How Many Summers Left?

I do not love hot weather. I do not love intense humidity and stepping out into the outside world and feeling myself gasp. And, for better and for worse, I live in Washington D.C., where this is how it is in July and August. On the other hand, my grandmother turned 90 years old this [Read More...]

O Parenting: You Humble Me

Our Little Bean is starting to stand, ever-so-momentarily, on her own. Meanwhile, our lives careen on with her a central part of them: family trips and visits with friends, work and projects, housekeeping and grocery shopping. Occasionally I am blessed with the help of a babysitter or nanny. And as I introduce that person to [Read More...]

Weeding Out Racism

I’m a gardener in the upper Midwest, so in July I spend a lot of time pulling up weeds. Just yesterday, along with a lot of other stuff, I probably pulled up a couple of hundred tiny maple trees, growing from the ‘helicopter blades’ that spin to the ground from my neighbor’s maple each spring. [Read More...]

Storms and Solidarity

All day Thursday I wore my Standing on the Side of Love t-shirt, through meetings with academia, organizers, congregants, and staff. A day of solidarity, a day of grief and a day of joy. Solidarity with the Texas State Senator Wendy Davis, who stood on the side of love (without eating, drinking, using the bathroom, [Read More...]

Into the Summer Daze

We want summer to be leisurely. We want it to be restful. We want it to involve sandals, long meandering days, the sound of ice cubes clinking in a glass, a steady stream of lemonade or ice tea. We don’t, usually, want it to involve more to-do lists and travel details than the winter holidays. [Read More...]

Role Camera

It will only be five minutes. A favor. Celebrating women in the month of May and need a female minister to represent. When she asked a few weeks ago, calling in the middle of a rich and full work day, I said yes, okay, sure. I needed practice publicly speaking about ministry, especially as a [Read More...]

Compassion and Connection

His Holiness the Dalai Lama has graced New Orleans with his presence this weekend. Prayer flags are fluttering from balconies more accustomed to Mardi Gras beads and brass bands are sharing the scene with throat singing… HH Dalai Lama arrived under the auspices of a conference called “Resilience: Strength Through Compassion and Connection.” Those familiar [Read More...]

Creating Life

Standing in the doorway between the ticket table and the concert last night, the music from the incredible jazz trio on the chancel washing over me, I was overwhelmed with gratitude. This is my life! Somewhere between scheduling the termite treatments and the ceiling repairs from a leaky roof, between taxes and budgets, between making [Read More...]

Prayers for the Possible

In 1854, Rev. Theodore Parker prayed: “Help us to grow stronger and nobler by this world’s varying good and ill, and while we enlarge the quantity of our being by continual life, may we improve its kind and quality not less, and become fairer, and tenderer, and heavenlier too, as we leave behind us the [Read More...]

Not Avoiding Forests, Though They Have All Those Trees

I sometimes (daily?) get overwhelmed by the minutiae of life. I often feel amazed at what others seem to accomplish while I feel like I’m drowning in dishes, dirty clothes, to-do lists, e-mail, and piles of papers. I’ve even been known to turn down a vacation because getting organized for all that just sounds like [Read More...]