THE ROADMAP

Stories about anticipating, planning for and navigating life’s twists, turns, tragedies, and triumphs.

Wings for Widows: Offering a Better Way to Navigate the Aftermath of a Loss

Wings for Widows: Offering a Better Way to Navigate the Aftermath of a Loss

This column originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on December 9, 2018.   Word came by phone, delivered by a stranger I never did meet. Nine years ago, my husband, the father of four, died in a hospital emergency room after efforts to coax his heart back into service fell short. In an…

Embracing Our Expiration Date

Embracing Our Expiration Date

This piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on November 22, 2018. We’re born with an expiration date. Yet, it’s not the nature of our culture for us to speak much about the inevitable. Until it smacks us in the face. Flames claim homes. Cars collide. Cancer visits. Regardless of what event shepherds…

Lessons from Military Life and Its Transitions

Lessons from Military Life and Its Transitions

This piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on November 11, 2018. Teresa graduated from high school with no direction. When she joined the Navy, she had never been anywhere, done anything, or worked in any way. She quickly discovered the military is more than a job – it’s a way of life.…

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REALTORS® Stepping Forward and Living the “Better” Choice

It was dark and rainy and Saturday morning to boot. My husband, the CEO of Minnesota REALTORS®, had signed us up to participate in the REALTORS® Relief Run, held in conjunction with the National Association of REALTORS annual meeting. Just a day earlier I would have tried to talk Chris out of attending, leveraging his…

We can be better. If we choose.

We can be better. If we choose.

This piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on November 1, 2018. As I was born to a Jewish mother and Catholic father, it feels poetic that a Catholic priest shared a Jewish man’s life-changing wisdom with me nearly a decade ago. I was in a dark place, trying to make sense of…

From Surviving to Thriving

From Surviving to Thriving

This piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on October 14, 2018. We all accumulate scars in life, some more penetrating than others. How – and why — do some people falter, some survive, and yet others thrive? That question so intrigued Emma J. Bell that she stepped away from a judgeship to…

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Autism, Mothers and the Great Gift of Planning

This piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on May 13, 2018.   One in 42. That was the prevalence of autism in 8-year-old Minnesotans in 2014, the CDC recently reported, compared to one in 59 nationally.   So for an awful lot of moms, “our day” triggers a constellation of emotions: sadness,…

Gophers head coach Pam Borton signals to her team during their 70-62 loss to South Dakota State in a third round WNIT game at Frost Arena in Brookings, S.D. on Thursday, March 27, 2014. After 12 seasons as women’s basketball coach at U-M, Borton was fired Friday following her fifth straight year missing the NCAA tournament. (AP Photo/Argus Leader, Elisha Page)

Coach Pam Borton Perfects the Pivot

This piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on March 25, 2018. Pam Borton put everything she had into the University of Minnesota women’s basketball program for a dozen years. She worked holidays and weekends, guided immature teenage girls into confident women and collegiate competitors. With both wins and losses, she took flak…

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Your Personal Readiness Plan™ – A Winning Strategy for the Game of Life

  A version of this piece originally appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on Feb. 4, 2018 Winners engage in strategic planning. They gather the players and identify the big goals. Where do you want to be in 10 years? What steps will you take to get there? What resources will you put towards…

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Toys for Joy: Community, Gifts and Smiles

  This story appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press on December 16, 2017 When Christmas arrives shortly more than a thousand families will experience unexpected joy in Anoka County, Minnesota, thanks to a large contingent of community partners. From fundraising to fulfillment, volunteers are contributing time and money to bring a smile to children’s…

Be The Match

Be the Match: A Young Man’s Life-Saving Gift

What would you do to save a stranger’s life? This is Mike Rice’s story. It appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press. It began with a cheek swab. It morphed into a life-saving stem-cell transplant for a stranger and an unexpected bond between two families. At the age of 28 Mike Rice felt a calling…

Dick Long

Dick Long’s Life and Legacy

Though Dick Long left us seven years ago he left a notable legacy. On this Throwback Thursday I’m sharing a piece I wrote a month after his death. December 27, 2010 It seems that Dick Long never forgot what it felt like to be hungry or to wonder whether he’d have a bed to sleep…