PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a postcard. I like to post one that speaks to me each week.

october 2

Day 2: When things get tough, I want to remember:

  • I have made it through every struggle I've faced.
  • This too shall pass.
  • I can control how I respond to the situation, not the situation.
  • Steady on!
Find the prompts here!

sunday stealing

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Fall meme

1. Fave fall Holiday: my birthday 👸

2. Best thing about fall walks: the air is crisp and the sun is warm

3. Favorite fall chore: switching my summer clothes to my fall and winter clothes

4. Least favorite fall chore: 
putting away my summer shoes and digging out my winter shoes

5. Best change in the home: I have a lot of windows and the sun feels especially warming now

6. Best tree in the fall: maple

7. Fall ritual: aimlessly driving to look at the scenery

8. Most frustrating thing about fall: pesky rodents are everywhere

9. Favorite fall decorations: pumpkins--carved or not

10. Favorite clothing: light layers--sweaters

11. Traditional fall candy:
caramel apple

12. Favorite sound: crunching leaves underfoot

13. When does fall begin for you?
usually when I go on Harvest Break

14. What is your favorite aspect of fall?
the colors

15. What is your favorite fall memories?
the first time I drove behind Mars Hill mountain by myself

16. What do you like to drink in the fall?  
apple cider

17. What's your favorite fall food?  sour cream pumpkin coffee cake or pumpkin chip cookies

18. What color is fall? brown and orange

19. What does fall smell like? Yankee Candle Autumn Wreath (apple, clove, nutmeg, cinnamon, etc)

20. If you could go anywhere in the fall, where would you go?
for a plane ride over Maine


october 1

Day 1: Share your best soup recipe.  This is a family favorite!

Taco soup:

1 lb ground beef
1 chopped onion
1 package of taco seasoning
1 jar salsa
1 cup of water
1 can of rinsed and drained chickpeas
1 can of rinsed and drained black beans
1 can of tomato sauce
1 can of stewed tomatoes with chilis

Serve with shredded cheese, a dollop of sour cream, and tortilla chips.

Find the prompts here!


saturday 9


Forever Your Girl

1) In this song, Paula Abdul tells her boyfriend he's got to remember, she's forever his girl. How's your memory? Do you remember things easily or do you leave yourself notes and reminders? I have a good memory--although I do leave myself reminders just in case

2) Paula reassures her lover that she can't be swayed by another man, even if he gave her diamonds or pearls. Tell us about a piece of jewelry that means something to you. A student had on a really cool necklace with a dangly pendant that I really liked so I bought one just like it from Avon.  That was probably a dozen years ago or so.  I wear it often.
3) Paula is best known as one of the original judges of American Idol. Without looking it up, can you recall the men who sat on either side of her? Randy Jackson and Simon Cowell--I was a major Idol fan for many years

4) Paula has been dancing since age 8 and moves very well in heels. Tell us about your favorite shoes.
Lately, it's been a pair of navy blue Keds.  Just the originals.
5) A lifelong dancer, Paula admits she's not a trained singer. For this record, she worked with producer Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, who won accolades for his work with singers including Madonna, Kelly Clarkson, Toni Braxton and Janet Jackson. Who is your all-time favorite female singer? Annie Lennox or Linda Ronstadt
6) She advises young girls to "keep the faith and don't lose your gut instinct." How about you? Are you more logical or instinctive? I'm a good combination of both--I rely on both
7) Paula is excited that Richard Branson has chosen her song, "Straight Up" as the theme for his Virgin Galactic Spaceflight company. Would you like to orbit above the earth? oh, hell no

8) In 1989, when this song was a hit, the Sears Holiday Wish Book was big on bathrobes. Men and women alike were tempted with brightly colored, belted robes with hoods and patch pockets. Tell us about your bathrobe. it's plain white, below the knee, kind of a soft jersey material with extra deep pockets

9) Random question: What do you consider your best quality? I am a great listener


friday 5


  1. When did you most recently experience the beginning of a beautiful friendship? a colleague and I have really hit it off
  2. For whom did you last stick your neck out? I can't remember, I think it was for my bestie
  3. What matters more to you, and what matters less as time goes by? what matters more is my peace of mind and what matters less is everyone else's opinion
  4. What have you been shockedshocked!to learn this week? I know this is a lighthearted question but I am reeling at the news that a former student of mine died of an overdose
  5. Who’s looking at you, kid? you are!


blog daily challenge

 It's time for an October blog challenge!  I put this together from a variety of sources...

Feel free to join!

Find the prompts here!

three on thursday

Click here to join in

Thing one: I am very excited for my sisters to arrive as we gather to celebrate my nephew's wedding!  It's going to be a lovely time.

Thing two:  I had a lot of fun at my manicure this morning.

Thing three:   I spent an hour and a half at the DMV and couldn't get my license renewed because I didn't have enough proof of residency.  Oh well, there's always tomorrow!


w.w.w. wednesday


Welcome to WWW Wednesday! Hosted by Taking on a World of Words.

