Relighting the Tree of Life

It's October.  That means, at least here in Pittsburgh, everyone is beginning to talk about how to commemorate the terrible thing that happened here last October 27, when some guy from the suburbs drove into our Squirrel Hill neighborhood, went into the Tree of Life synagogue, murdered 11 people, injured others, and traumatized many more. … Continue reading Relighting the Tree of Life

Two Things About the Climate Strikes

I attended the Student Climate Strike on September 20 in Pittsburgh.  So did my 14-year-old son, who is actually a student.  I went to show my support of the students but also because climate change is affecting me, too, and all of us.  A lot of other gray-haired people had the same idea. In fact, … Continue reading Two Things About the Climate Strikes

Trixie Belden and the Little Fires Within You [book reviews]

My daughter Lydia is about to start kindergarten and is not really reading yet, only recognizing about 10 words.  That's fine.  When I was her age, I was reading on about a fourth-grade level, and that was fine, too--except that I got bored with the books in my classroom.  My father mentioned to a co-worker … Continue reading Trixie Belden and the Little Fires Within You [book reviews]

Help Save Pittsburgh from Instant Garbage!

Here are some upcoming events in our Challenge to reduce single-use plastic products in Pittsburgh: Tuesday, March 5, Allegheny County Council will consider a resolution on plastic reduction, 5:00pm at the City-County Building. Saturday, March 9, a "No Plastic, Please" Awareness Blitz will train volunteers to visit (the same day) restaurants in Squirrel Hill to … Continue reading Help Save Pittsburgh from Instant Garbage!

Go Green in 2019: Cut Back on Single-Use Plastic!

Here in Pittsburgh, we're having a challenge to reduce consumption of single-use plastic (SUP) products.  If you live somewhere else, launch a challenge in your area!  Even if you make it just your personal challenge to use fewer SUPs yourself and to ask the stores and restaurants you visit to stop pushing so many SUPs on … Continue reading Go Green in 2019: Cut Back on Single-Use Plastic!

A Certified Wildlife Habitat in an Urban Churchyard

"Wildlife" sounds like something that lives out in the wild, right?  We picture wildlife in the jungle, in the desert, or at least deep enough into the forest that it can't hear motors. But wild animals live in almost every acre of Earth's surface.  Squirrels are wildlife.  Ladybugs, ants, and even pigeons are wildlife.  Leopards … Continue reading A Certified Wildlife Habitat in an Urban Churchyard

Wallflowers and Oranges Unbound! (book reviews)

I've been catching up on my magazines this month, but I've also read three books... The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky Charlie is a friendless teenager beginning his freshman year at a high school in the affluent southern suburbs of Pittsburgh.  The book is a series of "Dear friend," letters he's writing … Continue reading Wallflowers and Oranges Unbound! (book reviews)

What I’ve Learned By Reading Too Much (and 4 other books!)

In addition to finishing the books I got for Christmas in time for my birthday, I've read a few other new-to-me books recently, including one that actually has the alternate title What I've Learned By Reading Too Much!  I learned something from each of these books. The Dance of Anger by Harriet G. Lerner This … Continue reading What I’ve Learned By Reading Too Much (and 4 other books!)