Back in The Saddle Again….

Hello SMOMs… so sorry I have been away from this blog for so long. I have missed it, and am glad life is now providing me with the opportunity to get back in the SMOM groove!!

Here’s the short version of what I’ve been up to…

  • Left my full-time employer and have opened a business of my own
  • Have been developing materials and ordering product for my new Biz
  • We’re moving into a home with my Mom so she can live life with a little more ease
  • Following my very own North Star to the land of hope and happiness 🙂

Here is the result of some of that…

  • The format of my website, Plain Jane Ink has completely changed;
  • I have heeded the call of Personal Coaching and completed programs for the Life Coaching designation;
  • Have created a new Facebook page for Plain Jane Ink;
  • And am still trying to champion our environmental impact by taking on the distribution of a great laundry product called SmartKlean
  • I have a jewelry designer working on a special bracelet for SMOMS. Something we can wear in those tricky and sticky situations to remind us that we are not alone, and that we are an important and integral part of our Step Families. I’ll post a pic as soon as I have the prototype.

Just click on all the highlighted links to see what it’s all about.

I am also very happy to announce that the core of my coaching will revolve around personal development, and of course, Step Moms! Do let me know if I can be of any assistance to you, a friend or family member.

And now that I am back in the saddle again, you can expect to see regular posts on this site.

So glad to be back with you all again! Hope your summers were all wonderful and that Back to School sees you able to get in some much-needed ME time!!

Be well and Be Happy,


Step Moms: I Believe You Are Great

“ I believe that you are great,

That there’s something magnificent about you.

Regardless of what has happened to you in your life.

Regardless of how young or old you think you might be.

The moment you begin to think properly,

This something that’s within you,

This power that’s in you that’s greater than the world,

It will begin to emerge!

It will take over your life.

It will feed you.

It will clothe you.

It will guide you, protect you, direct you, sustain your very existence…..

If You Let IT!!

Now that is what I know for sure.”   Michael Beckwith

Just a little power note for all my Step Mom peers as we head on in to the Holiday Season. Believe  you are great each and every day and on the flip side of this tough, tough time of year, you’ll look back and just laugh at how easy it was for you to breeze through all the stress and turmoil that’s bound to ensue.

Cheers to you all!

Peace and Love,

PJ xoxo

Step Moms Sacred Space

In “Stepmonster”, Wednesday Martin writes about wanting a real wall to provide a boundary for the bedroom she shares with her husband. Real or otherwise, with actual walls or perceived ones, Step Moms do need to find, create or build a sacred space all for themselves, an oasis if you will in which to relax, recharge and release.

In the first home my husband and I shared together, I did believe this would be our bedroom until I came home one day to find my Step Daughter stretched across the bed chatting with her Dad. I’m sure this may have happened in their original home, but man, was I not going to stand for it in mine.

Married or otherwise, my bedroom has always been a sacred space for me. I am one of those people who chooses to set up my bedroom first when moving into a new home, knowing that at the end, middle or beginning of the day, I will have that space to come home to, retreat to and wake up to.

Your space need not be your bedroom, but creating YOUR space is indeed a necessity…even if it’s just yours for a part of the day and it is understood that there will be no interruptions or knocks on the door.

After discovering my Step Daughter in the bedroom I shared with my husband, in the home that was OUR primary residence, that my hard-earned money was going to pay for, I didn’t immediately react but instead waited for the time after they had all gone home to say…”Hey buddy, that wasn’t cool.” You see, we had talked about the bedroom just being our place. I really didn’t care if the kids ran roughshod over the rest of the house, I just wanted the boundary drawn at the door to our room and really didn’t think that was a lot to ask.

And in typical male fashion his response was “Oh yeah I forgot”. This reminded me that not every incident within my new family dynamic was created deliberately or to hurt me, but could just happen as a result of the sometimes unreliable mechanics of the male mind. Just the same as forgetting to buy milk at the grocery store, these guys can forget some of our requests as well and every now and then, although we’d like to rip a strip off them because they usually deserve it, we really do need to cut them some slack 🙂

Doesn’t mean you let yourself get run all over, just means you stop and think about how the situation may have occurred before the beheading happens.

