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Guided Self-Discovery Can Be Sublime

The Mother-Daughter Way LIVE weekend was a celebration of shared self-discovery. On the sign-in book, I see these comments: “A warming of the heart,” “Wonderful sharing and fellowship,” “Beginning to really enjoy life,” “Sharing with others is very healing,” and “an opening of the heart in remembrance of Mom.” Although our event began on a snowy […]

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Transcendence in the Mother-Daughter Way

    For the final week of the Mother-Daughter Way, we focus on transcendence. What does that mean in everyday terms? When my mother asked me to sit for this portrait, I resisted. I was busy. She was dying. I imagined having yet another unfinished portrait to remind me of the ways we couldn’t sign […]

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Compassion is Another Kind of Beauty

  Compassion is the focus for the 9th week of the Mother-Daughter Way – compassion for self and for others. Valentine’s Day messages bombard us with lush images of romantic love  –  images that can be elusive and misleading. They exude a manufactured beauty that doesn’t fit all shapes, sizes or ages. By contrast, compassion is always a good fit. […]

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A Powerful Combo: Emotional Strength & Vulnerability

Emotional strength coupled with vulnerability make a powerful combination. After my mother died, this self-portrait startled me when I found it among her works-in-progress. It showed her strength of character and her self-awareness as she faced her mortality. The portrait was a project my mother started after she survived her first battle with breast cancer, but […]

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January Thaw II: A Green Light on Your Possibility

Last week I wrote about the origin of The Mother-Daughter Way, and offered a glimpse of the power of the MOM Fix to shed light on, and reveal alternative endings to painful mother-daughter stories. I’m excited to do this pilot program with a group of interesting, thoughtful women. And I do the entire program right […]

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Thrilled to unveil Alice’s Cape May, the part represents the whole . . . .

The Part that Represents
The Part that Represents

Studio Palette of Secrets and Unfinished Business
Studio Palette of Secrets and Unfinished Business

Fifteen years ago, Saturday, my mother began painting a large oil portrait of me. That may sound unremarkable, since she was a painter and I am her daughter, but it was highly charged for two reasons: I was busy, healthy, and I hate to sit for portraits. She was weak, breathless, dying of breast cancer, and she had never been satisfied with any of the previous portraits she’d attempted of me.

Continue reading Thrilled to unveil Alice’s Cape May, the part represents the whole . . . .

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Loving, Losing, Letting Go

Yesterday, I helped out as my friend Sandy Sampson conducted an estate sale to empty her parent’s home. I had to see how she did it. Sandy is an awesome daughter who provided much family caregiving over the past decade. Her father, Harry Trigg, died in April 2009, and her mother, Marion Jane Bold Trigg, […]
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The Promise of Mothers and Daughters

…this is how you sweep a corner; this is how you sweep a whole house; this is how you sweep a yard; this is how you smile to someone you don’t like too much …   Jamaica Kinkaid, “Girl” Will you be there?  …  Can you hear the truth?    Tori Amos, “Promise”   It’s been a lovely […]
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Malala: Standard-Bearer for Girls’ Rights to Education

This month of honoring women may be coming to a close, but it’s been an opening for me in a way I never dreamed. As a writer who is given to privacy, revision, and possibly overworked revision, this blog accomplished what my mother said the shift to watercolors from oil paints did for her. I […]