonight we decided to take a hike for the post-work/pre-bed time hours that the girls were with Nana and Jeannie. We hustled home around 6 and shucked our work clothes for hiking gear. Little Beso, our cocker spaniel tagged along. Ok, actually he lead the way, bolting up the mountain and turning occasionally to look back at us and snicker. We’d been hiking about 30 minutes when we came upon a ledge that gave me pause. The slowing of our pace, the softening of my hard edges…

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Posted on August 20, 2011

I remember poring over photo albums and sifting through boxes of photos as a kid. We have a few albums along with the annual iPhoto albums Sean creates each Christmas now, but our history lives mostly on our phones, laptops and my blog. The girls will often ask to look at the pictures. I usually relinquish my phone or computer and then slip away to fold a hamper of laundry. The other day I let myself get lost in the images—frame after frame stared back at me with wide, blue eyes, towering evergreens and expansive Adirondack skies. The pictures sit unedited, there are bad hair day pictures, pasty-face pictures and plenty of, “Really, you had to take the picture at that angle?” shots. The…

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Sparkles for the Faeries

Posted on August 16, 2011

I grew up believing in magic, from faerie blankets at dawn to wishing on stars before bed. One of the most profoundly exquisite aches of parenting has been the distillation of beauty. There is a literal sensation of lived-joy seeping from my memory and infusing moment’s with the best of what I had, faint wisps of my childhood lacing themselves into these new childhoods. The other night I was retrieving snack bowls and sippy cups from the bench beneath an olive tree in our backyard. Out of the corner of my eye I saw a box, not just any box, one of my Birchbox boxes. My mom had gifted me with a subscription after I heard about them through Cool Mom Picks. The boxes…

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Ruminating on legacy

Posted on August 15, 2011

I’ve been thinking lately, chalk it up to withered vines and unexpected new blooms. I turned 38 last month and, not that the age 38 is any great shakes, I’ve realized some things. Life isn’t what it seems, or rather, our potential isn’t what it seems. It’s easy to get caught up in people preconceiving what we can or can’t do, or protesting that time, money or circumstance make something other than exceptional the only possibility. I am realizing, trite as it may sound, that every day is a chance to break free from the rut, succeed beyond expectations or means. When you persist and believe more in the rightness of the path that you are on, rather than some perception of what you…

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