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August 16, 2015
For the past three weeks, my project has been developing a website called Uplit.org, a site dedicated to promoting more uplifting literature in high school English classes. The bleak, depressing literature reading assignments – that have traditionally been accepted as the norm — have bothered me ever since my middle son had severe anxiety issues during his junior year of high school, and I discovered that during this time, he had been reading a novel in which two people try to commit suicide. That was not the only one he read that year that involved suicide. This, of course, didn’t cause my son’s anxiety by itself, but it might have been a contributing factor. I couldn’t help but think what would his mood have been like if he had been reading something more uplifting — would it have had an effect?
As my husband and I worked with our son to get him through his struggles, he was our priority; yet, I still thought about the literature issue and vowed to look into it at some point. Since 2010, I’ve gathered info about it. With my youngest son now going into his freshman year of high school, the issue is … Continue reading..
August 12, 2015
Philadelphia is so close to New York, that when my husband proposed a summer vacation road trip, this seemed like a a natural, easy drive destination. I had been there as a kid, but this was a first for my son, and there’s a boatload to do….literally….including taking a Duck Boat Tour.
We are Duck Boat fans, having taken it in other cities, so we were delighted to come on board in Philadelphia.
Seth and Duck Boat Dancing Fred
RIDE THE DUCKS Philadelphia is a land and water sightseeing tour. For 90 minutes, you see landmarks in the historic Old City and Museum District, narrated by a good-humored guide, in this case Dancing Fred (with the duck socks), and then the vehicle converts to take to the water for a brief cruise on the Delaware. At the end, you get a whistle that quacks — my son can’t get enough of the quacker. Dancing Fred made it very lively, as he engaged with the tourists, and you laugh as you learn. It’s a great introduction to the city.
Philadelphia is a wonderful walking city, but taking a tour helps give you the lay of the land.
Next up was a … Continue reading..
August 11, 2015
My son (age 12) found it so amusing that HERSHEY is actually a real life town. This is just one of the fun facts he picked up during our recent summer trip and two night stay at Hershey Lodge.
Not only did he enjoy HERSHEY PARK, but HERSHEY CHOCOLATE WORLD has much to offer beyond the decadent, hard to resist goodies they sell…but also in terms of fun, unique, interactive experiences.
We loved the HERSHEY’S GREAT AMERICAN CHOCOLATE TOUR — an indoor ride that begins in a tropical rainforest where cocoa beans grow and are harvested, and we follow their journey to sweet transformation…culminating in a candy sample.
There is a REALLY BIG 3D SHOW — you wear 3D glasses, and whimsical HERSHEY’S Product Characters come to life on the big screen in all their glory. Young kids especially will like this.
We had total fun with the Create Your Own Candy Bar attraction and the Chocolate Tasting Adventure. In making your own candy bar, we donned aprons and caps (I refused to let my son or husband photograph me in mine.), and we got to pick goodies to add to the bar and watch the bar-making process. We … Continue reading..
August 11, 2015
My son is 12, and he’s a big water kid….always has been. He loves to swim, and we go regularly to our community pool in summer. He’s a future lifeguard in-the-making.
Ever since he was little, he’s enjoyed waterparks as well, so when we learned of the new Camelback Resort featuring Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark, we dove, literally, at the opportunity to experience it.
We spent a fun-filled overnight at the Camelback Lodge in Tannserville, PA, and it was a memorable stay. It’s about a two hour drive from our home on Long Island, NY, so very convenient, and once you’re there, you don’t need to leave. It’s like “one stop waterpark shopping….and more.”
The Lodge itself is large, but homey, featuring warm, inviting decor, with comfy chairs, where you can perch and watch the action in the indoor waterpark. We liked our room….though the beds are on the firmer side….and the sink is outside the bathroom. On one hand, that was convenient so someone could wash up while another showers in privacy, but on the flip side, since I awoke before my husband and son, I wasn’t able to jumpstart using the sink or mirror, for fear of waking … Continue reading..
August 10, 2015
There’s a new Hedwig or Hed-nig town, as he refers to himself, and he’s making the show his own.
