The humorous essays in the memoir, Is That The Shirt You’re Wearing?, are woven together by journal entries from two summers in the author’s life when absolutely everything happened.
The essays address a diverse range of topics, from Brakeman hating being called “Ma’am” (and proposing a wonderful alternative), to accidentally teaching her seven year old daughter to swear; from discovering the perils of shopping in the loud and stinky Hollister store, to being scolded by a Very Important Singer. Each essay is introduced by a journal entry that provides a humorous or poignant (yet always very relatable) update on the lives of her husband, three daughters, and elderly, yet still guilt-inducing mom. The journal entries emphasize the cyclical nature of life, and trace the author’s bumpy transformation from chronic planner to one who discovers the joy of living in the moment before she runs out of moments.
This is not a mommy blogger whining about her kids. Instead it’s a slice-of-life of a typical American family, a chronicle of the ups and downs of modern life. Readers of Brakeman’s previously published essays have compared her writing to that of Nora Ephron. Though the humor is often wry in tone, ultimately people will find this collection to be life affirming.
When not writing, mothering, daughter-ing, or wife-ing, Brakeman works behind-the-scenes on variety television shows. Also, she is a nice person and eats her vegetables.
PS. She lies about the vegetables.
This book is just so funny and enjoyable that I had trouble putting it down to get on with my chores. – Virginia L Knauss
I picked up “Is That the Shirt You’re Wearing?” for a long girlfriends’ weekend in the sun and it was the perfect lounge by the pool / beach read. It was easy, relatable and entertaining. Genuinely capturing the humor in the messy reality of family life, dealing with kids and juggling work, it reads like a conversation with your funny friend…in fact I found myself reading parts of it out loud! I recommend! – kelly muller
The writing is superb and so genuinely human and humorous! To have such a view of the everyday mishaps and travails is truly a gift. Miss Brakeman has that gift! Wonderful read! – Carol P Kusama
Wonderfully witty and poignant collection of essays. I laughed and cried with Kristen’s stories. – Robin McQuay
Make sure you have some time when you pick this up, because you won’t be able to put it down! It is sort of like checking your friend’s facebook posts where everything is super rosy, their kids are super heroes and they spend their lives traipsing around Europe; but in reverse. It is real life, so you don’t feel like you suck and its communicated in such a way to make you laugh. – Happy Spike
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