Talking to Animals Shared by: Marina Berzins McCoy One of the most influential aspects of my grandfather’s wisdom was not what he said but how he modeled a way of relating to the natural world. My grandfather talked to animals. Out loud. For example, if a woodchuck was digging up some plant in his garden, he’d go talk with it, perhaps saying in a warm, yet chiding voice, “What are you doing in my garden? This is not for you. Go find yourself some other food to eat. There’s a nice bunch of blackberries on the rock wall for you to visit.” My grandfather kept chickens and geese and would talk with them as he walked them out to the pond and back. He had no illusions that the animals understood his words, but he treated animals with friendship rather than as objects to be used. All of the natural world was his friend. Read the rest of Marina Berzins McCoy’s reflection, What I Learned from My Grandfather About Courage and Nature. (Photo by Abigail Lynn on Unsplash.)


No Dream Too Small

No Dream Too Small Shared by: Gretchen Crowder I remember being struck by how skilled my grandfather was, as I looked from the small image of the table to the full-sized replica before me. He only had a seventh-grade formal education, but he had built a life from it. And he learned, somehow, along the…


Life Is Something to Enjoy

Life Is Something to Enjoy Shared by: Bob Burnham My grandma loved the Detroit Tigers; she found great joy in following them, no matter how bad they were. I remember watching many Tigers games with her. As we watched the players warm up before one game, my grandma, who was in her 70s at the…


Sharing Candy

Sharing Candy Shared by: Barb Gilman My aunt Jean taught me to enjoy my food. She had a bout with cancer that took away her sense of smell and taste many years ago, and because of her stroke, she wasn’t the neatest eater. But that didn’t stop us from bringing her a bag of candy—Hershey’s…


Were You Praying for an End to the War?

Were You Praying for an End to the War? Shared by: Jayne Ragasa-Mondoy I asked [my mother], “Were you praying for an end to the war?” “We hoped for that outcome,” she replied. “But what we prayed for was for the United States, our allies, and even our enemies of war to be open to…


Connecting People

Connecting People Shared by: Rebecca Ruiz My “Grammie Margie” was like a butterfly that spreads joy throughout the garden. Her garden was the entire town, and she touched the lives of everyone in it…Margie’s network was huge, and every day she would use her network to resolve someone’s needs—always without money. If one needed a…


A circle of women

A circle of womenShared by: Cathy B. I am so lucky to have had a number of elders who have been so inspirational that I can only hope to count myself among them someday. Aunt Florence: Who took me in every summer, starting from when she was in her 70s, up until she died when…