Good parent or a packrat?

Two miniature Polly Pockets have smiles on their faces and sit precariously on the ledge of a table in between several tealight candles and several old DVDs of long forgotten movies, National Treasure, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Little Women to be specific. In another corner, several Rescue Heroes have fallen over on their …

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License to drive: Excited over a piece of paper

When I got my driver’s license as a young sixteen-year-old, I couldn’t wait to drive. I didn’t care that the car was our family sedan and that anything over 55 mph and the car would start to shake and shimmy. The car and my driver’s license, a small card that had my name and indicated …

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Coronavirus: A bittersweet drive

I pushed hard down on the gas pedal and raced up the highway. I’ve made the drive to Washington D.C. hundreds of times over the years and I smiled thinking of the great time I was making, I would be there in no-time. I left late at night, but I still figured I’d run into …

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The sound of silence

I took the train home from work recently and I looked to be the lone person on the car without headphones. I noticed it first on the platform: everyone was head-down, headphones in place, looking at their phones. Later on the train, I sat up at one point to stretch my neck and looked in …

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Who do you admire?

Every year since 1948, Gallup, the polling company, has asked Americans to name the man and woman that they admire the most. Surprisingly, I didn't show up anywhere on the most recent list! I'm nowhere to be found. Instead, former President Barack Obama and current President Donald Trump tied last year as the most admired …

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Take me home country roads

I can sense it coming. The feeling starts out like a distant ache. I’ll push it back to the back of my mind in the hopes that it will go away. My attempt to keep my focus to “the here and now” will work for a while, but the feeling will soon come back. This …

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And a child shall lead them

My daughter loves hanging out with her friends. She also enjoys reading or relaxing with our dog Nittany. Likewise, my oldest son loves to lift weights and watch action movies. Over the past twelve months, I’ve watched as both have given up things they love and stepped out of their comfort zones to tackle new …

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A perfect day

The coffee was weak, my toast was burnt, and my omelet tasted bland. My wife’s breakfast wasn’t much better—her crêpes looked soggy and lumpy. That’s not all. The restaurant was loud and had a strange echo and a cold breeze shook me every time a customer opened the door. Despite the food and the surroundings, …

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Expecto Patronum

Indigenous cultures occasionally focus on spirit animals who help guide and direct them during times of trouble. It’s not just the native cultures, but modern day fiction too. In J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World of Magic, Harry Potter’s Patronus charm takes the shape of a stag, just like his father. Wizards use the spell as protection in …

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Two stories that make the “cold, hardened heart” melt

Coming off the practice field last week, Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Carson Wentz stopped to sign a jersey for an 11-year-old boy in a wheelchair. Pro athletes visit hospitals and support their favorite charities all the time. Detroit Lions Quarterback Matt Stafford recently called a 14-year-old double amputee onto the field during the team’s scrimmage, letting …

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