I started this blog in 2017 with the name This Creative Midlife. I was 49 at the time and was curious about the ways creativity was important to me at that point in my life.

I am no less curious about the role creativity plays in my life, but it started becoming difficult to justify the “Midlife” part as I grew older so I became disenchanted with that name. Also, I was never quite comfortable with having a defined theme and wanted to move toward something more general.

I decided to rename my blog Being and Formulating because I once had a blog with that name. Although it’s a mouthful, I always liked it.

It comes from a quote from the diaries of Anaïs Nin. I came across this quote second-hand from Brassai’s book Henry Miller: The Paris Years:

“In Miller’s mind…to commit the events of one day, or even one hour, to paper takes days if not weeks. Anaïs would therefore never catch up with events, and her Diary would never be truly current. Moreover, all she was doing by trying was postponing the exhilaration of life, the moments in whose heat you would never think of writing. The pulse of life makes any formulation impossible…All the diary can reflect are life’s stagnant period, what Andre Breton called the ‘empty moments’ of existence. Anaïs wouldn’t always avoid throwing herself into the current of life. She too would directly confront the dilemma of whether to live or to write. She herself says as much in her Diary: ‘The river of life divides into two branches: being and formulating.’”

I love this quote and decided I wanted to use something from it for the name of my blog: my choices being either “Being and Formulating” or “Life’s Stagnant Period.” While the later has certain panache, I opted for the former.

This new name doesn’t suggest a particular theme. It just points to reflecting about one’s life which grants me license to write about whatever I want to write about. Probably not a whole lot will change since my creative endeavors will most likely play a key role in this site.

I have long been a writer and have had short stories published in Ayris Magazine, Compose: A Journal of Simply Good Writing, The Casserole, Contraposition, The Penmen Review, and Monday Night.

In addition, I have had poetry appear in Small Brushes, Superior Poetry News and The Vermillion Literary Project.

I didn’t know it at the time I started this blog, but my interest in photography grew to be one of the main topics of this site. I fell in love with that hobby and posted about it often and will probably continue to do so.

To a lesser extent, I developed an interest in drawing. The best I can say about that is I’m a dabbler and aspirational. I only have so much free time so I can’t explore all my hobbies to the degree to which I would like, but I’ll recount what I do accomplish here.


Autumn Photos at FDR Park

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I recently realized I have some photos from back in November I never posted about. I’m glad to have some older photos to share since I’m still waiting for my new computer. I... READ MORE

January 2024 Update

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January is always a tough month for me. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve lost my taste for winter even though winters in Philadelphia have gotten more mild the past few years. December, at... READ MORE

2023 Washington DC Trip Part 2

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Continued from Part 1… The next morning started out at Open City with somewhat less healthy options, as least for me. Holly had a breakfast burrito but substituted egg whites for the eggs... READ MORE

2023 Washington DC Trip Part 1

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During our winter break, Holly and I took a short trip to Washington, DC. We usually don’t travel at that time and, weather permitting, often treat it as a 2nd Staycation doing some... READ MORE

December 2023 Update

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Not surprisingly, Holly and I had a busy December. In addition to the Christmas holiday, December is always extra-festive because of Holly’s birthday early in the month. For each of our birthdays, we... READ MORE

Top Posts for 2023

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I was planning on a Top 5 Posts for 2023 list but after the top 3, there was a 3-way tie so this is a Top 6 Posts list: #1 Minolta X-700 with... READ MORE