a tale of two trees

There were two dogwood trees in my front yard as a kid, a delightful contrast to the nine, sappy pine trees scattered around. One was bifurcated at the base, but otherwise grew straight up, only small, thin branches sprouting from the top of its two trunks.

The other had broad, thick branches stretched out, starting a couple feet off the ground. Its bark was worn smooth in a handful of spots from all the times my brother and I had climbed it. It was a great tree for climbing. It didn’t take us long to find the right combination of moves to reach its top: a foot here, hand there, grab this branch, swing around here. (more…)

he still calls me munchkin

Every little kid needs that person, that someone who makes them feel like the center of the universe. I was lucky enough to have that person in my life since my birth. The one who was always proud of me, always listened to my stories — my grandfather.

Any time my parents dropped me off at my grandparents’ home, I went straight for his lap. I knew it was my safe place. Eventually, I got too big to climb on his lap, but I knew I had a safe place in his heart. (more…)