Who I Met Today

Everyone Has a Story

Category People to Meet

Kristen Morita – Baby Sign

When I visited my young granddaughter (and her parents!), her simple hand movement declared an end to her dinner. All done. And bath time. And observing the gazelles at the zoo. A different gesture demanded more—strawberries, milk, time in the pool, elephants. When my boys were infants and toddlers, baby sign was not “a thing.” Kristen Morita is a Washington state speech pathologist and mom to two young daughters. She works with

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Cindy Burnett – Podcast Host and Book Reviewer

Cindy Burnett and I connected through our shared love of books. I only wish I’d met her when I lived in Houston for all those years. Anyway, whether I’m scrolling her social media posts, reading her book columns, or listening to her podcast, Cindy is a go-to source for book opinions and recommendations.

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Dr. Jeanette Norden – A Neuroscientist Talks Alzheimer’s

For the past decade, I’ve had a front-row seat to the devastating effects of Alzheimer’s. The neurodegenerative disease has wreaked havoc on my mother-in-law. And those who love her.

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Susan Martin – Hiking the Grand Canyon

At 5 am, Susan Martin dragged herself out of the cozy hotel bed. She stuffed the final supplies into her bulging backpack–snacks, a lunch, extra tops and bottoms for the next two days and nights. She tugged a jacket over her other four clothing layers and poured a cup of coffee.   

And then she pulled back the drapes to look out the window.

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Megan Gill – Package-Free Shops

Exploring Megan Gill’s package-free shop, The Good Fill, is like wandering the luscious aisles of a candy store. Every which way you turn, shelves and bins and shiny containers entice with zero-waste options for those everyday items we all use.

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Vivian Shudde – The Brookwood Community

“This is my life—and your imperfect life too,” says Vivian Shudde, CEO of The Brookwood Community, to the roomful of parents whose children have various intellectual and physical challenges. “Believe me, our sorority sisters and cousins and neighbors and school friends have imperfections in their lives too. But they’re easier to hide.” As a small child, Vivian’s younger sister, Vicki, contracted the mumps. The disease led to meningitis and brain

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Dr. Ann Neely – Picture Book Expert

“Before we get married, I want you to take Dr. Neely’s children’s lit class,” one of Dr. Ann Neely’s students announced to her fiancé. “It will help to make you a better father.” For 35 years, Ann, one of the premier experts on children’s literature in the country, read books published for the younger set—for a living. When she wasn’t squiring visiting authors to public schools and non-profits or speaking

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Nancy Fox – Equipping a Rental Home

To cut costs and recoup expenses, many property owners rent out their city apartment or lake house or condo at the beach. Although some balk at the idea of other people sleeping and lounging in their vacation home, the rental process can work and offset the cost of a second residence. Nancy Fox, property manager extraordinaire, knows how to make the rental process a good experience for owners and guests.

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Dr. Melissa Langley – A Dermatologist Talks Botox

“Let me look at your neck. Hmmm…I’ve never seen something like that.” Just the words I want to hear from a dermatologist. Not long after I moved to Nashville, Dr. Melissa Langley and I met at an exercise class. One day, as we set up our mats and weights and balance balls, she continued to stare at my neck. “Come see me at my office,” she said. Besides treating skin,

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Robyn Sargent – King Arthur Baking Instructor

Robyn Sargent’s job is a delicious one. In her “office,” a spacious test kitchen equipped with the latest baking pans and gadgets, Robyn bakes cinnamon rolls, pizza dough, and cream puffs. She adjusts seasonings and ingredients until the final product tastes just right. And as a King Arthur baking instructor, she gets paid to do this. I discovered King Arthur Baking this past holiday season. A lovely friend gave me

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Christine Han – A Photographer’s Favorite Spots in Brooklyn, NY

Series:  Cities to Explore 

I’m sure you’ve spotted Christine Han’s stunning photographs. You’ll see her work in glossy magazines, delectable cookbooks, and advertisements for Pepsi and Starbucks and Bose. Scroll through the pages of Cup of Jo or Apartment Therapy, and Christine’s photos will tell the story of a person or space.

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Judy Wright – A Master Gardener

Do you eat a traditional meal on New Year’s Day? Around the world, foods served on the first day of the year symbolize luck, prosperity, and fertility. In Japan, noodles represent longevity. Italians serve dishes with lentils. Scandinavians dine on herring, and the people of Mexico eat grapes. And, as Judy Wright discovered when she moved to Nashville, Southerners sit down to collard greens, pork, and black-eyed peas. And this

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Erika Owen – Do You Flaneur?

When was the last time you took a walk without trying to accomplish something else at the same time? No stopping off at the market. No listening to a podcast or returning a phone call. No counting steps or miles. For me, it’s been awhile. Erika Owen “needed more quiet in her life.” The rat race of her New York City media career left her with little unscheduled time. Seeking

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Bill Nolan – Butterball Turkey Hotline Expert

“I lost my wife a few months ago,” said the polite, older gentleman. “She always made the Thanksgiving turkey, and I want to cook a nice dinner this year. As a gift to my kids, in memory of their mom and my wife. But I need some help.” While the caller took notes, Bill Nolan walked the man through the fine points of cooking a perfect Thanksgiving turkey. Step by

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Marci Houff – Ovarian Cancer Symptoms to Know

The American Cancer Society estimates ovarian cancer will strike more than 22,000 women in the United States this year. And 14,000 of those women will die. Ovarian cancer is difficult to detect in its early stages and challenging to treat once the disease spreads. According to Marci Houff, “Every woman in the world is at risk of developing ovarian cancer, and a great majority don’t know much about it.” Including

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April George – Turkey on the Table

In my attempts to achieve gold-star grandmother status, I’m always on the lookout for ideas to inspire teachable moments. And, not trying to rush the fall season, I can’t wait to introduce you to a new feathered friend with a good lesson behind him. My granddaughter may be a bit young this year, but Mr. Turkey on the Table is all set to head west for his first Thanksgiving in

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Anthony Amore – Art Theft Investigator

On March 18, 1990, around 2 am, two police officers knocked at the employee entrance of the Isabella Stewart Gardner museum. A security guard, breaking protocol, opened the door and allowed them to enter. The fake police officers handcuffed and bound two guards and made off with thirteen pieces of art from the beloved museum in Boston’s Fenway neighborhood. The crime remains unsolved, and none of the nine paintings or

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Ashley Campbell – Children’s Thank You Notes

Ashley Campbell is a stickler for thank you notes. “When I was growing up, if a relative sent a gift and didn’t receive a written thank you, everyone in the family heard about it,” laughs Ashley. She watched her perfectionist daughter struggle with the cute kids’ stationery Ashley had on hand at home. Dear Grandma and Grandpa ran off the page with the traditional note cards. “Kids in kindergarten and

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Jenna Testa Kilpatrick – Coastal Dune Lakes

I can’t think of anything I enjoy more than walking the beaches of 30A, the pristine stretch of coastline in Northwest Florida’s Walton County. When surrounded by waves and sandpipers and the rising sun, I’m in my happy place. If I’m lucky, as I sip my morning coffee, a dolphin or two will swim by to greet me. And then, I know, it will be a good day. Besides soft

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Evelyn Henson – Happy Art and Artist

In a world with disturbing news coming at us from every angle, Evelyn Henson’s art makes me smile. And don’t we all need a little happy these days? Loaded with bright colors, delightful animals, and spirited landscapes, her colorful art is “meant to brighten your day and bring sunshine to your home for years to come.” Mission accomplished. As I browse the splashy paintings and mugs and beach towels and

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