Owning? Affirming? Deciding?

Hi all!

Over the last week, I wrote posts about owning your own wisdom, and affirmations... do we need them?

As the week has progressed, I have had more time to ponder the idea of affirmations, and also deciding on how, or what kind of power they will have in my life.

Deciding I think is the key... the key to many parts of  life.

As I have decided to find my inner compass, and use that guide as my directional... I feel more empowered to be who I am striving to be.

I had the opportunity to deal with a number of confrontations this past week... we have a variety of transitions going on in our life, and instead of pausing, and waiting to see what might be the group thought process, which I would have done in the past, I chose to evaluate, and speak out.

I had a situation at a restaurant, and it was not pleasant.   Usually when we have been there it has been a great experience, but not this time.  Instead of staying quiet I spoke up... then also commented on what I felt... and was reprimanded by someone who was with us.  I chose this time, and am beginning to do this more often, to be clear on what I think... not needing permission, or affirmations from anyone else for the thoughts, responses, and feelings that I have.  

 I am a woman now, who has decided not to live her life pleasing others... 

My goal is not to just be obstinate or confrontational, but empowering and loving of myself. Someone that I trust deeply, has used this wise line... "I'm not saying no to you, I am saying yes to me."

So, as I think about owning, affirming and deciding, deciding and owning are what I am concentrating on.

My life is mine to own, and design. 

So is yours....

Until next time,







Hi all!

What are affirmations?  Why are they valuable?  Do we need them... or do they get in the way of what we are trying to become?

After my last post, "Owning your own wisdom", I received such a wealth of knowledge about how people felt about and reacted to this post.  I have to say that the large majority of the responses I received were overly positive... and then also some were evocative.  

Some of the thoughts shared were how it touched peoples hearts... and how the post spoke to them. I felt honored, and happy that people responded that way.  

And... then there were those who didn't affirm... or perhaps didn't relate to what I was expressing, or have another take on that thought... the idea, that we are enough, just the way we are.

What a wonderful chance to have a conversation about what matters, and how we decide what that is in our lives!

Do affirmations matter?  Or do they distract from the ability to grow... to live in that space that can be uncomfortable while growth happens?

I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Until next time,




Owning your own wisdom...

Hi All!

Last night, during our neighborhood 4th of July Celebrations,  which is always fun because of the variety of age groups,  I had the great fortune to spend  time with a young woman, whom I have known since she was born.... MY how time flies. 

Grace just finished her first year of college, and while we were talking about all the changes and exciting things that have occurred in her life this past year, I noticed she was wearing a beautiful blue ring on her ring finger.  I complimented her on it, and asked her about it.

She shared the best story with me while we were sitting next to each other in the dark, on a side street watching our local Fireworks display explode all around us. It was a wonderful backdrop to the story she began to tell me.

She said her Grandmother had a beautiful diamond ring that Grace always admired when she was a little girl.  She asked her Grandmother about it,  and inquired about who gave it to her.

Her Grandmother said that no one had given it to her.  She had purchased it as a gift to herself.  It was to remind her of her own beauty, value, and importance.  

Grace then shared that was why she had her beautiful blue ring ... the one  that I complimented her on.  She bought the ring for herself as a symbol that she was enough all on her own,  that she was valuable, important and loved.  She said it was to remind her to love and care for herself well ...that she did not need anyone else to affirm her value or worth as a woman.   A gift from herself... a gift to honor herself.

I smiled in the dark, and thought about that power.... the power of women sharing, and passing their wisdom on to their younger family members as a guide to learn from and find their own empowerment.

In this climate of the #metoo movement, and the continued empowering of women... I told Grace Bravo.... Bravo for knowing and owning the wisdom her Grandmother shared with her, and embracing it as her own.

I am thinking about what I might buy myself...  

Until next time,


The Gift of Love...

Hi All!

As all parents know, once you have a child your life is forever changed.  

I have loved Megan Elizabeth Saxelby since before I even met her... she is our youngest daughter, and one of the reasons I am a Mom.  Since April 27th of 1983, she has been mine to love, and care for, to guide, and protect and most of all to cherish.

Cherishing children.... it is a gift that parents receive.  

Yet, at some point in time, they are no longer ours.  When does that happen?  Well, actually I would say that they truly never are ours to keep. They are their very own persons right from the moment they are born, and at best, it is our job to help them become who they are meant to be.

