• Our Home These Days

    November 15, 2012, Washington, DC: I always have trouble with this time of year when the sun sets early and the temperature drops and those of us who are outdoor types accustomed to squeezing all we can into long, bright days are suddenly forced to find alternatives indoors. You’d think that after 30 some years, I’d

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  • Home: Where The Structural Is Personal

    November 4, 2012, Washington, DC: A storm like Hurricane Sandy pushes to the forefront many of the topics discussed regularly here on Neighborhood Nomads. In alignment with the tagline at the top of this site, storm stories are stories of our homes, our neighborhoods, and the power — and vulnerabilities — of the physical places we

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  • Miles from Monday: Hunkering Down

    October 29, 2012, Washington, DC: Suffice it to say this is no typical Monday. Already laundry is in the dryer and chili is on the stove. Crossword complete. Floors vacuumed. Leftovers gone. Nearly nap time. Hurricane Sandy is approaching my East Coast hometowns, and she’s making a longwinded entrance. Southport is evacuated. Wall Street and the

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  • Why Do You Live Where You Do?

    October 28, 2012, Washington, DC: When people ask me what my blog is about, a short answer is that Neighborhood Nomads delves into the question of why people live where they do. There are always a number of reasons, both conscious and unconscious, that a place “becomes home”, and I love hearing people’s perspectives about which

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  • Where To Get Unstuck

    October 25, 2012, Washington, DC: This chair by the window seems like a good place to get unstuck. There’s no tv back here by the kitchen and it’s mostly quiet apart from the low hums of city traffic and the washing machine. Soft lamplight and a softer sunset highlight the chair by the window that

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  • Room For a Fresh Start

    “We need our rooms to align us to desirable versions of ourselves and to keep alive the important, evanescent sides of us.” -Alain de Botton, The Architecture of Happiness September 16 2012, Washington, DC: I had the good fortune to spend last week in several of the rooms I love, tightly clutching summer’s end before

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  • Portrait of Home: Sunday Morning

    September 2, 2012, Washington, DC: Sunday morning. Labor day weekend. Time to put our feet up and finish a book, buy fresh tomatoes and greens around the corner at Eastern Market, get the bike repaired, go for a run on a still too humid September morning. This is what home looks like these days, morning

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  • The Allure of an Open House

    May 13, 2012, Washington, DC: Are you someone whose curiosity draws you into open houses? Someone who asks questions about the narrative of a place? The floorboards? The history? The windows? I inherited my open house syndrome in large measure from my mother, and on this mother’s day, I thank her for passing it along. With

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  • Growing Roots

    May 3, 2012, In transit on Amtrak: It’s that time of year again when I vow to learn how to garden. On Sunday, I visited our neighborhood hardware store called Frager’s to pick up my annual supply of soil, plants and seeds. It was a sunny day and the outdoor garden shop was filled with

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  • Just A Little Outdoor Space

    March 29, 2012, Washington, DC: We have a little outdoor space here at home. It overlooks an especially narrow alley because the street behind ours is a diagonal one that squeezes the backs of our homes close together. A mess of tangled black wires hangs above and a confident squirrel paces back and forth there

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  • Reminds Me of Home

    “An ardent supporter of the hometown team should go to a game prepared to take offense, no matter what happens.”                                                  -Robert Benchley January 22, 2012, Washington, DC: You know the drill.

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  • Comfort Zones and Common Ground

    January 17, 2012, Washington, DC: Nevermind how you feel about the suburbs versus the city or small town New England versus the ranch land of the west. There’s no denying that the pull of place, whatever your preference, is a force to be reckoned with. Certain places evoke a physical and emotional reaction from each of

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  • Full House

    December 27, 2011, Southport, CT: If this house has a personality, a bold, boisterous, bright personality, it must live for weekends like that one. It must live for the surge in the electric bill, the sloppy kitchen counter tops, and the smells of soups and firewood. A house like this one must smile from ear

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  • The Long Way Home

    “What is home if the road that draws you away from it is more familiar, more comforting? Home is what you find when you get there.” -Colleen J. McElroy, A Long Way from St. Louis December 23, 2011, Washington, DC: And so it begins for so many people. This annual trek. This long drive home

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  • Hometown, By Marriage

    November 26, 2011: There’s a charming red house in a town just outside Boston that I’ve just realized has become my newest home. I’ve married in. With a new family, I’ve inadvertently been graced with yet another place on the map that’s meaningful to those I now call family, with a hometown accompanied by years

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  • Neighborhood Nomad: Sara’s Brooklyn Ballroom

    November 20, 2011, Washington, DC: Sara is one of my oldest and dearest friends. We met in the first grade in Baltimore, Md., stayed in close touch after my family moved away, and eventually became college roommates in two adjoining 80-square-foot dorm rooms in Manhattan. When Sara first emailed me this summer about her new

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