Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Mother's of Reinvention A Must Read for Women!

The Mothers of Reinvention
Reclaim Your Identity, Unleash Your Potential, Love Your Life
By Jennifer Pate and Barbara Machen
Published by Vanguard Press
January 3, 2012; $15.99 US/$18.50 CAN; 978-1-59315-683-1

Since we launched our show "Jen and Barb, Mom Life" more than four years ago, the number one question moms have asked us is, "How did you guys do that?" The subtext was not about producing and hosting an award-winning web series, but did we reinvent ourselves, especially given our roles as mothers, wives, and career women? Over and over, moms confided in us, sharing their frustrations, fears, and dreams. How could it be that so many of us who had always dreamed of having a family were feeling like something was missing?

What was a mom to do? REINVENT!
Through the journey of our own reinventions, we discovered the Mom Secret: The more satisfied you are with yourself, the better you can deal with the chaos that surrounds you, the better role model you will be, and the better off your entire family will be! This is not a luxury. This is a necessity.

In The Mothers of Reinvention, Jen and Barb share their steps to help you realize your full potential as a woman while still maintaining your joy as a mom and/or wife. Whether you're a new mother, a mother of school-age children, or an empty nester, Jen's and Barb's personal stories, in addition to accounts from other women who have also reinvented, will engage, inspire, and motivate. Every mother deserves passion outside her family, and The Mothers of Reinvention will help you discover what that means for you!

The 411 by Maria:
OK, as a mom, I was very interested in reading what Barb and Jen had to say about reinventing yourself after becoming a mom!  After becoming a mom, I never once felt that I had to reinvent myself but totally get what they are trying to say. I was not a business woman, I was not a popular girl, I was not a woman who longed for adventure and felt that I was missing out on something better. I wanted to be a mom! My life, was always my kids but now that they are in school, I am tired of struggling and have been trying to figure out a way to make a living while doing it on a flexible schedule that coincides with my kids school schedule. I NEVER want to put them in a before or after program. The thought doesn't sit well with me at all.

With that being said, my blog header says, "Maria's Space, A little place to call my own". It was titled that because as the mom of two under 3 years old who was alone for 12 hours a day with a screaming (18 hours a day) baby and a tantrum throwing son, no family, no friends, nursing 12 times a day, I really needed to establish a place where I could go that was FOR ME!

So part of me completely agrees with finding time for yourself while taking care of your family. 

Barb and Jen sound off on each section. It is nice to hear their individual voices, experiences and personalities shine through. I also appreciate that they don't give you a quick fix or tell you that there is a sure fire way to streamline your life into balance. There will never be a balance but if you "change your perception" you will find what works for you. 

My favorite parts of the book where the true stories from moms included in each section and their "best advice". 

My second favorite part is the end of each chapter "Now You Know". A quick summarization of the chapter.

Some of my favorite statements:

It's OK to say no - and okay to say it often.
Don't underestimate the power of the word need in your vocabulary.
Control only what you can control (These are words I live by. I don't waste time wondering what may happen, I only focus on what is happening and what is in my control).
Everything is not your responsibilty
Your children are capable of more than you realize
You have to be brave enough to ask questions - open up to others, let them know what your doing, and see if they or anyone they know can help you.

I started follow Barb and Jen on their Facebook and Twitter as well as catching up on their webcasts. They really are very REAL. It is like listening to your "smarter, more successful girlfriends" who love you anyway. 

To purchase The Mother's of Reinvention go to Amazon.

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Author Bios
Jennifer Pate, co-author of The Mothers of Reinvention: Reclaim Your Identity, Unleash Your Potential, Love Your Life, was raised in Highland Park, Illinois. She attended the University of Illinois at Chicago while performing in theater and dance in Chicago. After years of traveling the world and performing, she moved to Los Angeles and became a casting director for film and television, cofounding Colloff, Fishman and Britt (CFB) Casting. Jen switched gears again after having her first child, to become a stay-at-home-mom for the first five years of both her kids' lives. She now is the cocreator and cohost of Jen and Barb: Mom Life. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Jonas, and their two children, Cooper and Lilah.

Barbara Machen, co-author of The Mothers of Reinvention: Reclaim Your Identity, Unleash Your Potential, Love Your Life, was raised by a single mother on government assistance in a suburb called Daly City (population 100,000), outside of San Francisco. One of a dozen kids in a graduating class of five hundred to receive a full scholarship, she attended USC. The cocreator and cohost of Jen and Barb: Mom Life, she lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Shahrad, and twin daughters, India and Soraya.

For more information please visit, and follow the authors on Facebook and Twitter

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to facilitate this review.


  1. Debbie Kennedy9:53 PM

    This book sounds like something I should have read ages ago. I think something like this would be great moral support!
    cleaningrhouse at yahoo dot com

  2. I would like to read this and pass this on to all the moms I know.


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