Navigating through all the phases of childhood and growing up... that is the task of each child, and of each parent.  When you do it right, or when you get it right, or when you're just damn lucky.... it's pretty great.  When your children become adults, you can pause and smile and celebrate.  

So I am celebrating today!  

This beautiful daughter of mine has made a commitment, and marriage vows to Maximillian... who loves her and cherishes her, and knows her soul in a way that Mothers wish for their daughters.

From the moment our children arrive in this world, we give them love, and then wish them love, and hope they find love, and then cherish it when they do!

Love truly is all we need.

I love you Megan and Max!


Until next time, 

Pam (aka Mom )


life... it just keeps flying by...

Hi all,

Years ago when I was but a young girl, my grandmother told me that as you get older, days seem to feel the same, but the years buzz by faster and faster!

Because I was a little girl, I honestly didn't think too much about it then, yet obviously, the talk stuck with me.

My Grandma, on my Mom's side, was a very quiet, practical, hard working woman... she lived by herself and right down the street from her sister, and close to her youngest son and his family. We saw her frequently, yet I feel like now, I would enjoy having the opportunity to speak with her about life now.  It's my turn to say that the days feel the same, but the years are buzzing!

Next week we get the distinct pleasure of immersing ourselves and our family in the marriage celebration of our youngest daughter.  We are thrilled and excited.  We look so forward to enjoying all that will be part of these fun few days.... and I am going to try and see if I can make them evolve in slowwwwww motion!  

I can't believe that my youngest daughter is 35, and I cant't believe that after all the planning we have done for this celebration, that it is just around the corner.  I plan on enjoying every moment... relishing the seconds, and hours, as they lead to the days of this party.  

As cliche as it sounds, when your kids are little, HOLD ON!  It flys by...

Smile for us next week.... if you would.  It's some of life's good stuff!

Until next time, (which will feel like a second)






Books, Books and more Books!!

Hi all!

I am excited!


Because I get to be part of Independent Bookstore Day!

I have loved books for a very long time.  I love everything about them!  How they look, how they feel, how they smell... yes, although that may seem weird to some, I love the smell of a new book when you first open it and turn the pages... it's inviting and soothing all at the same time!

When I was a young Mom we would read every night with our kids.  It was a standard ritual... pick out the books, cuddle, share stories, and stories... until finally... it was time for bed.  And as all of you parents of young children know, that ritual can go on for hours... if you let it... :)

But, reading aloud, and reading to or with your kids can go on for many years, and be a shared joy and coveted time of each day.  When our son was growing up, we began reading the Harry Potter series together.... he was just 9 or 10 when the first books came out.  I used to have the joy of an Independent Bookstore in our little town.  It was called  "Crocodile Pie" and the owner was an amazing buyer and lover of  great literature for children of all ages.  She was the first one to introduce my to, and to share the joy of J.K. Rowling's genius.  Now, all these years later, Bill and I still talk about those evenings reading in bed, and not wanting to put the books down!

Reading and Bookstores go together in such a perfect way.  I know kids can get a lot of books and content online, but to me, and I am passionate about this, there is nothing like the real thing.  A book... it will never lose power, and you can take it with you anywhere!  AND.... if you travel, no one will ask you to turn it off on take off or landing... maybe they don't do that anymore... but I never used ebooks anyway!

This Saturday, April 28th, is Independent Bookstore Day across the country.  I am heartened and gloriously happy that it seems this type of store is thriving again, and finding it's place in towns and neighborhoods throughout the country.

So, if you love books, if your kids love books ( and I hope they do!) find an Independent Bookstore near you this Saturday and go in, grab some books, hang out, read some stories, and immerse yourself and your kids for the day!

You never know where a good book will take you!

Happy Reading,


On being a Mom... in any time in history...

Hello all!

Recently on Facebook I have posted some articles about being a Mom in todays fast paced, constantly moving, technologically based society.

It's hard to stay connected  with all the requirements on Social Media... Twitter... Facebook... Instagram... Snap Chat... ( I think that may still be viable???) and still have time to actually do anything in your day!

Yet, I would argue, Moms are always and have always been trying to find how to mange all that's required of them as women... people in their own right as well as all the other titles they might hold.

Think about all the women of the early 20th century had to do... without all the modern conveniences we have now... they must have spent all their days just working on finding ways to feed, cloth and care for their families... and maybe have some time for themselves.  BUT...isn't that what most women are still trying to figure out??

