The Pajama Diaries

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The Pajama Diaries is a syndicated comic strip created in 2006 by Terri Libenson, an Reuben Award-winning artist[1] who has also done work for American Greetings.[2] It is narrated by Jill Kaplan, a wife of a loving husband and working mom of two young girls in a Jewish family somewhere in Ohio done in real-time fashion, where the characters age with the progressive years of the series and deals with varying topics from the everyday silliness and dramas of life to social commentary. The Pajama Diaries is carried by King Features Syndicate.Heaton, Michael (2009-03-23). "Ten Minutes with Pajama Diaries cartoonist Terri Libenson". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved 2009-03-27. 

Main Characters[edit]

  • Jill Kaplan: The modern, multitasking mother of two daughters and wife of Rob Kaplan. She is descended from Sephardi Jews. Jill works at home as a web designer, and often has to balance her job with her home life. She is an emotional type, and a bit of a self-confessed control freak, especially when it comes to her daughters. Every now and then, her teenaged subconscious voice of reason, or in certain cases, unreason, '80s Jill, appears in the bathroom mirror to voice her opinions. Often, '80s Jill brings along old friends from days gone by. She also has an older brother by five years, Brian, introduced in the November 22, 2014 strip; that lives out of state and married with two teenaged children, a son and daughter that look a bit like Jill.
  • Rob Kaplan: Jill's easy-going, yet bluntly honest husband, of Russian Jewish background, father to daughters Amy and Jess, and devoted to his family. He is a semi-independent IT contractor who works outside of home. If he has a fault, it is that he has a constant libido that sometimes Jill finds irritating.
  • Amy Kaplan: The elder teenaged daughter of Rob and Jill. She is currently in high school and was dating Lisa Day's eldest son, Danny. In the spring of 2013 she completed her bat mitzvah. She is set on being athletic, independent and outdoing her sister, Jess.
  • Jess Kaplan: Amy's playful, bookworm-prone younger sister by two years who's just entering adolescence and is currently in junior high. She also had her bat mitzvah on October 3, 2015.

Other Characters[edit]

  • Lisa Day: Jill's best friend and the mother of three children: sons Danny and Noah, and third one yet to be identified. Early in the strip two of the children were named Matthew and Katie. Lisa has a struggling marriage and recently separated from her husband. In the fall of 2013, Lisa studied to be a teacher and was a student teaching in Jess's junior high school.
  • Nanci Raymond: Jill's friend who is an assertive and ambitious mother of teenaged twins. Her current second marriage is to David, the elderly father of a former beau. In July 2014, she gave birth to her child with David, a son named Ben.
  • Grandma Sophie: Rob's old-fashioned Polish grandmother who enjoys reminding Jill about the virtues of being the ideal homemaker. Jill finds these reminders annoying. Grandma Sophie tells of leaving Poland when she was a little girl before World War II while the remainder of her family perished in the Holocaust. Every Yom Hashoah she lights a candle for them in their memory. In more recent years, she has been afflicted with dementia and now resides in a seniors home.
  • "Perfectville": The "perfect" next door neighbours across the street from the Kaplans. They do everything right, seemingly without effort, from their pristine lawn to their always appropriate housewarming gifts. Perfectville refers mainly to the overachieving, African-American mother (real name is yet unknown). Despite her friendliness and well-meaning advice, Jill is both envious and amazed by her neighbour's ability to do it all and to do no wrong. In helping Jill to prepare for Amy's bat mitzvah party, Perfectville revealed she was once a CEO for an advertising agency until her firstborn came and she decided to give up the working world for motherhood, plus that she got fired for blowing a $2-million account of one of her former firm's clients[3] and has recently launched her own party-planning business.
  • Judy (aka Jill's Mother): Jill's widowed retiree mother residing in Florida with her live-in boyfriend, Harv at a retirement community. She often complains of the ailments related to old age to Jill with grotesque details.
  • Deb Lowell: Another friend of Jill and working mother. Was part of her circle of friends early in the strip, but has not been seen since.
  • Harper: A friend of Rob and a bachelor looking to settle down. Was part of the Kaplans' circle of friends earlier in the strip, but has not been seen since.


There are three books containing collections of The Pajama Diaries strips, including bonus strips. They are currently published by TJ Studios.


  1. ^ " That moment I got a %$@# Reuben!
  2. ^ "Pajama Diaries" SeattlePI. Retrieved 2015-2-27.
  3. ^

External links[edit]