Bobbing Along

A Lifetime of Stories: collected, painted, shared.

Ancestors and Anecdotes

Brace yourself.

This section is dedicated to stories from years past as well as more recent vignettes. Some stories may be delightful. Some may be serious. Some may be very, very personal and for those, I say: read at your own risk. This section of my blog is dedicated to those sorts of stories that my family may, down the road, eventually, want documented. If they don’t, then, down the road, eventually, they can just delete the whole damn thing.

Oh, and please don’t expect these to be in any chronological order. It’s all I can do to remember the details.


I never let the details get in the way of a good story.

Just sayin’.

Aye! More about Eyes

Some have asked what it is like to have single vision. My answer usually is “it’s no big deal.” And for the most part, that is true. Depth perception is my greatest issue. The front fender of my car is a clear testament to that. When I am working on a painting, I’ll often stand […]

A Door Opens

History fascinates me. Not the economics and treaties and dates and stuff like that, you know, not the pesky details that one is tested on when studying the subject, no, not that stuff. I find history fascinating when people–ordinary and extraordinary–are the focus. After all, what is the point of history if not to remember […]

Painting “Aloft”

Occasionally, a painting will literally burst from hand to brush to canvas, without any notion or planning at all. Aloft is one of those paintings. When I began this work, we had just learned of my mother’s cancer diagnosis. She was, at that point, an 18-year breast cancer survivor but the cancer that had then invaded […]

Eulogy for My Mother

Delivered on April 23, 2010   Good morning, On behalf of my father, my sisters and brothers, and my entire family, I would like to thank you for the respect you have shown my mother and the love you have shown us by your presence here today. We have been deeply touched by the outpouring […]


It was a check-up. Nothing more. No urgent issues. No medical problems. Just a check-up. We reviewed the list of medications: for hypertension, check; for cholesterol, check; for digestive issues, check; for anxiety… “So, how is the Celexa working? How are you feeling?” “Better. I’m feeling better.” “Just better? Not good?” Hmmm. I thought better […]

The Great Fourth of July Flood and Other Tales

Holidays. Everyone loves holidays. In this family, holidays tend to bring a unique level of chaos. I refer to certain crises as “party games” for, if nothing else, the crisis of the day later becomes fodder for entertainment and laughter. I remember a Thanksgiving years and years ago when I was just entering adulthood. It […]


Know this: That he wasn’t always frail. Nor was he always broken, unsteady, unkempt, unclean, unclear.   Know this: That there was another man before the man he became. Before the man who was brutal and demeaning, angry and resentful, demanding, and impossible to please.   Before the hateful words, the rages, the beatings, the […]


Exactly one week after rather unsuccessfully introducing Rooster to musical theatre, I had the following phone conversation with him… Mom-mom: So, Rooster, did you like the Wizard of Oz? Rooster: Yes, I did! I did wike it, Mom-mom! Mom-mom: Would you like to see it again sometime? Rooster: Yes, I would! (slight pause as Mom-mom tries […]

Sound of Musicals

It was 1960. November. I remember because it was Thanksgiving weekend and my parents had taken my older sister, my younger brother and me to New York City. It was a trip just for the older three children. We had left the triplets at home in West Virginia with my grandparents as babysitters. (Yes, you […]

Opposites (Just sayin’…)

Me: The holidays are approaching. Houseguests will be arriving. I’m looking for a front door wreath that says “welcome”.   He: I’m looking to turn off all the lights and pretend we’re not home.   Me: ……….   He: I guess we have different ways of viewing things, huh?   Me: ……….