Mother’s Day

May 11, 2014 at 7:03 am (In So Many Words) (, , , , , , , )

This is my third mother’s day – fourth if you’re one of those people that count mother’s day when you’re pregnant because you’re a mother from the first heartbeat.  I believe in life from the moment of conception, but I wasn’t really thinking of myself as a mother yet.  I didn’t really feel like a mother until I was nursing and changing diapers and praying I didn’t screw it up.

Preggo me with fam

Me & Ayla Day One

Although this blog began as a book review blog, it is still a blog and by definition it is an online diary.  Which means it contains not just one of my passions, but all of them.  Books, Kung Fu, Cycling, and now, of course, for the last three years – mothering.

Being a mother, for me, has meant that I have found every possible way to make half my previous yearly income from home.  I’m not quite making half as my book sales are chronically lean because it’s in the wrong category on Amazon.  I’m a little conceited about the beauty of its cover and enticing back jacket blurb and think it would sell like hotcakes if only the right people could find it by browsing.

Of course, being a mother has actually made it possible for me to finish writing a book in the first place.

Day in the Life 054Being a mother, for me, has meant that my book reviews take me twice as long to write because I used to be able to completely bury myself in a book until I felt like coming up for air.  Now, I don’t get to choose when I come up for air – that is usually chosen for me by a precocious three year old who will say things like, “Mommy, I need more juice.”  “Mommy, look, it’s echoes, like in the bathroom.” (After drawing a series of parenthesis like lines getting larger across the width of her chalkboard.)  “Mommy, I need a peanut butter sandwich.”  “Mommy, you be the orange dalek and I’ll be the white one – ‘Exterminate! Exterminate!” (While dancing rubber Daleks across my kitchen table.) “Mommy, I want to learn something.  Can we do a lesson?” “Mommy, can you teach me my letters now?”  I love my tiny, vocal, human who will assert her needs and remind me to read to her at every turn and not neglect her schooling.

At the dock 6Being a mother, for me, means endless beautiful walks in the woods.  Miles and miles of trails, flower picking, foraging, bird-watching, and outdoor story time.  It means multiple trips to the park, the lake, the grocery store, bookstores, and libraries.  It means art projects, painting, dancing, extra house cleaning just for the fun of letting her sweep and mop knowing I’ll have to do it again.  It means demonstrating all of your passions, all your talents, all your dreams, and all your healthy habits to a small person who is watching your every move and gathering every ounce of information she can from it all.

Being a mother has meant seeing this little girl go from this:

Ayla

To this:

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In what can simultaneously be equated to a blink of an eye and the longest three years of my life.

I didn’t think I’d be a mother.  But I’m enjoying it immensely.

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The Mother’s Day Post

May 4, 2012 at 5:39 pm (Events, In So Many Words) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Mother’s Day is celebrated all over the world at various times in Spring to, obviously, honor one’s mother.  In the United States, Anna Jarvis founded the day we know now that is celebrated on the second Sunday of May, in 1908.  By 1914 it was made a National Holiday.  By Jarvis’ death, she was renouncing her own holiday as having become too commercialized.

It is too commercialized.  But, who wants to abolish a holiday that celebrates ones mom? No one. Its not like Valentines when you can commit to showing your partner you love them every day of the year.  A lot of children (especially adults) don’t live anywhere near their mothers, and this is a good day to (of all days) let them know that you’re still thinking of them even from afar.

My proposal? Untraditional gifts.  Token mother’s day gifts come in the form of Hallmark Cards and flowers.  That’s all well and good, and if your mother loves those things, by all means, get them for her.  But get her something more as well.

Always, I’m a fan of books, afterall I write a book blog.  There’s always something special to be found at a bookstore.  Whether its the latest and greatest of a beloved series, a funny gift book, a sappy gift book, a history book on a topic of interest that you both share, music, movies, or just a gift card so she can go have some time to herself and pick out something of her own choosing, there’s something for everyone at a bookstore.

For Dads helping small children, a newer (but not too new) overlooked title is Tomie DePaola’s My Mother Is So Smart. DePaola has been an award winning children’s author for years, but even I didn’t know this 2010 publication existed until I stumbled across in the library the other day.  Its beautiful, as are all his books, and celebrates the love and awe he had for his mother as a child.  Its sweet, and perfect for a young mother to read to her toddler… although I did notice how many things I’ve neglected to master as a mom, like the perfect cookie recipe, and the uncanny ability to always know why my child is crying.

Great Gift #2: I dream of having a cleaning service come through my house once a year.  I keep a fairly clean house.  I actually enjoy cleaning, when I find the time and energy to clean up blocks and toys that have been strewn everywhere for the 300th time that day.  But the idea of having a cleaning crew come in every Spring and scrub my base boards, toilets, showers, and maybe also have my AC ducts cleaned out – that would be the BEST mother’s day gift EVER. (Aside from someone purchasing and installing all my hardwood floors over night without any assistance from me… that would be even better, but a little less practical as a mother’s day gift.)  If this awesome treat proved unobtainable, I might settle for lawn fairies to come weed my gardens in the middle of the night.

Shop AKKlemm.scentsy.us

Great Gift #3: After books and a laziness enabler, I choose  Scentsy products.  I love candles and fabulous smells, but the wickless candle deal with mood lighting has proven to be the best choice when a toddler is running all over the place.  When (I say when NOT if) your kid decides to lather themselves in hot candle wax and try to put every blessed thing you own under wax treatment, you want it to be low heat, no flame, I promise.  My favorite spring scents available this year are Pixie and Cerise.  The Just Breathe is also quite excellent and one of my year round favorites of all time.  But you know your Mom and/or Wife, get what she likes.

Great Gift #4: Reloadable Starbucks gift cards.  Who doesn’t practically live at Starbucks, or would if they could?  Its become an American staple.  Cliche, over-rated, over-priced, I agree, but hey, its pretty darn good coffee available on every street corner, I’ll take it.  The reloadable gift cards are pretty sweet.  Reload them a few times and you are an upgraded customer with free birthday drinks, free syrup add ons, free cups of coffee with your bean purchases, the list goes on.  Buy the mother in your life a gift card and take the time to reload it for her a few times before the year is up and BAM! she is one happy caffeined lady.

Whatever you do, be sure to enjoy the day.  Sundays should be lovely days anyway, but I hope one day Ayla will love to spend a lazy Sunday with me, reading, having coffee, or maybe picnicing in the sun if the weather is nice.

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