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The Art of the Journey

The Art of the Journey

About a decade ago, frazzled from working at home with an infant and toddler, I decided to take a day for myself. I could have gone for a massage or hit the mall, but instead, I did something that at the time was entirely uncharacteristic: I went to a retreat center for a labyrinth walk.Continue Reading

Writing on a Different Page

Writing on a Different Page

In recent years I’ve discovered how important it is for me to have a physical outlet. I can be a fairly emotional person, and all the feelings that accrue as we go about a day—happiness, anger, passion, peace, outrage, frustration, cheer, lust—often beg for release. Some of that energy gets diverted to the page, eitherContinue Reading

Failing at Success

Failing at Success

Years ago, I was absorbed by Ken Burns’ documentary about the expedition of Lewis and Clark. Among the things that stands out all these years later is a quote Burns pulled from Meriwether Lewis’ diary on the occasion of his 31st birthday.             This day I completed my 31st year… I reflected I had asContinue Reading

Me, Myselfie and I

Me, Myselfie and I

From a very young age, I hated how I looked in pictures. My nose always seemed too large. My eyebrows were too thick. My awkward stage was painfully awkward and then drawn out through years of braces, glasses and acne. Even in my 20s, I hadn’t found my groove yet—any groove, really—and it hurts evenContinue Reading

(Most) Writers Aren’t Saints

(Most) Writers Aren’t Saints

When I mentioned recently I was visiting the relics of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, a friend asked if I was going to see a finger bone or something equally macabre. The mortal remains of this Carmelite nun have, in fact, previously traveled the United States, but these were true artifacts: her pen, inkwell and writingContinue Reading

The Unlikely Reunion That Was Meant to Be

The Unlikely Reunion That Was Meant to Be

Years ago when I was feeling creatively stunted and questioning my ability as a writer, I stumbled upon Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. I was utterly convinced of my lack of talent and hoped her book might work as some magic elixir. It didn’t transform me instantly into the writer of my dreams. I’m stillContinue Reading

Back to School, Back to Work

Back to School, Back to Work

I’m probably one of the few people I know who eagerly counts the days until school begins. Not that I ever would wish summer away. As a wife and mother of two young children, the warmer months are devoted to visits with friends, field trips and vacations. There’s also a good amount of lazing about,Continue Reading

Mi Abuelo, Mein Opa

Mi Abuelo, Mein Opa

For years, my grandfather’s life could be boiled down to the two most lasting impressions he left upon my mother. The first occurred when she was 10. She and her sisters were sitting around the kitchen table eagerly awaiting the eggs he was preparing at the stove. They were my mom’s favorite: sunnyside up. ButContinue Reading

Beneath the Label

Beneath the Label

For the past couple of years I’ve visited my daughter’s elementary school as a Diversity Day speaker, and I’m sure as the students enter the room they’re wondering why a lady with skin as white as Carrera marble is standing at the front talking about multiculturalism. I introduce myself as an Italian-American from Brooklyn, N.Y.,Continue Reading

The Reluctant Sharer

The Reluctant Sharer

As anyone who knows me well will tell you, I’ve skillfully avoided social media over the years. Facebook? Not a chance. LinkedIn? Yawn. Twitter? I never could be witty or interesting enough. Well, I finally conceded to all of the above within the last month. I wish Facebook had a sound feature, because I seemContinue Reading

Fiction vs. Non-Fiction

Fiction vs. Non-Fiction

I’ve always been fearful of writing fiction, mostly because I didn’t think I had anything worthwhile to say. The lack of confidence that held me back for so long almost certainly stemmed from a want for identity. I was born to a Cuban mother and Italian father in Brooklyn, N.Y. in a neighborhood that wasContinue Reading

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