Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Happy Birthday, Mom

Today is my mother's birthday. She's turning 39 today. :-)

I love my mom. It was a little tough growing up, though, because I think we're a lot alike - two strong-willed, independent, stubborn women..."alpha" females, you could say. You can't have two alpha females in the same household - won't work, no way, no how.

So things got much better when I got married, moved out, and became the alpha of my own household. Our relationship grew stronger and deeper - even more so when I got pregnant with my first child. Suddenly, my mom was a wealth of much-needed information and could help calm my fears of becoming a mom for the first time. I realized just how smart she really was.

Today, my mom and I have a pretty good relationship. I realize how blessed I am to have her in my life -and to have her close by - just a 20-minute drive away. So, in honor of her birthday, here's 10 things you should know about my mom.

1. As much as my mom tries to come across as proper and prim - she was probably a holy terror growing up. She was the youngest of four sisters - and I think she did a lot of things that she'll never admit to. That's probably a good thing - too much information about your parents isn't good.

2. My mom is very social - she loves to have people around her and she loves to talk and she loves to socialize. Some people think I take after her because of this - because I like to have parties, too. But - parties exhaust me. I have them out of necessity. I think my mom has them because she genuinely likes them.

3. My mom was a pretty good bowler. She bowled for many years with my dad in a league; some of my earliest memories are being at the bowling alley every week. I remember Mom having a pretty good average, and bringing home many trophies. I haven't bowled in 20 years...unless you count bowling on the Wii. I don't think that counts.

4. My mom now bowls on her own Wii. She also did the fitness test on the Wii and came out with some "age" that was like, 20 years younger than her real age - which just thrilled her to death. So, of course I had to do this fitness test on the Wii and came out with 46...my real age...that sucked. Obviously, my mom cheated.

5. My mom loves to quilt. And quilt. And quilt some more. She has an entire room in her basement that is devoted to quilting. She is constantly trying to get me interested in quilting. I'm not interested. My sister quilts...even my daughter quilts. That's enough quilters in the family - so leave me alone already. (Kidding)

6. My mom makes the best pot roast in the world...and the best ham and beans. (hint, hint)

7. My mom used to be a smoker many, many years ago - and then went to a hypnotist and quit. Just like that. I know it's been many years since she quit and I've been very proud of her ever since. Cheers for Mom!

8. My mom taught me to give back...by volunteering and making a difference. When we were little, she volunteered with the Muscular Dystrophy Association...now she's very active with other organizations, such as the Fox 4 Love Fund for Children. She's making a difference in the world, and that made an impact on me...how important it is to leave a legacy for your children and your grandchildren.

9. My mom has six grandchildren and four step-grandchildren, and 7 great-grandchildren. She accepted my stepkids and step-grandkids with open arms and never made a differentiation between them. They all get "grandma kisses and love" when she sees them.

10. My mom showed me that it's okay to be a strong, independent woman who can love their children and STILL be active in the world...volunteering, working, and pursuing hobbies and interests. She's my mentor.

I love you, Mom. Happy birthday to you!


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