From Chicken Soup for the Working Mom's Soul


Margaret Haefner Berg is an associate professor of music education at the University of Colorado and the mother of two boys. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and playing the violin. She can be reached at margaret.berg

Peggy Bert is a graduate of Upper CLASS Speakers, a certified Personality Plus Trainer, a private pilot, and holds an M.A. in theological studies. A sought-after speaker for conferences and retreats, Peggy specializes in teaching personal growth topics, communication skills, and relationship enrichment. She is completing her first book. Publishing credits include Chicken Soup for the Soul and Marriage Partnership magazine. Her family enjoys skiing, beach walking, and traveling. To find out more about Peggy, visit

Stephanie Ray Brown of Henderson, Kentucky, is a part-time reading instructor and a full-time mother to Savannah and Cameron. She salutes all working mothers, especially those who are single. She dedicates this story to her favorite single mother, Rita Ray, who worked as a factory worker, cashier, coal miner, and nurse so she could send all three of her children to college, as well as herself.

Vanessa Ann Cain married her high school sweetheart and is currently living in West Tennessee. In addition to humorous stories about her children, she pens poetry, children’s book manuscripts, and newspaper articles for the State Gazette in Dyersburg, where she works as a reporter. She can be reached at [email protected]

Debi Callies is the author of Stay Strong, Stay Safe, My Son, a book describing her challenges in sending her son Robert to war. Debi is also the proud mother of three other children: Demi, Kaila, and Drew. She teaches at Ottawa University in Phoenix, Arizona. She can be reached at [email protected], or visit

Stephanie Chandler is a small business expert and author of From Entrepreneur to Infopreneur: Make Money with Books, E-Books, and Information Products (John Wiley & Sons, December 2006). She is also the founder of, a directory of resources for entrepreneurs, and, a custom writing business that specializes in electronic newsletters.

Dorothy Megan Clifton is seventy years old, so it’s not easy being brief about her life experiences. She is active in community theater and loves playing the piano. Dorothy is also an avid reader and active within her church. She’s been blessed with two great kids and five grandchildren. Life is good.

Karen Cogan enjoys writing stories for both children and adults. She has several books available in library collections. When she is not writing, she enjoys time with her family and playing with her dogs. To find out more about Karen, please visit

Heather Cook is a writer and mother. She lives in Calgary, Alberta, with her husband and two children. Heather enjoys reading, horseback riding, and an elusive thing called peace and quiet. Her book, Rookie Reiner, is due in 2008 from Trafalgar Square Books.

Susan Courtad knows a thing or two about Hershey’s chocolate and juggling many roles. A full-time working mom, she recently completed her first novel about a single mother learning to balance parenting, dating, and working in corporate America. She can be reached at [email protected]

Diane M. Covington graduated with honors from UCLA and became a successful entrepreneur and then an award-winning journalist. Her writing has appeared in national magazines, newspapers, and on NPR. She divides her time between her apple farm in Northern California and the beaches of Southern California. She can be reached at

Margaret P. Cunningham lives with her husband, Tom, on Alabama’s beautiful gulf coast, where she enjoys reading, writing, family, and friends. Her stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies, including four previous Chicken Soup for the Soul books. She has just finished her first novel, entitled Lily’s Garden. She can be reached at [email protected]

Crystal Davis received her master’s degree in psychiatric social work, with honors, from Wayne State University in Detroit. She is the author of a newly released self-help book, A Journey to Wholeness: Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places. She is a school social worker with the Detroit Public Schools and has been providing services to students for fourteen years. You can email her at [email protected]

Jane Elsdon is an award-winning author of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. She is a past poet laureate of San Luis Obispo, California. She has published over two hundred poems and short stories. The joys of her life are her husband, family, friends, and her art. She lives in Atascadero, California.

