Three Holiday Tips

I was watching Sheila wrap gifts yesterday as we prepared for our trip to see family. She was having a fun time cutting paper, tying ribbons and labeling gifts. She keeps a diligent list of what everyone is getting to make certain that the number of gifts and costs of gifts are kept even among family members. While shopping for gifts is far from simple, wrapping is pretty straightforward and automatic. The only thing left to do after that is to put them under the tree or in our situation, into the suitcase. As we approach the holiday time, I’m looking for two ways to keep my energy up and to enjoy it all. Keep it simple–Remember the 80/20 rule. Read More

An Evening of Literary Conversation or “The Inner Nun”

It’s the way I like to go to performances. Just show up 5 minutes before and see what tickets are available. That turned out to be the plan when my wife Sheila suggested we go to the Pittsburgh Literary Speaker Series the other night. The speaker was short story writer Gary Saunders. A McArthur Genius award winner, I couldn’t help but think that I can only benefit from being around smart people. However, it was really my wife, Sheila’s idea (actually another smart person) to go see him, in part due to her recently published book, Warrior Mother and her commitment to be around great authors. The evening looked like it would be fun. It was amazing. Saunders was immensely Read More