[cs_content][cs_section parallax=”false” separator_top_type=”none” separator_top_height=”50px” separator_top_angle_point=”50″ separator_bottom_type=”none” separator_bottom_height=”50px” separator_bottom_angle_point=”50″ style=”margin: 0px;padding: 45px 0px;”][cs_row inner_container=”true” marginless_columns=”false” style=”margin: 0px auto;padding: 0px;”][cs_column fade=”false” fade_animation=”in” fade_animation_offset=”45px” fade_duration=”750″ type=”1/1″ style=”padding: 0px;”][cs_text]“Is there not some need for ‘mother culture’? But how is the state of things to be altered? So many mothers say, ‘I simply have no time for myself!’ ‘I never read a book!’ Or else, ‘I don’t think it is right to think of myself!’ They not only starve their minds, but they do it deliberately, and with a sense of self-sacrifice which seems to supply ample justification.
Mother must have time to herself. And we must not say ‘I cannot.’ Can any of us say till we have tried, not for one week, but for one whole year, day after day, that we ‘cannot’ get one half-hour out of the twenty-four for ‘Mother Culture?’– one half-hour in which we can read, think, or ‘remember.’” – Charlotte Mason on Mother Culture
After years of managing a busy household of nine people, Well-Read Mom founder Marcie Stokman learned that she was a happier, more whole woman, wife, and mother when she was reading good books. As her children grew, Marcie began sharing a talk with area women that she called, “The Well-Read Mom.” What she learned through that experience is that moms want to read, but can’t find the time, or simply don’t know where start when it comes to choosing books.
Years later, Marcie’s daughter Beth, a new mother, voiced her frustration with the typical mom’s group conversation which seemed to be limited to sleeping habits and strategies for soothing teething babies. “Isn’t there a place for women, after college, where they can keep exploring the good, challenging stuff – high quality literature, philosophy, theology?” Beth asked.
Just a few months later, in the fall of 2012, in a small town in northern Minnesota, twenty women gathered in Marcie Stokman’s living room for the first Well-Read Mom meeting. The reading list that year that included Dorothy Day’s The Long Loneliness and Sigrid Undset’s monumental Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy, among others. Halfway through the year about 100 women met for the first Well-Read Mom Conference in St. Paul, Minn. It was a wonderful year and by the end of it, many women shared their enthusiasm for the group, for the encouragement to read, and for the accountability provided by the monthly meetings.
Now, there are hundreds of groups in over 40 states and 10 countries, that’s approximately 900 women who are reading more and reading well. We hope you’ll join us on this fascinating journey we are making with women around the globe. It is truly a gift!
You can sign up for our monthly newsletter to stay in the loop, find Well-Read Mom on Facebook, check out readers’ pictures on Instagram with the hashtag #wellreadmom, and join us at the various events we host throughout the year.
Each year we read from a thoughtfully-considered book list, publish a Reading Companion filled with author bios, original reflections on each book written by women in Well-Read Mom, and discussion questions to fuel your group’s monthly meetings. In addition, you can listen to helpful audio introductions on each month’s book and bonus material from our conferences. And most importantly, reap the benefits of carving out time each day to read great books and discover a new depth of friendship with the women who are reading alongside you.
Feeling inspired? Here’s how to get started! (link)
Psst… If Well-Read Mom is already a meaningful part of your life, please consider making a tax-deductible donation. We are proud to be an official 501c3 non-profit organization.
The Team (same page as About, below)
Marcie Stokman, founder
Marcie is the founder of Well-Read Mom. She speaks and writes to encourage women. Marcie and her husband Peter have seven children and eight grandchildren and live in northern Minnesota where she is homeschooling their youngest daughter and teaching literature, writing, and Christian Studies as a part of a local academy.
Janel Lewandowski, operations
Janel lives in northern Minnesota with her husband and five children. She earned her master’s degree in pastoral studies and spent fifteen years in ministry and volunteer management. Now her days are full of homeschooling, playing in the woods and water with her family. She enjoys teaching middle schoolers, travel, and the simple surprises of small town life. Janel helps with Well-Read Mom operations in a variety of ways: planning, budgeting, membership, and grant writing.
Nadine Schaefbauer, website
Nadine lives with her husband and five kids on a small farm in Brainerd, Minnesota. She homeschools and over the past 31 years has put her bachelor’s degree in computer information systems to use. Nadine assists with the Well-Read Mom website and accounting functions. Nadine loves to teach, read, garden, and explore God’s natural original designs with her children.
Beth Nelson, public relations
Beth lives in Stillwater, MN with her husband and four children. Beth earned her degrees at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN in Catholic Studies and Italian. As a part of the Well-Read Mom team, Beth helps out with advertising, fundraising, public relations, and creative input.
Stephanie Stokman, communications
Stephanie lives in Madison, WI with her husband and three young children. Stephanie studied French and International Studies prior to dabbling in editing and publication design. She stays at home with her children and enjoys tending their fledgling garden, reveling in a good stash of books from the library, and biking alongside her husband with kids in tow. Stephanie is editor and creative director of the various Well-Read Mom resources. She also helps with web design and communications.
Mary Teck, Susan Severson, Lisa Stokman, Alison Solove, Margaret Stokman, Paige Sanchez, Stephen Sanchez[/cs_text][/cs_column][/cs_row][/cs_section][/cs_content]