Here’s to anniversaries and olives

by Angela on April 23, 2014

happy anniversary Nine years ago we stood in front of our friends, family, and a beautifully lit fireplace that really added a toasty punch to our vows. We hadn’t expected to use the fireplace at the end of April, and I’ve thought about our wedding day a lot this year season as snow piled unexpectedly into record-breaking piles.

Happy anniversary to my best friend, to the person who helps me remember that freezing rain can be pushed to the periphery with a crackling fire.

Cheers to years and years of laughter, love, and blue-cheese stuffed olives.

The fabulous Angela from Jumping with My Fingers Crossed and I want to see your funny, your yummy, your heartfelt, your favorite phone photos of the week. All you need is a blog post containing at least one photo from any phone camera. Link up below, and don’t forget to visit some of the others!



Opening doors

by Angela on April 22, 2014

Listen to Your Mother Doors intrigue me.

I’ve always loved the scene in Alice in Wonderland where she needs to eat and drink her way into a door that fits, losing touch with the key that works and struggling to find her way out of a room that doesn’t offer her anything anymore.

Doors frighten me.

I worry about not having the key I need to jingle a lock open, not being able to get to where I need to be.

Doors surround us: people we meet, opportunities that present themselves in small packages or unwieldy bundles. Doors open when we least expect them, and sometimes we’re searching for the right key when really we should be looking for a different door.

Listen to Your Mother has been a door for me. I sought it out, in so many ways: driving to Indiana last year, many times, to push my words “from page to stage;” applying to bring the show to Michigan for the first time; connecting with two women I respect and care about more every day.

This weekend, LTYM: Metro Detroit opened another door for me. I didn’t know this door existed, and I definitely didn’t know I needed to step through it.

Satori Shakoor is one of the amazing members of the LTYM: Metro Detroit inaugural cast, and she’s the creator and producer of The Secret Society of Twisted Storytellers. Once a month, storytellers take the stage at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, and they tell their stories.

Stories emerge from Detroit all the time, stories that trickle to national news teams. Negative stories. Bankruptcy and a mayor in prison, corruption and sweeping camera angles that drink in the ruin of beautiful buildings and burnt parcels of land. I imagine people watching these stories turn off their TVs, not wanting to think about how Detroit’s problems could one day be their problems.

Those are not the stories of the Twisted Storytellers: men and women who take the stage and affirm that life is an excruciating, exhilarating gift.

Those are not the stories of the audience participating in the stories told in that theatre. And yes, the audience participates — not with words, though there are affirmations and cheers, held breath and laughter. The audience participates with their eyes, with their hearts, with their very being that says, “Yes. We hear you. We empathize. We see the power in each of your stories, in each of your spirits.”

People who think Detroit is crumbling need to go sit in one of those chairs. They need to listen to the Twisted Storytellers tell their stories.


It sounds so simple, and maybe it is.

How do you feel about performing on stage?

I’ll be writing more about being a “virgin” at The Secret Society of Twisted Storytellers later this week.

Join The Secret Society of Twisted Storytellers on May 16 for Monumental Mothers.

Join us on May 4 for Listen to Your Mother: Metro Detroit


The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry – A review

April 21, 2014

I loved playing Life. A game where you spun and let the spaces map a life for you with careers and little peg children and no real stakes because everyone put the money and the fake children back into the box at the end of the game. Your next game might land you a better […]

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They should have worn shades

April 20, 2014

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April 18, 2014

I had to scrape snow and ice from my car this week. Tile installation coincided with the season’s final — yes, I’m daring to say final — snowfall, and my car has been in the driveway for days. My hands chapped in minutes, my gloves tucked away in some corner of the house I couldn’t […]

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The zoo is worth it

April 15, 2014

Cars lined the street leading to the brick entrance. Cars snaked in a non-moving line towards the parking garage. Cars crawled through the parking lot, waiting for tired legs to pick a car on their way out of the zoo. We went anyway. Before we moved, our zoo was minutes away. The kids barely had […]

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Between busy and still

April 14, 2014

The numbers creep forward, green against black. I know the morning will come too quickly. The lazy, easy routine we’ve slipped into during spring break will evaporate into sleep-stained eyes and rushed minutes. I will have to pack lunches again. We didn’t fly to Mexico or drive to Florida or venture farther than the zoo […]

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April 9, 2014

We’re playing outside without coats these days, or they end up strewn across the (muddy) grass. Both kids are tackling climbing trees. Strangely, it doesn’t make me nervous. My heart races a little when they ride their bikes too far away from the curb, so this laissez-faire tree climbing attitude surprises me. One day, one […]

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More than pretty

April 3, 2014

Lyrics and lines have always come easily to her; she hums tunes and acts out scenes and inserts words she knows for those she doesn’t. Most of the time she belts out songs with abandon. I’m more vigilant about the music we listen to than I used to be, and our current favorites are Kidz […]

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Climb into the time machine

April 2, 2014

My breath catches when I least expect it. She’ll be coloring, with a curtain of hair pooling on the table, and I see her baby face slipping into how she’ll look in ten years. He twisted in his chair the other day, reaching for the water dispenser on the refrigerator. Not only did his arms […]

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