I'm her oldest child and it was my birth that turned her into a mom, but she gets all the credit for being such a good one. I certainly had nothing to do with it. She doesn't even have any gray hairs that I can pretend I contributed to.
When I was a teenager, I went to a week-long church camp for about five summers in a row. Each parent was supposed to send along a letter that would be opened on the last night of camp. My mom never forgot to send one along (thank you!) and she made it extra-fun by, instead of writing a long sappy letter, made a list of great things about me. After the first year, I always looked forward to this part hilarious, part sweet letter.
In her honor, today, I figured I'd write her a list of 25 great things about her:
- She is TGM (The Good Mom).
- She loves pretty things like flowers and dishes.
- She's always up for a fun adventure to somewhere new and unexplored.
- She is great about doing things individually with each of her children. Our trip to New Orleans (or N'awlins) in 2000 was extremely memorable.
- She loves to watch movies. Whenever I hear the opening music for Anne of Green Gables, I think of her watching that and other movies over and over as she ironed. (Now I just watch the movies and don't iron).
- She always has a nice-looking dinner table (and delicious food to go with it).
- She was extremely supportive of all my after-school activities, coming to all my plays and even once coming to a dress rehearsal since it looked like she might be out of the state with Shepard for treatment during the production.
- She loves to send little packages for holidays or even for no real reason - nothing is more fun to get in the mail.
- She always plays with my hair when I sit next to her.
- She's "still got it" when it comes to fashion.
- She's a great seamstress. I was looking through some old pictures today and was amazed at how many cute homemade clothes we had.
- She plans amazing trips. We've traveled a lot in the USA and elsewhere and I can't remember a single trip that wasn't a complete blast.
- She's a phenomenal public speaker.
- She loves to laugh.
- She establishes (and maintains) great traditions, like seeing a movie in the movie theater on Christmas Eve each year.
- She loves to read and has read literally hundreds of books aloud to her children over the last two decades.
- She's welcomed both her son-in-laws into the family and made every effort to make them feel that they belong.
- She loves doors - whenever we drive through neighborhoods, she comments on the cool doors of different houses.
- All my friends have always liked her and thought she was super fun and cool.
- She makes all of us feel like her favorite child.
- She always made us great Halloween costumes - we were never the sad children dressed up as hobos.
- She's always interested in our lives, but not nosy or intrusive.
- After decades of not being a runner, she now runs three miles a day (might I mention that she far out paces her daughters that are in their twenties).
- She's been remarkable at helping each of us develop individual talents and interests.
- She has excellent nicknames for all of us - I'm usually Louie. Merrick is Merksy, Landen is Donie and Crawford is Goghs.
- (BONUS!) She really was Mother of the Year in 2003 (bet you didn't even know it was an official award established by FDR's mother).