Circling the Wagons

First, from me and my family, Happy New Year!


Oh my goodness, it’s been quite while since I’ve last posted.

I see a draft in my box saved called “When You Get More Than You Give” which was about our friend Melanie from inner city Bronx who came to live with us for a week (what a transformative experience it was) and the kid who I mentored as a young 20 year old living in Chicago nearly 20 years ago from Cabrini Green named Melvyn (I searched high and low for a picture of him, but don’t think I have one). I still wonder where he may be now and how he may be doing…But, as you can guess, the post was about getting more than you give, which definitely occurred through both of those experiences.  Since so much time has passed since blogging last,  I’ve decided to keep that post be buried into my private archives. Some things are best left there.


But there is a segue way here, it is a new year and always a chance for a little introspection.  So many people have expressed their feelings of contempt of last year.  An election that didn’t go the way most people I know wanted…too many unexplained violent shootings, acts of terror and other scary phenomenon.  Let’s be honest, it was a bit of a malaise, that 2016.

For me, I had a weird/frenzied December mixed with traveling, gift buying, decorating, consuming…you know the typical holiday chaos, while a health scare (that ended up being nothing) somewhat consumed me, much of the month.  Now that the dust/tinsel has settled (and again, thank god that scare amounted to nothing–once your health or that of a loved one is in question, everything feels murky), hopefully some of the unsavory-ness of last year is behind us, I finally have a moment.

I think about what I hope for in this year ahead.  Hopes for myself, for my family, for the world.

It really amounts to “Circling the Wagons.”


A friend/philanthropist who I really admire used this phrase with me recently when describing how her family reset after the financial crisis, in terms of setting their charitable priorities.  Not to be used in the sense of fending off attacks, or what not–but just reigning it in and putting into focus that of which is most important.  The phrase sticks with me.

I’m aiming to put a circle around my priorities or the wagons:)  Personally I’m striving for focus and calm, more ability to give back to my family, friends and to those Melanie’s and Melyns of the world.

Welcome to a New Year!


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