Happy Mother’s Day!

May 11, 2008

Twenty-two years ago, my mom celebrated her first Mother’s Day as an actual mom.

I’m her oldest child and it was my birth that turned her into a mom, but she gets all the credit for being such a good one. I certainly had nothing to do with it. She doesn’t even have any gray hairs that I can pretend I contributed to.

When I was a teenager, I went to a week-long church camp for about five summers in a row. Each parent was supposed to send along a letter that would be opened on the last night of camp. My mom never forgot to send one along (thank you!) and she made it extra-fun by, instead of writing a long sappy letter, made a list of great things about me. After the first year, I always looked forward to this part hilarious, part sweet letter.

In her honor, today, I figured I’d write her a list of 25 great things about her:

  1. She is TGM (The Good Mom).
  2. She loves pretty things like flowers and dishes.
  3. She’s always up for a fun adventure to somewhere new and unexplored.
  4. She is great about doing things individually with each of her children. Our trip to New Orleans (or N’awlins) in 2000 was extremely memorable.
  5. She loves to watch movies. Whenever I hear the opening music for Anne of Green Gables, I think of her watching that and other movies over and over as she ironed. (Now I just watch the movies and don’t iron).
  6. She always has a nice-looking dinner table (and delicious food to go with it).
  7. She was extremely supportive of all my after-school activities, coming to all my plays and even once coming to a dress rehearsal since it looked like she might be out of the state with Shepard for treatment during the production.
  8. She loves to send little packages for holidays or even for no real reason – nothing is more fun to get in the mail.
  9. She always plays with my hair when I sit next to her.
  10. She’s “still got it” when it comes to fashion.
  11. She’s a great seamstress. I was looking through some old pictures today and was amazed at how many cute homemade clothes we had.
  12. She plans amazing trips. We’ve traveled a lot in the USA and elsewhere and I can’t remember a single trip that wasn’t a complete blast.
  13. She’s a phenomenal public speaker.
  14. She loves to laugh.
  15. She establishes (and maintains) great traditions, like seeing a movie in the movie theater on Christmas Eve each year.
  16. She loves to read and has read literally hundreds of books aloud to her children over the last two decades.
  17. She’s welcomed both her son-in-laws into the family and made every effort to make them feel that they belong.
  18. She loves doors – whenever we drive through neighborhoods, she comments on the cool doors of different houses.
  19. All my friends have always liked her and thought she was super fun and cool.
  20. She makes all of us feel like her favorite child.
  21. She always made us great Halloween costumes – we were never the sad children dressed up as hobos.
  22. She’s always interested in our lives, but not nosy or intrusive.
  23. After decades of not being a runner, she now runs three miles a day (might I mention that she far out paces her daughters that are in their twenties).
  24. She’s been remarkable at helping each of us develop individual talents and interests.
  25. She has excellent nicknames for all of us – I’m usually Louie. Merrick is Merksy, Landen is Donie and Crawford is Goghs.
  26. (BONUS!) She really was Mother of the Year in 2003 (bet you didn’t even know it was an official award established by FDR’s mother).

I love you, Mom! Happy Mother’s Day!

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  • Reply TheMoncurs May 11, 2008 at 9:56 pm

    Wow Mother of the Year? Super imrpessive! Yay Janssen’s mom!

  • Reply Bart May 11, 2008 at 10:25 pm

    Even though I now do my own ironing (thanks for all the times you did do the ironing, btw – remember? back in the day when you had Gilmore Girls episodes to watch on Tuesday evenings?), I have no doubt you’ll be a mother just like yours. That’s one of the reasons I married you!!! A great mother often has great daughters! And it’s certainly the case with you!

  • Reply Terri B. May 12, 2008 at 12:38 am

    What a great tribute to your mom. Makes me want to know her :o)

  • Reply Rhiannon May 12, 2008 at 2:59 am

    So Sweet! One Easter, my mom sent me an Easter Basket to school containing – candy, top ramen, a roll of quarters, hairspray, and various other things I’d need. Best basket ever – and stuff only a mom would know her little girl needed. 🙂

  • Reply Jess May 12, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Aww, this is so sweet. I’m glad you’re so close with your mom.

  • Reply monica and brad May 13, 2008 at 5:16 am

    I would love to meet your mom some day. She has no idea who I am, but that would be so cool for me!

  • Reply Science Teacher Mommy May 13, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    I’m totally going to stop thinking what a good mom I am and get to work. 🙂

  • Reply Sara May 13, 2008 at 8:36 pm

    I’m going to print this out and make it part of my to-do list! Seriously, though, your mom sounds great and it’s a tribute to her that you wrote this about her!

  • Reply The Dynamic Trio May 14, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    That’s so sweet! Mother’s are such special individuals. I’ve always thought that because God can’t physically be with us that’s why he sent us mothers. 🙂 Beautiful tribute Janssen.

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