Voices From the Past

You settle into the plush, cold seat and reach for the safety belt. Without thinking, you poke a key into the ignition. Oliver whines and you wait until you hear the engine purr before pulling the car into reverse.

For some time now, you’ve been on the lurk for a cassette player. Your collection of […]

Happy Birthday to a 117-Year Old Woman

Dear Nana,

You would have been 117 today, a possibility which wouldn’t have crossed my mind had I not read Neenah Ellis’ If I Live to be 100 – Lessons from the Centenarians, a series of interviews with men, women, and couples between the ages of 100 and 117.

While some of the interviewees were […]

Dancing with Nana – Those were the days

The sun is low in the sky as my Polish Nana and I settle into her living room with our customary after-dinner wine. The enormous picture window frames the lush oak-shaded lawn beyond her rose garden. The wall on the other side of the room is stone and wood, a magnificent fireplace flanked by custom […]

What’s My Line

Nana wasn’t lazy, I tell myself as I lurch from task to task, slogging my way through an endless to do list. Nana wasn’t lazy, but I just have to get outside for a walk. As soon as the woods closed in around me, my vision began to blur. Dang, here I was feeling sorry […]

Good Neighbors in Spades

Nana creating a new garden, circa 1920

Dear Nana,

I’ve been busy “Nanafesting” all week. That’s what we call it when we “manifest Nana,” usually in the kitchen. Seems like I’ve been cooking all week. I baked a cake for Jason’s birthday, made twenty sandwiches for Alisa’s moving-in party and five dozen chocolate […]

Alone in the Woods

Dear Nana,

I dreamed about my girlfriend Ruthann last night and that made me think of you. Plus, I can’t think of a blog topic, so I decided to write you instead.

Ruthann passed away the week before Thanksgiving. I woke up thinking, “I need to email Ruthie” and then I remembered. That’s when I […]

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, NANA!

Nana and Susi outside her New Jersey home.

Dear Nana,

Today is the 107th anniversary of your birth. For as long as I can remember, you’ve been part of my life. Thank you for all that you taught me while you were here. Thank you for thirty-five years of unconditional love. I think […]