I always have teased my Mom that I'm the luckiest kid out there. My Mom's birthday & Mother's Day are always in the same week. I get to go shopping once and forget for another year. The same was true for my Dad, but this is about Mom. My Mom was the only stay at home mom of any of my friends growing up. Can you believe that? It always bothered me for some reason, but now I see the benefits it has bestowed upon me. My Mom can't cook for anything, but her baking is the bomb. She made homemade bread, cake, donuts, cookies, candy - you name it she could bake it. Everything from scratch, too - not shortcuts in our house. There was nothing better than coming home from school and the house smelling of fresh baked bread. Oh, and there was always a loaf about to come out of the oven, so snack that day would be warm bread and melted butter (real butter, not margarine). Oh, they must serve that in heaven.
My Mom wasn't much of a disciplinarian. I don't remember her ever raising her voice. The only time she ever spanked me was when I was 4, ran out of paper dolls, so I used her window shades. Yeah, I wasn't the smartest 4 year old that day. When she caught me I had realized the error of my ways and thought I'd make up for it by taping the shades back together. She busted me before I finished. She grabbed the tape first then decided I needed to be spanked. Uh, yeah, in the heat of anger she forgot she was holding the tape. My butt figured it out almost immediately though. Thirty years later I can still recall every detail of that moment including the look of disappointment in her eyes. Yep, that was it the only time my mother ever spanked me in my life. I was, however, grounded often. Interestingly, I am probably still grounded as my mother's favorite length of grounding was "indefinitely" and I don't ever remember being ungrounded.
My Mom had brain surgery 5 years ago and there have been some residual effects that have made her a bit difficult to deal with at times. It wasn't such a problem when Dad was alive, but the last year has made it more of an issue. I love my mother more than anything and I just wanted to give a little shout out to a woman who taught me that raising children is by far the hardest most rewarding occupation out there. I love you Mom! Happy birthday & happy Mother's Day!