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Episode 139. Jennifer Pepito on Wholeness in Motherhood + Her New Book Mothering by the Book

Episode 139

Books are incredibly powerful. We know this and yet as moms we don’t always make time to read. The world tells us that there is no time for anything, ever. And in the same breath often tells us what to do, what to read, how to think, how to mother…and a lot of that messaging leaves us feeling fearful, unworthy, and like we aren’t doing enough.

What if there was a way to step off the hamster wheel of modern motherhood and find ourselves feeling more whole, more worthy, and like we’re getting it right? And what if the secret to that was found in reading more books?

Today’s conversation with Jennifer Pepito is so enlightening. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I am a changed person, a changed mother, and I believe a better mother because I read books. Namely the books of the authors I have interviewed here on the podcast, including Jennifer’s book Mothering by the Book: The Power of Reading Aloud to Overcome Fear and Recapture Joy. Jennifer is here to expand our book lists and shine a light on our motherhood journeys with deep, mature insights, ideas for battling comparison and other daily fears that arise in our mama hearts.

Jennifer’s Bio: Jennifer Pepito is the author of Mothering by the Book and the founder of The Peaceful Press ( Jennifer is on a mission to help moms overcome fear and love their life, and her homeschool curriculum empowers this through heroic stories, heartwarming poetry, and engaging life skills development. Her resources help create joyful memories among families, which leads to deeper connections and lasting relationships. Jennifer’s writing has been featured in several online and print journals, including Wild and Free, Commonplace Quarterly, and Home Educating Family. She’s a Wild and Free podcast host and has made guest appearances on popular podcasts such as 1000 Hours Outside, At Home with Sally, and Charlotte Mason Poetry. Jennifer lives in the mountains with her beloved family, where she enjoys reading aloud, working in her garden, and watching the sunset.

In this episode Jennifer & I talk about:

  • Her new book Mothering by the Book
  • Our homeschool focuses
  • Loving our families well
  • Encouraging one another as mothers
  • Jennifer is a mom of 7, married for 32 years, homeschooled for over 25 years
  • The Peaceful Press curriculum
  • “Books inform our lives whether we know it or not”
  • The importance self awareness as a mama
  • “You need self awareness to love well.”
  • Less reaction and more being still
  • Reading for pleasure and education
  • The trap of blame
  • Accidental marriage advice
  • Life long learning
  • How different each of our children are
  • Considering personality differences
  • The call to humility in motherhood
  • Healthy comparison in motherhood
  • Thankfulness as the key to happiness
  • Encouraging gratitude in our kids
  • Modeling thankfulness to our kids
  • Tone rules
  • Growth is a process, not a one time thing
  • Reading for connection
  • Creating a family culture in our home
  • Gather multiple times a day
  • If we don’t create a family culture, one will be created for us
  • Schools have become the culture for kids
  • The less you’re with your kids, the less you want to be with them
  • It’s a dereliction of duty if parents stop communicate values to their children

Books & Authors Mentioned in this Episode:

  • Endurance
  • Ruth Haley Barton
  • The Bible
  • Seeking God by Ester DeWall
  • Habits of the Household
  • Little House on the Prairie (Cherry Jones audiobook version)
  • Charlotte’s Web
  • Little Britches
  • Some by Ellen Montgomery
  • Little Women
  • (order number 1234) to get the book list
  • The Elliot Family Trilogy
  • Chronicles of Narnia

Jennifer’s Links:
Instagram: @jenniferpepito and @thepeacefulpress
Websites: and

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Homeschool Explained. Today’s episode is sponsored by Homeschool Explained, an online course I created to help parents find their confidence on their homeschool journey. I used to teach in-person workshops here on Maui to help families gather all the information and resources they need, answer all their questions, alleviate concerns, and help them get organized as they started homeschooling. Homeschool Explained is the online version of those workshops. I totally get it, starting any new journey can be overwhelming…especially when it comes to re-thinking how your kids are going to get an education—and that you’re going to be the teacher. But don’t worry. There is so much support and freedom in homeschool. It’s do-able. It’s fun. And it takes way less time than most people think. I put almost 15 years of homeschool experience and insights into this easy to follow, easy to use online course that answers common questions, helps you work through worries, and saves you time. No more internet search overload. This is all the info you need to get started homeschooling today from a trusted, experienced source.

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