Essays & Travel 

 

Whether I’m scouting for migrating birds on Virginia’s barrier islands or facing my fear of heights on a high ropes course, I find the world endlessly fascinating. I especially love writing about people, places, and issues that move me.

Over 75 of my articles and essays have been published in The Washington Post. I'm a regular contributor to Arlington Magazine and Bethesda Magazine and have also written for Washingtonian, Notre Dame magazine, Chesapeake Views, and many online publications.

 
Soaring down a zip line at Nemacolin in the gorgeous Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania — woo hoo!

Soaring down a zip line at Nemacolin in the gorgeous Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania — woo hoo!

 
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selected stories

 
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Cold Play

A Pennsylvania town embraces the chilly weather with its Fire and Ice Festival.

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Reliving History

In Yorktown, Virginia—a Revolutionary War battle site—the town’s colorful past still reverberates today.

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The Fine Art of the Girlfriend Pep Talk

How a fear of heights and a “You got this!” from a stranger taught Amy Brecount White a key way to support other women.

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Get Away: Jamestown’s Diverse HerStory Exhibit

"Tenacity" offers a multicultural look at the women of 17th century Virginia.

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Street Art

Kaleidoscopic murals energize the Annapolis Design District.

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Feeling Stressed? Treat Yourself to a Mini Retreat.

Where to try meditation, mindfulness, t'ai chi chih and other spiritual paths to centeredness.

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Scouting for migratory birds for The Washington Post.

Scouting for migratory birds for The Washington Post.

In Search of Tundra Swans A-Swimming

If you live near the Chesapeake Bay or are just plain lucky, you may have seen one of our winter jewels flying in lately.

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Birding in Loudoun County for The Washington Post.

Birding in Loudoun County for The Washington Post.

Birds of a Feather Stick Together

It's not often you find a wide variety of animal habitats in a relatively concentrated area, and it's even rarer that such a pristine spot is open to the public.

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Illustration by Tim Williams.

Illustration by Tim Williams.

What Colleges Really Want

Getting ready to apply? Don't stress. Here's what's important in today's competitive landscape. And what's not.

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Winterthur, a former du Pont estate. Photo courtesy of Winterthur.

Winterthur, a former du Pont estate. Photo courtesy of Winterthur.

DuPonts and Wyeths Lived Here

The Brandywine Valley gave rise to two 20th-century dynasties: one aristocratic and one artistic. Their homes can tell you stories.

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Harbor City

Annapolis bustles with walking tours, eclectic shops, charming eateries—and a strong sense of history

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Art in the Air on the Eastern Shore

Every July, Easton becomes a mecca for artists and art lovers.

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Whale Watching in Virginia Beach

Not many people know these graceful giants can be spotted in the winter.

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Photo by Karena Dixon.

Photo by Karena Dixon.

Escapes

Oxford's Slow and Friendly Pace.

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How to Raise a Reader

Want your kids to become avid readers? Here's how to share the love.

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Photo by Mick Rock.

Photo by Mick Rock.

Good Libations in Nelson County

Locavores will find fine wine, craft beer and tasty spirits under the micro-appellation "Nelson 151" near Charlottesville.

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Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
— POET MARY OLIVER