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Moms Lust Over 50 Shades

50 Shades

C’mon, am I the only mom who has not read 50 Shades?

I swear, everywhere I go, women are getting excited about erotica—dubbed romantica—like teens used to gush over Twilight. When I was in the middle school office signing out my daughter for an orthodontist appointment, a retired sixth grade language arts teacher asked out loud if I had read it yet. (She thought the writing was repetitive). At a recent soccer game, my in-laws quizzed me about S&M. Awkward. The other day in water aerobics where the average age is 77, they blushed about bondage in their bathing suits. TMI from ladies who cover their hairdos with shower caps. Continue reading

Chicago Mom-Author-Moviemaker Inspires Niceness Worldwide

When I think of good deed doers (as in mitzvah makers), I think of Amy Krouse Rosenthal. She’s a mom, a writer, a short film maker (as in both her height and length of her mini movies). She’s a visionary, an optimist, and a player (as in word juggling and positive pranking, more on that later). She happens to be Jewish, and she celebrates all walks of life by spreading niceness. In a world with so much negativity, Rosenthal is a positive force to be reckoned with (as in tikkun olam, repairing the world).

If you ask me, she’s the original “Happiness Project.” Continue reading

Blackberry-Blueberry: It’s A Memory Mishap for the Middle-Aged Brain

Do you ever feel like you’re losing your mind? Not in a straight-jacket, padded-room kind of way. I mean, do you mix up words, forget names, miss appointments, drive in the car with destination unknown, and get frustrated with technology because you can’t remember how to record American Idol? It’s a wonder that I manage to do what I do everyday. Continue reading

Mom Catches Bieber Fever

Go ahead and make fun of me. I can take it. I’m a big girl. I openly admit that I’m a fan of 16-year-old singing sensation Justin Bieber—you know, the cute kid with the flip hairdo, no pimples, and the guts to dance on stage alongside his mentor Usher like no other white boy I ever saw.

Even though I don’t have the pop star’s poster on my bedroom wall yet, I still felt like a giddy teenage groupie (they’re called “Beliebers”) when I took my 12-year-old daughter Sari and a bunch of her girlfriends to the opening night of the wildly anticipated movie “Never Say Never.” Continue reading

Teen Brain Baffles Parents

Being a teenager is tough, and so is parenting one, especially in today’s fast-paced, high-tech world where, for the first time, kids are the ones teaching us about social media and how to navigate our way into the future. Honestly, without their help, I’d never figure out how to operate the television remote control or know how to add new contacts into my cell phone. Teenagers consider themselves masters at multi-tasking. They do homework while they watch television, text their friends, play on the computer, and listen to music, all at the same time.

“It helps me relax and focus on my studies,” says my son Jack, 15, who used to collect baseball cards and now accumulates apps on his iPhone.

Continue reading

Happy Hour Fashion Show Benefits Dress for Success

What does a Jewish mom enjoy more than eating out, shopping with her gal pals, and doing a mitzvah at the same time so that she doesn’t feel guilty for leaving her husband at home with the kids and a sink full of dishes?

I can’t think of anything.

So here’s an opportunity to do all of the above—cocktails, couture, and a good cause—at the third annual GNO (that’s “Girls Night Out” for those who still like to spell out words) on November 4, 6-9 p.m., at a trio of my favorite food and fashion hotspots in Wildwood Town Center.

The evening kicks off with wine and appetizers at a popular contemporary European restaurant Table Three where guests will salivate over goat cheese and spinach dip and the newest fall fashions from Heels (over-the-knee boots are big) and Pure by Jen (gray is the new black), which are conveniently located walking distance from each other on the cobblestone Main Street. Admission is $25 and benefits an international non-profit organization called Dress for Success, which promotes the economic independence of disadvantaged women right here in St. Louis by providing them with professional attire, as well as a network of support and career development tools to help them thrive in their careers and lives. In fact, since opening its doors in 1998, Dress for Success Midwest has served more than 25,000 women with the goal of suiting 1,500 ladies this year.

