Mother’s Day from Home

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My Mother’s Day started as all should: Breakfast in Bed! Now, let’s be clear, I have NEVER been served breakfast in bed, and my children are 5 and 9. But there’s nothing like a pandemic to bring out kindness in people, amiright?

Imagine those Tide commercials that show how laundry detergent can save your breakfast-in-bed-provided-by-small-children experience. Well, it wasn’t quite like that, but I will tell you that cereal, while perhaps easiest to prepare, is not the easiest for your recipient to eat.

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I will give them an A+ for presentation! And yes, that’s chocolate on the plate beside those strawberries – so fancy! I will confess I haven’t eaten a bowl of cereal for breakfast in a long, long time. I’m more of a protein breakfast gal, usually something with eggs, and in case we are ever allowed in a room together again and you’d like to make me breakfast, here are my favorites:

  • Scrambled eggs with cheddar cheese (and sometimes ham)
  • Omelette with spinach, ham and goat cheese
  • French Toast with powdered sugar and real maple syrup
  • Fried egg on half a toasted multigrain english muffin with parmesan cheese
  • A Keto Pancake (even though we’re not on the Keto)

Or of course, Frosted Mini Wheats with a fresh strawberries and chocolate :) To be fair, my husband cooked an “after-breakfast” omelette for me, so I had that, too. Decadent! And to be really clear, my husband cooks one of my favorites every single day. Lucky me!

Back to Mother’s Day. It didn’t end with a fancy breakfast. After breakfast Ella wheeled in my office chair, dressed up like a throne (“for a queen”, she said):

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As Zoe pushed me awkwardly down the hallway, Ella pointed out some decorations they had made by hand. Ghosts. Not sure what to make of that, but it’s the thought that counts? Notice them hanging from the doorway behind her:

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My sweet husband had procured the kind of “flowers” I love – ones that you put into the ground! We’ve had a raised garden bed for years, which had the remnants of a wildflower garden I planted about 6 years ago by a tossing bag of mixed seeds a friend gave me across the bed. Every year “something” bushy has come up (we never identified it), giving us a pop of joy, but mostly, the bed ended up filled with weeds. Oh, and maybe some leftover spinach leaves I tried to plant, also years go, by tossing a bag of seeds throughout a vegetable garden.

Needless to say, that garden container has had a workout, given our sporadic interest in its contents. Because we don’t do it often enough, I always forget how much work it is… and Mother’s day was no exception. The day started off overcast, which was perfect for gardening, but by the time we were done the full sun had burned my shoulders. Oops?

I’m going to say it was for a good cause though, because look at the outcome!

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Even more special is that before we planted, the girls picked out specific flowers to “give” my mom, Grandma Ruth, my grandmother and me. So this is a Mothers’ Garden, filled with love, and as we planted each, we welcomed it to the garden.

I had also forgotten how planting with distracted kids is not really the “help” you think you have, but I remain thankful for gesture. Better yet, turns out those wild bushes that kept popping up had grown some HUGE bulbous roots. Guess who dug those out? (Hints: it was not me, and it was not anyone under the age of 10.) In fact, because there were so many bulbs, making planting difficult, Bart basically had to dig up the entire garden. Love that man.

Prior to planting, when the girls picked out the flowers for their grandmothers, they made short Happy Mother’s Day videos to let them know their “flowers” were joining our garden, and to wish them a great day!

Later in the day my sister and I hosted a Mother’s Day ZOOM for our extended family, which is in some ways better than the individual calls we would have made or cards we would have sent. So I’m thankful to get to “see” faces and have live interactions, even if they have to be virtual for now.

Though distracted kids LOVE to stare at screens, it’s hard to keep them interested in a group Zoom call when they’re not the show (or there’s no “show” to watch). I talked them into performing a dance to their new favorite song, Queen of Mean from the Descendants 3 movie. One day I will capture Ella singing this on video alone. It’s magical, and there’s a whole blog post about how quirky that kid has become. Her favorite line is “Now there’s a devil on my shoulder where the angels used to be.

Think about that.

At another point during our Zoom call, the kids had gone outside then came running back in because “Ella was bitten by a red bug.” We checked out the site, and there was no sign of a bug bite. As Ella described the bug (“bright red, with pinchers”), I encouraged her to draw it. Then she wanted Auntie Shawn (clearly the smarter of the twins) to identify it. See what you can come up with:

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Sure, that’s pink not red, but don’t let the color throw you off. She swears it was red, with pinchers, and despite some Google efforts, we were not able to surface a picture that matched the actual perpetrator (according to Ella).

Thankfully, that bug bite never appeared – talk about something that would have ruined a Mother’s Day: a trip to the ER! Disaster averted.

As a final note on the day, the image at the top of this blog post is of a wall in our hallway where the girls used blue painter’s tape to write “I Luv U Mom”. So in case you missed it, this post is filled with creative ways to fill your shelter-in-place days with memories. And if you haven’t stocked up on painter’s tape, just do it.

To keep it real, I’ll confess (again?) I’m really struggling with handling a full-time job and home schooling, trying to be the “Awesome Mom” who can even make a pandemic fun. My progressively testy tones don’t match the love that was showered on me for Mother’s Day, but maybe a positive part of all this is we’re all finding out how forgiving we can be.

I am inspired by the grace and kindness of the mothers around me, especially my own mom, who is teaching Ella to read, 3 hours a week, and embracing our every crazy dinner party or kooky idea – even watching the kids assemble a jigsaw puzzle (isn’t that like watching paint dry?) And also my sister, who is taking her time to meet with Zoe every morning to kickoff her day, helping her create confident, self-driven habits – much better than the prescribed (with input!) schedules I produce.

Here’s to ALL the amazing mothers out there (of kids & furries & others)!

This crazy time may bring out our “crazy”, but together we will make it through, and hopefully help take the GOOD STUFF with us to the other side of this mess. I mean, come on, all three of these moms below survived years of perms, so anything’s possible.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

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2 thoughts on “Mother’s Day from Home

  1. Hot tip: you might want to acquire the gmail address ella.shedevil@gmail.com before it’s gone. As someone with a shedevil address for decades, I find it’s helpful to warn people of what they’re getting. :)

    Happy Mother’s Day – sounds lovely with the ghosts, flowers and multiple breakfasts. You’re definitely earning your gifts this year!

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