Problem Solving


The images are terrible, but I’m excited about the progress. Photo 1, no packing. Photo 2, heavy packing on the first line, Photo 3, light packing on the first line, Photo 4, light packing on the top line and two runs through the press.

It’s not perfect, but we’re getting there.

“Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.” 
― F. Scott Fitzgerald

Printing, Ink, and Type

LPWho knew at my age–I’d discover a new passion?

Actually, I’m not surprised. I love to learn. And I’ve loved typography since I first explored it on my Mac in 1987, when I advised a school newspaper. Without a design background, I’ve struggled. But even that can be studied.

And, now, I’m about to buy my first press, a letterpress Morgan Line O’ Scribe. After a only a few letterpress classes, I am a neophyte for sure. But I can’t wait to bring it home and get my hands on it.

Ink, anyone?



I didn’t write on our trip to the Blue Ridge Parkway. But I did relax. And I suppose that’s worth leaving piles of laundry, scads of paperwork, and even the studio for a few days.

We managed several hikes, the last on Tuesday morning up a gorgeous rocky path that opened up to a 360 degree view of the mountains.  My legs are a little sore, but no matter.

Now if I can just keep my head clear to work through some upcoming events.

Posted in Fun

Climbing the Mountains

My legs and hips are sore, but it’s a “good sore.” The kind of ache that comes after working hard and pushing myself.

I often feel it after gym boot camp, which I take three times a week at 6am. And I feel it now, after three fairly significant climbs we did on Skyline Drive this weekend.

We arrived late Friday, car packed with supplies and food, just in time to set a warm fire and cook dinner. I love the cabins at Lewis, where we get a real bed and hot shower, but cook meals outside and enjoy the fresh air.

Early Saturday, we decided to climb Stoney Man, a relatively easy hike with a gorgeous view at the top. Leaves of yellow, gold, and red and evergreens surrounded and sheltered us on our hike, a peaceful climb with only a few steep sections. And then the gift–we walked to the open summit and a view that made me breathe deeply. I hear the mountains can be crowded in October. Half the world wants to see the leaves change. But our early climb meant we were nearly alone.

After a lunch of peanut butter and jelly, I talked David into “walking” to the Rapidan Retreat, Hoover’s summer getaway. The three mile climb about did me in. Heading down was not problem, with beautiful mountain laurel and bright yellow leaves rimming the tree trunks. We stayed close to the brook, and the sound of flowing water was soothing. After a short tour of the house from one of the Park Service reps, we headed back. And this time, of course, we climbed up. A mile and a half over rocks and streams left me breathing hard and wishing for an end much sooner than it came.

We collapsed back at the cabin and rested before preparing our chicken on the grill. The setting sun glowed off the golden leaves in the sky.

Early Sunday, we drove to Hawksbill Mountain for a delightful climb, one where we could chat the entire time and not be out of breath! Because we were so early, we ran into few people. And we had the 360 view to ourselves. Absolutely amazing.

Did I think about writing? Of course. And I wrote a little, too. My friend, Elizabeth, has mentioned how a good walk can change an entire writing perspective. Ah yes. And–sometimes quirky ideas just happen. Like the woman in the cabin next to us who chased a frightened mouse around her cabin, couldn’t catch it, but found it floating in her toilet the next day. Yuck.

What can I do with that? Thinking, thinking…..


Posted in Fun

Coming Back

I closed the door to the cabin this morning at 6am, ending a restful two-week vacation. The cabin sits behind my mom’s house in a small community in South County, Rhode Island. Walks down to the salt pond, boat trips across the pond to the beach, and visits with cousins and friends gave me time to think, read, and sleep. We arrived home around 3 today, dog and cat grateful to be out of the car.

And I am ready to put finishing touches on a presentation I’ll be doing at Collegiate School in Richmond next week on project-based learning. Actually it’s more of a workshop as teachers are coming prepared to dig in and rethink their curriculum. I’m looking forward to the conversations about inquiry-based learning and what that means for all of us.

But tonight I’m missing the sand between my toes.


Posted in Fun