Fallen

imageWind and rain recently severed the last major branch off one of our favorite trees. It had a surprising effect on my husband and me. I have since talked others who shared the same experience about losing a tree by their home. Trees are more than tall plants. They are guardians, and keepers of time and memory. They also give us life. I will share my poem in homage to our fallen tree.

Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged | 20 Comments

Etiquette In The Digital Age

image1                                                                                                      Photo: Getty Images

My husband and I raised our sons during the fleeting history of Instant Messenger, followed later by cell phones, texting, and smart phones. Where once I wrote thank you letters, I have largely shifted to expressing thanks by email, and where I used to talk by phone, I now text for short messages. I sometimes wish that we had a guide to help us navigate these new ways of interacting with one another. I’ve tried to evolve my own personal list of etiquette guidelines to match the times.
Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , | 17 Comments

Shhhhh! Argue At A Whisper!

angry-couple

 

 

 

 

My husband and I usually work through a disagreement before going to sleep, but after a stressful day of travel recently, we were too tired, and the excitement of having a family weekend at Lake Tahoe masked the tension until the next morning. We woke up early and had began airing our grievances when our son knocked gently on the bedroom door to ask if we could keep our voices to a whisper. His request turned out to be a valuable lesson.
Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

The Miracle Of Migration

imageMigration in most animals is precipitated by changing seasons and natural rhythms, including food, weather, and breeding. I marvel at how whole species can move long distances without even the help of a car, train or plane! I thought about this yesterday as I flew across the country.      Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Rosh Hashanah

Tree-of-Life-055For Jews around the world, this is the season of reflection and forgiveness. Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, is a time to look at the ways in which we have transgressed and to apologize, personally, to anyone we may have offended or hurt. In so doing we are once again sealed in the Book of Life. Whether or not we are Jewish, I believe we could all benefit if we took a page from this book. Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

Labor

At this time of year many of us are transitioning from vacation back to work. It has me thinking about the meaning of labor.
image
This twin hull boat model was made from a lobster buoy, slabs of granite for the keel, and another Styrofoam buoy pushed through sticks for the sails.
Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

Extroverts and Introverts

Do you get your batteries charged by being at a party, or by being on your own? When you go home alone do you reach for the phone or sigh and settle into a good book or movie? These are some of the differences between extroverts and introverts.

image

Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Letting Go

Paul & caterpillerA friend gave me the following quote by Reverend Safire Rose on letting go. Lately, I have been reading it almost daily. It reminds me to let go of all that I can’t control, which is almost everything, and live in the present. Bit-by-bit I am loosening my grip, and finding the gift of freedom that results. I share it as a gift to you:
Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , , | 20 Comments

On Kindness

kindness2

Of all the qualities that augment good in the world, I believe kindness is number one. Kindness is a doorway to the heart. It is something we learn (or not) from childhood. If we have not been treated kindly, we have to make it a conscious practice. Kindness begets kindness.
Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Martha Stewart’s “American Made”

image

 

 

 

 

 

 

Working a loom in my dorm at college

For more than 20 years, my friend Martha Stewart has celebrated a spirit of innovation in the pages of her magazines, on her television shows and, more recently, online. Now, through American Made —founded in 2012— Martha and the editors of Martha Stewart Living are spotlighting the next generation of great American makers: entrepreneurs, artisans, and small-business owners who are creating beautiful, inspiring, useful products; pioneering new industries; improving local communities; and changing the way we eat, shop, work, and live.   Continue reading

Posted in Eileen's Armchair | Tagged | 8 Comments