Marilyn Stevens' Blog

Marilyn Stevens

Marilyn Stevens
Grecia, Costa Rica
August 20
Not Good with Titles
Gurgling towards the unknown only knowing it will be another great adventure. Mystified by the magical connections that continue to appear in my life, whether I think I need them or not. Each time I make someone a "favorite" on OS an angel gets its wings ... Visit my blog: htto://


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So in his recent essay “Diapers, Scallops and Which,” my dear husband has trashed my Mid-Atlantic- tinged accent without regard to the fact that MOST real Americans consider the New England accent somewhat ridiculous. The title of my essay is just one example. On trips to visit Paul&rsquo… Read full post »

JULY 23, 2011 3:02PM

Zen and the Art of Push Mowing

 When we moved to our rental house in March, we inherited a front yard with grass. In Phoenix, this is mostly an anomaly. Desert landscaping makes more sense. As a committed environmentalist, I used to tsk-tsk at the golf courses and lawns, their sprinklers wafting precious water willy-nilly. An… Read full post »

JUNE 14, 2011 2:20PM

Father Foley Criticized My Daddy

The first time I noticed – no, not noticed, felt deeply in my gut

Was the day I had to deliver a package to Father Foley.

I was eight.

Getting picked to walk across our asphalt playground,

To cross Curtis Avenue and walk up to the white… Read full post »

JUNE 14, 2011 12:29PM

High School Graduation

Just a hint of pink sky silhouettes a row of palms before the sky turns deep blue velvet and the Glendale High School band strikes up Pomp and Circumstance. A perfect May graduation night. Straight rows of folding chairs wait – bright white against the emerald football field. The three-hundred… Read full post »

MAY 30, 2011 10:32AM


  I go to the summer service at 10 today, but it doesn’t start until next week. So I’m 45 minutes late.

 “Missed your sermon,” I say to the rector, who is shaking hands with the sparse Memorial Day congregantion.

 “Then stay for the next service,” he… Read full post »

MARCH 4, 2011 3:55PM



 1918 Influenza epidemic

The signs were posted on at least half of the doors on the street. Inside one of them, Magda sat beside Stasczu, mopping his brow with cool water rung from the basin at her feet.

A rosary sat on the tiny bedside table. Every now and then,… Read full post »





Sometimes soup is much more than soup. Mushroom barley soup takes me on a real and imagined trip to visit my ancestors.

 I love to make  soup. Even though there are only two of us now, I still cook in my giant restaurant-sized soup pot. This… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 16, 2011 9:12PM

When We Leave

Our house is being auctioned on Friday. I want to leave it nice for whoever buys it.

 A whole industry has grown up around the need to clean out foreclosed houses. Bitter former owners, resentful of the unfair treatment (real or perceived) they’ve received at the hands of mortgage brokers… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 13, 2011 11:49AM

In Seventh Grade, Love Hurts

He let me hold his chameleon. Didn’t that prove that he liked me?

 Seventh grade can be a traumatic time. Especially when you are a “big” girl. I wasn’t plump, I was just taller than every boy – even the eighth grade boys. And my binding navy blue school uniform… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 6, 2011 5:23PM

Abu Dhabi … or Bust?

 After almost six years in Phoenix, the bloom is off the cactus flower. Paul and I are ready for something completely different.

We chose Phoenix six years ago because that’s where I got a job. From my bed in Wilmington, Delaware I took online… Read full post »

JANUARY 19, 2011 9:34PM

How I Know I Won’t Be Rich

I’m guessing that since I’m pushing 60, it probably would have happened by now. Unless I win the lottery. But since I never play the lottery, winning is pretty far out there as a concept. Also, when I’m in the Circle K or somewhere else where they sell lottery tickets, and… Read full post »

JANUARY 10, 2011 9:22PM

Sadness So Deep in Arizona

There’s a picture of Jared Loughner in the Washington Post. Not the crazed, bald photo that they keep showing on the news. This one is of a young college student in a t-shirt with his name tag “Jared.” It seems that he’s at some kind of street fair or maybe a… Read full post »

JANUARY 7, 2011 11:04PM

Divorce ... and More

I left. Both times.

Marriage #1. I feel fat. I'm not fat, you can see that in my quite cute modeling photos. But the agents tell me that my legs are “too thick.” It is the age of Twiggy and I take their assessments to heart.

Instead:… Read full post »

I love this soup! The Moosewood version makes it with homemade couscous dumplings, which are good, but I actually like it with frozen potato gnocchi even better! (My grandkids call it "Yucky Tomato Soup" -- but they mean it in a good way.) This recipe will serve about 8 -- I… Read full post »

Scribe at ComputerMy head is my favorite writing space. From earliest childhood, I’d imagine I was either in a movie or on a TV commercial or possibly being observed from above by (check all that apply)

a) angels

b) deceased relatives

c) my patron saintRead full post »


“Some women bleed sometimes. But it’s nothing for you to worry about.”

 *   *   *

 My introduction to the joys of womanhood was … limited. The only reason that my mother sat me down for “The Talk” at all is that I w… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 16, 2010 2:08PM

Do-It-Yourself Puberty: Chapter 1, The Bra

50s bra ad

There were the whispers: who does, who doesn’t, followed by the giggles. I shouldn’t have cared. But I was obsessed. And it was the early 60s. Jane Russell. Marilyn Monroe. Bullet bosoms. For readers too young to relate to these images, just check out Joan on Mad Men. See what I… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 9, 2010 11:05AM

Did I Ever Have Children?

1991. I’m here in the hospital again. I told them I was okay. But they didn’t listen. Just because they found me on the curb. My daughters are buzzing around me. Little gnats. Like the gnats that used to eat me alive at the beach. Are my daughters eating me alive?Read full post »

Making Honeysuckle Juice for Fun and Profit


When you’re eight, sometimes your entrepreneurial ideas don’t quite match up with reality. For example, I was so totally enamored of Frank Sinatra’s hit “High Hopes” that I decided to produce a neighborhood musical extravaganza based on the lyrics: Read full post »

The kerfuffle over immigration in Arizona, with the passage of SB1070 and the subsequent hold (by a Federal judge) on some of the key provisions in said bill, hits close to home. I am a teacher of secondary high school English language learning (ELL) in Glendale, Arizona, which means my… Read full post »

JULY 30, 2010 11:25AM

I Never Knew This about Me

So here I am at Happy Hour of all places, in the town where I was born and raised and no longer reside. I was never too thrilled about Happy Hours when I was single (a long, long time ago), but I was there with Spouse and Best Friend, so it… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 29, 2010 6:01PM

The Last Six Months



My mom had Alzheimer’s. And diabetes. And congestive heart failure. And glaucoma. By the time we – reluctantly – put her in the nursing home, she was having seizures every few minutes. We’d taken her to the hospital on a Sunday afternoon and my sister and I satRead full post »

JULY 28, 2010 12:49PM

Tomato Salad


3 large (preferably heirloom) tomatoes

1/2 small onion diced

2 T. sugar

2 T. white vinegar

salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

water to cover

Cut the tomat o into bite-sized chunks and toss with diced onion. In a 2-cup measuring cup, mix sugar and vinegar and add… Read full post »