I have the opportunity to spend time with a variety of young women, who are in their 30's.  Their lives are jam packed... and even though they're not having to spend most of their days finding ways to feed, cloth and care for their families, they still have that to do, as well as manage their own businesses, or work 40-60 hours outside their homes.

I am exhausted just thinking about all they have to do!

Yet... everyone of them finds their way each day to do just that.

I say, BRAVO!  Let's take a moment to recognize all that women do... pat each other on the back and then... relish the chance, make the time to make sure you carve out a few moment each day to acknowledge all that you do, and take some time... just for you.

You deserve it!

Until next time,



And today... it's time..

Hi All,

When our oldest daughter Anne, and her younger sister Megan were a senior and sophomore, respectively, in high school, Columbine occurred.

That was 19 years ago....

Today, I have listened to the eloquence and passion of the young people from Parkland's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.  I am hopeful and heartened.

While the legislators gave lip service, and deflected questions, the students, to their credit, continued to be eloquent, respectful and passionate.  Their words were intelligent, well thought out ... powerful.

We have become a bit numb, I believe to gun violence in this country.  As long as it has not affected, or touched us, we grieve, we acknowledge and then move on.... nothing done, nothing changed except the loss of continued life.

The Civil Rights Movement was led by students, the Vietnam War Protests were led by students...  as history now shows, great change came from both of those events. 

Isn't it time for us, adults to lead a movement that will affect great social and societal change? Can we be examples for our children, for those same children who are asking us to listen?

I am heartened, because if we say no, if we continue to be complacent, I know this group, this generation will lead the way...

Of that, I am sure.

Until next time,


Oh the Fun!

Hi All!

Oh the fun I had last Saturday!

I was part of a great anniversary celebration at Open Books in Chicago.  If you're not aware of this store, they do great work promoting, celebrating and advocating for literacy and reading.  If you are in the Chicago area, it is so worth a Field Trip to check it out.  It is on Lake Street in the West Loop area.

Open Books does a wonderful job with Story Time twice a week.  One on Thursday, and one on Saturday.... so this last week was the two year anniversary of this fun event... and I was invited to read my books... and generally have fun, sing, play and enjoy all that goes on with being around young children.  Actually the parents were pretty fun too!

Watching kids engage with, and enjoy books is just the best!  I loved the chance to watch their reactions, and their parents, as I read my stories.  The best part is when you see them laugh, respond, and engage with all the parts you had hoped they would while you were writing it!

Someone asked me what was my primary goal in writing for kids, and I said "To have a child smile, and tell me they love my story!"  That.. is the good stuff!

In writing this blog, I started talking about how to try and do right by your kids, be an example, help them become the people they are meant to be... well, that is what I got to do last week.  Follow my dreams, and take the risk to embrace them.  I keep telling my kids to do that... so I need to do that too!

Heres' a great quote from Oprah Winfrey:

"The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams."

What are your dreams?

I'm having such a blast playing mine out... and I know that even though my kids are all grown up, they're still watching!


Until next time,



On trying...

Hi All!

"There is no try.  There is only do."  John Green, The Fault in Our Stars

I had the chance this afternoon to talk with two bight, smart people about topics I know little to very little about.

In this author journey, I keep finding out about new stuff and how to use it.  It's tons of fun and exhilarating to learn new stuff... especially technology and social media stuff... cause that is not my innate wheel house.

I watch my little bitty grandkids know exactly how to manipulate I Phones and I Pads and marvel at the fact that that's their language.  They have seen these devices since they could see, actually honestly before they could see... cause I am pretty sure there were lots and lots of photos snapped right from the first moment they were born!  I actually know this to be true, cause I was one of the people sticking that device right in their face... :)

I figure that you can always learn a new language... it just takes time and persistence (and a little bit of help from people who know a lot more) to figure it out.

The age old adage of "KEEP TRYING" is definitely a universal truth.  No-one gets very far without trying... ok, some people seem to take less time and get there quicker, but truly, the more you try and the harder your work the sooner you succeed.

That's a good lesson and good behavior to model to your kids.... no matter what age you are, or what age they are.

Kids... and our children are always are kids, learn what they live and what they see modeled for them.... the good, the bad and even the ugly.

So, I am trying to learn new behaviors, new skills, and new ways of adapting to how the world works now, and how people get their information.

Wish me luck! 

I'm trying!

Until next time,