“This incredible organization outfits these women from head to toe—all for free—so that they can get ready for a job interview and reenter the workforce,” says Rosemary Barry, owner of Heels, whose business donates shoes every year. “Every year the Girls Night Out event raises about $500 for a different cause, and this year we ask participants to also bring an item of apparel, footwear, or an accessory to help women feel good about themselves.”

Finally, everyone goes home happy (and tipsy) with a complimentary tote bag filled with lots of goodies, including jewelry, a scarf, cosmetics, move tickets, coupons, and other surprises.

For reservations and more info, call 636-273-4000 or 636-458-8588.

Hadassah Audience “Eats Up” Chocolate Stress Busters Speech

For all of my friends who were too cheap to fork over $50 a plate at the Hadassah Great Plains Region banquet on June 5, 2010, at Hilton St. Louis Frontenac (yes, the same night as the Liza Minelli concert at Powell Symphony Hall and Rabbi Shook’s retirement party), here’s my presentation on “Women and Stress” and how chocolate solves all of life’s problems. If you would like to book me for your next event, please contact my agent, uh, that would be me.
Click here to watch me conquer any fears of public speaking in 30 minutes. And remember that the camera adds 10 pounds.

You’re Invited to a Hadassah Weekend Getaway

What would you rather do on a Saturday night—go see the legendary Liza Minnelli live in concert or listen to me talk about ways to balance stress in your life?

Well, considering the VIP tickets are already sold out at Powell Symphony Hall for the famous singer, why not join me at the Hadassah “Jeans and Jewels” banquet on June 5, 6:30 p.m., at the Hilton St. Louis Frontenac where I will lead a lively discussion on how to manage our hectic lives and achieve happiness using my personal favorite coping mechanism, which I’ll divulge only to those who attend.

The Hadassah Great Plains Region Board Retreat, called “Juggling Without The Struggling,” takes place June 4-6 and features two other speakers who you don’t want to miss. Annette Sondock, the national chairperson of the Hadassah Medical Organization in Israel, which is the most advanced medical and research center in the Middle East, brings her expertise in organization, leadership development, and fundraising, while Rabbi Dale Schreiber, a chaplain in Oncology at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, shares her insights on spirituality and healing. The weekend is filled with lots of learning, laughter, and sisterhood that you just can’t get from a Broadway star like Liza.

It’s an honor for me to hang out with this Hadassah group, which is part of the largest women’s mass membership organization in the United States with more than 300,000 members, associates and supporters. Plus, Hadassah raises more funds than any other national women’s volunteer organization. The Great Plains Region Board encompasses six states and includes women of all ages and backgrounds, but their commonality is working tirelessly to enhance the quality of American and Jewish life through its education and Zionist youth programs, two hospitals in Israel, and personal enrichment and growth for its members.

To top off the weekend, everyone is invited to join us on June 6 for the “Walk on Sunshine,” a one-mile family fun walk at Queeny Park that has raised more than $400,000 for groundbreaking brain tumor research and treatment. Click here for more information on the walk.

For more information on Hadassah, go to Hadassah.

Go here to make a reservation for the retreat.

Meanwhile, enjoy these videos of Liza Minnelli in the musical Cabaret.



Share Your Confessions Here

Typically Jews don’t make confessions. Instead we carry our guilt like heavy bricks on our backs the way our ancestors did when they were slaves in Egypt.

So, I’ve created this sacred place in the blogosphere where moms everywhere can go and release their sins. Feel free to send me your’s at any time.

I’ll start.
Continue reading

Mary Tyler Moore Song Inspires Mom

Why is it that every time I carry my groceries in a brown paper bag, I feel like Mary Tyler Moore and start to hum the theme song “Love Is All Around?” There’s something empowering about clutching a sack full of apples, ice cream, a carton of eggs, and Raisin Bran cereal with a stalk of celery and a bouquet of daisies sticking out of the top that makes me feel like I can conquer the world.

So to all you women who have the urge to sing in the supermarket parking lot or toss your headbands in the air when you’re in a crowded street, this one’s for you:

“Who can turn the world on with her smile?
Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile?
Well it’s you girl, and you should know it
With each glance and every little movement you show it

Love is all around, no need to waste it
You can have a town, why don’t you take it
You’re gonna make it after all
You’re gonna make it after all”