Sunday Post: Recipe for Self-Esteem


A recipe, according to the dictionary, is a list of ingredients and instructions for making something, especially a food dish.

Jake at Time after Time has a Sunday Post Challenge and every week he provides a theme…this week’s theme is RECIPE.

I love soup!  Do you?  Soup can be hearty or light, warming or cooling…soups are so easy to make and, when you make them yourself, you can use healthy nutritious ingredients and leave out the preservatives, high sodium levels and artificial colors that are rampant in most canned or packaged soups you buy at the store.

Here is a recipe for Cock-a-Leekie Soup…absolutely delicious…and very easy to make, even your kids can help!


You will need: 1 large pot, 1 lb boneless chicken breasts cubed, 2 slices bacon, 1 large leek sliced (about 2 cups), 1 cup sliced fresh carrots, 2 cups cubed potatoes, 1 container low sodium vegetable broth (32 oz), 1 cup basmati rice, 2 Tbs single malt scotch (optional), ½ cup diced prunes, 1 Tb dried basil, 8 cups water.

1.      Saute bacon in pot…add chicken pieces and sauté a few minutes.

2.      Add sliced leeks, carrots and potatoes and stir well.

3.      Add vegetable broth, prunes, water and basil and stir well.

4.      Bring to a boil, add rice and scotch…lower heat, cover and simmer for 1½ hours.

5.      Serve with crusty bread and a simple tossed salad.

6.      Store in covered container in fridge.

7.      Makes about 12 cups of soup…you can easily make less by cutting the ingredients in half.


So what is the recipe for helping a child develop a high self-esteem?

1.      Help your child master tasks and skills.

2.      Encourage your child to value his own strengths and qualities.

3.      Help your child to feel appreciated and loved.

4.      Encourage your child to express his feelings.

5.      Help your child to acknowledge and cope with his fears.

6.      Encourage your child to accept himself and his body.

Kids love to help in the kitchen…not only does that time with you build self-esteem, but it also helps children develop reading readiness skills (or better literacy skills if they are older).  They also learn about good nutrition, and many picky eaters will try new foods that they have helped make.

If you would like more information about helping children develop a positive self-image or need some quick and easy ideas and self-esteem building activities, please pick up a copy of my book.  During the month of March, we are offering free shipping on my website (an additional $5 off the price of the book for participants in the PPP Reading Challenge) or you can purchase the book on Amazon.


 If you’d like more information about Jake’s Sunday Post: 







I’ll add more folks who are participating in Jake’s Sunday Post as soon as their posts are up.

Soup image thanks to

Will The View and The Chew Be Replaced in 2012?



Suicide rates in this country are alarming.

Domestic violence and child abuse stories are reported by the media every day.

People are angry and frustrated about foreign policy, the economy and lack of decent health care.

Tempers flare on roadways and in department stores and post offices.

A disconnect is taking place in every level of our society.  Husbands and wives don’t communicate with each other.  Parents don’t communicate with their children.  Children don’t communicate with parents, siblings and classmates.

Perhaps we are descending into an electronic black hole where people will no longer know how to talk to each other face-to-face.  Everywhere you look fingers are flying on computers and electronic devices.

Television shows like The View and The Chew attempt to enable viewers to simulate sitting down with friends or family members and chatting about what is happening or how they are feeling. 

The simulation is not working and people need to rediscover how to communicate with one another.

Perhaps The View should be replaced by The Clue, a show with a panel of parenting experts who address the problem of communication between family members, friends and co-workers.  Learning how to communicate includes knowing how to listen as well as knowing when to talk and what to say.  

