Discovering Barcelona through Music

Just a few cords on a keyboard. Then, a simple bass line. A few beats later, the satin voice of the singer; in the background, finger snaps provide tempo as the measures build and the music becomes fuller. By the time percussion enters, there’s no way my body can remain still. That song, “Closer” from… Continue reading Discovering Barcelona through Music

Celebrating a Life with Moments of Grace

Snow crunched between asphalt and shoe tread, my breath muffled in the scratchy warmth of a wool wrap. For this Texas girl, six-plus inches and a morning temperature hovering at 10 degrees Fahrenheit were quite the novelty. I’d arrived in Illinois just prior to that mid-January snowfall. Each day, I eagerly bundled up for a… Continue reading Celebrating a Life with Moments of Grace

Most Popular Blogs of 2018

Throw Back Thursday, January Review, Best of, Top 5; whatever this list’s title, I’ve looked back at 2018 to see which of my blogs readers enjoyed most. Runners treasure a PR (personal record) and I do love a stat, so reviewing is always a fun reveal. There are always surprises. Writing, you see, is a… Continue reading Most Popular Blogs of 2018

How Do You Measure Success?

Damn New Year’s resolutions. Damn those ubiquitous ads for personal improvements. Damn fresh starts, reaffirmations, good intentions. Damn everyone pushing those annual bookended reflections: What have you done so far? What do you want to achieve? Awards and Writing At last night’s Golden Globes award ceremony, Glenn Close gave a tearful acceptance speech that tore… Continue reading How Do You Measure Success?

Best Black-Eyed Pea Recipe Ever

New Year’s Day. Odds are good you’re like me today: a little sleep deprived, a bit hung over, and optimistic about the new year. Who doesn’t want the next 365 to start off right from Day 1? That’s why I always serve black-eyed peas on January 1. While I grew up a native Texan, my… Continue reading Best Black-Eyed Pea Recipe Ever

What I Read in 2018

Documenting #52booksin52weeks turned into a surprisingly interesting project. Accountability through publication was a success; for once in my life, I faithfully (and relatively regularly) updated an on-going reading list. In the process, I learned some things: You like it when I talk books!┬áSurprisingly, these blog round-ups and Facebook and Instagram posts were some of 2018’s… Continue reading What I Read in 2018

The Flower Cap Cult

Like any self-respecting cult, ours has a charismatic leader. Our matching flower caps were her idea. We’re a loud bunch, anonymous in the dark. Because that’s when we dip into Austin’s Barton Springs pool. Before the sun rises, while the moon still watches; before dedicated swimmers knock out pre-work laps; before entrance fees are collected;… Continue reading The Flower Cap Cult

Exceeding Reading Expectations

As November draws to an end, the holiday noose begins to tighten. Entertaining, decorating, gift giving, family get-togethers, obligatory travel . . . all signal the calendar year is rapidly coming to a close. We’re tearing off the page on Week No. 47 out of a total 52! My, how time flies. Which means all… Continue reading Exceeding Reading Expectations