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Articles written by Carrie Classon

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Grateful to be exactly where I am in life

My husband Peter likes the “edge season.” He told me this as we watched the moon rise over the mountains and felt a chill breeze rise with it. As far as I know, Peter invented this expression. He might have meant the “season’s end,” but I...

 

Even on vacation there's something to worry about

My husband Peter and I are spending a month in Spain and we have left our worries behind. As a result, we have had to come up with new, temporary worries to occupy us until we get back home. Peter ran out of lotion and for several days used...

 

Spending time abroad opens my eyes

My husband Peter and I have settled into the little house we are calling home for a month in southern Spain. The house is old and quirky, but I’ve come to believe that all homes are quirky in their own way. Whenever I spend time in another...

 

Taking owls as a good omen on trip

First, I noticed the owl. “Peter! Did you see the owl?” Our last Airbnb in Spain had a ceramic owl. So, when I found a similar owl — in a similarly inconvenient location — I took it as a good omen. “What owl?” my husband, Peter, said....

 

Fall brings both anticipation and dread

My parents live in a cabin deep in the north woods. I know this sounds like the start of a fairytale. Sometimes it seems a bit like one. There are bear in the woods. Deer run in herds. The seasons are far more pronounced and extreme than those I am u...

 

Easier to love a dog for what it is than a person

When my husband Peter and I met, we each had a dog. Peter had a collie named The Pretty Boy, (Yes, “The” was part of his name) and I had a pound puppy, part golden retriever, part border collie mix named Milo. The Pretty Boy died shortly before...

 

Husband and I are compatible travelers

Peter and I are packing for our annual trip again. My husband is retired and I write, so we are able to travel now. Getting married late in life, this might have posed some problems because Peter is exactly the opposite sort of traveler I used to...

 

Happy to get chance to bloom, even late

I realized that I might be a late bloomer — a little late, naturally. I love hearing about proteges: the 5-year-old drummer or the 16-year-old activist. I love hearing the 9-year-old who sings like an old soul and reading about the 14-year-old who...

 

Hoping house will sell to someone who loves it

The message said: “The septic guy can’t find the cover. Call him.” I’ve been getting a lot of messages like this since I decided to put my century-old farmhouse up for sale. I haven’t lived in the farmhouse for years now — not since I...

 

Sometimes it's best to say nothing at all

Peter was up before anyone else — as he often is. My husband gets up early in order to have enough time to brood before busybodies like me expect him to engage in cheerful conversation. But this morning we were staying at my parents’ cabin and...

 

I think a happy marriage is like stew

I told my husband, Peter, that our marriage was like stew — and that’s a good thing. This is a second marriage for both of us. We were both married for a long time and then divorced for quite a while. We dated other people and realized how...

 

My blessings come in bad disguises

They say blessings come in disguise. If so, my blessings are poorly disguised. They show up wearing false noses and funny eyeglasses and are instantly recognizable unless I am being completely thick-headed — and it is astonishing how often I am. I...

 

Popular kids just like anybody else

I was not popular in high school. Everyone says this. I now realize that no one — not even the most popular person in high school — self-identifies as popular. Lately I’ve been getting a lot of Facebook friend requests from people I scarcely...

 

My parents still inspire me in their 80s

I spent the last couple of weeks visiting my parents. I’ve been lucky in the parent department. It’s fashionable to recall some pivotal incident that occurred when we were 8 and extrapolate how every difficulty experienced in our life since is a...

 

Grandmother's wedding dress now worn twice

She wore it for one day in 1919 and it looked as if it were sewn with this in mind. My grandma’s wedding dress was more than a little worse for wear. It had been folded up in a small box and kept safe by my cousin, Jill. (How Jill ended up with...

 

Box of letters full of memories and surprises

The surprises just kept coming. When I moved in with Peter a few years back, I brought my clothes, a few books, and some artwork. I rented out my house, gave away my furniture, and everything else was consigned to “things I’ll deal with...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    July 31, 2019

Good to see old birdhouse getting use

Nobody was using the old wren house. My grandfather built it. Grandpa started building birdhouses when he retired from milking cows and his second oldest son took over. That son, my mother’s brother, is now 87 and retired 20 years ago. It’s a...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    July 24, 2019

Marriage has privileges - like head vacuuming

I’ve been having my husband, Peter, cut my hair. I’m not sure I would recommend this to everyone, but I have almost no hair. Actually, I have the usual number of hairs, but they are so fine that a hair that falls from my head into the sink is...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    July 17, 2019

Summer birthdays always a gamble

This is my birthday month. Those of you with summer birthdays know it’s a little different. In the middle of March, everyone says, “Wow! A birthday party!” You bring treats to school and everyone is happy for an excuse to celebrate. It’s...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    July 10, 2019

Parents still complement each other after 60 years

My parents recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary and I stood in front of the greeting card rack for a long time. Whenever I try to buy a card for my mom or dad, I have a heck of a hard time. I almost bought a “blank inside” card...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    July 3, 2019

Happy anniversary to this column

I started this column one year ago. I am more than a little superstitious when it comes to numbers. When I wrote the first draft of my memoir, “Blue Yarn,” I had an even number of chapters in all three sections. This was probably tidier than...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    June 26, 2019

Friend helped me use my head for right things

I’ve got a good friend, Ayo, who told me, “Don’t use your head to break a coconut.” As I wrote about in my memoir, Blue Yarn, I lived in Lagos, Nigeria, for almost four years, and I met Ayo there. Ayo is a smart woman and a voracious reader a...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    June 19, 2019

Spring clean your life, not just your fridge

Spring came late and so, appropriately, did the annual deep cleaning of the refrigerator. A lot of stuff gets tucked into the refrigerator over the course of the winter. Obsolete condiments band together and take refuge deep in the corners. A...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    June 12, 2019

Husband made a friend in raven 'Big Boy'

My husband, Peter, decided to make friends with a raven. We have a lot of ravens around our house. Ravens are smart birds and Peter did some research on them. They mate for life and can live to be 17 years old in the wild. They learn to recognize peo...

 
 By Carrie Classon    Voices    June 5, 2019

Anxiety not always something dangerous

I get anxious, as I might have mentioned. While I don’t think it’s anything requiring medication, fortunately, I became aware at middle-age that I have always had a sort of “hum” of anxiety going on in the background. I usually only notice it...

 

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