The Chew is a fairly new show that adds cooking activities to the celebrity chatter.  How about replacing it with The Do, a show where the hosts and a small group of children read a picture book story, do a quick and easy craft project and prepare a healthful child-friendly recipe together.  Children watching the show at home would enjoy hearing the story and observing the kids on TV interacting with each other.  Parents at home would see how valuable such simple activities can be in building self-esteem, developing reading readiness skills and providing their children with a fun-filled day.  These are the same activities parents and teachers will find in my award-winning book, Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking.  To ring in the New Year, we are offering FREE SHIPPING on our website if you order a copy of the book in the next thirty days

Do you want to start off the year building your child’s self-esteem and developing your child’s literacy skills?  The book is endorsed by parents, educators, self-esteem experts and national organizations such as the JDRF and will give you great story suggestions and quick and easy activities.  Grab a copy now and make 2012 a fun-filled self-esteem building year for your family.

Will The View be replaced by The Clue?  Will TV sponsors opt for The Do instead of The Chew?  That probably won’t happen.  But parents can take some simple steps in 2012:

  • Sit down together as a family for dinner every night (or as often as possible).
  • Plan a family talk and listen time…some families have a talking stick…whoever is holding the stick is the one who has the floor.
  • Work on family projects together…everyone should be responsible for certain chores…even young children.
  • Arrange special events that the whole family can enjoy that don’t cost a lot of money…a nature hike to a local park where everyone helps pick up litter; a summer picnic of sandwiches and lemonade on a blanket in the living room in the middle of the winter.

How do you promote good communication in your family?  I’d love to hear.

Holiday Confessions of a Grateful Blogger


I love to write.

I love to talk.

Ergo, I love to blog!

My blogging journey began a little over a year ago when my book, Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking, was published.

The blog began as an extension of the book so that I could connect with parents:

  • To share my passion for picture books and the messages they contain.
  • To provide information about using positive parental participation to build self-esteem and strengthen the parent-child connection.
  •  To offer crafting and cooking activities along with picture book summaries and reviews to help parents develop better literacy skills in young children.

Accomplishing the above goals are very important to me, but I must confess that my blogging journey has been an educational, enjoyable and uplifting experience for me as well.

I’ve connected with over a thousand wonderful people…through blogging and Twitter and Facebook.  The only downside…with all of the amazing posts, stories and articles available to read and comment on, I barely have time to write my own blog and work on my next book project!

Here are the guest author posts and reviews I did of several new and exciting children’s books.

Rebecca Dunning: Real Life Princess

Olena Burda-Lasen: The Vitamin Band

Donalisa Helsley: The Day No One Played Together: A Story About Compromise

Martha Rodriguez: A Reel Cool Summer

Anthony Majewski: Read With Max

Here are just a few of the blogs I follow that inspire, educate and entertain.

Mirth and Motivation

Spirit Lights the Way

Piglet in Portugal

Stacey S. Jensen: Writing My Way Through Life

Plate Spinning 101

Because I’m the Mommy

The Mom Writes

Here are some of the sites I post on.

voiceBoks: The Voice of Motherhood

Social Moms

Bloggy Moms

Mom Bloggers Club

She Writes


Pikes Peak Parent



Here are a bunch of the 5-star reviews and recommendations of Show Me How that were done this year.

Home Grown Families: A Natural Living Blog

My Little Me

Virtuous Foundations

Dallas Chapter of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)

Chic Galleria Magazine

A Reel Cool Summer

The Children’s Book Review

Makobi Scribe

The Mom Writes

Jamie’s Precious Peas

The Mama Loves Her Bargains

Kidlutions Preferred Product Awards

Book Dads


Frugal Military Wife

I’m so very grateful to all of the bloggers and tweeters I’ve connected with this past year.  I confess, though, that with blogging, book writing, working, and taking care of home and hearth, I am constantly juggling the need for sleep with the desire to do everything else.  So, when the other day, my husband asked me what I wanted for Christmas and I replied that I had EVERYTHING and needed NOTHING, I must confess that I wasn’t being totally honest.

If someone invents a time machine that can enable me to fit thirty-six hours of activity into a twenty-four hour day…please contact me immediately at!

Happy Holidays to all who have read my posts, followed me on Twitter, recommended and/or bought my book and supported and encouraged me on this amazing journey during 2011.