Tools for School

images-7Choosing a new pair of school shoes, shopping for new clothes and loading up on school supplies were my favorite parts of welcoming a new school year when I was a child…perhaps you felt the same way. A similar shopping expedition with your children or grandchildren is bound to bring back these positive memories. (more…)

Happy Father’s Day

max in ny

My Father ~ Max. M. Michelson

Bruce Feiler, NYT family columnist and the best-selling author of The Secrets of Happy Families, advises us to tell our story:

The most important thing you can do may be the easiest of all. Tell your children the story of their family. Children who know more about their parents, grandparents, and other relatives – both their ups and their downs – have higher self-esteem and greater confidence to confront their own challenges. Researchers have found that knowing more about family history is the single biggest predictor of a child’s emotional well-being.

In that vein, I am expanding upon an earlier post that I wrote about my father:

This past February marked 40 years since my father passed away. At the time of his death, he was a father of three and a grandfather of six. I wish he knew that all these years later, his children and grandchildren (two of whom are grandparents, themselves) would hold vivid and treasured memories of him close to their hearts. Through his words and actions, he set a standard that we tried to emulate in key areas of our lives. Probably that was his hope; he made all the small moments with each of us count.  (more…)

Good Reads for Camp

file0001799683072Sandwiched in between ordering and attaching name labels, scheduling doctor visits and filling out medical forms, turning the living room into a packing station, buying endless pairs of socks that would be never be allowed back home, and last-minute trips to Target was the joy of scouring the bookstore with my kids in search of good reads. (more…)

Children’s Stories: Print to Screen

file0001496984376Watching a movie with your grands is another way to enhance and extend a good reading experience—and just plain fun. Of course, many film adaptations don’t quite live up to their literary sources, but movies have their own charms. (more…)

That Lovin’ Feeling

262481_477774512296230_155460898_nI’ve been wondering (secretly) if the love affair is over. Neither a short-lived nor casual romance, the relationship has been going strong for more years than I care to admit. Signs were pointing to a waning of passion, even though books have clearly played a major role in my life (what did you think?—this is a blog about reading, after all). (more…)

Games: Brain Food

What is it that is deaf, dumb and blind and always tells the truth? *

file451294959608Mother’s Day afternoon found us wandering in and out of the inviting shops that line the street in Lincoln Square, a vibrant Chicago neighborhood. I definitely planned to make a stop at Café Selmarie, a wonderful bakery/restaurant which provides charming outdoor seating in the summer and The Book Cellar, an excellent independent bookstore, where you can even indulge in a glass of wine while mulling over your selections. The rest, I was leaving to whim. (more…)

Happy Mother’s Day!

Ruth

My Mother ~ Ruth Michelson

Tomorrow is the day set aside to honor the mothers, grandmothers and perhaps even the great-grandmothers in our lives. Sometimes the circle widens to include aunts and other women who have played a meaningful role.

I hope that a book is among the presents you give or receive, whether it be a memoir, novel, volume of poetry, cookbook or blank journal ready to be filled with memories, observations and dreams. (more…)

Weekly Round-Up

Sharing what I read, saw, learned or thought ~

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I know many of you are as entranced with Downton Abbey as we are. We came a little late to the party; by the time we caught up with the first two seasons, the third season had been removed from On Demand and Infinity and not yet released on DVD. What to do…besides sulk? Nothing, we thought, until a golfing buddy (Thanks, Leo!) of my husband’s clued us in—we could purchase the third season on iTunes and watch it on Apple TV. Back to sipping tea and enjoying Maggie Smith as the Dowager Countess! (more…)

Celebrate Israel

 images-6images-9I was invited to a 65th birthday party on Sunday and accepted, happily. A joyous event filled with music, family fun and Israeli spirit was held at Unknown-6the Ravinia Festival grounds—a perfect setting. Maybe you’ve guessed…it was JUF’s annual Israel Solidarity Day, a unique musical and cultural experience marking Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel Independence Day. All the activities were family-friendly, including art projects, face painting, PJ Library reading corners and visits by Shalom Sesame characters. (more…)