Leaps of faith: Spring, summer and kindness

Farmer’s market season opened today, and I was there, not particularly because I needed any produce but just on principle. Our local farmer’s market is a community gathering place, a neighborhood pub for summer Saturday mornings. It’s not summer yet, of course, but being there on opening day is a gesture of faith that someday it will be.

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I Am Not Your Negro: Go see It

“The story of the Negro in America is the story of America. It is not a pretty story.”

-James Baldwin

James-Baldwin-2

Photo by Allan Warren (Own work) CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL, via Wikimedia Commons

Over at Escape Into Life, I have a new “Accidental Critic” review posted, reflecting on the film “I Am Not Your Negro.” Now playing in downtown Chicago and coming in May to Oak Park  (for one day only), “I Am Not Your Negro” is based on author James Baldwin’s notes for an unfinished project in which he planned to examine the slayings of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King Jr. – all friends of his. Continue reading

Yearning for Summer

Onions-250It feels like spring today in my part of Chicagoland, and over on Twitter I see people on the West Coast preparing to head out to their farmer’s markets. So now I want to be at mine.

Unfortunately, it’s only mid-February, and here in the Midwest we won’t see a farmer’s market for months to come. Memorial Day, where are you?!

I want sunshine and rows of fresh produce and flowers—lettuce and spinach, strawberries, live plants for the garden. I want the party atmosphere and the fun of seeing friends and neighbors out and about. Continue reading

Challenge Yourself!

Thanksgiving makes me think of pie. Actually, it makes me bake pie. I’m the baker in my family, and Thanksgiving is when I’m really called for duty. This is because I have all of my mother’s pie recipes, plus one that I made up myself with inspiration from my mother’s “Mystery Jelly” recipe (yep, that’s what she called it). Also, I have my mother’s pie crust recipe. I’ll tell you the secret later. In any case, I have become the pie baker. (Right now, the first of at least four Thanksgiving pies is in the oven: pecan. Pumpkin and fruit pies yet to come).

pumpkin pie

The pie I didn't enter (a little too brown on the top)

So I’m thinking about pie. And believe it or not, that is making me think about bravery. Here’s why: Continue reading