Maya Fleischmann is a writer, wife, and mother of three. Raised in Hong Kong and the United States, she currently resides in Vietnam, where she continues to write and teach. She is an avid traveler, book lover, and advocate for literacy and education. She can be reached at [email protected]

Dorothy K. Fletcher has taught high school English for thirty-five years. She won first place in the 2006 Robert Frost Poetry Contest and was invited to speak at the Library of Congress in December 2006. She loves writing and has published three books. To find out more about Dorothy, please visit

Peggy Frezon is a freelance writer from New York. Her publishing credits include Guideposts, Sweet 16, Positive Thinking, Angels on Earth, Teaching Tolerance, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Soul Matters, and more. She enjoys spending time with her husband, Mike, and kids, Kate and Andy. For more information about Peggy, please visit

Sally Friedman is a mommy-writer. Her family has been at the center of her life—and work—for decades because of her passion for personal essays. Another generation—her seven grandchildren—now provides additional inspiration. She can be reached at [email protected]

Tony Gilbert, a native of southwest Georgia, is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi and the University of Georgia. A former teacher, coach, and marathon runner, Tony was a sportswriter for many years and has authored three books.

Christina Guzman lives in San Jose, California, with her three children, Karinah, Alexis, and Justice. She is a full-time single working mom. She enjoys spending time with her family and writing poetry. She can be reached at [email protected]

Pamela Hackett Hobson, a busy mother of Tom and Mike, is the author of The Bronxville Book Club and The Silent Auction. Pam’s work was featured in the New York Times article “Buzzzz, Murmurs Follow Novel.” To find out more about Pam and her novels, please visit

Linda Hanson has worked as a respiratory therapist at eight hospitals in four states over the past thirty years. She is happily married and the proud mother of two grown children, who are both now terrific cooks.

Jonny Hawkins draws cartoons full time from his home in Sherwood, Michigan, alongside his lovely wife, Carissa, the CFO of his tiny humor enterprise. They are parents to two young boys, Nate and Zach, and their brand-new baby, Kara, born January 1, 2007. Jonny dedicates the cartoons in this book to Carissa and his little redhead, Kara Elise.

Miriam Hill is coauthor of Fabulous Florida and a frequent contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul books. Her publishing credits include The Christian Science Monitor, Grit, St. Petersburg Times, and Poynter Online. Miriam’s manuscript received Honorable Mention for Inspirational Writing in the 75th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition.

Jo Ann Holbrook freelance writes from her rural southern Indiana home, shared with husband, Gil, and their horses, dogs, cats, and chickens. Her weekly newspaper column, “Heartbeats & Hoofprints,” is often about animals and the people they own. She travels and is keen on horseback riding and life. She can be reached at [email protected]

Melanie Howard is an award-winning writer whose work has appeared in SELF, Glamour, Baby Talk, and other national publications. She lives in Virginia with her husband, two children, and dog. Melanie enjoys travel, tennis, and family time, and goes to great lengths to avoid doing laundry. She can be reached at [email protected]

Bonnie Jarvis-Lowe is a registered nurse from Newfoundland, Canada. Her nursing career, family, photography, and writing have been her lifelong passions. She has two grown children and a granddaughter. Now retired, she has more time to devote to her writing and photography and family, and her much loved boating.

Lynda Johnson received undergraduate and graduate degrees in chemistry from the University of Cincinnati in Ohio. She is a wife and mother to the most wonderful family in the world. Hobbies include lampwork glass, jewelry, cooking, and gardening. By day, she works in quality assurance for a major pharmaceutical company.

“Prayer cheerleader for the Lord” is how Eva Juliuson describes herself. She encourages others to delve deeper into a prayer relationship with God. She offers an e-mail ministry that sends out regular short prayers to jump start others’ personal prayer life. If you are interested in receiving her e-mails, contact her at [email protected]

Kimberly Kimmel, a journalist, songwriter, former editor for a music/fashion magazine, and writing instructor, has sold numerous articles and short stories. She has interviewed dozens of celebrities, mostly for the teen market.

Kimberly has two grown children and calls Los Angeles home. She can be reached at [email protected]

Betty King is the author of It Takes Two Mountains to Make a Valley; But—It Was in the Valleys I Grew; The Fragrance of Life; and Safe and Secure in the Palm of His Hand. She is a columnist of two weekly newspaper columns. She lives with the disease MS.

