Magical Memoir Moments

Little Golden Book: Martha's House

Moving Across the Bridge: From Dream to Reality, Christmas to New Year, and Part I and Part II of Our Pittsburgh Adventure

The end of December is like Monet’s Japanese footbridge, says writer Philip Martin. For us, this time has been a moving experience, bridging Christmas and New Year, dreams with reality, and the first half of our “grannynanny” sojourn with the last half. Christmas Kate and Nik hosted our whole family in Pittsburgh, the city of…

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Lydia and me enjoying a visit to the lovely Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Pittsburgh.

Feeling Useful: A Place Where Age and Love Meet

In my twenties and thirties and forties, I was a professor. In my fifties I was a college president. In my sixties I was a foundation executive. Now that I am six months away from age seventy, I’ve been promoted to “granny nanny.” But what, exactly, does that mean? Obviously, it means helping to keep…

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This photo was taken from our car window the day we moved here as we got close to the skyline.

Our New City: Pittsburgh

First it was Brooklyn. Now it is Pittsburgh. The grannynanny gig takes us to cool places. I’m trying to learn all I can about Pittsburgh. I ask all my new friends for help. Let’s start with geography. This is a city of three rivers and 466 bridges. In the U. S., only New York City…

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Restaurant shenanigans.

Laughing Every Day: The September Report

 “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.” That Proverb poetry branded itself in my spirit. I’ve always loved a good laugh, whether a chuckle or a guffaw. According to the latest edition of the AARP magazine, “Laughing can give your immune system a temporary boost, ease pain, relax arteries and offer your torso a…

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Note every face. Can you tell that black flies were biting us? The photographer took them away electronically, but we felt their bites all evening. Can you tell who was itching to get away from them? :-)

What I Love About Portraits: The Beauty of Every Face

Almost everything I remember clearly about the past has to do with a person, often with a face. These days, granddaughter Lydia is teaching me about the early origins of love for the human face. Below is 29 seconds of a typical interaction with her at ten weeks of age. She is alert and curious,…

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At the Peterhof in St. Petersberg, Russia. A magical moment.

What Remains: The Most Lasting Images from 24 Days in the Baltic Region . . . And a New Chapter Begins

Travel brings many rewards and pleasures too obvious to mention. But it also contains a danger: too many miles covered too quickly can all blur at the beginning and fade at the end. That’s one reason to take pictures. Looking back over the entire set of 340 photos taken over 24 days of travel, some…

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The almost-smile of a newborn. The dress was made from a pillowcase and hand dyed by Kate.

Wiping Away the Tears, Embracing the Fears, Celebrating the Joy!

The birth of a new baby brings all our emotions to the surface: curiosity, fascination, elation, and joy beyond compare. There’s also terror! “Is she breathing?” “Will I let her down?” “How do I handle the responsibility for another life?” Every parent asks these questions, alternating between ecstasy and anxiety. Fortunately, others have been there…

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A Cartoon With Uncanny Accuracy: Predicting the Winding Blog Path

See how yellow this cartoon is? The darkest areas are tape that is no longer transparent after a decade. My colleague Amy clipped this image out of a newspaper ten years ago when she heard I was thinking about becoming a blogger.. For some reason, I kept it. I could not have known, then, that I…

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