Bucket list by ages 10-18

In honor of summer, my daughters and I create a list of items we’d like to do or experience before school starts again. We call it our summer bucket list. I’m a list maker from way back and find a secret thrill in writing recently completed items on my list just for the pleasure of immediately crossing them off. Yes, I’m one of those. In the spirit of bucket listing our summer plans, here’s a look back at my top 10 between ages 10-18.

1.Marry Kirk Cameron or Michael J. Fox.

Apparently neither man got the memo they were slated to be my groom because they have both been married for almost 30 years TO OTHER WOMEN. Their publicists obviously diverted my letters and thwarted a timeless romance. Or a really short one given I was 9 when Michael J. Fox married, and most states do not endorse child marriages that young.

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2. Live in a mansion with ‘help.’

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Because who wants to do chores or share space with siblings? Needless to say, I have never lived in a mansion nor will I. Too much work to maintain.

3.Be a millionaire (obviously if I’m going to live in a mansion).

I earned less than $5 a week in allowance. What was I thinking?

4. Have my first kiss.

I think I was 13. It was memorable for its wetness. ‘Nuff said.

5. Go on a date with my crush.

My crush wasn’t interested so I settled for my crush’s friend. The movie was horrible and the handsy groping was uncomfortable. After that, I didn’t date much in high school.

6. Be a model.

Considering I was shy and awkward, I don’t know how I thought this one was going to happen. Despite having an hour glass figure by the age of 16 (36, 34, 36) and a propensity for blushing when someone stared at me, I did manage to model a green nightie and feather boa** in my sophomore year production of L’il Abner where I played Stupifying Jones, the sexy robot who stupified men with a swish of her hips.

**Who puts a 16 year old in a nightie and sends them on stage?? Who? There are photos of me in the yearbook, and my school frequently posts old photos on the website to share our school’s pride. I work in my old district and have established myself as a serious professional. I can not have pictures of me in a nightie surfacing for all to see. Lord love me. Why did I want to be a model?

7. Learn to drive

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My mom taught me until I accidentally pressed the gas instead of the brake and nearly put a hole in the garage door. Then my dad took over and he taught me on a stick shift. After months of lectures, a string of cursing and a lot of crying (sorry dad!) I got my license. It was many years later, though, that I consistently remembered the art of turning off the headlights, filling up the gas tank before it’s empty and not locking the keys in the car.

8. Graduate high school.

Not to date myself, but that happy event happened in 1997. (Though dating myself would have been preferable to the awkward grope fest I was subjected to in the 8th grade).

9. Get accepted into a good college and win some scholarships.

I was accepted into Beloit College, a small, private, liberal arts college in beautiful southern Wisconsin, and won a $24,000 academic scholarship (to offset the cost of the $30,000 annual tuition cost). Woohoo!

10. Go to college far from home.

Beloit is 40 miles from my home. I went anyway.

Silver Tongued Temptress: Release day is here!

I am super excited my third and final installment of the Westby Sisters is available for purchase. Silver Tongued Temptress follows the life of Beatrice Westby, the reclusive and rebellious oldest sister of the Westby clan. She was a hard one to write, but I am proud of the results. Check out my Facebook page for a contest. Click here: 

Two reviews are in:

Angel Gebeau

June 27, 2018

Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The second in the series is still my favorite, but couldn’t put it down until the end just the same. Beautiful conclusion to the Westby trilogy.



June 27, 2018

Format: Paperback
This is the second book I’ve read by Sara Ackerman, and it won’t be the last. As always, the author blends romance, history, and making you feel as though you are right there with the characters. I loved the Grandmother’s sassy sense of humor. I look forward to reading more by this author.


If you’re interested in purchasing Silver Tongued Temptress or any other titles in the Westby Sisters Series, click below:


Barnes and Noble:

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Wild Rose Press


A Retrospective on Impulse Control

I may appear to be a mild-mannered woman, mother and teacher, but inside–inside I battle ill-timed urges which can be cause for humor and embarrassment.

Some times I am successful in curbing my impulses. Take a recent meeting I had with my boss. We were interviewing a candidate over Hangouts and as he adjusted the computer so I could see, he flicked his arm across my pen. My thumb was up to my mouth ready to lick and wipe his arm where I had marked him before reason prevailed and I reminded myself of one of the most basic commandments of workplace interactions:  ‘Thou shalt not lick thy boss.”

Other times, I am not so successful. On a recent trip to Chicago, my family was going to take a boat tour. We were running late, so we were rushing to catch the boat which was leaving in less than ten minutes. My family was behind me as I walked down the stairs following a well-dressed gentleman . He checked his watch and quickened his pace down the stairs. I followed suit, our footsteps thudding on the metal stairs leading to the pier. He glanced behind at me, smiled and ran. I followed leaving my family in a cloud of dust. We ran the length of the pier. I was a golden retriever who had spied a fluffy squirrel with excellent taste in shoes and a charming smile, so I ran.

After my family caught up to me and we realized I had blown past the ticket booth in my pursuit of “Smartly-Dressed-Gentleman-Who-I-Took-For-A-Squirrel” my husband said had the man had candy, I’d have followed him to his white van containing a tear-stained mattress without hesitating. (I’d like to think I’d have enough sense and self-preservation to not enter a strange car with a strange man). Regardless, he joined a different tour and we returned to the ticket boot to buy tickets for a later trip.

There was the time I decided to move furniture and shoved a bed out my bedroom door only to have it get stuck, effectively blocking me in my room. I had to call my husband (then boyfriend) to come and get me out. Then there was the time I sang a naughty song to my husband in front of my 3 y/o (complete with sassy butt shaking) before realizing what I was doing and who was present.  She went around spelling the alternate form for ‘cat’ for weeks before she stopped.

I could go on, and in fact, my family did several weeks ago. It took about two hours. To quote Jane Austen, “in such cases as these a good memory is unpardonable.” They, however, have not forgotten, nor are they likely to given the frequency with which my gaffes occur. While inconvenient and often embarrassing, I can be assured my spotty impulse control provides hours of entertainment for my family and friends.

(C) Sara Ackerman, 2018