Meredith Jacobs, author of The Modern Jewish Mom’s Guide to Shabbat, is editor of www.modernjewishmom.com, a dynamic and popular new website, and co-founder and CEO of Modern Mom, Inc. Jacobs hosts “Connecting Family,” which airs on Baltimore’s WYPR on Wednesday mornings. Through building a social network through the Internet, Jacobs has connected with moms all around the world learning how to use centuries-old Jewish traditions to help connect with their heritage and form a stronger bond with their children. Jacobs tells people that the joys and lessons offered from Modern Jewish Mom (MJM) have meaning for people of all faiths.
Her parenting columns run in various Jewish newspapers including The Baltimore Jewish Times and The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles and Jewish Telegraph Agency (JTA). She has been interviewed for her perspective as a Jewish mom for articles in such publications as Parenting magazine and The Forward. Jacobs speaks to various women’s and Jewish groups across the country, is a frequent guest on 9 News Now (the CBS morning news program in Washington, D.C.) and has been featured on XM Radio and NPR. “Faith in the Family” is her series of webisodes about making a Jewish home that airs on www.Beliefnet.com.
The Modern Jewish Mom’s Guide to Shabbat serves not only as an instruction manual for teaching the traditional observance of the Sabbath, but also to use Shabbat as a vehicle for connecting with family and for teaching children about values, morals, culture, and family. It is Jacobs’ aim to illustrate how the old testament traditions offer practical parenting tools.
Jacob’s journey to becoming the MJM began as a quest to find ways to put meaning into her family’s life and give her children a sense of place in the world. While striving to help her children be successful and achieve their desires, she also wanted to give them knowledge of something deeper, larger and more meaningful than the material possessions they could acquire.
With a background in public relations, Jacobs left the professional world when her daughter Sofie was born and has spent the last decade creating programs and events for local charity groups, schools, and synagogues. She has helped shape the personal and spiritual growth of young people in her synagogue through various leadership roles. In 2004, she conceived, developed, and executed a year-long series of workshops about Shabbat that garnered the attention of both the local and national Jewish press. Today, within her community, Jacobs is active in the PTA, the Service Guild of Washington, and the Women's Auxiliary of the Hebrew Home of Washington.
Most significantly, Jacobs is wife to Jonathan Jacobs and mother to Sofie and Jules. She is proud to have a traditional home, while still being considered quite hip and cool. Like many moms, she admits to an addiction to Starbucks Iced Venti Skim Lattes, cooking, entertaining, reading, running, Pilates, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, comedy, music, family, and her crazy Wheaton Terrier, named Mac.
A native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Jacobs holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Haveford College, a Master's of Science in Business from Johns Hopkins University, and she is a graduate of the Jewish Federation of Washington's Jewish Leadership Institute and attends Hebrew University’s Florence Melton Mini-School.
Praise for Meredith Jacobs:
“After reading [The Modern Jewish Mom’s Guide to Shabbat], I brought [Meredith Jacobs] to my synagogue to speak to our congregation about incorporating Shabbat into their lives. She was a huge hit. The young families really appreciated her sincerity and her message and everyone felt very encouraged to try some of the things she shared.”
-Rabbi Lisa Rubin, Temple Beth-El of Great Neck