Mimi Greenwood Knight is a freelance writer living in Folsom, Louisiana, with her husband, David, and their four children, Haley, Molly, Hewson, and Jonah, plus four dogs, four cats, and one chuckleheaded bird. She enjoys Bible study, butterfly gardening, baking, and the lost art of letter writing. She can be reached at [email protected]

Margaret Lang is a freelance writer with twenty-six published stories. As a speaker/teacher in the United States and overseas, she teaches women about their value and teens about purity and purpose. Her greatest joy is coming home to her two young granddaughters. You can contact her at margielang

Pat Winters Lauro is a freelance journalist whose work frequently appears in The New York Times. She has a BA from Fordham University and a master’s degree from Columbia University. The mother of three children, she lives with her husband in New Jersey where she works full time as a professor of English and journalism. She is currently working on a chic-lit novel.

Mary Dixon Lebeau is an employment counselor and freelance writer. She and her husband, Scott, live in New Jersey, where they sneak a peek at “real summers” through the eyes of their five children. Mary has written for Family Circle, Parenting, Parents, and three previous editions of Chicken Soup for the Soul. She can be reached at [email protected]

Sheryl McCormick is a proud single parent of seven-year-old Dylan. She was a medical technician in the Canadian Forces. She has since been discharged from the military to be able to spend more time with her son. Dylan is her inspiration for this story. Sheryl aspires to be published in the children’s market.

Sharon McElroy is published in Chicken Soup for the Sister’s Soul 2 and award-winner of the annual publisher’s award for Artist Profile Press, Inc., for a poem on the subject of writing. Additionally, Sharon was awarded the Notable American Woman Award for respectfully reflecting leadership and positively inspiring the spirit of people worldwide through her inspirational poetry. Please feel free to e-mail Sharon at [email protected]

Dahlynn McKowen is the dedicated mother of two and a full-time author. She is an active coauthor for Chicken Soup for the Soul books and has created many titles, including Fisherman’s Soul, Entrepreneur’s Soul, Soul in Menopause, Sisters’ and Brothers’ Soul, and the upcoming Female Entrepreneur’s Soul. To find out more about Dahlynn, please visit

You’re danged if you do and danged if you don’t, so you might just as well follow the dirt road in your soul to Carol Mell’s “Humbug Mountain” at and the Albuquerque Journal North Edition, where she takes a humorous gander at Taos, New Mexico, and all places west. She can be reached at [email protected]

Pat Moore, a professional organizer and speaker since 1991, was a national household tips columnist for six years and one of the first organizers to appear on HGTV. Her parenting priorities created a wonderful new business of organizing photos and creating customized scrapbooks for clients nationwide. She can be reached at [email protected]

Maryjo Faith Morgan belongs to Colorado Authors’ League ( and hosts a Weekly Writers’ Workshop, which furthers members’ writing careers. She produces a wide variety of written work, including business text, magazine features, and creative nonfiction. Her husband, Fred (, is the Webmaster behind They also enjoy tandem biking together.

Cynthia Morningstar received her bachelor of music in piano performance from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkansas in 1979. She is a pastor’s wife at Sandusky Presbyterian Church in Sandusky, Michigan, where she also works as a librarian, piano teacher, and choir and handbell director.

Jan Morrill has written several short stories and memoir essays and is currently working on a novel. She graduated with honors with a bachelor of arts degree from Langston University. Jan lives in Fayetteville, Arkansas, with her husband, and enjoys sailing and traveling. She can be reached at janmorrill

Ann Morrow and her family live in Custer, South Dakota, where she writes humorous/inspirational pieces. Her columns and short stories have appeared in a variety of publications, including previous Chicken Soup for the Soul books. She can be reached at [email protected]

Jennifer Nicholson works in a quality assurance role with a leading worldwide pharmaceutical company. She is also a wife and mother of two beautiful children. In her spare time, she loves to scrapbook, watch her kids’ soccer and hockey games, and write.

Linda O’Connell has been an early childhood educator for thirty years. She is a multigenre freelance writer and writing teacher. She has been published in many anthologies, literary magazines, and newspapers. She enjoys camping with her husband and treasures the time she spends with their grandchildren. She can be reached at [email protected]

Jennifer Oliver, author of Four Ears: Works of Heart, owes her inspiration to househubby, Stephen, and to their magnificent creative life forces: Cody, Ethan, Matthew, and Madison. Her stories have appeared in several Chicken Soup books and other heartwarming publications.

