"Wrestling with God" book with Barbara Falconer Newhall

Wrestling with God: Stories of Doubt and Faith

"Any seeker of any faith will be blessed to read the words of this fine author and observer."

Publishers Weekly, starred review

Click to learn more about "Wrestling with God"

My Ever-Changing Family

Our family shrinks and grows. People die. People get born. People get mad and won't talk to you for a while. Kids grow up and find partners of their own, and pretty soon there are brand-new in-laws.

Leap Year 1976 — The Day I Popped the Question

march 6, 1977 jon and barbara newahall greet guests at University Club, San Francisco, a their wedding reception. Photo Peter Luers Studio.

He said yes. And so did she. Photo Peter Luers Studio

2016 is a Leap Year, and February 29, Leap Day, is coming up on Monday. That means Jon and I will be celebrating the fortieth anniversary of the day I proposed marriage. (Or the tenth anniversary, depending on how you calculate it.) Here’s how it happened:

By Barbara Falconer Newhall, The Oakland Tribune, May 31, 1987

Things were getting serious. My boyfriend had moved his goldfish into my apartment.

I returned from a long weekend with my parents to find that Jon had moved his [Read more…]


Revisiting My First Blog Post Ever — How the Selective Service Made a Man of My Son

Cover of 1998 US Selective Service draft registration pamphlet.

The Selective Service notice — I left it at the post office.

By Barbara Falconer Newhall

Note to readers. Seven years ago this month, in 2009, I posted my first blog post, and BarbaraFalconerNewhall.com was born. I hope you have enjoyed visiting this website as much as I have enjoyed sharing my adventures and posting my photos. Here’s that first post: 

A colorful pamphlet, was standing at crisp attention in its rack in the post office lobby. “MEN 18-25 YEARS,” it read. “You can handle this. REGISTER. It’s quick. It’s [Read more…]


Kindergarten Looms for a 5-Year-Old and His Mom

A five year old boy lines up against a wall to be measured. Photo by Barbara Newhall

Peter at 5. Will he measure up? Photo by Barbara Newhall

By Barbara Falconer Newhall, The Oakland Tribune, February 16, 1986

I slipped a sheet of paper across the breakfast table toward Peter, then rolled a couple of marking pens his way.

“Hey, Peter,” I said, trying to be nonchalant. “Want to draw a picture of He-Man?”

Peter smelled a rat. He is barely 5 years old, but he can [Read more…]


I’m Going to Be a Grandmother — Or Will I Be a Grannie? A Grandma? A Nana?

My Grandma Falconer at age 97 with pearls, up-do and 19th century-pince-nez.

My father’s mother, born in 1876, was known as Grandma Falconer. Here she is with up-do, pearls and 19th century pince-nez.

My mother's mother, born in 1896 and glamorous, went in for furs, lipstick and sassy headgear. Everyone in town called her Toto. Photo by DG Falconer

My mother’s mother, born twenty years later and glamorous, went in for furs, lipstick and sassy headgear. Everyone in Pentwater, Michigan, called her Toto. Photo by DB Falconer


By Barbara Falconer Newhall

Help! My son Peter and his wife are about to transform Jon and me into grandparents.

What shall I call myself? Something tried and true like Grandma, Grannie, Nana, or Grandmother Newhall? Or should I revive one of my childhood nicknames — [Read more…]


The Baby Quilts Are Ready — Now All We Need Are the Babies

Quilt piecings made of flowered calico in primary colors and black dating to the 1970s. Assembled in the Berkeley, California, quilting studio of Sue Mary Fox. Photo by Barbara Newhall

This one goes to the first grandchild. Photo by Barbara Newhall

By Barbara Falconer Newhall

Grandchild No. One is due in February, and this time the quilt will be ready.

Faithful readers of this blog will remember the story of the 40-year wait my brother and his wife had before I finally delivered their hand-made wedding gift to them. It was a crazy quilt made of colorful, flowered calico, pieced together on an old Singer sewing [Read more…]