Thursday, April 3, 2014

An early bird Family Friday: My mom, 4.3.14

This week's Family Friday is dedicated to my mom. I really don't think my mom  is aware of the impact she has had on me and my desire to be a maker and, I think, even more importantly, to be a good homemaker. Just the other day, Little Man had a pair of golf pants that needed to be mended. So, I borrowed Sister's mini sewing kit, found thread that almost matched and within a few minutes, his pants were repaired. I handed them over to him and he said 'Wow! You're good!". My response, "I learned from the pro over there" and glanced over at my mom across the room. Her response, "Me??! I don't think I taught you how to sew!". Uhmm...yes, mom, you did! She says that she didn't really teach me, that I just always wanted to watch what she was doing when she had a needle and thread in her hands. (I had a lot of opportunities, since she made a lot of our clothes herself).

My mom- then.



My mom- now. And my dad, too! This was on their 50th wedding anniversary in 2008. (Yes, they were very young when they got married!)




But what she probably doesn't know is how much I noticed all of the other things that made her an awesome mom. The everyday things, like:

How she always had a great meal on the table for us every morning and every night.

How she spent her days making our home really nice (even though we had very little money) by rearranging the furniture so it often seemed new even though it was just the same old stuff.

Sometimes spending entire afternoons polishing the paneling (of all things!) so it wouldn't look dull.

How she taught me how to iron while we watched Days of Our Lives together.

How she would prepare some kind of desert every single night for us all to enjoy while we watched our shows together (my favorite- popcorn, Pepsi, apple slices and Hershey bars!).

And the little ways that she showed her love for my dad. For example, every day she would finish making supper, then go into her bedroom to carefully apply her lipstick before my dad got home. And in the summer, she would sit and visit with my dad while he did yard work- continually moving her chair around the yard every time he moved on to a new chore.

There are obviously many more things that she did for us. Things that made me want to be the kind of mom that she was. And I think the fact that she took so much pride in her home, her family and herself  is really what made me want to give that to my own family.

The trusty, old sewing machine. This is the machine that my mom used for many years. I learned how to sew on this machine (once, sewing right over my finger as part of that learning process!). It's part of my early inheritance :) I recently had it refurbished and will never get rid of it. Ever.

The flower-girl dress my mom made for me for a family member's wedding. Uhmmm...can you tell it was made in 1970?! haha

And this must have been what started it all. My mom said I would just sit and watch her as she hand smocked this dress for me to wear to my aunt's wedding. Now I want to go smock something!



So, back to the sewing and the making. As I mentioned before, my mom made a lot of my sister's and my clothing. (What I loved about that is that I was actually getting something new for myself, not a hand-me-down from my sister!) We still have a few of the things she made for us and since I'm closing in on the big "5-0", I'm going to go ahead and call them "vintage" heirlooms :)  Having these heirlooms is a big part of what makes me want to make things. Things- whether those things are paintings or onesies or blankets or pillows. It doesn't really matter. What matters is that the people who end up with the things that I make, consider those things to be thoughtful and carefully crafted. And that they will, hopefully,  end up in that baby box or hope chest for the next generation to discover, enjoy and maybe even reminisce about. (I'm a hopeless reminiscer!) 

Thank You, Mom!

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