Samara O'Shea

Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

The Awesome Thing My Aunt Did After Her Divorce

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Here’s my latest contribution to the HuffPo…and it happens to be a short except from the book!

Transform Your Holiday Cards Into Something Actually Useful

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

I was interviewed for a little ditty on holiday cards for Men’s Health also got into touch with me recently for a short piece they’re doing on writing love letters. As we’ve suspected all along, people are still writing letters!

The Devil’s Advocate

Monday, June 18th, 2012

Hello! I hope everyone (especially fathers) had a fabulous weekend. My latest blog for The Huffington Post went up this morning. It’s called How Many Marriages Actually End in Happily Ever After? I’m just having a little fun playing Devil’s Advocate. . .

Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock

Sunday, April 8th, 2012

I hope everyone had a great weekend. Mine was wonderful and exhausting. I did log back into Facebook on Sunday afternoon. I’ll tell more about my experience later in the week. For now, I will simply share the game my sister shared with us over Easter Brunch.

Damn Those Letters!

Friday, December 30th, 2011

Usually, when I come across a story about someone finding letters from the 1940s it’s a triumph. They are love letters between grandma and grandpa during World War II, or they tell some other glorious story from the recent past. In the case of a 96-year-old Italian woman, it was damming evidence. Her 99-year-old husband (of 77 years!) found letters to a secret lover she had written in the 1940s. He divorced her promptly. Yikes! At first I thought he overreacted, but now I think he was looking for an excuse to leave. The article says this:

“The uncovering of the letters inside an old chest of drawers was the final straw for a relationship that had already been rocky: 10 years ago, the husband moved out to live with one of the sons, but returned weeks later.”

Rocky! After 60+ years. Oh my, marriage is an endless source of fascination. She begged him to stay but he wouldn’t hear of it. After all, he’s 99 and Italian. There are wild oats to be sown.

And with that, I bid everyone a very Happy New Year!

Moving On

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday weekend. I spent my weekend moving, which isn’t necessarily fun, but the end result is good. I moved from Prospect Park, PA, which is near the Philadelphia airport, to the Fairmount area of Philadelphia. They are 15 miles away and a world apart.

In Prospect Park I lived with my sister, and I left because her fiancé moved in. Many people have asked me if I felt kicked out of my home—not at all! I’m excited for the change in scenery. Plus I think that our home in PP is perfect for a couple just starting out. In Fairmount I’ll live with my cousin Kate. You remember Kate. My travel buddy.

In Fairmount, I’m in walking distance of both the Philadelphia Art Museum and one of the oldest prisons in the country—not to mention lots of yoga studios, bars, used book stores, and cafes. I’ll fit right in. Because of the move, the subsequent need to get settled, and my sister’s bachelorette party, which is this weekend, I won’t be blogging for the rest of the week. Before I go, however, I want to share this precious letter my sister wrote and gave to me on moving day. She doesn’t like her handwriting so she’s figured out a way to slide small thank you notes through her printer. Transcript is below the card image. I’ll be back next week!



My Dearest Sister,

On this, the day you move out, I have something I wish to say to you. I want you to know how much I have enjoyed living with you these past 4+ years! We really had to grow a lot when we first moved in together, but we did and I’m so glad we did. In hindsight, I believe it was such necessary, fundamental and lovely growth for both of us.

I also want you to know I will really miss you—I will miss you singing to me as I ascend the stairs each morning. I will miss fighting over whether to watch America’s Next Top Model or Bones. And I will miss simply having you around all of the time.

However, I think and I hope you will be very happy in the City with Kate. And I hope and pray that wonderful things happen to you in this next chapter of you life, or maybe it’s just the next chapter of you living situation—either way. So I wish you many blessings and much more lovely growth as you go. But remember, I will always be here for you, and wherever I am, you will have a home there also!

Much love,

Apology Accepted

Friday, April 15th, 2011

There’s a thoughtful article in this month’s Oprah magazine about forgiveness. In recent years I’ve learned that sometimes it takes as much grace and self-reflection to accept an apology as it does to deliver one. My favorite insights from the article:

~ “Study after study has found that forgiving is good for the body as well as the soul. It can lower blood pressure and heart rate and reduce levels of depression, anxiety, and anger. People who forgive generally have better relationships with others, feel happier and more hopeful, and score higher on just about every measure of psychological well-being.”

~ “. . .there are really only two steps in the process: grieving and letting go. Grieving, after you’ve been wronged, means letting yourself feel the anger, hurt, trauma, in all its original pain—but not indefinitely.”

~ “The decision to forgive touches you to your very core, to who you are as a human being. It involves your sense of self-esteem, your personal worth, the worth of the person who’s hurt you, and your relationship with that person and the larger world.”

~ “Forgiveness, I begin to see, is not about pretending you don’t feel angry or hurt. It’s about responding out of kindness rather than rage. It’s about letting yourself feel the full spectrum of emotions—grief and anger and hurt, but also kindness and compassion. Even toward someone who’s hurt you deeply.”