Dec 09 / Simcha

The Velveteen Rabbit on Everything

It has been said that a good artistic or literary creation is one that can be enjoyed differently at various stages of life.  Recall a book you read or a movie you watched as a child, and consider how richly different the experience was when you repeated it as an adult.

Yesterday I sat down to read the beloved children’s book, The Velveteen Rabbit (or How Toys Become Real), in preparation for an outing to Seattle’s Children’s Theatre with my six-year-old grandchildren.  Written by Margery Williams and first published in 1922, the book chronicles the story of a stuffed rabbit’s desire to become real through the love of his owner. 

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Nov 13 / Simcha

How Relationships Help Us Grow

I came across a lovely African proverb (see full proverb at end of article), and am writing this post as an excuse to share it — sort of like sewing a dress to show off the necklace.

In many ways, it is much easier to live one’s life alone.  No one challenges your lifestyle choices, your habits, opinions or idiosyncrasies; no one asks you to adapt, compromise or change.  

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Jun 27 / Simcha

Marital Advice from a Lawyer (J.J.Sexton)

New York City divorce lawyer James J. Sexton has faciliated the demise of over 1,000 marriages. “There is almost no story, no matter how sordid, that can surprise me,” he notes.

Without purporting to have any formal education in what makes a relationship thrive, he recently published a book  (If You’re in My Office, It’s Already Too Late: A Divorce Lawyer’s Guide to Staying Together) in which he shares what he has observed makes relationships fall apart irretrievably.

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Dec 16 / Simcha

How to Ask for What You Want

Working with couples, it strikes me over and over how instinctively partners move to the aggressive or passive/ avoidant end of the communication spectrum.

The former approach entails a readiness to attack, confront, criticize, or cast aspersion, and quickly escalates a conflictual exchange that could be so much more easily resolved. The latter promotes a sense of powerlessness in the relationship, self-pity and self-victimization, sulking, withdrawal, internalized and growing resentment, and does little to move a situation or dynamic in new directions.

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Dec 07 / Simcha

It All Matters (L. McBride)

In her heart-wrenching novel narrated in four distinct voicesLaura McBride looks at the humanness behind, and the significance of, our every action.  And she suggests that it all really does matter.   

The book’s title — We Are Called to Rise is drawn from the quote by poet Emily Dickenson:  “We never know how high we are, Till we are called to rise; And then, if we are true to plan, Our statures touch the skies.”  The following two eloquent quotes capture the book’s essence.

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