Author: marymillerchiao

Do You Know Your Neighbor?

Chiune Sugihara was born in Japan on January 1, 1900 and died at the age of 86. He had lived quietly in the years following World War II, supporting his family with a series of humble jobs, including selling light bulbs door to door. At his funeral, his neighbors were shocked to see the Israeli […]


About 15 years ago, I took a workshop on worm composting given by the City of San Jose. It changed how I approach fertilizing my organic plants and fruit trees. No more kitchen scraps and newspapers thrown in the garbage. Now those items are fed to some very hungry worms (the Mercury News uses soy-based […]

REST IN PEACE Beloved Brooklyn Dodgers The 2021 baseball season is here, but, for me, it will never be the same as it was in the 1950s. In the years after World War II, America prospered. The economy was robust. Business boomed, and new construction topped the charts. Inflation was at a minimum, and unemployment […]

2020 Reflections and Resolutions

It looks like 2021 may be a similar year to 2020. As if Covid 19 isn’t enough, now there are mutations of the virus, so we’re advised to continue hunkering down and leave our homes only when necessary. Government administrators in California have become our big brothers and sisters, insisting they know best how we […]

The Old Coal Stove

On Sunday, December 19, 1948, fourteen inches of snow fell on Long Island, New York. I was 4 years old. We had recently moved into a 2-story house on several acres in Glen Cove, a small city on the north shore of the island only a few blocks from Long Island Sound, a tidal estuary […]

I Like Ike

I’ll never forget the summer of 1952 when I was eight years old and living on the north shore of Long Island in New York.  World War II had been over for seven years, and war hero, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, was campaigning for president.  He was a popular candidate.  My Mom and Dad and […]

Instant Relatives

There used to be a store in Half Moon Bay, California, named Half to Have It.  I loved to walk through the front yard, a labyrinth of wrought iron furniture—gates and swings, fountains, and birdbaths—all connected into small outdoor rooms by sweet-smelling flowered vines.  Colored crushed glass blended with white pebbles and gray pea stones […]