75 for Greenbelt

In honor of our city’s 75th anniversary, and as an inveterate list-maker, I enjoyed coming up with these 75 reasons why I love living here:

  1. Moss – less grass to mow
  2. Willow oak trees older than me – great shade
  3. Sun-dried sheets and towels (glad I’m not the only one with clotheslines)
  4. Fresh strawberries, beans & tomatoes just outside the kitchen door
  5. Enough wild raspberries on wood edges to make jam
  6. Compost bin & rain barrel
  7. Picnic table
  8. Porch for plants, chairs, grill
  9. Birdsong all day long
  10. Walking paths with tunnels & bridges
  11. Greenbelt Lake
  12. Buddy Attick Park
  13. Ducks and geese in all seasons
  14. Turtles, frogs and water lilies
  15. Occasional deer and beavers
  16. Rabbits and yes, squirrels
  17. Playgrounds
  18. Shrom Hills Park
  19. Greenbelt National Park
  20. Beltsville Agricultural Research Center
  21. Ballfields
  22. Beach volleyball court
  23. Skate park
  24. Ping-pong table in the Youth Center
  25. Tennis courts
  26. Aquatic Center
  27. Greenbelt Library
  28. Greenbelt Homes Inc.
  29. Greenbelt Co-op grocery & pharmacy
  30. Greenbelt News Review – also celebrating 75 years
  31. Greenbelt Arts Center (black box theater)
  32. Old Greenbelt Movie Theater
  33. Greenbelt Federal Credit Union
  34. The New Deal Cafe
  35. Beijing Restaurant
  36. Silver Diner
  37. Greenbelt Intergenerational Volunteer Exchange Services (GIVES)
  38. Greenbelt CARES – family, youth & senior services and resources
  39. Greenbelt Labor Day Festival
  40. Greenbelt Baptist Church – solar panels on roof
  41. Friends at Greenbelt Community Church (United Church of Christ)
  42. Three friends from DC CRC who live near us
  43. Weekly prayer group
  44. Twice-monthly book group
  45. Friendly, helpful neighbors
  46. Greenbelt Writers Group
  47. Activist friends protesting environmental degradation, promoting wind power
  48. Citizens of the Year like Virginia Beauchamp and Sylvia Lewis
  49. Spontaneous Writing Group
  50. Greenbelt Online Yard Sale
  51. Bartering friends
  52. Yoga classes
  53. Greenbelt Patch
  54. Greenbelt Freecycle
  55. Free mulch at Northway
  56. Greenbelt Access Television
  57. Green Ridge House
  58. Greenbelters Facebook group
  59. All kinds of recycling, thanks to Luisa Robles
  60. Greenbelt Community Center
  61. Children of all ages
  62. Artist friends like Betsy Barber and Barbara Stevens
  63. Night sky observatory at Northway
  64. Greenbelt Metro Station
  65. Great musicians like April & Nuc Vega
  66. Photo-journalists like Eric Zhang
  67. Nature journalists like Don Comis
  68. Transitions Theater – First show was Greenbelt Voices
  69. Amazing quiet, yet close to highways and DC
  70. Local home improvement professionals like Bill Smith
  71. Art shows at the New Deal and Community Center
  72. Greener Greenbelt Initiative
  73. Paul Downs’ stick creations
  74. Greenbelt Museum
  75. 75th Anniversary Celebrations

Psalm 90 for Mom’s 90th Birthday

Father, Clarice has been at home in Your family for countless generations.
She worships You, Creator of Adirondack peaks,
Summoner of Atlantic sunrises and Shenandoah sunsets.

Clarice knew dust-to-dust loss from early childhood
as You drew her older sister beyond death and time.
Years later, yet seemingly too soon, You welcomed her father.
Many good years later, in Your timeless grace, Clarice bid
fondest farewells–first to her mother, then her younger sister,
and finally her beloved husband of more than 60 years.

Fear of Your frown often brought her down,
but she made every day count–
enduring woes, pursuing Your wisdom.

Your new-morning love always sings in her heart and voice.
In this new decade, may Clarice witness Your ever more wondrous
affirmations of tender, purposeful care for herself
and her children, to the third and fourth generation.