Columns

Bruce the Blog

Kids and Their Screens

“Kids, I don’t know what’s wrong with these kids today. “Kids, who can understand anything they say…? “Why can’t they be like we were? “Perfect in every way, “What’s the matter with kids today?” When Lee Adams, who lives in northern Westchester, penned those laugh-worthy lyrics for the Broadway musical “Bye Bye Birdie,” he was pumping irony. It’s a rite of passage for older folks (a demographic that includes yours truly) to kid themselves ...

Design Time

Since decorating mistakes can be very costly and time consuming, I always urge my clients to do their homework before undertaking any redecorating project. What kind of homework?  A good way to begin is to flip through design and decorating magazines, and visit websites dedicated to interior décor. Start collecting pictures of various design products and styles that appeal to you and you can visualize as your own.  Once you start identifying colors, designs, and various furnishings that illustrate your dream room, ...

Diversions

In light of the recent barrage of natural disasters and manmade tragedies, I struggle to find my usual light-hearted voice.  I’ll get it back, I’m sure, but for now, for this week, it somehow just feels frivolous and unsympathetic to talk about more fun diversions… So, part of my job is to attend charity events, galas, parties and social tributes.  For me, this is a lot of fun.  Kind of like my own personal diversion from the rest of my responsibilities.  This week was no different. I attended five ...

Dr. Linda

Dr. Linda, Thank you for your column about stress. The day I read it, my seventh-grade daughter, Lily, came home from school with a pile of binders that filled her entire backpack. This once happy little girl, who used to skip into the house after school, walked into the house and had a total meltdown. I tried to make light of it and even brought up something funny that happened to me at work that day, but nothing helped. This isn’t the first time it’s happened and I’m concerned that things are going to get worse.

Educational Alternatives

Dana Stahl, a learning specialist and educational consultant, will address educational questions and concerns that parents may have regarding their children’s academic development and progress in school. Topics can center on such concerns as how to handle homework dilemmas or what questions to ask at a CSE meeting. Questions can range from “How best do parents advocate for their children?” to “How do parents interpret formal tests that have been administered?” to “Which schools and colleges are right for my ...

Houlihan Lawrence Property of the Day

2 Hollowbrook Place, Cortlandt $550,000.00 This unique 3 family home boasts tremendous curb appeal with a stone and brick exterior. Each unit offers 2 spacious bedrooms, 1 updated full bath, updated kitchens, separate entrances and separate patios. Two of the three units have beautiful brick and stone fireplaces that create a warm and cozy atmosphere in the living rooms. There is plenty of backyard space for tenants to use and ample parking via 1 car attached garage, driveway, gravel parking lot on side of house. Additional unit used ...

Life, Health and Politics

Watching Hollywood implode for the past 10 days has been illuminating. Daily there are more and more stories of corruption surfacing, as well as new players coming to the fore. Women and men who had silenced themselves for years are finally getting a chance to speak up now in an atmosphere where they are far more likely to be believed. It might even be time to start investigating the creepy stories of pedophilia plaguing child actors in Hollywood that actor Corey Feldman first began mentioning publicly in 2013.   For one thing, the ...

Lost In Suburbia

“Hello, hello,” I said, picking up the phone when I saw my husband’s number come up on my Caller ID. Nothing. “Hellllloooooooooo?” I said louder. “Can I have a tall, decaf, skim mocha Frappucino,” I heard my husband say. It sounded like he wasn’t talking directly into his phone, but rather from a galaxy far, far away. “HELLLLOOOOOO!” I yelled at the top of my lungs. “HONEY, YOUR PHONE IS CALLING ME AGAIN!!” This, unfortunately, was not a new scenario. There ...

Man Overboard

My sister Kathy is taking an advanced class in American Sign Language. She has no plans to become an interpreter, so I assume she is doing it so that she can talk behind peoples’ backs without asking them to turn around. She says that for now she is better at talking in the language than she is at listening, but it seems like most people have that problem right now, hearing impaired or not. People have been communicating without words since the dawn of man, and ASL dates to the 1800s. It uses an alphabet composed of hand symbols and ...

On the World Scene

We spend so much time teaching our children not to bully one another and not to gossip, but all too often adults don’t practice what they preach, especially given the often toxic and viral nature of social media. Given the series of events last week regarding a disputed story involving the Somers girls and Yorktown boys lacrosse players, it seems that Somers school administrators were bullied into making premature statements. Many people are so quick to judge—and to judge publicly—without any deference to due process ...

Organizing Wisdom

People tell me that—their husbands think they are hoarders or they think that themselves. I’ve been a professional organizer for a long time and 99 percent of the time, these people are not hoarders. In fact, I’ve only met three in the last 13 years.  Hoarding is a mental disorder, an aspect of being obsessive-compulsive (check ICD Clutter–Hoarding Scale) and it requires the help of a therapist and medication. An organizer cannot work alone with a hoarder successfully. When I do run into a hoarding situation, I ...

The Seasoned Citizen

Big-sistership was thrust upon me by a well-meaning but very crafty mother.   Florence (my mom) gave birth to her second child in a small hospital where my dad, a young doctor, was on staff. At that time (the Dark Ages) women spent seven to 10 days “recuperating” in the hospital and children were not permitted to visit. Because all the attending nurses were friends, they dressed me in a tiny, handmade nurse’s costume, took me into the nursery and told me to “choose” whichever baby I wanted as my sister.

What Was I Thinking?

Just a few weeks ago, I wrote about vacations as a child on Cape Cod.  Last week- end I returned to the Cape, not as a child, but as an older and hopefully more appreciative visitor. I traveled with son and daughter-in-law, Paul and JulieAnne, and JulieAnne’s mom, Arline, heading to their home, Swan View, in Orleans. We had made this trip a couple of years ago around the same time and I have now christened this weekend as “The Moms’ Weekend” for the future. We arrived late Friday evening, unpacked and fell into ...

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