Don't Hate, Appreciate!

Today is my mom's birthday. (My gift to her is to not disclose her advanced age in such a public forum ... you're welcome, Mom.)

It makes me think about all the gifts I gave her over the years, and how earnestly she showed her appreciation for them - even though some the vast majority of them sucked. Lids torn from cigar boxes, covered with paper I'd drawn on, and trimmed with lace. A polished rock glued onto an adjustable ring, where the gemstone should be. Strange bits of cloth "sewn" into weird shapes. I was so proud of all these gifts, so sure she'd love them - and why? Because she did love them ... or at least pretended to with an Oscar-worthy believability.

Before I had kids, I worried about my own ability to appreciate such gifts. Would a wilted dandelion or nondescript glittery blob really have the power to bring a genuine smile to my face? I doubted it. But I was surprised, because you know what? With kids, it truly is the thought that counts. You know that their goal was to make you happy - and that in itself is so heartwarming that, no matter what the gift, it's impossible not to love it.

Which is why I nearly cried when, after a recent excursion to Bible school, Colin ran up to me excitedly. He was holding something behind his back and grinning from ear to ear. With a proud exclamation of, "Look what I made for you, Mommy!" he produced the most beautiful necklace I've ever seen:

I swear to you, it could have been made with dried mouse turds and I would have had the same reaction - because I knew he had been thinking of me. He loved me. And he wanted to give me something special.

So thanks, Mom, for all the years of making me feel like every gift was a treasure. That's so important. As a token of my appreciation, I'm sending you a bracelet of dried macaroni, dipped in glue and sprinkled with every color of glitter I could find.

You're welcome. :)


  1. I made the most god forsaken ash tray out of rocks one year in summer school ('70's) and my mom kept it out for years... even though she doesn't smoke!

  2. When I first learned to sew, I stitched together several little pieces of material, creating a "quilt" that was about six inches by six inches. My mom still has it on display in her bedroom!
    Colin's necklace is so sweet.

  3. ahhh how sweet is he? I've heard all about the pink necklace he made now I know what it looks like. :-)

  4. I like the necklace Colin made for you! You're right - the most important part is the love that goes into each and every little gift. And I still have that polished-rock ring, gently tucked into the velvet slot in my jewelry box with all my other rings! It's STILL the thought that counts. I love you!

  5. Just stopping by from the housewife diaries! I love little presents from my kids. I couldnt ask for more.

  6. This is so true. I love everything my son has made for me--including the gaudy noodle necklace.

    Your son did a fantastic job with his necklace.

  7. very cute post. i used to make my mom homemade maracas using two stapled paper plates with dried beans. Now that's love.


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