You all know that I haven't been posting lately because I was busy preparing for my mom's birthday, and Thanksgiving. I meant to write a post dedicated to my mom on her birthday, but things kind of got away from me. I thought maybe it would be appropriate to share with you things my mom taught me, that I am grateful for...
Mom taught me...
1) That being angry at someone hurts me more than them. Forgiving heals me. She is the most forgiving person I know.
2) That it IS my responsibility to care for those who are weaker. She used to visit and shop for the elderly on our block. No special neighborhood outreach program. No big ceremony for her celebrating her years of volunteerism at the end. Just the knowledge that she was there for people who needed her.
3) I can do what I set my mind to. Nobody ever cheered me on more than Momma.
4) We are more valuable than the things we do, but we still need to do for others to feel valuable. I don't love mom any less now that she can't walk than I did when she was able to help me with errands and stuff. She is still so cherished.... But she needs to be able to do things for others in order to feel that life is worth living. Mom doesn't run errands for me or elderly neighbors anymore, but her quiet prayers give us strength and she now makes things for families, friends, and even strangers.
5) Momma taught me to cook. She gave me the confidence to believe it is okay to change a recipe to suit my family better. When I started putting olive oil instead of vegetable oil in her bean salad recipe, she was cool with that. When I put canned tomato sauce instead of real tomatoes in Daddy's Hungarian Goulash recipe because my husband has diverticulitis, she gave me the nod to do what was best for us.
6) That BÓG (Polish for God) is watching me. Yes, when I was little, it sounded kind of like a threat. And I had a complex that God could see me when I was taking a bath. I was a modest little girl. But now that I am an adult I have a clearer picture that she meant watching over me, not spying on me. :-)
7) That it never hurts to watch the weather forecast so that I can plan for tomorrow, or, in the case of winter in Chicago, next week.
8) That you can never have too much Crystal Lite in the house.
9) That if a recipe didn't turn out just how I wanted it, don't admit it. Claim it is a new recipe...
10) People respond better to patience than to being chewed out.
11) Always wear a hat that covers the ears during Winter.
12) Have extra blankets in the car in Winter.
13) Keep an extra five dollars in your coat pocket in case you run into someone who needs money, but are afraid to open your purse. (My momma is the only person I know who could be suspicious of strangers and generous to them at the same time.)
14) Hot chicken soup will cure a cold.
15) Hot tea will cure almost anything else.
16) People like getting cards for Birthdays and Anniversaries.
17) Mom taught me how to read. Now that her eyesight is poor, we often listen to books on tape together.
18) Shortcuts aren't always bad, so long as they don't prevent you from learning the right way. I learned to tie my shoes with the bunny ears, not the rabbit through the hole...
19) Music from other cultures can be as exhilarating and uplifting as music from our own. Mom is Polish, Daddy was Hungarian, yet Mom would listen to Irish music, Italian music, German music, Mariachi music....lots of different music played in our kitchen.
20) To dance wherever I darn well please. For momma, that had been our own kitchen, sometimes the living room....For me, any supermarket in my area still courageous enough to play music (I found a fruit store in my area that still plays music, and I shop there a lot now! They even sell meat and groceries! Yayy!)
I'm sure that's not the end of it, but I have things to prepare for tomorrow, and Momma also taught me that I'd better make cooking and serving for Thanksgiving a priority! ;-)
Happy Thanksgiving, and God Bless You!