The Racist and the Ficus Tree

When I was young, the one black boy in my elementary school was my classmate. His name was Teddy. This was white-white-white Iowa in the 60’s.  My first grade teacher, Mrs. Van Cura, got angry at the class one day for misbehaving and said, “Whoever doesn’t behave will have to play with Teddy at recess.”… Continue reading The Racist and the Ficus Tree

Popsicles, Light Carpet, and Stitches

(re-run) It was Labor Day weekend. We needed to get a handle on the mess in the garage. I asked my oldest to watch my youngest while we parents worked outside. She was nine, in 4th grade already for a week, and the baby was almost two and a half. Then a series of unfortunate… Continue reading Popsicles, Light Carpet, and Stitches

Street Dance

(re-run) After hiking six miles with the senior group called DASH, which does not dash at all, but rather hikes slowly through the woods with plenty of stops for bathroom breaks, snack breaks, or count-up-and-regroup breaks, I was too pooped to go out dancing. But my friends were going, it was close (just one town… Continue reading Street Dance

Fighting for Blue Jeans

(re-run) When you’re in the dog house, you are in trouble. You’ve done something bad. As a child, I was never in the dog house because we didn’t have one. We didn’t even have a dog. My mother had her own strain of weird expressions that she said to us kids on a regular basis,… Continue reading Fighting for Blue Jeans

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

(re-run) When I was in high school and bought some of my clothes at the DAV (Disabled American Vets) thrift store, they called me quirky. When I made a cool pair of bell bottom jeans out of my dad’s old work pants, they called me quirky, but they also asked me where I got them.… Continue reading Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

A Girl, A Creek, and an Hour to Spare

(re-run) When my worker woman showed up Monday morning after having been gone for a two-week long vacation, I had a long list of to–do’s for her. I answered the door and found her nine year old daughter standing next to her. I said hello and went over the list with Kelly. I left to… Continue reading A Girl, A Creek, and an Hour to Spare