NOTE: My brother wrote me this email back in 2017 about his relationship with politics and his thoughts on being an expat. He died that November and I only recently rediscovered this and thought it was worth sharing. I miss his thoughts. ___________ much as I hated (and regretted, at the time) my whole experience
Yesterday, I took my 13 year old daughter to Plymouth for a history visit. The plan to see Plimoth Plantation was mentally scrapped at the halfway point of our 75 minute drive south. After all, we’d been there only a year before and on the same exact day. I know this because I was standing
A few days ago I realized it was all getting to be too much. News that is. Actually, to be more specific, news commentary. News I can handle. I follow current political events with major newspapers (both local and national) as well as general business, human interest, education and housing, etc. Local newspapers enrage me
When struggling for things to write about, there’s a topic that’s been off limits. I promised myself when the kids were younger and this site was new that I wouldn’t use their private lives as public content. Here and there I’ve shared some things, but most of the time I’ve kept the details of of
I will admit to being stuck. Stuck in Christmas past, which — grief aside — has always been my “go to” place this time of the year. There’s something about the holiday that brings back vivid memories of childhood, even more so having watched the excitement and joy of my own two daughters that begins
This past weekend I wrote my brother’s obituary. An obituary that he never would have wanted, but that we needed. This follows the personal tribute I wrote, which was more about what he meant to my life . Writing is always hard. But writing the summary of someone’s life, particularly when you are dealing with
How do you capture the love you have for someone in words? Really convey what that person has meant to you and your life in all its form and complexities? Our family is not the traditional family. Somehow over the years we managed to let it fall apart, let the bonds that connected us wither
This is my dog. This is my bed. And this is why I cannot get up in the morning.
I just realized it’s been four months since I’ve written a feature. Finally over the hump! Phew. And here she is. I heard a quote on the radio the other day that really resonated with me and properly sums up my writing experience: “I hate to write, but I love having written.” Thank you to
Without fail, each time we spend more than a day in another place, I have the desire to move there. The highlight reel: I’ve opined about living in Pacifica and Monterey; Ipswich, Chatham, and Gloucester; Boulder and Nederland; Philadelphia, New York City, and Seattle. But Maine. That’s where I really sink my teeth in. Trulia
When I first started this blog and was trying to figure out what I’d fill it with (still working on that), I briefly thought of making it parenting-related since that’s been the major focus of my life for the past 12 years. But then I started thinking that the stories of my kids weren’t really
I try not to spend too much time in the Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda neighborhood, but sometimes you end up there by accident, before you can roll up the windows, lock the doors, and speed away. A recent and too short trip to New York City found me there, as family stroll brought us from The
I hadn’t stopped to think how big 12″x18″ would really be when I placed a printing order last week for two of my photographs. Now that they are matted and framed, however, I’m pleasantly surprised to see that they’ve taken up the entire gallery wall outside of my studio. There are probably upwards of 45,000 digital images on my computer.
In retrospect, it was probably for the best that my laptop’s WiFi connection didn’t work for most of the time I was at the studio on my first day. The absence of Twitter forced me out of my new hidey hole and I slowly discovered the environment of the third floor. First stop was the women’s bathroom where I admired
When I moved back to Massachusetts nearly five years ago, I discovered volunteerism. I was 42 and had somehow made it that far in life without anyone ever asking me to be directly involved in a cause or an organization. I don’t know what that says about me, but I think that sometimes it’s best not to ruminate
Last week I signed the lease on a 285 square foot art studio on the third floor of a refurbished mill building in Lowell. I move into my new writing space on April 1. Perhaps the joke is on me. The idea of renting a studio for writing came out of nowhere. One day I remembered the building from
I have a complicated relationship with nature, particularly as it relates to my home and, in particular, because I’m a homebody.
Ranking up there with fried clams, frappes, bubblers, blinkers, and clickers, a sighting of a Bathtub Mary is very Massachusetts. The Virgin Mary in her grotto, as seen in a side yard in Hudson, MA.
Sometimes when you live near history, you take it for granted. I was reminded of that during February vacation when I took the kids to the Boott Cotton Mills Museum in Lowell. Growing up in Massachusetts, I was aware of the various mills in the state and the company towns that formed around them. It’s also hard to
Other than a handful of news and feature articles and the occasional freelance job, my writing production has flatlined. There are a few things rattling around the inside of my head–an essay here, a short story there–but nothing that makes me want to carve out some time to write for hours. The inspiration just hasn’t
by Karina Coombs Brother and sister act at last month’s FNL. (Photo by Parissa Khayami) [Reprinted from the original Carlisle Mosquito article found here.] If you are in middle school and looking for a fun Friday night, Carlisle’s hottest club is FNL. Located in the gym and exercise room at the Carlisle Public School (CPS), and
by Karina Coombs [Reprinted from the original Carlisle Mosquito article found here.] It’s not often that you get a chance to reinvent yourself and when it happens in your mid-40s, and you thought those chances had all but passed, you take it. Newly arrived in Carlisle, I first met the Mosquito’s General Manager Susan Emmons
by Karina Coombs A series of ceramic scrolls from Bedford artist Carol Rissman. Rissman makes each tile from white or red clay before imprinting or stamping them with natural found objects. Pieces are then fired and stained. Tiles are selected individually for each scroll and mounted on a wooden backing. (Photo by Karina Coombs)
by Karina Coombs “I dedicated my waist to the first cookbook. I dedicated my hips to the second cookbook and I added a chin from Baking with the Brass Sisters,” says Marilynn Brass of her newest cookbook co-authored with sister, Sheila Brass. The Brass Sisters, as they are known, are the authors of three acclaimed cookbooks
I stayed up as long as I could this morning, but in the end I made myself go to sleep knowing what we would all learn eventually and trying to figure out a way to explain this to my daughters. They went to sleep thinking they would wake up to a bold new day: the