The month of June holds many wonderful memories for me. When I reflect back on my childhood, I think about how it signaled the end of the school year and dreams of summer plans. By June, my mother would have already registered me for some summer camp, either day camp or sleepaway.

June also reminds me of my father and how we always used to honor him in a special way on Father's Day. My dad was an immigrant and Holocaust survivor, and he was so happy to be able to come to this country in 1947. He was never able to finish high school, but he had a lot of street smarts and innate intuition. I learned from him to "follow my gut." He arrived in New York City and got hired for his first job at a belt factory on the Lower East Side. They made those thick elastic belts that were popular at the time. Like most immigrants, he and his brother, the only two Holocaust survivors in his family, worked very long hours. In spite of that, my dad always had a positive attitude, and everyone loved being in his presence.

The month of June also reminds me of my grandmother Regina, who was born on June 22, 1903, and orphaned during World War I. My first memoir, Regina's Closet: Finding My Grandmother's Secret Journal, was about our relationship, and I'm now working on a follow-up book. If she were alive, this year she would have turned 117. I just read that the oldest living person right now lives in Japan, and her name is Kane Tanaka. She's 118 years old.

Here's wishing everyone a beautiful June! In Southern California where I live, we call the weather pattern in this month "June gloom" because it's often overcast, and it was also pretty cloudy most of this past month too ("May gray"), so who knows if June will bring in something different. But whatever the case . . . I'm sending love and light to all!

Be well. Be safe.

  • Write about a man in your life who made an impact on you.
  • Write about a famous man you admire.
  • Write a poem about a male figure in your life.
  • Write down your thoughts about a favorite book by a male author.

Ode to Memory” (poem). Ephemeral Elegies. Spring 2021.

“Craving You,” “Desire” (poems). Last Leaves Magazine. April 2021.

“Mothering Yourself Can Be a Nourishing Experience(article). Sixty and Me. May 15, 2021.

“Mothering Yourself Can Be a Nourishing Experience (article). Thrive Global. May 25, 2021.

"Mothering Yourself Can Be a Nurturing Experience (article) The Good Men Project. May 26, 2021.

“Fortune Cookie,” “The Meetup” (poems). Blood and Bourbon. 2021.

"Creating Hope After a Pandemic. Psychology Today. May 28, 2021.
Secrets of Longevity: Hundreds of Ways to Be 100 by Dr. Maoshing Ni (nonfiction/self-help)

Dr. Mao, as he calls himself, is a 38th-generation doctor, and when you visit him, you can feel the wisdom in his bones and words.

This book, to be read sporadically, offers a wealth of ideas on how to not only live longer, but how to stay healthy.

Open to any page and you'll get a surprise nugget or tip to help you live a healthier life. For example, Ni suggests drinking celery juice and three apples each day, and he says that carbonated drinks leach the calcium from our bones. He reminds us that honey is a natural antibiotic and can also be used for stomach ulcers and heartburn, but because of the chance it can harbor botulism, it should not be given to children under the age of one.

Highly recommended for all. A really great reference book that is also very inspiring!
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