Friday, May 6, 2011

Mother's Day: Actions, Not Words

So the big joke around these parts is that for Mother's Day, my family is going to take me to the Santa Cruz Boardwalk for the day so they can go on the rides. Yay. What mother doesn't dream of her special day being spent amongst the screaming masses watching her kids getting alternately jacked up on sugar and grease and then reaching the precipice of vomiting as they stagger off each loud and disorienting ride? Let's stop at a bike store and an Abercrombie on the way home too!

If I didn't know they were kidding - and take it from me, Andrew, you are kidding - I'd have to explain that Mother's Day is about doing something for MOM. Something you might not normally do, like attend the big Craft Fair in Napa or take her to dinner at the Beach Chalet in San Francisco. But because you love the mother in your life so much, you can suck it up for 24 short hours and do what she wants.

Those greeting store cards with their insipid poems really get under my skin for their vague odes and promises: "Mother, You Are The World To Me, And I Bless The Day I Was Born to You." "Mother, You Are An Angel To Me." "To A Perfect Mother Who Loves Unconditionally."

You know what your mother would love unconditionally? Not the card, but rather the scenario of waking up on Sunday morning to see her family hard at work putting away the shoes from under the piano and behind the ficus, weeding in the vegetable garden, and sorting through the clothes in the dresser to make a neat stack of outgrown clothes to send to the Salvation Army. Mother loves to hear you say, "We already made our breakfast, and cleaned it up too (emphasis mine)!") Mother loves when her husband hands her the remote and says "I can miss a day of basketball. What do YOU want to watch?" Actions, not words, people.

It is in that spirit that I am giving this week's Music Moment over to my mom, who is an angel to me, loves me unconditionally, blesses the day etc. After considering Marty Robbins and Kenny Rogers, I'm asking Gordon Lightfoot to sing her very favorite song, "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald." Gets her weepy, in a good way, every time.

C'mon, altogether now on the "…great lake they call Gitchigoomee…"


  1. Oh, how funny--I blogged about almost the same thing this morning. I don't want a $5 impersonal card and an overpriced flower bouquet. I want peace and quiet and someone to clean my bathroom.

    It's so simple. So cheap. And it would mean SO much.

    Enjoy your day!

  2. I love this. So very true. (Does EVERY piano collect shoes?? Our does too.)

    This might not surprise you considering our cosmic taste in music, but I too grew up listening to Gordon...this song is one of my Dad's favorites.

  3. You are just too good!

  4. Here I am again feeling guilty that on Mother's Day all I want is to *not* be in the company of the very 3 people that made me a Mother in the first place. I know, it's awful and many will judge harshly. But I say, judge away. And while you're at it fold the laundry, *put it AWAY* and don't let the door hit you on the way out.
    You rock Nancy. May your Mother's day be full of Jane Austen-era mini-series, elastic waist pants & really good take out.

  5. Nancy, Enjoy even those moments in Santa Cruz. This will be my first Mothers Day with both boys away. I am going to dinner at my neighbors, I've kind of adopted her kids. ~ Beth

  6. I adore Gordon. Truly. I'd even go see him in concert, but it might upset my fellow Fanilows.

    Happy Mother's Day!

  7. After I had my temper tantrum (that I wasn't proud of) for not getting what I wanted in the am, we had a very nice Mother's Day afternoon. But why don't they learn from the year before. Do we really have to S P E L L it out for them. We plan everyday, wouldn't it be nice if they (and I mean kids and husband) could plan one day a year for me.
    PS I love the Big Dipper!!

  8. Love this true. SO true. Don't they know the best present would be to do some friggin' WORK around the house so you don't always have to do it all?


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