Issue No. 6 Winter 2020

It’s time to revisit Marilynne Robinson’s novel, Housekeeping, about America’s shift from homesteading to rootlessness.  In the 1950s,  two orphans are cared for by a grandmother who views housekeeping as a sacred act. Her sheets “are like vestments flapping in the wind.”  Robinson examines our tenuous hold on place and asks why some of us are natural nesters and others born vagabonds.

Author/filmmaker Phil Cousineau talks about the hero’s (and heroine’s) journey with all its wonders and temptations — and what it takes to find our way back home.

For some 19th century immigrants, homesickness was a wasting disease.  Others fared better, finding ways to honor the homes they’d left behind.  

Richard Beban on what to do when joy gets in your eyes and how to say goodbye to a well-loved shirt.

Duncan Parsons on saying “I’m sorry” to the fish, the dog, and the house.

Read Ludmilla Petrushevskaya’s surrealist tales about an artist who loses his Moscow apartment to a swindler and a mother who loved her children until they moved back home.

Get yourself to  a Repair Cafe where you can fix your cell phone or your toaster and restore an antique dresser.  Some places will even teach you how to crochet a throw or darn a sock. 

Virginia Woolf moved between the countryside and London as if her life depended on it.  For her, home was both an intellectual hive and an insistent muse.

Feminist writer Anna de Noailles had an ultra-quiet writer’s den. Proust followed suit recreating La Belle Epoque from his cork-lined room.

Poet Ann Robinson describes cleaning houses in Marin County in the 1980s when the money flowed and so did the drugs.

Shoshana Zuboff  says our digital helpers aren’t manna from the gods — they’re here to steal our data and our privacy. Should we worry?


 How are we reinventing home as an intellectual salon, a mindful sanctuary, a hub of creativity and commerce?  

Psychologist Helen Marlo tells working mothers how to make their lives like music — a symphony with changing elements. 

Valerie Andrews reports on the latest neuroscience studies that show how winter can be stressful, and why our best prescription is to hunker down at home.

Jane Austen felt a house revealed the character of its occupants.  When choosing a partner, she advised, look carefully at how he keeps his rooms. 

Our belongings aren’t just passive objects here to do our bidding, says C. G. Jung.  They have personalities and adventures of their own.

The Slow Housekeeping movement is about making a nourishing home. Here are some tips on  how to create your own domestic rituals. 

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