Tag Archives: Chicago

Interview with Nili Yelin, The Storybook Mom

 

 

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Today I have the pleasure of speaking with Nili Yelin, A.K.A. the Storybook Mom. A Wilmette resident and NU graduate, Nili is known throughout the Chicagoland area for her interactive style of storytelling and ability to communicate her passion for literature to her listeners. She has an extensive background in performing and developing her own material. I first became acquainted with Nili when she accepted my request to entertain at the opening of the Little Free Library in Highland Park. We bonded over our shared love of books, kids and literacy. Animated, enthusiastic and engaging, she brings stories to life, mesmerizing both mini-bookworms and reluctant readers. Some of her many activities include recording podcasts for the Field Museum, running the children’s stage at the Chicago Tribune’s Printers Row Lit Fest and serving as Chicago Ambassador for Lit World’s World Read Aloud Day. Continue reading

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Bookstore Love

 

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I recently read—and enjoyed—the novel, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin, a sweet homage to independent bookstores. Given my long-standing love of bookstores (and libraries), it’s not surprising this story resonated with me. I still have fond memories of the book sellers of my youth: the erudite sales staff at Kroch’s and Brentano’s, the mystique of the 3rd floor book department in the iconic Marshall Field’s, and the laid-back vibe of Barbara’s Bookstore. Continue reading

Taking the Polar Plunge

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 Some talk the talk

Some walk the walk

Sunday some took the plunge.

I would do many things to promote literacy and to support the Chicago Special Olympics (my son was a coach when he was in Chicago), but taking the Polar Plunge definitely does NOT fall in that category. Fortunately, there are others, apparently thousands of others (including some who are well-known), who are foolish willing to brave the icy waters of Lake Michigan and Chicago’s frigid temperatures in their efforts to advance those causes. Continue reading

Of Books, Women and Prisons

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This summer, at my daughter’s suggestion, I started watching Orange is the New Black on Netflix. Pretty soon, I was hooked and binge-watched the entire season over the course of a few days. I was intrigued even further when I found out that this show about life in a woman’s prison is based on the true account of Piper Kerman (Piper Chapman, in the show), a Waspy Smith graduate. In fact, I’ve persuaded my book club to read Kerman’s book of the same name. Continue reading

Keep Your Brain Unbored

More evidence is now in, according to a possibly ground-breaking study published online July 3 in the journal Neurologytackling brain-stimulating activities from childhood through old age can help delay the onset of memory loss. We need to keep our brain active by doing things, such as reading books, writing letters and solving problems throughout our lives. Gma Ruthie and Max Continue reading

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. Continue reading

Happy Father’s Day

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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.  Continue reading