The bane and beauty of running

It's said that life begins at the end of your comfort zone. I've followed my dad’s footsteps in this one, and for running it certainly holds true. I run. I run for that “me" time. I run for that clear-headed exhaustion at the end. I run for the physical and health benefits. And I run to eat cookies. This winter I was out the door pre-dawn at least five days a week. I love when the city is mostly asleep and the darkness makes it picturesque. It’s just me, the fruit stand and coffee cart vendors, bus drivers and deliverymen. From mild mornings to the cold rains and driving sleet, these tranquil moments belong to few. I love running in below zero temps before sunrise; it is so reviving when that polar chill cuts through my base … [Read more...]

#Scene on the running route #JoggingNYC

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Building Families, Nurturing Communities: The Important Role of Social Workers in Adoption

As families journey through life together they’ll face important, complex questions at each phase. With over a hundred years of experience, it is now an enormous community of birth parents, adoptive parents and families, and adoptees that Monica and her colleagues at Spence-Chapin have nurtured. .. Read the rest of the article on the Spence-Chapin blog, where it was written for Social Workers Month. … [Read more...]

Things I love about winter

After three years back in the Northeast US, I'm basking in the change of seasons. Spring is so hopeful and romantic, brimming with life and new beginnings. Then there's Summer – what’s not to love (so says a Pacific Islander)? And Autumn, charming you senseless with its burnt shades of color and kicking off the onslaught of festivities worldwide. Winter? It took living the past seventeen years in the tropics, without the seasons, to come around to winter’s magic. This year I am all about the dark bleak days of winter and embracing the chill. It’s well into January now, and so far it’s a mild one. But we’re looking at double-header snow systems this coming holiday weekend and I’m crossing my fingers! Photo at Mohonk Mountain Lodge … [Read more...]

The best app for trying different types of meditation – Insight Timer

I tried the gamut of meditation apps, and as a beginner my favorites were Headspace and Calm for their easy to digest introduction to mindfulness meditation. Through both apps' introductory content I was able to sustain a meditation habit for about 20 consecutive days on each one. I was able to see a positive difference. Calm $12.99/month; $4.99/mo for annual subscription of $59.88; or $299 lifetimeHeadspace $12.99/month; $7.99/mo for annual subscription of $95.88; or $399 lifetimeInsight Timer $5/month paid annually Both apps are highly rated and popular, but soon their linear approach, limited offerings and voice acting got boring, and that’s when I found Insight Timer. (I am not affiliated in any way to this app except as a user). … [Read more...]

Moving on and saying goodbye…

She kept us on our toes for six weeks, clocking an impressive array of medical emergencies one after the other. Who knew that heart failure could be so stunning, and tragic, and poignant. I got front row seats to a thoracentesis procedure, where the fluid was sucked out of her lungs through a long needle. I got to sit with the MRI technician at 3 am as he isolated the network of carotid arteries on the screen, searching for the occlusion. I got a crash course in thyroid function and how it slowly but steadily weakened one system after another, the signs flashing by without me recognizing their urgency except in hindsight. She racked up to eleven specialists/teams coordinating her care by the end, with visits nearly every hour 'round the … [Read more...]

Late night hospital watch rambling

The waning moon is still bright, and I think to the Kingdom's geckos that are starting to tuck in on the other side of the planet. It's the fifth night sleeping in a chair by my mom's hospital bed. I look over at her and my next thought is whether it's Hypnos or Morpheus who rules over the land of eternal darkness, beyond the gates of the rising sun... … [Read more...]

Protecting kids from identity theft

Chief Mom Officer recently posted about tax identity and corporate identity theft, followed by a great piece on protecting children's identity. She posts: 27% of child identity theft crimes are committed by people who know the child – friends or family members, sometimes even parents. The remaining 73% of crimes are committed by criminals who steal the child’s information either through a data breach or good old-fashioned theft. They then create a synthetic identity for the social security number, using the real number combined with a fake date of birth to steal the identity and use it – likely undetected – for years. The entire post is worth a read: Thieves Are Coming For Your Children - Protect Their Identities. I recently started … [Read more...]