family is story

Folk Lore

Saying Goodbye to Autry Circle

Have you ever been torn between the feelings of relief and grief? Standing on the bare land of where my home once stood, I felt those feelings rise up through my tear ducts. My homestead of 41 years is gone. It was sold to an […]

My Blind Great-Grandmother and a Lesson in Integrity

As I’m writing this, allowing myself to dwell on the fact that I can’t have cookies, my mind has drifted to my great-grandmother’s house and Breyer’s peach ice cream. I love the fact that I knew and remember my great-grandmother. She was a wonderful lady […]

My Worst Scar: How I almost lost a finger

“Where. Is. DAD!” I screamed through tears. “He’s coming, he’s coming. He just went to look for your finger,” my mom said. “Please hurry,” I begged. Minutes earlier, my brother, Tim, decided to crank up the family dune buggy and take it for a spin. […]

A Note From Pop

Pop was a romantic. He wrote often in his diaries and in notes of his many adventures, love of travel and love for my grandmother. I was fortunate to grow up living next door to them, and I was able to witness a loving, respectful […]

The Last Gift I Gave my Mom

After the doctors had gone and the family had gone their ways, I stood in the hospital room with my mom and dad skeptical and second-guessing the diagnosis. Surely, my mom had more than three months to live. How could this have happened so fast? […]

How to Watch Birds

From an early age, I was a birdwatcher by divine association. The divine being God’s will and the association being my mother, Nancy. My mom loved birds. She loved them to the extent that she documented three generations of Wood Duck families that made our […]

The Day my Brother Died

It was a hot Sunday, June 14, 1987. The sun bright and crisp. Having been inside all day, I felt as though I should get out of the house and do something—go for a ride, maybe. Yes, that was it. I’d saddle up Dan, my […]

Brothers: Lessons in Survival Training

As the baby of the family, trying to keep up with two older brothers was a daily training in survival of the fittest. Evan, my oldest brother, is nearly nine years older than me. Tim, the second oldest, was 4.5 years older than me. Because […]

Weird Family Stories we Love to Tell

“And he went so crazy that he ate his shoes.” And thus ends the bizarre ancestral tale of one of my closest friends. To which, I counter with the tale of my ancestor, a club-footed pre-teen who hid under the family’s porch to shoot Yankee […]

June is Sneaky

June is a sneaky month for me. It sneaks in summer temps. It sneaks in sudden downpours on sunny afternoons. It sneaks in random cry-fests. It sneaks in cringe-worthy memories. It sneaks in pain. It sneaks in joy. June used to be MY month, for […]