Why “my sweet old etcetera”?

I started this blog over two years ago, and it never occurred to me to explain the name until today. So, why “my sweet old etcetera”? The short answer is that it’s the name of a poem by E.E. Cummings, and I love poetry, and the title sounds like what my blog is about: the... Continue Reading →


Funeral for a Friend

Dear Tom, Do you remember the glass relish tray you gave to Paul and me as a wedding gift? It’s a large oval platter, divided into four sections, each separated by a scalloped edging, and the center bowl is trimmed in a perfect circle of glass beads. The edging forms a delicate leaf pattern at... Continue Reading →

Time with Dad: The Workshop

When I was a kid, I loved spending time with my dad in his workshop. We had one of those big metal sheds that were in everyone’s backyards in the 70s – red and white, styled like a barn – and Dad had it wired with electricity, so it had lights, heat, and a stereo... Continue Reading →

Don’t Forget

As I was driving Anna home from William and Mary yesterday, we started singing that children’s song about Michael Finnigan (the guy who had whiskers on his chin-igan) – don’t ask me why. I stumbled over one of the lines and Anna turned to me and asked, “Do you not remember the words?” “Of course... Continue Reading →


There’s nothing I can write about the horrific acts of terrorism in Paris that hasn’t already been expressed. The news reports leave me sickened and angry and numb all at once. There’s that famous quote by Fred Rogers that goes around after something unthinkable happens, the one about looking to the helpers. Whenever I’m afraid... Continue Reading →


Yesterday was a dark, rainy kind of day, perfect for my hermit tendencies. I had to conduct an interview via conference call, which allowed me the luxury of working in my sock feet with a large cup of hot cocoa at my side. The working from home thing can be a pretty sweet deal, but... Continue Reading →

Not Yet!

I can’t bear to look at Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving. I hate that retailers go directly from Halloween to Christmas without any acknowledgement of Thanksgiving at all. Granted, there isn’t much demand for turkey wreaths or Thanksgiving trees, but still, it makes me mad. As I scrolled through my Facebook feed this morning, I saw... Continue Reading →

Right Now

I don’t know what to write about. Getting back into blog mode has been harder than I thought it would be. It’s frustrating because I thought now that I’ve been writing daily, usually working on multiple stories at once, blog-related topics would flow like water. Not so. Maybe it’s because I haven’t been taking as... Continue Reading →


Ugh. That’s how I felt about this day by the time the sun went down. Ugh. Parent-teacher conference day never fails to deliver at least one surprise, and today was no exception. Hope is a beautiful, vibrant, creative soul, and I love her with every single bit of my heart, but dear lord, she gives... Continue Reading →

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