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“A Year is a Very Long Commitment”

Pikes Peak clouds 4

I admit I am not much on making New Year’s resolutions or choosing a word for the coming year. If those are meaningful practices for you, I do not mean to diminish them. I simply have never connected to them. One year, in talking about this topic with my mother, she said something like, “A […]

Turning 90

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

I’m not turning 90. But my mother is, in just a few days. She’s always been a little proud to share a birthday with Thomas Edison. My dad died when he was 83, and both of my in-laws were gone by their mid-80s as well. So it feels like a big deal to have our […]

Mama Says: Special Presentation

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

Now don’t send me hate mail because you love your dog. I am about to tell you a story about my mother and her dog. Here’s the preface. My mother is fond of her dog. She recognizes that he has been good for her in the years since she’s had him. But today is her […]

One Year of Mama Says

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

Almost a year ago I started a Friday feature called “Mama Says.” Every week I shared something my mother has said that caused me to laugh, reflect, act. It’s been fun to hear that people looked forward to what Mama had to say each week. “Mama Says” as a weekly feature has come to an […]

Mama Says #50

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

When I spent an extended visit with my mother in Florida last summer, I met a next door neighbor who gave me his phone number and said I could call any time I needed something—anything at all. I left feeling assured that if I had to manage some sort of emergency from a distance, I […]

Mama Says #49

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

My mom was telling about something that caught her eye while she was out shopping. Her response was, “It’s nice. I like it. I’ll have some.” Okay, so it’s not a flawless way to make purchasing decisions, especially if your budget boxes you in, but it made me think that sometimes we … er, I […]

Mama Says #48

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

My mom lives in south Florida, on the Gulf side. So the first part of this week was of particular curiosity for me. Where would Isaac hit land? Would it be a hurricane? What was the weather forecast for my mother’s town? When I talked to her on the phone she said my brother, who […]

Mama Says #47

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

My brother, who shares a home with our mother, is a photographer and videographer. Recently Mom was with him while he was setting up to do a video recording of an event that paid tribute to a group of individuals who had served in the military during World War II. We chatted on the phone […]

Mama Says #46

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

I was 16 and learning to drive. This was the era—all of my childhood, really—when my dad rode a commuter train from our Chicago suburb to downtown Chicago. It was a rare thing for him to leave a car at the train station—we didn’t have an extra car to sit idle all day. Someone dropped […]

Mama Says #45

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

Remember the days when bosses dictated and secretaries typed? When  I was 16 and registering for the coming fall high school classes, all college prep, my mother suggested I should learn to type. Well, not to be disrepectful to her, a secretary, but I said I wasn’t going to be a secretary. So why should […]