The AtHome Pilgrim

Musings at a Slower Pace


Philly area, Pennsylvania, USA
"Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita," I find myself still asking some of the same questions I did when I was just a punk kid. The Big Things confuse me. Fortunately, though, many little things delight and amuse me, and some Big Things--my wife, our kids, our bird and bunny visitors, food, baseball--make me very, very happy. In my pilgrimage, I try to be guided by the wisdom of dear old Auntie Mame: "Life is a banquet!"


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Editor’s Pick
JUNE 12, 2012 6:15AM

Mind-Blowing, Spirit-Lifting Night Sky Video

Had to share this. Ran across it yesterday doing research. It’s a brilliant achievement of a magnificent scene.

Embedding has not worked. Go here: 

The video is less than three minutes, and trust me, it is well worth your time. It is the product of 30 hoursRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 25, 2011 6:51PM

Baby Deer Sighting

 Not much to say about this. Just that they’re adorable.    

Deer 1 


 Deer 2


Deer 3  


Kinda worried about them, actually. They seem pretty small for this late in the year. 


Words and pictures © 2011 AtHome PilRead full post »

What follows is part of my grandmother’s memories, recorded when she was in her eighties. The three previous parts here, here, and here. She is recounting life on an almond farm outside a Sicily village in the early 1900s. In part 2, she related that her father, having heard of jobsRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
MAY 4, 2011 7:52AM

The Mortifying Beginning to My Not-So-Brilliant Career

When my roommates and I arrived for our senior year of college and entered our room for the first time, we found a framed piece of art on the wall, an oval reproduction of some Great Master’s Madonna, nailed to the concrete, on hand to bless all that might transpire. OrRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 1, 2011 8:51AM

Puns and Neologisms for April Fool’s Day

April Fool’s Day seems like a good occasion for some word play. Get your groans ready! 

Czech mate: the spouse of a resident of Prague 

If it ain’t Baroque, don’t fix it: said by the music director of the symphony who disliked music from the seventeenth century Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 13, 2011 10:30AM

2011 Philadelphia Flower Show: Springtime in Paris, Part 1

Finally, as promised a week ago yesterday, here are some pictures from this year’s Philadelphia Flower Show, which dazzled our visiting friends from Ithaca so thoroughly that they kept the glow after returning from the show last Sunday evening even after learning that a foot of snow was faRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 14, 2010 8:14AM

The Tree: It's a Decorated Life (repost)

She hankers for it as thoroughly as any kid hankers for presents on Christmas morning. 

She yearns for it as completely as we yearn for her poppy-seed cake, madeleines, and chocolate-chip cookies this time of year.  

To Mrs. P, Christmas is not Christmas without a tree.  

SheRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 15, 2010 8:34AM

Autumn Echoes of the Past

On yesterday’s walk in the park, I remembered to snap one of my favorite trees. This one, which lies about 200 feet from an old stone farmhouse, has seen, and endured, many decades. One advantage of seeing it in this season is that the absence of leaves reveals its structure moreRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 28, 2010 9:14AM

Spoiler Alert: World Series Game 1 Recap

The San Francisco Giants seem to be begging for a new name. It seems they want to be called the Giant Killers. 

First they stormed back from far behind the long-time National League West-leading San Diego Padres to capture the West division title on the last day of the season. (OK.Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 22, 2010 9:01AM

Legging One Out: NLCS Game 5 Recap

When is a 6-hit, 2-walk, 6-inning pitching performance bigger than only the second no-hitter in postseason history? 

When the pitcher throwing that ugly game does so on one leg. (Which put him one lower limb ahead of home plate umpire Jeff Nelson’s total number of functional eyes.) 

IRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 20, 2010 9:02AM

NLCS, ALCS Recap: Giants, Rangers Not Following Script

Everything was all lined up for sweet double revenge.  

The “best Phillies team ever” (and they are) would play its three aces through the weak National League contenders to their triumphant third pennant in a row, thus besting the Dodgers of the 1950s and 1960s and 1970s, the BRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 7, 2010 8:13AM

Dedicated Doc: Phils-Reds NLDS Game 1 Recap

OK. I’m not going to recap every Phils playoff game, as I did last year: too busy right now. 

But, you know, last night something special happened, and I can’t let it go. (If you want an excellent summary of all three of yesterday’s games, see Andy Wolfenson’s post of todRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 21, 2010 11:13AM

Real Families Mean Real Family Food

When I think of family, I think of food. (This will come as no surprise to anyone who’s read me—I always think of food—but it might be a relief to waking, vanessa, and others who feared I’d think of baseball . . . ) 

Food might not be the OneRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 13, 2010 7:06AM

NL All-Time All-Stars: Andy Wolfenson’s A-Z Challenge

About a month ago, my OS baseball buddy Andy Wolfenson came up with the challenge of creating an all-star baseball team with one player representing each letter of the alphabet (original post here). I foolishly suggested an American League versus National League roster, and Andy talked me into aRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 1, 2010 7:55AM

Photos of America: A Tale of Two Pig Roasts

Pig roasts are America?  

You have a better candidate?  


The first came on Labor Day weekend, 2008, in a small town in east central Ohio. It was my brother and his friend’s 24th annual pig roast; the first I was to attend. (The last, it turns out, for my brother.)Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 14, 2010 9:22AM

Feet of Clay

Yesterday, I failed Parenthood.

Good parents set an example.

Whatever calm I claim in the face of challenges, whatever wise acceptance I allege before adversity was revealed as apocryphal.

I began relatively well. When the printer refused to print, I concluded that the carrier holding the ink cart… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 7, 2010 8:50AM

Flowering Gifts

For about two weeks each spring, our dull old suburban neighborhood becomes Eden. Enjoy!




















The pears are the best in the fiRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 19, 2010 8:39AM


At six, when I finally finished yesterday’s deliverable, which I had foolishly thought would be done by noon, I had to close the window behind my desk, as the early spring sun was losing some of its potency. The few buds beginning to appear on the forsythia and lilac bushes noRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 8, 2010 8:41AM

Open Call: My Greatest Fear

Sitting on the bar stool, the potent smell of whiskey competing with the stench of stale smoke, seeing my father trading familiar banter with the barkeep and wondering how he could know so well this guy who should be no part of our family’s life, bewildered as to why, after picking… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 22, 2010 7:15AM

Winter Morning








Words and pictures © 2010 AtHome Pilgrim.

All Rights Reserved.   Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 22, 2009 9:40AM

Foodie Tuesday: Carne Asada en Casuela (Cuban Pot Roast)

Michael Rodgers issued an undisguised plea, in a recent comment, for a Cuban Foodie Tuesday post from me. So I thought I’d oblige.

While I’ve been rhapsodizing about the joys of pernil on nochebuena quite a bit recently, I won’t post that today—because I don’t have anyRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 5, 2009 8:53AM

Season Recap: Thank You, Phils

Thank you, Phillies, for a great year: an unexpectedly great year given a litany of troubles (Hamels’s arm in spring training, Harry Kalas’s death in week 2, the travails of Brad Lidge, Jimmy Rollins’s 0 for the first half, and so on). You tied history by being the first NL teamRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 25, 2009 8:24AM

Homage to "Northern Exposure"

Last week, Mrs. P and I watched the last episodes of the last season of Northern Exposure, completing our long-drawn-out retrospective of that remarkable series, my favorite TV show.


Northern Exposure was sui generis. Cop show/crime drama? No. Doctor show? Nope. Spy thriller? Hardly. SRead full post »