Monday, May 30, 2016

A Different Kind of Memorial Day - Happy Birthday "Mom"

I was blessed to have two wonderful mothers in my life. I think many times people think that step-mothers are like in the movies. But, for the most part, they are just trying to fit in with the dynamics of someone elses family. They juggle not only their children, if they have them, but often work and taking on the new family responsibility.

I called her this week to sing her "Happy Birthday" with the girls and they had just gotten back from a 10 hour one way trip to support one of my sisters kids who was graduating from high school. She is willing to driven hours and hours to support her grandchildren. I think there was one year they have five graduations in three different states to attend. Here is a post where she drove down for Princess Fours Graduation. Here is one where she came down to Princess Three's graduation.

Here is one where at our annual lake camping a few summers ago. She and my dad pay for the group campground at nearly $200 a night.  

She is so willing to do anything I ask and is always helping. Here is a link to a post where they recorded themselves reading books for my kids and grandchildren. 

She is extremely thoughtful. If you mention something you like, she will look for it for you and try to find it for you. I saw some cute Mexican train domino holders she had made so that your tiles can stand and lean on them and she made me some for the girls and I which is time consuming. Here is a link to that post Here is a link to part 2 of that post.

Here is another example of her getting things for you if she can. I have a daughter that LOVES Sesame Street and we were looking for tickets for a concert with them and the Tabernacle Choir at Christmas one year and she got us tickets and not only for us but they picked up some of my nephews and nieces and drove them to the concert, then home after. She is always thinking of how she can do for our family and treats us as if we were her own.

I really think it is difficult in blended families as parents tend to favor their own. I truly have NEVER EVER felt like she has done that. She treats us as if we were her own. 

She worked most of her life and even retired after my dad retired. She isn't like some that will only spend "her" money on her kids. She and my dad pay $100 a month to each grandchild that choose to serve as missionaries anywhere in the world. The missions last from 18 months for girls to 2 years for boys. That is $2400 out of their pocket for each boy and $1800 for each girl that goes on a mission. 

They have always had one or two missionaries out but there was one point that they had 7 missionaries serving! That is $700 a month which is a mortgage payment or would be a payment on one or two really nice cars! They could have bought a nice cabin or vacation home with the money they have spent on missionaries over the years and it isn't like she has had many go yet as her children still have young kid and my siblings and I have many more children than hers so she has really sacrificed financially for our family. 

There have been other times that they "donate" to our families such a weddings, giving us cars and appliances and other items they could sell, but choose to give them to family instead. Before she gets rid of anything, she offers it to family.

She was always kind and loving to my mother and would always invite my mother to her home for Christmas dinners a tradition she started by cooking meals for my siblings and I and her kids. They also pay for our annual Christmas skating party and rent out the rink and provide lunch as well. 

I don't think our family would have half the traditions we do if she wasn't involved in the planning and execution. I am sad to say that the past few years, we haven't gone up to the memorial day picnic and ball game as I haven't had the best of cars for the past few years and it is always the last week of school for us so it is a crazy weekend. Her birthday and my sisters birthday are always around Memorial Day so we usually celebrate at the picnic. Once again, I am not able to go the 6 hour drive for the picnic as Princess Five and I are heading the other direction for a 4-H camp and I need to get my suburban running and serviced and we head out first thing Tuesday morning and I have had kids home all weekend so I need to get some stuff done before heading out. 

I haven't covered the half of what this amazing mother means in our family, to my girls, and her impact on my life! I am truly blessed to have TWO amazing mothers and will always be SO grateful for her in my life! I have written so many posts lately memorializing my mother with her recent passing that I wanted to take some time today to Memorialize my Other Mother! 

I LOVE YOU MOM! Thank you for all you do for our family and my girls! I could never repay or thank you enough for your kindnesses and generosity towards our family but I want you to know that I NOTICE what you do and I am GRATEFUL for what you do!  THANK YOU for what you do!  Consider yourself Hugged! 

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