Tiffany O’Neill was raised in California’s Central Valley. She now makes her home in New Jersey, where she enjoys life as a freelance writer, wife, and stay-at-home mom of two daughters. She can be reached at [email protected]

Erica Orloff is the author of Spanish Disco, Mafia Chic,Double Down, and other novels about glamorous women, none of whom bear much resemblance to her real, messy, but joy-filled life. She lives with her family and assorted disobedient pets in Virginia. To find out more about Erica, please visit

Joan Paquette is a freelance and children’s writer who lives outside of Boston, Massachusetts. She is still juggling work and motherhood, and loving every minute of it.

Mark Parisi’s “Off the Mark” comic, syndicated since 1987, is distributed by United Media. Mark’s humor also graces greeting cards, T-shirts, calendars, magazines, newsletters, and books. Lynn is his wife and business partner. Their daughter, Jen, contributes with inspiration (as do three cats). To find out more about Mark, please visit

Kathleen Partak has been writing a weekly e-mail column for the past seven years called the Monday Motivator. Kathleen has done several short-term columns on telephony, today’s technology, and mortgages. She is the proud wife of an Army soldier and mother of three-year-old Mason. She also has several children’s books and a motivational book in the works. She can be reached at [email protected]

Stephen A. Peterson received his bachelor of arts and master of science degrees from Indiana University–Bloomington, his doctor of philosophy from the University of Oklahoma, and is persuing his doctor of philosophy in counseling psychology at Oklahoma State University. Stephen has written more than 500 stories and scholarly articles and more than thirty books in the areas of military history, psychology, and anthropology. He is a recent military retiree and plans more books in the near future. He can be reached at [email protected]

Stephanie Piro lives in New Hampshire with her husband, daughter, and three cats. She is one of King Features’ team of women cartoonists “Six Chix” (she is the Saturday chick!). Her new book, My Cat Loves Me Naked, is available at bookstores everywhere. She also designs gift items for her company, Strip T’s. To find out more about Stephanie, please visit She can be reached at 27 River Road, Farmington, NH 03835, or e-mail [email protected]

Mindy Potts, wife and mother of two, earned her master’s in education from the University at Albany in 1992. She works in elementary education and writes for a small paper with a big name, the OK Times & Hudson River Sampler. She also dabbles in writing children’s literature. She can be reached at [email protected]

Felice Prager is a freelance writer from Scottsdale, Arizona, with credits in local, national, and international publications. She is a multisensory educational therapist and works with adults and children with moderate to severe learning disabilities. To find out more about Felice, please visit Write Funny! at

After spending several years working in social services, Britt Prince returned to school to earn her master of arts in elementary teaching from George Fox University in 2007. She enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, collecting vintage toys, and writing stories. Britt can be reached at [email protected]

Winter D. Prosapio is a Hill Country essayist and writer, and writes the weekly humor column “Crib Notes.” Her writing has appeared in the Christian Science Monitor, Texas Co-op Power magazine, regional and local publications, Working Mothers and several online sites. To find out more about Winter, please visit

Emily Rider-Longmaid wrote “Moms Know Everything” at age thirteen. Now seventeen, Emily is a high school junior in Massachusetts. She plays soccer and basketball and is a member of her school’s Community Service Board. She speaks Spanish and French, enjoys reading and writing, and loves spending time with family and friends.

Brenda Rosales Rincon is on a career hiatus to focus on motherhood and writing. As of press time, Brenda owns twenty pairs of black shoes and fifteen black skirts. She and her husband, both USC graduates, live in Southern California with their seven-year-old daughter, a Seinfeld fan with comedic aspirations of her own. She can be reached at [email protected]

Bruce Robinson is an award-winning, internationally published cartoonist whose work has appeared in numerous consumer and trade periodicals, including the National Enquirer, The Saturday Evening Post,Woman’s World, The Sun, First, Highlights for Children, and more. He is also author of the cartoon book Good Medicine. He can be reached at [email protected]

Dan Rosandich operates, where over 3,000 cartoons are available for licensing at reasonable fees. Dan also specializes in “custom” cartoons, which can be used for any professional projects. Dan can be reached at [email protected]