Taye Diggs is now starring in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, the 2014 Tony Award winning Best Musical Revival, for a limited 12-week engagement at Broadway’s Belasco Theatre (111 West 44th Street). It marks his first New York stage role since the 2005 revival of A Soldier’s Play, and his followers are coming out in droves.
Diggs made his Broadway debut in 1994 in the Tony Award-winning revival of Carousel. Soon after, he landed the role of Benny in in the landmark musical Rent, a role he recreated in the 2005 film version. Diggs’ other New York stage credits include Chicago, Wicked, and Andrew Lippa’s The Wild Party. His many film and television credits include How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Go, Chicago, The Best Man, its follow up The Best Man Holiday, and six seasons on ABC’s hit drama “Private Practice.”
The show was been tweaked for Diggs. He makes references to real life ex-wife Idina Menzel, and Frozen’s “Let it Go” and Darren Criss (the most recent Hedwig) — which while clever and current — are out of character … Continue reading..
August 5, 2015
Gearing up for our trip to London, I’ve been encouraging my son, 12, to read about places he might want to visit. Reading isn’t his favorite thing, but looking at a vibrantly illustrated picture book makes it easy. And, given that he’s a dog lover, my favorite series is The Adventures of Bella & Harry.
Written by Lisa Manzione and illustrated by Kristine Lucco, they have books for a number of worldwide destinations including London, Rome, Jesuralem, Berlin, Cairo, New York, Paris, and more.
Bella and Harry are wide-eyed adorable puppies. BCFs — “best canine friends” who travel with their owners. Bella is a girly girl — she loves wearing a pink bow and collar. And, Harry is all boy. They have all kinds of adventures together, and take the reader along for the ride.
In Let’s Visit London!, they ride on a double decker bus, visit Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Changing of the Guard, London Bridge, Waterloo Train Station, Stonehenge, have high tea and fish ‘n chips.
In Let’s Visit Rome!, Bella & Harry learn about Gladiators, the Colosseum, Palatine Hill, the Roman Forum, Circus Maximus, Piazza Navona, Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, eat antipasto, and more.
In Let’s … Continue reading..
July 31, 2015
Gail Sheehy, 77, is the author of seventeen books, including the classic New York Times
bestseller Passages, named one of the ten most influential books of our times by the Library of Congress. A multiple award-winning literary journalist, she was one of the original contributors to New York magazine and has been a contributing editor to Vanity Fair since 1984.
A popular lecturer, Sheehy was named AARP’s Ambassador of Caregiving in 2009.I had the opportunity to chat with Ms. Sheehy, and she was every bit the candid and inspiring force I anticipated.
Robin: You have two children, and how many grandchildren do you have?
Gail: I have three, and the third is turning 8 and is still in that totally admiring phase. I took her to see The Lion King. We were enthralled together. The funny thing is I’m showing her some of my tweets, and a picture of my memoir poppcd up. She asked, “What’s that?” I said, “It’s a picture of my memoir. It’s the latest book I wrote. It’s about my life.” And she said, “Well, how old were you in that picture?” I said, “I was in my 20s.” And, she said, “Boy, now you’re
… Continue reading..
July 30, 2015
Actress, producer, artist, designer, philanthropist, and mother of six, Jane Seymour, 64, is a multiple Emmy and Golden Globe winner, known for her roles in Live and Let Die, Somewhere in Time, East of Eden, and the acclaimed television drama Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. Her love of art has led her to great success as a painter in watercolors and oils. In 2008, Jane partnered with Kay Jewelers to design a special jewelry collection called “Open Hearts by Jane Seymour.” In 2010, Jane launched the Open Hearts Foundation, which works to empower people to turn their personal adversity into opportunities to help others, and is also involved in numerous philanthropic causes including Childhelp, American Red Cross, and City Hearts.
Jane and me.
I, Robin Gorman Newman, founder, MotherhoodLater.com, had the opportunity to sit down with Ms. Seymour during a recent trip to New York City (Ms. Seymour lives in Los Angeles), and she is lovely (inside and out), forthcoming, accomplished, engaging, inspiring, sincere, and a delight to hang with. I thank her for taking the time to share with me and our audience. Hope you enjoy the interview.
ROBIN: You are clearly a woman who embraces change and … Continue reading..