Sunday, May 13, 2007

We've quit celebrating a lot of holidays around our house, at least in the sense of not wasting money on gifts for what we call "Hallmark Holidays." I don't want my kids wasting their hard-earned money on presents just because someone somewhere decided this should be a gift-buying day. For the last two weeks we've been inundated with commercials on television implying that husbands and kids should be spending thousands of dollars at Zales buying diamond necklaces and earrings for Mom, or buying iPods or cellphones at Best Buy, clothes or dishes at Marshall's, etc.

Yeah, I like presents as much as anyone. But the greatest gift to me is having children who are kind and loving, who are honest and hard-working, who don't drag me out in the middle of the night to bail them out of jail, who don't keep me up nights worrying that they're in trouble, who don't break me financially because they need drug rehab, and don't steal from me to support a drug habit. My greatest gift is four fantastic, wonderful, awesome children.

The oldest has two of the cutest little boys on earth. She's smart, funny, has a good job that lets her support herself and the boys, owns her own home, and she comes to see us several times a year even though it's inconvenient and tiring to make the trip after working all week. The second oldest lives far away, but he makes me proud when I see how he treats the ones he loves. He makes more money in a week than we do in two or three months, but he doesn't spend it on high living. He helps his family when they need it, helps his girlfriend when she needs it, puts some back for a rainy day. Oh, and he sent me flowers for Mother's Day. I can't remember the last time I got flowers, but I'm pretty sure the last ones also came from him.

The second oldest is just about to finish college. One more semester to go. He's held a 4 point average in all but one class, works part-time in the computer lab, comes home for the weekend when I need him to or when there's a family gathering so he can be part of it. He's at an age where a lot of kids pull away from their families, but he hasn't done that. I'm looking forward to the day when he finds that special someone and she knocks his socks off. I just pray she's kind and gentle, like he is.

The youngest is our rebel. She's opinionated and very vocal about her beliefs. But like the others, she's a damned good kid. She's beautiful and smart, a killer combination. We're still watching to see where she's headed in life, but I know, without a doubt, she'll make a difference. And she'll make us proud, as her brothers and sister have.

As for me, I tried to send my mom flowers but I waited too late, apparently. FTD's website and 800 number wouldn't take orders, I tried 1-800-Flowers, Teleflora...all busy. My mom is 800 miles away, so I can't pop by and take her a bouquet from the grocery store. I should have sent a card, but I was so busy helping the third child move home from college and working on my books, I forgot.

So I called her today to wish her Happy Mother's Day and reminded her of the hard backed book I gave her last month in case I forgot this month. Hopefully, like most mom's, she understood.

My kids haven't gotten together for a group photo in many years. Here's one from nearly 15 years ago.

Yeah, I've been blessed.

Happy Mother's Day!

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