Harriet May Savitz has over twenty-four books published by major publishers. Savitz’s book Run Don’t Walk was made into an ABC Afterschool Special produced by Henry Winkler. Recipient of the PSLA Outstanding Pennsylvania Author Award, Savitz now has her groundbreaking books about the disabled back in print. To find out more about Harriet, please visit, or she can be reached at [email protected]

Deborah Shouse is a speaker, writer, and editor. Her writing has appeared in Reader’s Digest, Newsweek, and Spirituality & Health. She is donating all proceeds from her book Love in the Land of Dementia: Finding Hope in the Caregiver’s Journey to Alzheimer’s programs and research. To find out more about Deborah, please visit

Elizabeth Bussey Sowdal is a registered nurse and freelance writer living in Oklahoma City. She is married and has four quite remarkable children. Initially, she thought the children would provide her with a lot to write about, but she has grown to love them.

Judy Spence worked twenty-five years at Southwestern Bell Telephone Company before retiring in 1993, but she says her favorite job was parenting daughters Stephanie and Shelby, now grown. Judy enjoys reading, traveling, and playing with her sweet granddaughters Micah, age four, in Edmond, OK, and Avery, age three, in Albuquerque, NM.

Ken Swarner is author of Whose Kids Are These Anyway? He can be reached at [email protected]

Pamela Teague lives in Edmond, Oklahoma, where she works as a Realtor. She enjoys reading, writing poems and children’s stories, cooking, ministering in her church, and spending time with friends and family. Pamela’s publication credits include a short story, “Mattie’s a Pipsqueak,” published by On the Line magazine, and “Baby in the Mirror,” published by the International Library of Poetry in their latest collection of poems, Twilight Musings.

Stephanie Welcher Thompson’s four-year-old daughter, Micah, says, “Mom makes Chicken Soup in the office.” Often the subject of stories, Micah doesn’t seem to mind, yet. As founder of State of Change, Stephanie hosted a radio show and writes syndicated newspaper columns. She is a freelance writer. She can be reached at P.O. Box 1502, Edmond, OK 73083, or e-mail [email protected]

Bernetta Thorne-Williams was born and raised in Washington D.C. She received a BS and BA from NC Wesleyan College. Bernetta currently resides in North Carolina with her husband and two sons. She is a contributing author of two other Chicken Soup for the Soul books. Bernetta has completed several romance novels. E-mail her at [email protected]

Tanya Tyler is a writer and editor in the advertising creative services department of the Herald-Leader newspaper in Lexington, Kentucky. She is also an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). She can be reached at [email protected]

Arlene Uslander is the author of twelve nonfiction books, primarily in the field of child development, parenting, and humor, and has won several media awards for excellence in journalism. Uslander is now retired from full-time teaching, spends her time writing, editing, traveling with her husband, Ira, enjoying their grandchildren, Eric, Ryan, and Carly, and doing some substitute teaching—just to stay in touch with what’s on kids’ minds, and in their hearts, today.

Mary Vallo is a writer and editor of the regional parenting magazine The Parent Paper. She lives with her husband and three children in Pearl River, New York. She can be reached at [email protected]

Shirley Warren describes her writing as the best excuse she can find for avoiding housework. Her works are based on her desire to find inspiration in ordinary day-to-day experiences. She resides in Massachusetts with her family, where they choose to live happily ever after. She can be reached at [email protected]

Jo Webnar is an author and freelance writer currently living aboard a trawler that cruises the East Coast and Florida. Her first romance, Twilight, is offered as an e-book. Savign Tampa is a romantic suspense offered by her literary agent. She is working on her third novel, Hidden Death, which is set in the Florida Keys. For more information about Jo, please visit her website at

Jennifer L. White is self-employed as a media consultant in Massachusetts. She is married to Mark, with a son, Colin, and daughter, Devon. Jennifer and Colin have published a book of humor poetry and illustrations entitled Coolhead Luke and Other Stories. Look for it at

Nicole M. Whitney is the founder, producer, and host of News for the Soul, a popular radio show and home to the largest online, totally free, life-changing audio resource, found at By thinking differently, she has transcended the three “incurable” diseases mentioned in this story. To find out more about Nicole, please visit

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