Wednesday, May 30, 2012

In Celebration of Mothers - "Grown and Flown"

Today's post comes to us from Mary Dell Harrington and Lisa Heffernan over at "Grown and Flown", a blog for empty nest (or soon-to-be) moms.  Mary Dell and Lisa bonded over coffee and "mommy" stories and the impending graduations of their children.  After many cups of coffee (not in the same day, I'm sure. Or maybe it was...), these two joined forces to create a blog spot where people could share their own experiences and advice about parenting once children leave home.  As a mom (anxiously) awaiting the return home of her oldest child from college, I have found articles that inspire, entertain, and inform me as I prepare to have a house full of kids again in the near future.  

I hope you enjoy the following article about finding beauty in the mundane, and how sometimes the gifts that last are those that are the most practical and straight-forward.

"You're a Good Mother"
By a Grown and Flown writer

My mother’s philosophy on gift giving tends toward the mundane. It was my father, before his death,  who would come up with the “wow” gifts for each of us that would be waiting under the tree on Christmas morning.  My mother supplied the other packages (pajamas, turtlenecks), and would fill stockings with staples - socks, underwear, toothbrushes.  When we asked her what she wanted for Christmas, she answered with her own list of basics -nylon stockings, hand cream, and the perfume she liked best.  

I have come to appreciate her style of gift giving. I think of it every time I put on a dress and hunt through my drawers for stockings without runs in them.  I never find any.  I go barelegged or I change into trousers and socks. My mother understood that a wonderful gift is the thing you need to get you through the day.

My mother’s health and memory are now failing and  she doesn’t get around like she used to.  Although she loves being with her grandchildren and likes it when we take her out to restaurants, dining with her presents challenges: her hearing is poor and unless we look right at her and speak directly to her, she interrupts everyone’s dialogue with “What was that? What did he say?”  

With her fading memory, she doesn’t remember what she has done or who she has talked to or what her friends are doing these days.  But she has this: she thinks my children are amazing and she loves them.  She tells me, often, what wonderful people they are and then enumerates the reasons why.  And then she tells me that I am a good mother.

When I think about the gifts my mother has given me, I realize that her reminder that I am a good mother is perhaps the gift I need most these days.  
What are the most memorable gifts your mother has given you?  How has she influenced your parenting style?


  1. Hi Dawn, Mary and Lisa - I thought your Mother's Day was a fortnight ago .. ours has long gone.

    Mother's never do - even when they become aged and infirm .. one of the saddest comments my mother made some while in to being stroked and bedridden was that she wanted to help - but couldn't .. she has said she appreciates my help and continued support over the 5+ years so far .. it's not easy - but I'm glad she lives on - so she's given me faith, support, trust and has never moaned, even though she's bedridden. We never know our end of life .. I certainly didn't expect this - and just take the best I can, and the opportunities that arise - however small ..

    Mother's are wonderful .. cheers Hilary

    1. Hi, Hilary. This post is part of my ongoing series. Instead of celebrating mothers just one day I decided they should be celebrated all year long :-) I'm so sorry to hear your mother is so ill - it is definitely difficult to see our parents lose their health. I'm glad she still inspires you :-)
      Thanks for stopping by and reading, be sure and check out "Grown and Flown" when you have a chance!

  2. oh i am seeing more and more how i am like my mother, the good and the not so good---i miss her dearly and always knew she thought i was a great mom, if just a little too soft :)

    1. Lynn, it is the greatest compliment for our mothers to tell us we are doing a great job. (-:

  3. I fell so fortunate to still have my mom and value her opinion, like one of our writers did in this post. Thanks for including Grown and Flown in your ongoing tribute to moms.