• What are you currently reading?  The Bakeshop at Pumpkin and Spice by Donna Kauffman, Kate Angell, and Allyson Charles, The Friendship Breakup by Annie Cathryn, The Rabbit Hutch by Tess Gunty, and I'm just starting to listen to Fairy Tale by Stephen King.

• What did you recently finish reading? (links to my thoughts on the books)    This Time Tomorrow by Emma Straub, Vacationland by Meg Mitchell Moore, and This Must Be The Place by Maggie O'Farrell.

• What do you think you’ll read next? I'm not sure--I've got so many going now! 


ten things tuesday

1. What's on your fall bucket list?  I actually haven't made one--but the big upcoming event is my nephew's wedding and my away sisters and their families will be here to celebrate!

2.  Write a letter to your sibling(s).  
Dear Sisters,  
Next week is going to be fun and fast.  So be prepared for lots of memory-making and laughter!  Ting!

3.  What are you completely honest about? my lack of keeping my house clean and decluttered

4.  How can you be helpful today? I printed off the Hallmark Christmas movie schedule for Dad

5.  Write a review about the last book you read. I finished reading Vacationland and wrote about it here.

6.  Your favorite football snack recipe.
Buffalo chicken dip from my neighbor, Nicole
2 bricks cream cheese, softened
2 cups shredded chicken breast
2 cups shredded cheddar
1 cup Texas Pete's Buffalo Hot Sauce
1 cup Ranch Dressing

Mix the chicken into the softened cream cheese and add all the rest, stir well. Bake around 40 minutes or so. Or put in a crock pot and heat through to melt the cheeses. Great with Tostitos Scoops. I actually made it with a half-cup of Texas Pete's to accommodate the older crowd.

7.  How do you decorate for fall? I don't really decorate my home but I decorate my classroom with some pumpkins and a pinecone garland

8.  Capture the changing season with photos. 

9.  What does content look like to you? it looks like my recliner at the end of the day

10. How do you keep yourself organized as life gets busier? I rely on the Notes and Calendar apps


finished reading

Now, this is a beach read!  Set on the coast of Maine, the atmosphere is spot on.  It's the story of family, illness, and tradition.  Every year Louisa and her family spend summertime at her family's home on the coast of Maine.  This year, Louisa is on a sabbatical from her history professor gig at NYU to write a book that's not happening as steadily as she expected.  Her three children are all dealing with kid issues like boredom, first love, and too much sibling time.  Her husband's start-up podcast company is taking all of his time and causing him to be mostly absent.  Louisa expects this retreat to Maine to solve all her problems but reality has other plans.

The narrative shifts perspectives between Louisa, her children Mattie, Abigail, and Claire, the housekeeper Pauline, and the mysterious newcomer Kristie.  I will say I particularly enjoyed the chapters from the kids' perspectives.  Their take on the adult situations was well-done.

This felt like a coming-of-age novel.  It felt like all of the characters grew and evolved as they ultimately rediscovered the power of forgiveness and the importance of family.

From the publisher:
Louisa has come to her parents' house in Maine this summer with all three of her kids, a barely written book, and a trunkful of resentment. Left behind in Brooklyn is her husband, who has promised that after this final round of fundraising at his startup he will once again pick up his share of the household responsibilities. Louisa is hoping that the crisp breeze off Penobscot Bay will blow away the irritation she is feeling with her life choices and replace it with enthusiasm for both her family and her work.

But all isn't well in Maine. Louisa's father, a retired judge and pillar of the community, is suffering from Alzheimer's. Louisa's mother is alternately pretending everything is fine and not pretending at all. And one of Louisa's children happens upon a very confusing and heartfelt letter referring to something Louisa doesn't think her father could possibly have done.

Louisa's not the only one searching for something in Maine this summer. Kristie took the Greyhound bus from Pennsylvania with one small suitcase, $761, and a lot of baggage. She's got a past she's trying to outrun, a secret she's trying to unpack, and a new boyfriend who's so impossibly kind she can't figure out what she did to deserve him. But she can't keep her various lives from colliding forever.

As June turns to July turns to August, secrets will be unearthed, betrayals will come to light, and both Louisa and Kristie will ask themselves what they are owed and what they owe others.


I am...

ReadingVacationland by Meg Mitchell Moore

Listening to:  a car alarm keeps going off

Loving:  a day without any concrete plans

Thinking:  I'm trying to decide what to wear to my nephew's upcoming wedding

Feeling:  excited for my sisters to arrive!

Celebrating: my nephew's nuptials

Grateful for:  time off from school to decompress and get ready

Weather:  it is 63° and mostly cloudy

Enjoying:   Potato Harvest Break--which is a two-week break from school. Back in the day, there were so many family farms that relied on manual labor (their own children and other kids) that the family would pull the kids from school to help with the harvest. I am not so sure why we continue having Harvest Break as most kids do not do the manual harvest jobs which have become mechanized and you need to be at least 18 to operate the machines. It was a rite of passage when I was a kid. Now, not so much. But it's a tradition.

A quote I want to share (not exactly a quote but...)