Find it, decorate it, protect it and revel in it. That sacred space you establish in your home, your own little corner of the Universe will come in handy more often than not 🙂

Happy Building!!

PJ xo

Step Moms: Hold on Tight!

I have written a lot over the years on how important it is to let love lead and to focus on the love between you and your husband to get you through the tough times. Recently, I have had the unfortunate experience of needing to apply this theory to life beyond Step-dom and am I ever glad I have always hung on to this belief.

On June 30th, my younger and only brother was tragically killed in a car accident and it was my life long love for him that carried me through some really trying times. Not only with my own grief, which is still the first thing I think about every morning when I awake, but also in the face of great adversity with some less than savoury extended family members. Almost like a sixth sense, love kicked in and allowed me to move through and past the demands of less than rational minds and crazy surges in emotions.

This journey has been eerily similar to the path I have travelled in Step-dom, with disappointment in people and disbelief at pettiness rife for the taking. But but but but but, love still reigned supreme. As I traversed each heart wrenching day, focusing only on my brother, much as I have focused on my love for my husband, allowed me the tunnel vision necessary to rise above all the crap and do what was right.

And so, I implore you, in Step-dom and in life, hold on tight to love for it is the true and great and only route to happiness and self fulfillment.

Be well and be happy, hug your siblings and love your husbands!!

PJ xoxoxoxo

Step Moms: Time Passes, Things Change

It’s true, and I am a living testament to the value of sticking with it. Time passes, things change and life as you know it is changed on the other side of being immersed in a life that includes Step Kids.

You become you again, your marriage takes priority again and your Skids, well, they turn into adults, living their lives on their own terms and the beauty of bearing witness to that is immeasurable.

I have been thinking lately that maybe, as we go through the day-to-day drudgery and hurt that can be part of life in a Step Family, we give too much power to the drama, take it too personally and add fuel to a flame that would be better left alone. I have come to the conclusion that some of that just might be true.

We can’t be blamed for it, it’s a natural knee jerk reaction to being thrown to the wolves 🙂 But, it does end. And if knowing this going in can help you keep perspective as life as you knew it spins completely out of control then I truly hope you take this bit of information to heart.

Continue reading

Step Mom Survival:Windows and Walls

I read about the theory of Windows and Walls in Elizabeth Gilbert’s latest book, “Committed”, and was so intrigued by it, put it to work in my own house.

Of course at this point it is just my husband and me under the same roof, but I have found that the principle can be extended to all manner of relationship, and can indeed be something for Step Moms to add into their Survival Kits.

Although the purveyor of Windows and Walls Shirley Glass passed away in 2003, her words and theory still ring true in her absence.

When I started to look at my life, all things in my life and measured it all by what should be behind windows and what should be behind walls, clarity ensued, and a greater bond between my husband and myself was also a beautiful surprise.

It makes perfect sense, and also the perfect fall back for a Step Mom who may sometimes struggle with how much of her life is now, no pun intended, under glass. I have often just used the key words windows and walls with my husband to bring focus back to the special-ness of our relationship, and the contents of which require safe keeping.

Continue reading

Step Moms: Cut Yourself Some Slack!

’cause no one else is gonna!!

Have you found that in becoming a new Step Mom you have also taken on the characteristics of a pheasant under glass? All of a sudden every single solitary move you make seems to be under a microscope and meticulously dissected by everyone you know and tons of those you don’t:)

The way you wear your hair, do the dishes, clean the tub, sort the laundry, cut the grass, cook, spend money, go on vacation, dust…. where you work, who your friends are, and on and on it goes. All those life choices that you have been so proud of making, the accomplishments you secretly coveted, are now fodder for the rank and file of your new expanded family.

So what the heck is a girl to do?


Continue reading