Monday, June 2, 2014

I Forgot to Tell You....

Have you ever had "Posters Remorse" after a Facebook post?  We've all had "buyers remorse" at one time or another.  But "posters remorse" can happen easily these days as well.  This morning, I had "posters remorse."  I woke up to the post I had written about my mom and just wished I could delete it.  Not because I had said something wrong, but because I didn't say it well enough.  I didn't do her justice.  I tried.  But I barely scratched the surface.  I wish my words were more eloquent.  I wish I could remember more.  My mom accomplished a lot.  But WHO she was is even more remarkable.  I wish I could bottle up the essence of my mom.

When writing last night, I forgot to tell you that my mom would have conversations with ANY young adult - a waitress, a flight attendant, a hotel clerk - and encourage them to continue their education.  She was passionate about being a life long learner and by the time we ordered at any restaurant, she had that young adult considering going back to college.

I forgot to tell you my mom LOVED setting people up.  If you are were a young adult and were single, my mom had a guy/girl she just *knew* you were going to love.  Dates were set up all the time.  Many marriages happened as a result.  She loves love.

I forgot to tell you that my mom's favorite organizing tips were 1) E & C and 2) Only Handle It Once.  "E & C" - Eliminate and Concentrate.  Eliminate what you don't need and concentrate on what is important and what you value most.  "Only Handle It Once" - If it touches your hands, deal with it.  Don't pick it up, put it down, and then have to deal with it later.  Only handle it once.  You'll save much time in the long run.

I forgot to tell you that my mom invented "Happy Nothing Day."  So if there was a month with no official holiday to celebrate, she would celebrate Happy Nothing Day.  We'd come home from school to streamers and balloons and a little gift at our plate.  My mom LOVES to look for reasons to celebrate anything and everything in life.  A TMI example of this, is that we were able to get our ears pierced as a celebration of becoming a "woman."  ;)  No milestone was little and no event was small.  We had a reason to celebrate whatever, whenever!

I forgot to tell you that my mom threw the BEST dinner parties for her friends.  A few of my favorites was her "In Poor Taste" party where everyone was supposed to come dressed "in poor taste" and everything at the party was in poor taste.  The brownies looked like little poops, people dressed super tacky (think plumber crack) and my mom acted in poor taste the whole dinner - even shaving her armpits at the dinner table!  She was HILARIOUS.  The other one I loved was for my dad's 50th she threw a "Better Half" party to celebrate my dad reaching mid-life.  Everyone came dressed as their better half and had to act like their better half all night.  Again, hilarious!

I forgot to tell you my mom really REALLY valued family time.  As busy as our lives were, she would always block off "Family Nights" on the calendar.  When my sisters and I were younger, it was every Friday night.  And we'd rotate who picked what we got to do for Family Night.  (bowling, roller skating, etc..)  As we grew older and busier, she didn't sacrifice family night.  They remained a priority and she'd work around our schedules.  She loved to have people over and entertain, but she also protected time investing in just our party of 5.

I forgot to tell you that one Christmas my mom invited our old, widowed next door neighbor with dementia to join us on Christmas Day because she had no family in town.  And when she was finally put in a home, my mom visited her once a week - even when Mrs. Giles had no idea who anyone was anymore.  My mom visited without fail.  Another Christmas we had a single mom join us whose kids were with their dad for Christmas and she was alone.  Our home was a safe place for whoever needed one.

I forgot to tell you that my mom kept our house immaculate at all times.  And when I say immaculate I mean IMMACULATE.  Closets, drawers, cupboards.  What was seen and what was unseen was always in order.  Her driving force?  To be a perfectionist?  Nope.  She wanted anyone to be able to drop by at any time and feel welcomed and she wanted to be available to serve them without hesitation.  She even had a hidden key outside our door and typed instructions on how to use the TV remotes and A/C etc.. inside on the counter in case someone needed a place to stay while we were gone or out of town. She would just tell them where the key was and they were able to make themselves at home. Her home was her ministry.

I forgot to tell you that my mom was creative in her parenting.  When she taught us piano and we got into a "rut" she told us she hired a new piano teacher for us, named Mrs. Magilicutty.  The day for our lesson came and the doorbell rang.  We were so excited - ran to the door and found my mom standing there, dressed as "Mrs. Magilicutty." She introduced herself and all of a sudden new life was breathed into our lessons with our "new" teacher.   ;)

Here I am again. Needing to stop writing but I don't want to.  I literally could go on and on.  You've indulged me enough by reading this far.  I don't expect many will.  And I get it.  But I just had to say more today.  I'm sure over the next season of life as she continues to decline, there will be more "volumes" of these types of posts.  Thank you for letting this be a safe place to remember.  And reflect. And celebrate.

My mom was remarkable.  Gracious.  Smart.  Generous. Kind. Selfless.  Achiever.  Leader.  Strong.  Wise. Intentional.  Funny.  Hard working.  Faithful.  Creative.  Talented.
But most of all?


  1. Deanna, These are wonderful words and reminders of who your mom is and was. What a wonderful way for your kids to someday get to know the mom you remember! You are leaving a wonderful legacy for them. Your mom would love that! :) Cindy Todd

  2. And she was warm. The night our whole crazy family stayed over at your parents' house she had welcome signs and notes of instruction to make us feel at home...and breakfast for us the next morning before church. And her smile! Her smile was and is a friend-maker. She smiles, she said hello, and just like that we thought we were part of her family.

  3. What an inspiration to read! I love these ideas! She is amazing!

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  5. Stephanie workmanJune 3, 2014 at 5:03 AM

    Thanks for sharing this! She was a remarkable woman! Writing this is a great way to process & keep her legacy alive!

  6. Kleenex needed! Your mom is amazing. Hope you and she don't mind if we want to imitate :) "In poor taste" parties and celebrating nothing days. Wow, what a special mom you have!