We were sitting in a sunroom, swapping stories, news and updates when the question was asked, "Why did they get divorced?"
Editor's note: This column by Jackie Gingrich Cushman was originally published Nov. 22, 2012. Her mother, the late Jackie Ginrich, died this year, on Aug. 7.
Autumn has always been a transitional season for me. As a child, I saw it as the time when the carefree days of summer changed to conform with the structure and requirements of school. The same held true through college and graduate school.
Transformation is fascinating, especially when the change is dramatic and you can see it happen before your very eyes. That point was underscored to me this week by "Body Evolution," by Global Democracy, a video that was released two years ago, but went viral last week, when the model was identified publicly.
When our oldest child was an infant, I talked to her nonstop. It was an ongoing monologue, a narrative of her life in progress. Topics included what we were doing, where we were going, what I was dressing her in, what the weather was like and what was happening next.
The news this week of two arrests in the case of a 12-year-old suicide is a reminder of how middle school drama can go awry.
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The recent political entanglements over the budget have focused more on political maneuverings and who is right about what statement, rather than what the policies mean to average, everyday Americans.
"First you win the argument - then you win the vote," is the now well-known quote from Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. President Ronald Reagan was the last Republican president who understood and used that strategy.
Stories are important not as simple entertainment, but also as education and indoctrination. What we believe happened in the past and the stories we highlight shade our present and influence our future. The best stories not only have a moral, where good triumphs over evil, but engage us intellectually and also emotionally.
It seems the Republican Party news is getting worse. This past fall, we suffered the defeat of our nominee for president. Based on the economic conditions, Republicans should have won. Many Republican pundits tagged Mitt Romney as the winner days before the election, talked about a possible landslide and were flabbergasted when he lost.
The New York Times mobile app sent me a breaking news update Wednesday morning: "U.S. Economy Unexpectedly Contracted in Fourth Quarter." Based on high government third-quarter spending and government policies and politics occurring during the fourth quarter, the slowdown should come as no surprise.
Fascinating. President Obama mentioned our Constitution in the first paragraph of his inaugural address, but in the same paragraph quoted from the Declaration of Independence, noting that we "articulated in a declaration" the following words:
Last week, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed cited the need to use hard and soft politics in governing the city. "We are making hard decisions again and again that allow us to show compassion," the Democrat said at a luncheon held by the Atlanta Press Club. "Because you can't help other people if you're broke yourself."
It's the beginning of a new year and a great chance to start over -- but how? Here are 10 ways to gain a fresh start in 2013.
A year ago, I resolved to spend 2012 praying more and, in my prayers, asking for patience. I have prayed, I have asked, I have received, but not enough.
The school shooting in Newtown, Conn., where 20 children and six staff members of Sandy Hook Elementary School were killed last week, is a tragic reminder of the sanctity of life. Of promising young lives cut short and the uniqueness and preciousness of every single person.
The current conundrum regarding the legalization of same-sex marriage is what happens when church and state are mixed - the topics become confusing and confused.
Last week, I was exiting my neighborhood Starbucks when I happened to overhear a middle-aged man talking to a younger man who appeared to be his son.
The passage in Ruth 1:16 highlights what it means to belong: "Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God my God." This was Ruth's response when her mother-in-law Naomi suggested she go back to her own people after the death of her husband, Naomi's son. But Ruth was determined to stay, to be with Naomi.
Thanksgiving week is a time to express gratitude and appreciation and to acknowledge what we are thankful for in our lives. Many of us have Thanksgiving routines and rituals that take us out of the everyday routine of our lives and provide a space for us to slow down, unwind, reflect and give thanks.
Any change requires pain. Whatever we are doing now is easy (we think) compared to change, whatever it may be. Changing is hard. It requires us to think anew, to change our habits, our processes, our language. It's venturing out into the unknown. Without a compelling reason, people will stay the same and not change. People begin to change only when the pain of what they are doing becomes more painful than the pain of change.