A Miracle of Mermaids (September 1995)

The child was inconsolable after her father died. Nothing seemed to help, until… By Margo Pfeiff, Reader’s Digest, September 1995 Rhonda Gill froze as she heard her four-year-old daughter, Desiree, sobbing quietly in the family room that morning in October 1993. Rhonda tiptoed through the doorway. The tiny child was hugging a photograph of her father, who had died nine months earlier. Rhonda, 24, watched … Continue reading A Miracle of Mermaids (September 1995)

Magic in the Mind (December 2012)

How do magic tricks work? Teller, of Penn & Teller, pulls back the curtain on human perception. From Smithsonian Magazine, originally published in December 2012 issue of Reader’s Digest. In the past five years, magic—normally deemed fit only for children and tourists in Las Vegas—has become shockingly respectable in the scientific world. Even I—not exactly renowned as a public speaker—have been invited to address conferences … Continue reading Magic in the Mind (December 2012)

Love That Boy (May 2016)

I was so worried about having the perfect father-son relationship that I almost missed the incredible gift in front of me. By Ron Fournier from the book, Love That Boy, Reader’s Digest, May 2016 My wife, my children, and I stood in front of a white, seamless wall, our noses practically touching its surface. Suddenly, the wall opened—it was a hidden door to the Oval … Continue reading Love That Boy (May 2016)

“If You Find This Letter, Then It’s For You” (November 2015)

Hannah Brencher left a note on the subway for a stranger. What came next was an abundance of love. From the book, If You Find This Letter, Reader’s Digest, November 2015 I looked down at my shoes as people filled the train, and then I saw her. I saw her beat-up unlaced construction boots first. I followed the shoes, laceless hole by laceless hole, all the way … Continue reading “If You Find This Letter, Then It’s For You” (November 2015)

On the Trail Of a Fairy Queen (February 2017)

Also known as “I Found A Story: The Final Chapter.” Inspired by her autistic son and his love of the outdoors, this special ed teacher created a magical village in the woods near her home. By Elizabeth Ludlow Vaccariello There’s a place near my home where fairies live. I’ve seen their wooden houses, knocked on their tiny doors, marveled at their itty-bitty bedrooms. It’s a neighborhood, … Continue reading On the Trail Of a Fairy Queen (February 2017)

“Call Back Anytime” (December 2016)

Also known as “I Found A Story: The Forth Chapter.” You never know what may come of a funny answering machine message. By Elizabeth Ludlow Vaccariello In February of 2005, Phil Belfiore was teaching his seventh-grade students how to write a parody of the Robert Frost poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening.” He liked the sample that he had written for them, so he … Continue reading “Call Back Anytime” (December 2016)

How “Claire’s Day” Begun (November 2016)

Also known as “I Found A Story: The Third Chapter.” How one mother’s tragedy inspired her to make a difference in the lives of other children. By Elizabeth Ludlow Vaccariello On a perfect and bright July morning, I had just seen Steve and the girls drive off for five days in Cleveland without me. It had been one of those goodbyes where you hug your kids, … Continue reading How “Claire’s Day” Begun (November 2016)