May 2003

Dear Friend

Springtime is really here, giving us the gift of brilliant sunlight, flowers, flowering trees and the warmth we’ve been seeking. May is a magical time of year for all of us.

Our Easter was celebrated in Washington with our “grand” twins, Nicholas and Anna. They both love the word “ball,” but don’t have “egg” in their vocabulary yet, so the Easter egg hunt was full of glee as they chased after “ball” after “ball.” This was our happiest Easter by far. I hope your holiday was spent with loved ones.

Our sermon Easter Sunday ended with the message that Easter is the beginning of the New Year of the Soul. Happy New Year to you!

May is a sacred time. Peter and I will celebrate our 29th wedding anniversary in the South of France. We’ll spend five days in the beauty of a country we dearly love. We’re staying at a secret spot where I will spend my days writing, inspired by the energy and beauty of Provence. We plan to have a glorious evening with my favorite artist Roger Muhl and his wife Line while we’re there.

Because our fall was spent in our New York apartment as Peter healed from his knee surgery, our being able to resume our full travel and lecture schedule felt wonderful. The contrast between being cozy at home and being out and about was dramatic. I appreciate the grace of change, much the way we do with weather conditions. Often bad weather makes us delight in glorious sunny spring days before the humidity sets in, before the heat becomes enervating, when we seek the brisk comfort of air conditioning.

Having the freedom to travel, to move about, has never meant so much to us. We feel more than ever that our home is a sanctuary. At the same time we’re glad to be able to experience all the stimulation and sensual delights travel provides. Every opportunity we have to expose ourselves to natural as well as man-made beauty is life affirming, life sustaining, life transforming.

Beyond the joy of honoring and celebrating our wedding anniversary every May, we all share in the memory of our mother with the Sunday dedicated to Mothers with a capital M. Every human being shares a common humanity. We were all born in our mother’s womb. Let us salute our mothers, our grandmothers, our great grandmothers. Let us acknowledge the gigantic contributions women make to our universe.

I lift my heart up to all the women, the mothers, who brought us into this world. No one ever knows, understands or appreciates, the pain, suffering, (risk of health and life) our mothers and ancestral women went through to bring us into existence. I don’t think of myself this Mother’s Day – I think of all our mothers. I think of my daughter Alexandra, the mother of our twin grandchildren.

I believe in Goddesses. Women hold up the earth. Without us, human life would stop.

If you are a mother, happy motherhood. If you are not a mother, happy memories of your mother, or grandmother, aunt or English teacher who inspired you to thrive, not merely live. Aristotle, my favorite ancient philosopher, taught us twenty-five hundred years ago that to live is not the point. The point of life is to “live the good life.” There is no possibility of a good life without the love, support, devotion, dedication and sacrifice of mothers.

Cheers to mothers. Bless these miracle workers who tirelessly tend to the needs of children, young and old. Being a mother is a privilege. The older my daughters are, the more I realize how blessed I am to be intimately involved in their lives.

Happy Mother’s Day. Enjoy this month to honor the noble women in your life who have given generously of their time, energy and wisdom. When Alexandra was in college she told me in the kitchen one morning, “You know, Mommy, if you weren’t fun to be with we wouldn’t spend time with you.” Out of the mouths of babes…

I try to give my children milk and honey. I’m enjoying writing Things I Want My Daughters to Know.

I hope you will celebrate this month with great happiness. As you spend more time communing with nature, contemplate the miracle of creation. Enjoy your role as co-creator. Plant seeds of joy that will uplift the hearts of all those whose lives are blessed by your loving care.

Love and Live Happy,

Book Sale
Mothers: A Celebration, in paperback, $12.00

Peter and Alexandra had a Grand time at the Winnetka Antiques Show in March!

Peter and Alexandra enjoying the first hint of spring at the wine reception following her talk.


Alexandra and a guest at the event display Alexandra's most recent book, Choosing Happiness, and her first book, Style for Living.


A bow at the reception:Alicia Schafer (Lecture Event Chair), Peter and Alexandra, Joan Senko (Antique Show Chair).


A Note about Roger Muhl,
My Favorite Artist.

Many of you have expressed an interest in this great artist’s work. I’ve been collecting Muhl paintings for 42 years. If you are interested in becoming a proud owner, please let me know. The prices range from lithographs to oils. Fax me at (212) 996-4625. Tell me your price range (lithographs are $1,400 and oils are $6,000 to $36,000). This one artist has brought great joy to the lives of hundred of collectors.

Wonderful photo (above) and note from Carol McCracken:

Dear Alexandra,Thank you for doing what you love so much ... writing beautiful books. I just love your thoughts, ideas and advice. Enclosed is one of my favorite moments -- in front of my Cape Cod fireplace with your book and Jake at my feet. You will never know how much your writing has helped me, but I wanted you to know that you have made a big difference in my life.
My thanks always, Carol McCracken

This Month's Suggested Reading

"Authentic Happiness"
by Martin Seligman (Free Press)

Grace Note

Begin a creative project you’ve been putting off because you didn’t believe you had time. Starting is half finished. The time is ripe.