Pencils Remind Me Of Second Chances

I am reading Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh again. Anne wrote it at the beach where she went alone to reflect on the pattern of her life. She wrote about her affinity for freshly sharpened pencils. I know exactly how she felt. There are so many satisfying things about pencils. Sharpening them is instantly
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Big Love

My mother’s love was big. Rita was the parent waving wildly from the audience with a toothy smile. In high school I messed up my solo in Oklahoma when I saw her arms fanning above her head. Other parents sat patiently, palms in their laps, and looked at the stage with neutral expressions. Rita couldn’t
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Praying for Hearts

I spoke to a customer service representative recently who was working during a natural disaster. Flooding in her community had reached historic levels. She filled me in on the areas affected and shared a story about a friend not being able to reach her elderly father because the road was washed out. She said they
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Family Dinner Is Our Favorite Hobby

Family dinner is good for the soul. When my children Matt and Emma were young, I read articles about the value of sitting together for meals. Family dinner saves lives, preventing drug abuse and reducing the likelihood of all kinds of social pathology. It even boosted IQs so I devoted myself to the ritual, using
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How To Choose A School

I have the privilege of being a substitute teacher at the school my daughter Emma attended in middle school and high school. The word privilege sounds like hyperbole when you’re talking about being a substitute teacher, but it’s not. When Emma was a student at the Atlanta Girls’ School, I was a vocal fan of
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Me and Emma, age 7, at the Beach

You Should Be A Doctor

My daughter Emma went to Rhodes College to study neuroscience and prepare for medical school. I love telling people she was “pre-med” and a neuroscience major. I usually start with neuroscience. If someone seems too impressed, I add an oh-shucks-comment like, “It’s not that big a deal. It’s just like majoring in biology.” If I
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