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Happy Mother’s Day

May 8, 2011

Happy Mother’s Day to my beautiful mom (pictured her in her senior year photograph. I have always loved this picture).

A few facts about my mother:

  • She is really, really pretty. I mean, look at her. And she is still just as pretty — honest, I’m not just saying that! So is my grandmother, in her mid-80s. Let’s hope it runs in the family.
  • Also, in addition to being pretty, she is charming, kind, helpful, talented, funny, and a very hard worker.
  • She was the mom that all our friends were envious of. “Your mom is so nice/pretty/fun.” Yes, she was and is.
  • She grew up on a rural farm in Eastern Oregon; her 8th grade graduating class had 3 (or 4?) kids. She grew up farming, doing 4-H, learning all the practical skills which she (mostly) passed on to me.
  • She is an excellent seamstress and quilter. When I was growing up, she made a lot of our clothes. I never got much past a basic dirndl skirt and pajamas, but she could make beautiful clothes, and made a couple of formal dresses for me. Now she mostly makes gorgeous quilts, some of which she hand-quilts. I could never, ever, ever do that. I know how to sew (sort of) but I have no patience for the kind of good work she does.
  • She taught me all the handy household tricks that you never really think you need to know until you do. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been grateful to know how to do an actual hemstitch, for instance.
  • She taught me the value of homemade cookies. Even when we were in our whole-wheat flour phase, we always had cookies in the house. PS: whole-wheat chocolate chip cookies kind of suck. It was a relief when white flour made an appearance again.
  • And perhaps most importantly, I have never ever questioned my mom’s love for me. She has made it clear that she loves me (and my brother) unconditionally, no matter what. This is a pretty awesome gift. I’ve never had to wonder if my mom would ever stop loving me, or love me less because of something I did or some way I am. Consistently, my whole life, the message has been: You are loved. Even if she didn’t like some of my actions or choices, there was never any question of her love and support. For that, I am truly grateful.
When I think about all the hardship my mom went through when we were little, I have so much admiration for her. We had very little money and she worked side by side with my dad to raise our garden; made bread every week; canned the harvest; helped with the butchering of steer, deer and elk so we would have meat to eat; and worked full time as a secretary so we could have health insurance. It was homesteading out of necessity, not trendiness, but it was a good lesson for me and my brother (I’m sure she wishes we hadn’t had to learn all that, that way — I’m sure it was not very fun sometimes.) Both my parents taught us how to be creative and work hard, but it was my mom who showed me that a woman could work just as hard as a man, and take care of all the things that a family needs, and still be kind and fun and not a total grouch, even though she was tired to the bone. It’s because of her that I know I can handle everything that comes our way. My dad taught and still teaches me the particulars of being a handy-person, but my mom taught me the can-do attitude. We had lots of challenges and we learned from watching to just tackle them head-on, look for the practical solution, and then get back to cookie-making.
I wish I were spending the day with her, but since travel is currently on-hold while we nurse Katie, this tribute will have to do. I celebrated in her honor by hemming shorts and ‘creatively’ altering a dress. Yeah. My sewing skills are barely passable. BUT — it seemed appropriate. Thanks for everything, Mom. You are an amazing role model and I’m so glad you are my mom. Love and miss you all the time.
16 Comments leave one →
  1. May 8, 2011 6:19 am

    Happy Mother’s Day to your mom. What a great tribute to a woman who obviously did, and still does, mean the world to you. It is a fortunate thing to have a mother who sewed positive seeds into our lives.

    • Mom permalink
      May 8, 2011 8:18 am

      Thank you, Carl. I am, indeed, very luck to have my wonderful Daphne and brother Matt in my life. I must have done something right along the way.

  2. Mom permalink
    May 8, 2011 6:53 am

    My sweet, lovely daughter. I’M the lucky one, to have you in my life. You and Matt inspire me every day to do the best I can, to try different things and ways, to be adventurous, to be the best “me” I can be. I’m so very, very proud of you and Matt. I love you both very, very much. Thank you for the tribute. And, whole wheat chocolate cookies do suck, BIG time.

    • Lara Starr permalink
      May 8, 2011 9:59 pm

      And you did a wonderful job Terri! Inspiring to all of us who don’t do it with 1/2 of your grace.

  3. May 8, 2011 7:58 am

    oh this made me cry! your mother sounds wonderful! happy mothers day daphnes mom!

    • Mom permalink
      May 8, 2011 8:18 am

      Thank you. And Happy Mother’s Day to you and your mom, too. 🙂

  4. May 8, 2011 9:54 am

    best mom ever! 🙂

  5. May 8, 2011 11:05 am

    What a wonderful tribute! Happy mother’s day, Daphne’s mom, and all the moms out there reading this too. Thank you all for what you do.

  6. D'Arcy permalink
    May 8, 2011 4:38 pm

    I can vouch for the fact that Daph’s mom still is that pretty, and is crazy nice, and can sew beautifully. Happy Mother’s Day!

    • Mom permalink
      May 8, 2011 5:02 pm

      D’Arcy, I love you, too. ONE day we’ll have to reconnect.

    • Mom permalink
      May 9, 2011 10:31 am

      D’Arcy, we both know sometimes my sewing leaves a lot to be desired (gigantic bridesmaid dress on teeny, bitty you).

  7. May 8, 2011 7:33 pm

    Wow. Happy Mother’s Day to your sweet, hardworking mom.

  8. Lara Starr permalink
    May 8, 2011 9:57 pm

    Oh you’ve got me all verklempt! Lovely tribute to a lovely mom!

  9. Elk Tracker permalink
    May 10, 2011 7:37 pm

    Dear Daphne what a wonderful tribute to a woman, and a Mom that I know to be truly amazing. I admire your Mother for having such a loving daughter, who, in her own right is strong and brave. Your Mother is certainly all of those things and many many more, but to see a bit of that in her daughter must be more than a “slight” blessing for a wonderful Mother on her most Special Day. Bless you for writing such amazing words, obviously from the depths of your heart.

  10. May 11, 2011 1:19 pm

    What a beautiful photo of your mom! I hope she had a wonderful Mother’s Day.

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