The Makers

Makers keep showing up in my life. You know, the people who translate ideas and mismatched parts into physical things. A car. A coffee table. A thriving business. A killer dress. I birthed a Maker. My eldest son tinkers and toils with his hands—happier that way than any other. I take no credit. My father’s…

The blank page speaks

I call it the tyranny of the blank page. I also call it the miracle of the blank page. How that plays out is up to me more often than not. I can tell myself that blank page will mock me because what I fill it with will not be good enough/smart enough/has been said…

I want to be a ballerina

Yes, that’s right. A real diva. The Sugar Plum Fairy in a Nutcracker suite that brings crowds to their feet, in a tutu metaphorically on fire. At least, that is what I used to want; I saw it as my destiny. So, as any good ballerina in training would, I walked on my tiptoes around…

Bending the mold

Dad was always sure he knew the way the world should work. As I grew up, this annoyed me sometimes. As I’ve aged, it has been such a comfort. I realize now it was a comfort even back then, although I was not wise enough to recognize that fact. My father was not a man…

An open book

I sigh in exasperation at yet another item littering the floor of my youngest’s room. Will he never learn to tame the clutter? And then I smile, my attitude flipping as easily as a page. A page in the book that was the object “littering” the floor of his room. This particular book was a…

Lessons I did not mean to learn

So much of what I have learned in life was unwitting. As a parent, this realization fills me with a strange combination of relief and chagrin. Because I can’t seem to stop talking. The teachable moments come fast and furious sometimes. I have so much hard-earned wisdom to impart about honesty, integrity, love (it’s a…

Holy making

I do what a lot of us do on a typical day. I wake up, get kids to school, work, work out, shop, cook, pay bills. On the good days, I find joy in the process. Or rather, it finds me. On the worst days, I wish for—what? More adventure, more money, more time, more…

The writing life

When you’re a writer, people seem to feel you must be bohemian enough to accept them asking you anything. Or maybe people are just rude. I prefer to think the former. Regardless, I’ve had many people ask me why I write. They look at me, curiously, wondering what the payoff is. Sometimes, the tone is…

I am humbled

I am not easily humbled. Status symbols don’t wow me. Your car, boat, square footage and social standing are of little interest. But show me something that matters—incredible internal strength, grace under pressure, acceptance—these things may humble me. I am human enough to appreciate a beautiful sports car or a lovely waterside home. I tend…

Got brave. Forgot the beret.

My brand new painting is gracing my laundry room. I’m not saying “my” because I bought it. I say “my” because the artist is moi. Take that, Mary Ann. For the uninitiated among you, Mary Ann was my third-grade nemesis in art class and one of the reasons I’ll never understand the term “art therapy”….

Hope on a balcony

I am moved by many things. Sunrise over mountains. A hummingbird in the woods. My children’s belly laughs. But nothing moves me quite as much as hope. In today’s cynical world, to hope is to be mocked on some fronts. Or to be disdained, dismissed as less sophisticated than your jaded peers. When I tear…

Candidkay gets brave in a beret

Not too much scares me. And what does scare me I, I’m sure, also scares many of you. The thought of losing my home. A medical test gone bad. Root canals. But each of us has our own quirky sense of the terrifying. Say, for instance, the photo of Shel Silverstein on the back of…