The Sweetest Memories

She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her. ~Proverbs 31:27-28

Lisa, me and Ricky with Mom and Dad
Lisa, Me and Ricky with Mom and Dad

Some of the sweetest memories I have growing up are of my family sitting around the dinner table after we’d eaten, swapping stories about our day and commiserating with one another about what hardships we may have endured. I have to give credit to my mom for those special times. She was always a stickler for sitting together around the dinner table, making sure the TV was turned off and always using real plates. Mom never allowed pots on the table. All the food had to be put into serving bowls. It may seem simple and unnecessary, but these small things made a big difference. We had to focus on each other, not the TV, and we knew this time was special.

Sometimes we’d sit for over an hour, not wanting this sacred time to end. It was the time of day when we had Mom’s attention. She listened and we loved talking to her. I’m sure many nights she was tired and just wanted to sit for a while before bed, but she didn’t. Rarely did we have to jump up and hurry off somewhere. So we talked and laughed and sometimes even cried. Occasionally we’d get in fights and scream and march off to our rooms, but that’s what families sometimes do.

Studies show one of the strongest indicators that children won’t get into trouble is the family dinner table, eating together at least three times a week. Mom may not have realized it then, but what she was establishing was very important. It definitely worked in our home and I’ve always tried to emulate it with my own family. Our kids need our undivided attention.

Occasionally, though, Mom would let us break out the TV trays and heat up Libby Land frozen dinners for supper. We thought this was the greatest thing ever. I’m sure Mom did too, since she didn’t have to cook 

When we only break out of routine intermittently, like she did, they become special events for our kids. It allows us to take a break as well.

I’m sure raising three kids wasn’t easy for my mom. My dad was a truck driver who was gone most of the week, and when he was home was usually sleeping. So it was up to Mom to take care of everything, including us, while he was away.

Mother's Day
My sister Lisa, Mom and me with our daughters

I remember one evening when my dad was on the road and the weather was pretty bad. Tornado warnings had been issued and we were scared. She piled the three of us into her king-sized bed where we slept peacefully all night long. I’m not sure if she got any sleep that night, though. The next morning when we looked out the bedroom window, the barn beside our house was completely gone, taken out by a tornado. We’d slept through it all, trusting Mom to take care of us.

We must have worn Mom out, though. It’s a running joke in our family that she can fall asleep anywhere, anytime (except the dinner table!). You’ll be in a deep conversation with her and look over to find her head cocked over, eyes closed, in a deep sleep. I have pictures to prove it. 

It even goes back to when we were little. Sometimes we’d have to take Daddy to work at night. On the long, dark road back home, we’d yell and sing to make sure mom didn’t fall asleep at the wheel. Thank goodness she never did. God was looking out for us.

Mom and great-granddaughter Blakely
Mom and great-granddaughter Blakely

As we’ve grown up, Mom has always been there to help. When I married and moved into a mobile home in the middle of a cow pasture, she helped plant bushes and flowers around our humble abode to make it feel like more like home.

When I had my babies, Mom was there to help take care of them. She still does, sometimes, even though their almost all grown—giving advice, hugs and prayers. Now she even has great-grandchildren added to the mix and is still ready and willing to lend a hand.

Every time I’ve moved she’s helped me set up house, cleaning and organizing, wallpapering and painting. She taught me how to make a house a home.

The list could go on and on, but you get the picture. I know lots of moms do all of these things day in and day out, without much thanks or acknowledgement. I know my mom has. So today, as we’re approaching Mother’s Day, I want to take this opportunity to rise up and call her blessed. You are precious to me, MaMa, and I love you for all that you’ve poured into me. Thank you for always taking us to church, even when it was hard, for being a godly example for us to follow and for showing us the importance of family. Outside of our faith, it truly is the most valuable gift we receive in life.

       Happy Mother’s Day, MaMa!!

Limoges family 2013
The Limoges Family 2013

Do you have a story you’d like to share about your mom? I’d love to hear it!

6 thoughts on “The Sweetest Memories”

  1. Thank you Carol. That was so sweet, better than any gift or card I could ever receive. God has blessed me with three beautiful children Carol,Rick and Lisa.I believe a family should eat at the dinner table as much as possible and make memories, Families grow up so fast and are gone so enjoy every second that you can. I hope you and Lisa have a wonderful Mother’s Day.This will be Lindsay’s first Mother’s Day.Ginger and Lauren I hope your day is special.I love each of you very much.

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