and, yes, I’m using the term “running” very loosely….

Photo by Adam Winger on Unsplash

It was a perfect day for a run. Sunny but not too hot. I was assured that the course was flat with no hills. There were young kids and older runners milling about. There was a lot of energy and a great turnout.

This was going to be a rare occasion in which my whole family did a sporty activity together. Rare because I generally did not do sporty things. At least not in public where people could see me. …


Do they even think before they post?

Photo by Glen Carrie on Unsplash

I used to be jealous of parents who had the internet at their fingertips, registering their kids for camp while still in their pajamas. Back when my kids were little, signing them up for activities involved going to the dance studio or the recreation centre and waiting in line the day registrations opened. We stood there, sometimes for hours, trying to hear what others ahead of us were signing up for, and hoping there would still be a spot available when we got to the front of the line.

Back when my kids were young, if I was looking for…


He was a dad, spreading cheer and trying to help his family.

Photo by Neel Patel on Unsplash

I heard him before I saw him. He was standing in the parking lot of the supermarket and playing his guitar to the small crowd who had stopped to listen to him. His hand drawn sign asking for help said he had two children, hadn’t worked since covid and couldn’t pay his rent.

After listening for a few minutes, I added my donation to his bag that was slowly filling with dollars and gift cards. He made eye contact, smiled and said thank you to each person who stopped to listen.

I went into the supermarket to do my weekly…


My parents’ retirement house felt like a perpetual summer camp

Photo by FilterGrade on Unsplash

Being in my parent’s great room always filled me with a sense of relaxation. Maybe it was the double sets of sliders that let so much sunlight into the room. Maybe it was the oversized, sectional couch that I sank deep into when I sat down. Maybe it was being away. Coming to see my parents in Florida meant I was away: away from work, away from home, the dog, the chores.

Technically, it wasn’t home for me, as I had never lived there. Yet for my children, it was the only home they knew of for my parents. And…


PET OWNERSHIP | ANECDOTE

But apparently, our cat doesn’t know how to read

Merlin and Diego, photo by Author

When my husband and son brought home Merlin, a tiny, all black kitten, I suggested that we make this one an indoor cat. Given the unfortunate demise that our last cat met while out on his neighborhood patrol, this seemed to me to be the humane and sensible choice.

Yet, just like his predecessor, when he came of age, Merlin was given the option of indulging his instinct to hunt and roam. He quickly became a favorite on our cul-de-sac, keeping my neighbor’s houses free of mice.

Merlin had a good life. He came and went as he pleased. He…


He sounded like a great guy….

Photo by Ahmed Rizkhaan on Unsplash

It seems surreal to even say these words, but I went to my cousin’s funeral. I listened as people talked about the friend they had lost and I cried.

Everyone was still absorbing the events of the past month. Exhaustion, weakness, loss of control over a hand, losing speech. Symptoms getting worse, doctors telling him everything it wasn’t but nobody able to tell him what it was.

Until the day before his 59th birthday, after a late night drive to yet another hospital, hours away. Now there was a diagnosis, a name, but no hope. Rare, fatal, no known treatment.


Sometimes it’s hard to know what stereotypes contribute and when genetics takes over.

Photo by Sandy Millar on Unsplash

I still remember watching my father teach my brother to mow the lawn. It seemed like a big deal, being trusted to use the power mower and take care of our postage-stamp sized lawn.

I asked my father later that day when it would be my turn to learn. I still remember the shock I felt when he told me that he wouldn’t be teaching me, that taking care of the lawn was a boy’s job.

While, yes, this attitude was fairly common back in the 70’s, this was not at all the way my brothers and I were being…


What was supposed to be an uplifting, motivational quote, took me down a rabbit hole….

Photo by Cindy Liu on Unsplash

“Everything that we do and everyone that we meet is put in our path for a purpose.” Marla Gibbs

This quote popped up in my project planner and while typically, I read the little quotes and move on, this one keeps reverberating in my mind and just wouldn’t let go.

Sometimes it’s just so obvious what that purpose is.

A spouse, a best friend, that special teacher.

You don’t have to dig too deep to recognize the support, the comfort, the impact they’ve made. Hopefully we’re smart enough to recognize those people and their gifts while we have them.

But…


OPEN LETTERS

It might be time to start all over…

Photo by Matt Hudson on Unsplash

Dear DMV Director,

Now that the pandemic restrictions are lifting and people are returning to somewhat more normal activity patterns, I hope you will take this advice in the spirit in which it is meant. My intention is truly just to keep people safe. This is why I am advising/suggesting/ requesting that you revoke everyone’s drivers licenses and make them start all over!

Seriously — you need to deactivate everyone’s drivers license and require them to take a refresher course in safe driving and retest each and every one of them.

Yes I realize that this would create a great…


Do The Positives Outweigh The Negatives?

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

My family mocks me. My friends shake their heads in disbelief. I know there are better ways to spend my down time. I read quality literature and in general, am considered to be fairly intelligent. I know there are so many good movies on streaming that I haven’t seen. And yet, I can’t help myself.

I love Hallmark movies. And on a rainy or snowy weekend day, I’ll plant myself on the couch, tune in to the Hallmark Channel and watch whatever comes on.

Please don’t remind me that every single movie has the same story line, the same outcome…

Sandy Gold

I’m an educator, an advocate for inclusion, an avid reader, and a mother struggling to adjust to being an empty nester. IG:@outofturnspeaking

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