Monday, May 14, 2012

I've Got Sunshine on a Cloudy Day

My sister, mom and I at brunch
I miss my dad every day, but some days are harder than others. May 13 is the worst day each year because it is the day that we said goodbye. One of the days each year that I let myself ugly cry, with big old sobs and crocodile tears. I do not know that there will ever be a time that it does not hurt.

And yet, yesterday was also Mother's Day, which made it a day of joy and happiness. A day to celebrate my wonderful mom, who has done so much for my sister and I. Plus I got to see my grandma, aunt, uncle, and cousins for a fantastic Mother's Day brunch. And that made me a whole lot less sad. Especially since Mother Nature gave us such a lovely day to be outside.

Here are just a few of the many things that I love and admire about my mom:

She comes from a family of nine kids. Between her siblings and step-siblings, there are seven girls and two boys. I had a hard enough time sharing with one sister, let alone that many. But there are definitely times when I am envious of having that many siblings, especially when they share stories from growing up.

She has a Master's Degree in Adult Education. After my mom received her undergraduate degree in Dietetics and completed her internship, she later went back to school for her master's degree at UWM. She and my dad both placed high value on education, which I greatly appreciate. My sister and I have master's degrees in Student Affairs/Higher Education (Rachel will officially get her degree next Sunday at graduation, wahoo!). This is a degree that most people have never heard of, and many of my colleagues would tell you that their parents have no clue what they do. But our mom does! In fact, back when I was studying in graduate school, she even knew of some of the same theories.

She volunteers. A lot. When I think about my desire to get involved and volunteer, I look to the amazing example set by my mom. She has been involved in a number of different church groups and service organizations since I was a little kid. She currently is a member of the Waukesha Service Club, and has taken on significant leadership roles, first with their Thrift Shop, and now the gift shop at the hospital. She has been retired for some time, but I think her schedule is crazier than mine.

She loves to knit and managed to teach me. She makes beautiful baby sweaters that they have sold at the hospital gift shop, in addition to these cute little vegetable baby hats that I swipe and give as shower gifts. She has also knit a number of gorgeous sweaters, scarves, and other items. She was patient enough to teach me to knit, and now it is one of my favorite hobbies too.

She is both my mom, and my sister. One of the most special moments was when she put on my badge at my Alpha Phi initiation. I had no idea that she was going to be there, so it was a wonderful surprise. She has taught me a lot about what it means to be a sorority woman and live your ritual through her daily example.

Happy Mother's Day Mom!

Don't forget to enter my very first giveaway! Today is the last day to enter. I'm picking a winner tomorrow morning. Good luck!

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