Mom, Mama, Mother dearest. Today is the day that I am reminded of all you did for us kids as we were growing up, and all that you continue to do for us now! I love my Mom just as every child loves their Mom – there are no words that can describe this love. A mother is a wonderful thing! They are cooks, chauffeurs, psychologists, doctors, coaches, nurturers, housekeepers, cheerleaders, teachers, bankers, referees, role models, party planners, coordinators, launderers, seamstresses, motivators, among many other things. My Mom is responsible for some amazing things:
- She passed on to me her love of the arts, her short fingers and toes, her cooking *skills*, her passion for reading a good story, her sensitivity, her value of family and friends, the ability to be a good listener, her “I could make that” mindset, and her love of a good deal
- She took fine art before I was born, got married at 20, became a mother at 21 and stayed at home with three kids for 20 years, then found the courage and the drive to follow her passion again by painting and selling beautiful canvases and going back to school just for fun
- She taught me the importance of sitting together at the table as a family for meals, bubble baths behind a locked door for some alone time, a good glass of wine, having friends over and playing music, a jar for spending – a jar for saving – a jar for charity, making lists to stay organized, and having a pellet gun in the bedroom to take care of those pesky ravens in the wee hours of the morning (we lived on an acreage!)
- She allowed me to constantly rearrange the furniture and make crafts out of the recyclables. She encouraged us to draw, paint, glue, collage, doodle and dream
- She locked us kids out of the house on sunny days, forcing us to use our imaginations and amuse ourselves, and didn’t make too much of a fuss when her gardening shears went missing while we made endless forts in the trees, or left buckets of frogs on the back patio for days
- She made our home a welcome and cozy place that kids in the neighborhood wanted to visit often
- She let us have cinnamon and sugar toast and tea with milk and sugar as an after-school snack
- She yelled only when she desperately had to, otherwise resorting to rattling the wooden spoon around in the kitchen drawer which was enough to make us smarten up
- She took us on all sorts of adventures with my Dad as kids – camping, boating, biking, hiking, road trips, swimming, collecting, exploring, learning – and continues to do so with annual family vacations
- She is the best treasure bargain hunter I’ve ever known, which often works in my favor (hello vintage turquoise typewriter for $3.99!)
- She helped me plan and execute my dream wedding, blew raspberries at me whenever I was about to cry, and walked down the aisle beside me and my Daddy
- She is becoming the best Oma ever, all she needs is the treat drawer :)
This year is also the first year I have a wonderful Mother-in-Law! She’s been a second mama to me for almost 7 years now, and I am grateful for her for a number of reasons:
- She raised Husbie as a single mom since his dad passed away when he was young. She shaped him into the caring, thoughtful, respectful, motivated, humorous, spiritual man that he is today and I am so lucky for this! I have nothing but admiration for my MIL when I think of what a challenge it would have been to raise a child on her own
- She gave Husbie constant access to new experiences as a kid, and he become quite a well-rounded individual. Husbie has a long track record of activities under his belt including everything from karate to violin to gymnastics! She encouraged him to explore and experience all that life has to offer
- She is ever an advocate for the more vulnerable members of society. She has worked within the inner city for years giving love, support, encouragement and anything else she can to anyone that needs it
- She is eloquent, curious, wise, giving, hardworking and compassionate
- She has the natural ability to write from the heart. This is evident in the story of love that she kept from Husbie’s first 6 years of childhood, which MIL and I worked together to turn into a book of writing and images for his 21st birthday!
- She is mother earth incarnate, I swear! Plants respond to her voice and her nurturing, and I feel like she’s Cinderella with all the birds and mice and other animals at her beck and call. Her garden is so wondrous every year and we often see the fruits of her labor with fresh veggies and fruit throughout the summer, and jams and preserves throughout the winter…delicious!
- She is always there with an herbalicious remedy for any sort of ailment or illness. I was first introduced to the disgusting yet effective oil of oregano from my MIL! Note to self: don’t swish it around your mouth
- She is brave enough to travel the world and visit places that I don’t think I’ll ever see, including Africa, Israel and Egypt. Husbie and I have the most beautiful treasures that she has brought back for us, including intricate cartouches and small alabaster pyramids from Egypt, olive leaves from the Garden of Gethsemane, hand painted pots, a gorgeous scarf for me, and a musical instrument and delicious cooking spices for Husbie from Israel (like REAL saffron, Zatar and Sumac), and a hand carved wooden giraffe and hand painted art from Africa! We are lucky to fill our home with pieces made by artisans all over the world
I thank God for blessing me with these two beautiful mamas to care for me and love me forever and always. I love you ladies! I would not be the woman I am today without you.