Archive for the ‘On this day in history’ Category

Graphic created with images and posts compiled from UNICEF’s Twitter feed. All images copyright UNICEF. Read more about UNICEF’s work with refugees.


Image copyright Pete Souza / White House


In memory of Leonard Cohen, 9/21/1934 – 11/10/2016


Today is Memorial Day in the U.S. — a day to remember and honor those we’ve lost to the senseless tragedy that is war. Here’s one story, about a distant relative, I first published in 2014. May Doug and his sacrifice never be forgotten. On September 27 1942, Douglas Albert Munro sacrificed his life in […]


I would love to hear your end-of-year reflections: 1. What was your greatest accomplishment? (Tell me so I can cheer for you!) 2. If you could do one thing over, what would it be? 3. What are you most looking forward to in 2016? I had to think hard when I read my friend Carolyn’s […]



Today is Esteban’s and my 25th wedding anniversary. Look at us! We were so young … so clueless … and so deliriously happy. I was thinking last night about how to best mark the occasion. List the milestones, perhaps? After 25 years, there are plenty: We’ve bought a house, gotten married, adopted a dog, lost […]


When I visited my parents in Florida last April, they offered me the red photo album that chronicles my first two years. I was reluctant to take it because it’s a piece of our family history. But my mom insisted: “These are your photos,” she said. “You should have them.” I’ve been thumbing through the […]


This post is dedicated to my friend Gilles Thomas, for his tireless devotion to preserving the work — and honoring the memory — of Charles-Axel Guillaumot. Suppose you’ve been hired to oversee a vast and vital railroad network. Now imagine that, on the very first day of your new job, one of the trains on […]


This morning I met with a couple who are trying to adopt a child. It’s a rigorous application process, so they asked me to help write a “family biography” about their background, values, and hopes for their future child. Two things struck me about the conversation: First, how carefully they’d considered their decision to adopt. […]