Introducing Enzo

As I write this, a four-legged ball of white Maltese fluff is nibbling his kibble at my feet… and now he is nibbling my favorite socks. Enzo has been with us since February 8 and is now three months old. He was so soft and quiet and snuggly at first—eyelids fluttering, curling up to nap for hours at […]

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On following a star

After we moved to our present neighborhood in 2013, Kristy, her husband Matt, and their two sons quickly became part of our “extra family”—the friends and neighbors you meet on your journey who get inside your heart in all the right ways. Kristy was a teacher by training, but she’s had an unrelated part-time, work-from-home […]

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Four years later…

This first post of 2021 marks the fourth anniversary of my blogging adventure. My daughter originally suggested Hashtag Retired as a way to explore my transition to retirement. As I settled into a freer though still busy lifestyle, however, writing about retirement seemed less and less important to me. Retired or not, you are who […]

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Music alone…

When I was a kid, my Italian-American family gathered every night of the Christmas season, each time around a different relative’s table, to eat (mostly), agree (often), disagree (more often), laugh at the same old stories (always), and sing. My cousin’s husband played the guitar; others, the accordion, the harmonica, the piano. I mimicked the Italian […]

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‘St. Martin’s summer’

What have I been up to in the last few weeks? Enjoying long walks under gorgeous October skies, reading (Elizabeth George’s A Great Deliverance and Louise Penny’s All the Devils Are Here — they are truly “sisters in crime”), baking a bit (more on that in a subsequent post), binging the magnificent series Shetland on […]

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Apple season redux

If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you know that fall is my favorite time of year, and October my very favorite month. Nothing beats the splendor of autumn leaves against a not-just-blue-but-BLUE October sky. The air is crisp enough for a sweater and maybe a scarf, but the bone chill is weeks away. […]

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A glimmer of sunlight, just for today

No one I know who is old enough needs to be reminded of this day. Of the horrifying shock, the sheer depth of the tragedy, the fear that set in as the chilling images were repeated over and over again, as that city—New York, New York—disappeared into a storm of fire and ash. My family […]

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What Betty taught me

Dear friends, before you read this, you should know that when I first started this post months ago, it was literally a fluffy little bit about the annoyances of successive household breakdowns. But when I came back to the post today, like a character in a novel under construction, it took me in an entirely […]

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Her Dad’s War

Marina Reznor’s new book, above, is a pictorial memoir of her father’s experience in Europe during World War II. And it’s probably very different from anything else you’ve read because although it follows him from rural Berks County PA up to and beyond the Liberation of Paris, the real star of this book is blood. […]

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Converted!

Not sure why writing has become a bit of a struggle lately. Actually, I am sure. The steady stream of bad news just drives my head deeper into book after book. A microscopic thread of good news? That I’m probably going to over-achieve my modest Goodreads reading challenge goal of 30 books. Actually, as I […]

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Dear Daddy, meet Lorenzo…

Your birthday, April 12, and Father’s Day went by without so much as a Facebook post.  Sorry about that, but I do have something for you. And it’s much more exciting than you  could imagine. Do you remember, by any chance, the very first time I saw an opera? It was on television, on a Sunday […]

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My quarantine crushes

I don’t have much to say about “the situation” that others haven’t already said, and said well.* We’ve all developed different coping mechanisms for life in captivity. When all of this began, I couldn’t concentrate on books or TV. Like so many of us, I focused on the one thing over which I could exert […]

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