The In-Between Place

I was born and raised on the south side of Chicago.  If anyone asks me where I’m from, I will always say “Chicago”, though it’s not exactly true.  For most of my life, I lived in not-quite-Chicago, less than two miles from the city limits.  However, I never really felt at home in the suburbs.  … Read More

Stories about Starting Over

It's interesting how so much of my writing revolves around the idea of starting over—maybe it's because it's happened so many times in the past few years.  And the funny thing is that no matter how many times I start over and do something new and learn all the lessons I think I'm supposed to learn, … Read More

A Life Update and a Story

I haven’t really been writing lately.  I’m just now trying to catch up on some writing projects, now that I finally have a couple of days when I’m not running around like a crazy person trying to catch up on life.  I tried to write a blog post last week, which came out sounding a lot like: Just … Read More

The Moment When Everything Changed

A year ago, I wish I had known how quickly everything can change.  Because nine months ago, I made the most impromptu decision of my life. I didn't know any Spanish.  I quit my job in Chicago, and I didn't want to teach anymore.  I'm not sure I could have found Guatemala on an un-labeled map.  … Read More

We are More Than a Résumé

Before I graduated from college, I visited the career center at my university to get help making a résumé.  I learned all about action verbs and bullet points and the sovereignty of Times New Roman.  But I remember thinking not even the strongest verbs or the most nondescript fonts could make my two … Read More


It's funny how some of my most vivid memories involve running. In second grade, we had a pen pal from the school across town—mine was a boy named Javier.  Our pen pals came to meet us, and he said "I bet you can't beat me to the fence!” "I bet I can!" I said, and without another word we ran.  I … Read More

Will You Wait For Me?

I found this post buried in my blog archives this week, and decided it needed a second chance.  I originally wrote it two years ago, but I've rescued it, done some editing, and re-posted it here.  Maybe 24-year-old me had something to say, after all.   I'm reminded of a song by Alexi Murdoch - a … Read More

  • house
  • theater
  • vwbug
  • tiles
  • restaurant

A Day in Xela

I've been learning about the history of Xela this week, about how it was built up before the turn of the 20th century by immigrants from Europe and other parts of the world.  There was once a train that stretched from here to the Pacific coast, but a combination of natural forces and government … Read More

Life Experiments: Natalie’s Story

Today, I'd like to introduce you to Natalie Seitz, who along with her husband is celebrating National Adoption Month by fundraising for their adoption.  This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart, and I'm so excited to celebrate these amazing risk-takers today! At the ages of 24 and 25 … Read More

To be Heard

This week, I am participating in the #Fireworkpeople blog tour. We all want to have a voice. We want people to listen to what we have to say and tell us our words are important.  As a result, we have a celebrity-obsessed culture that judges your value based on how many people listen.  No matter … Read More