Autumn in Alameda

Today is a glorious fall day full of slanting sunshine and soft breezes.  And, since it rained last weekend while we were away for my sister’s wedding, the yard is full of redwood duff.  It’s on the patio, the deck, the path, in the plants, in my hair, and where ever else it may drop. So, I’ve been sweeping and raking up duff and debris this morning (after a very pleasant walk to breakfast at WesCafe and a stroll through the farmer’s market on the way home), and I know I’ll be sweeping again next weekend. The fallen branches and tiny cones are our backyard’s version of autumn leaves.  Yet, it’s hard to imagine that our (hopefully) rainy winter is around the corner because today is warm and clear and beckoning everyone to come outside. Still, there are hints of autumn.  When outside, we have to notice the elaborate Halloween decorations created by many of our neighbors.  Jack-o-lanterns and gravestones and  my three year old friend who wore his bumble-bee crash helmet as he walked and rolled his scooter all through his parents’ pumpkin carving party are all surely signs of the season.  My cats are getting fuzzier and sleepier, and the drug store is full of Christmas decorations, so fall must be in full swing!  Enjoy the day.  Enjoy the season.  Enjoys the changes.   conespatio



Some thoughts about my sister this week of her wedding

Imagine a giant button that reads “I’M SORRY!”  My sister threatened to wear such a blanket apology to her high school reunion, and we laughed because, well, we knew her back then. She could be hard to live with. She threw things.  She borrowed clothes and shoes that mysteriously got lost or ruined.  (One pair of running shoes showed up at a friend’s flooded house years and years later.)  Her sarcastic remarks were legendary as was her tendency to answer a question with an attack.  I think that she was probably a little nicer at school than at home, but maybe she wasn’t.  Yet, when I think of her now, that mean girl is hard to imagine.

My sister has grown to be humorous, generous, kind, and the person who keeps the family together.  She opens her home for all the celebrations, and she makes everybody feel welcome.  She dotes on our niece and nephew, buying them great presents and arranging fun outings.  She drives Mama to appointments and deals with the doctors.  She makes sure that we vegetarians are fed well in the land of barbecue, and she hasn’t thrown anything at me in decades. And as a real testament to her humanity: her almost grown children (who have inherited her flair for showmanship) adore her and want her to be happy.  I do too.

So, my darling sister Susie, I wish you every happiness as you officially tie the knot with your sweetie.  I think grown-up love is swell.  Cheers and love, and yes, you can borrow my shoes.




On Thursdays, I dress like my cat.

We have a lovely new front-office person at school.  She’s charming, friendly, and extremely capable. She also likes the way I dress! She even asked where I shop! I suspect that the fact that we are both tall, mature blondes in a sea of younger folks may be behind the inquiry.  While I love the compliments, they surprised me since I tend to dress for comfort over style these days.  My high heels, for example, are long gone, and my waistbands are stretchy as often as not.  Still, I do like the recognition.  And yet, I feel a little pressure to step up my game! Maybe it’s not too late for me.  Then again, I usually have coffee spots on my blouse by 9:30 am.

Coincidentally, I recently discovered Accidental Icon, and I’ve been quite taken by her fearless style and intellect.  What other blogs are out there for women d’un certain âge?