Let Us Be Inspired By Eleanor Roosevelt


I watched Key Burn’s documentary, The Roosevelts, during the Holidays. It has seven episodes of approximate 2 hours each one of them. You must be wondering, how is it possible for a mother and a member of the professional world to have so much time to spare? Well, I don’t.

What happened is that I felt so in love with Eleanor Roosevelt that I skipped the sections that talked about other people. That shaved off a big percentage of the documentary. Also, I put the audio through loud speakers and cleaned my whole house while listening to it. There was no need for me to pay attention to the visuals to understand what was going on, and my closet, shelves, and drawers were completely organized by the time I was done with it. An excellent way of welcoming 2016.

Most people know that Eleanor Roosevelt was a champion of human rights. She helped creating the New Deal, worked for women’s rights, African American’s rights, Japanese’s rights, and had an enormous influence in her husband’s politics.  I won’t talk about her biography, which you can find here, but I would like to mention other facts about her life that got my attention.

1) Some of her closest friends were gay women. She probably had relationships with women herself. Lorena Hickok being one of them.

2) During her husband’s presidency, her relationship with Franklin D. Roosevelt was strictly political and professional. No much love there, but a lot of respect.

3) She practically got F.D.R. elected to his third term, after giving a speech and helping him get the Democratic Nomination.

4) She was not motherly. Her mother-in-law acted as the mother of her children.

5) She didn’t put a lot of effort into her looks.

6) She was a fearful child and a passive young woman. Confidence was something she gained in her later years.

Eleanor Roosevelt was a woman ahead of her times. I wonder what would she have done with her life if she were born 100 years later.  It is not easy for me to find role models, women that I deeply admire, especially from older generations, and here I found one that I really like. Some of her story is sad. She lost her parents young, she had a difficult childhood, but overcame all that to make a real difference in the life of people less fortunate than her.

Also, how refreshing is to meet a woman that didn’t cultivate her looks, but succeeded only thanks to her mind and heart.

Are there any women you admire? I would love to hear.

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Mrs. George Prior

jestcafe.com-benedict-cumberbatchWhat is your opinion on  being addressed by your husband’s name in letters or invitations? I understand that it is a tradition here in the US to do so and that people mean well, but, what if you didn’t change your last name? What if your name is completely different than your husband’s name? What is the right thing to do? Read more

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Myths About Women: Women Are Catty and Hard To Work With


Growing up, we are told how certain groups of people operate or behave in certain ways, and we assume these statements to be truth. Well, now that I am older and I have a mind of my own, I realize I have been lied to. Lies about women and their behaviors upset me the most, so I’ve decided to start a series on this blog called “Myths About Women,” as an attempt to create community and dialogue. Here is the first lie I was told growing up:

Myths About Women: Women Are Catty and Hard To Work With

I read an article in the NY Times the other day, which was, surprisingly, written with an unquestioned assumption that women are competitive.

We women use what is called indirect competition to undermine each other, which, I am guessing, is the opposite of direct competition, which is the method males use to compete. I am sure women are competitive, but I am still waiting to see proof that we are more competitive than men, that our nature is to undermine each other, and that this is, actually, our nature. I just don’t see it.

I have had 3 main jobs in my life, 2 in male-centered departments, and 1 in a female- centered department. Of these places, the healthiest and nicest place to work, for me, by far, was the department run by women. No doubt about it. I am not saying that working for or with males is necessarily stressful, what I am saying is that working for or with women can be extremely rewarding. I find my co-workers to be wise, smart, nurturing, and accomplished women working in a competitive organization that is changing the world (I won’t give more details about my day job). I find that, in general, we thrive on each other successes, and I don’t worry about any of them undermining my work. And I feel the same way about the men in my department.

I am sick and tired of people assuming that women are hard to work with because of their emotional instability and cattiness. I am sick and tired of reading articles like the one in the NY Times that, with no real proof, assumed that women are by nature cattier (though they might have a case when talking about teenagers, but do they?).

After reading the “Feminine Mystique” by Betty Friedan, I learned so much about women’s myths and assumptions. I had also fallen into the trap and remember being unhappy to have a bunch of women assigned to my student group when I was in college, thinking it would create more drama, but it was not the case.

But, where do these lies come from? I am guessing they are the result of having female value so dependent on male approval for thousands of years. Now that we are gaining more rights and freedom, I see more and more women embracing their true selves in a way that I believe is nurturing and balanced.

It is difficult to know who you are when you have been forced to look at yourself through somebody else’s POV, which has been the case of most women in history. Let’s remember that we have been allowed to be free-willed full citizens for less than a century, and only in certain geographical areas. In any case, I am lucky right now to have a great work environment and so many female friends who are supportive and see my victories as their own.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

jestcafe.com-myths-about-women3Image 1 Val Scrapbook – Image 2 Peter H Stranks
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A Wreath-Making Party


Some friends and I decided to throw a DIY wreath-making party a couple of weekends ago. It all started when I instagrammed a picture of a wreath I saw at the Farmer’s Market in Mar Vista. It was a beautiful and colorful wreath (here it is). Read more

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More Women Campaign – #morewomen

jestcafe.com-more women campaignSo, in politics, business, art, music and many other instances, women are grossly underrepresented in the positions of power; this is a fact. You can go back and forward about your opinions on feminism (the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men), but you have to admit that this has great implications for women.

With this in mind, Elle UK started the More Women campaign in October (#morewomen). If you follow UK celebrities on Instagram (male or female), you have probably seen this hashtag more than once on their posts.

It is only a matter of time before women fill more positions of power, but, until then, this kind of campaign helps us to dream and move towards this goal. Women are needed! I really believe this.

Anyhow, right now I am inspired by this campaign so I wanted to share it with you. Isn’t social media amazing? It provides a voice to those who didn’t previously have it. It creates community.

Here is the More Women Campaign video. Let me know what do you think, and have a great day!

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