Now that I am a mom, I understand that parenting is the hardest job out there. I also now see that moms are way under appreciated. I never really appreciated my mom until I had my first daughter.
There are several things I now appreciate about the way my mom raised my sister and me. She never seemed to be just surviving. She was always very organized and she seemed to genuinely enjoy being around me, my sister, and our friends.
When I think back to my childhood with my mom, there are several things I think my mom really did right as a parent.
She always played outside with us.
I have really fun memories of my mom and I playing basketball outside, watching her clean our pool while I laid out and didn’t help at all, and riding our 4-wheeler together. I actually almost ran over her with our 4-wheeler once. I missed her and hit our minivan. Those were the days.
She took us to the best classes and camps
We did not have all the money in the world, but my mom wanted us to excel at what we were good at. Each summer she took me to sports camps and my sister and I went to cheerleader camp. She did push excellence on us, but instead provided fun resources that helped build our self-esteem in different areas, and helped us become excellent at what we were doing.
We had to earn things
I remember being about ten years old wanting my own hair dryer. My mom had a hair dryer that I had been using, but I wanted my own. My mom said I had to do chores and earn the money if I wanted it. It was $20. So, I did laundry, swept and mopped, and asked my grandmother if she had any chores I could do. I earned my first $20 and went and bought my first hair dryer. I was so proud.
This is how things were at our house. If we wanted things that were wants and not needs, we earned them. My sister and I both got jobs starting at age 16. Our parents paid for our cars, and we paid for our gas and weekend spending money. This taught me several valuable life lessons. Besides teaching responsibility, it taught me how to understand what I really need and what I could live without from a young age.
We were taught how to manage our money
When I was in 7th grade, my mom took me to get a checking account set up. I don’t remember why she did this, but I bet it was because I was so great at doing my chores and I had too much money lying around. So, we went to the bank, and she set me up a checking and savings account. She told me that every time I made a deposit into my checking account, I also had to put some money in my savings account.
I did this all through high-school and college. Because of my moms advice, I was able to enter marriage at age 23 with money in my savings account to offer my new family.
Learning to manage my finances and start saving at an early age also made it easier for me to begin tithing. I had never kept all of the money I had earned. When I was a Junior in college, It became clear to me that I was supposed to be tithing. Living on a little less didn’t seem like that big of a deal.
We knew she would find a way to make it to all of our events
She was not a stay-at-home mom. She worked a full-time job. A lot of our events were during her work hours, but she made a way to be there.
She was hospitable
Our friends were always welcome at our house. My mom loved when we had people over to spend the night. She would drive us down to the movie store to rent a movie, and sometimes she would drive us around town’s ‘loop’ in our minivan. We thought this was really cool, but now I realize that it was not cool at all.
Shegave us room to be who we were
I have always been a bit of a free spirit. In high-school I would sit outside and make really strange picture frames from things like cut up magazines, and I had dreams of one day selling them. Instead of saying I could never make a living selling magazine picture frames, she just let me be. I ending up having a very successful career in advertising sales before I decided to stay home with our girls.
We always knew she would do anything for us. And she still will
My mom was there for us during our childhood for anything and everything. What makes her so great is that she is still there for us for anything and everything. She has flown across the country with my kids without me on two separate occasions because she knew I needed help. If you have ever flown across the country with a 1 and 3-year-old, then you know doing this for someone else’s kids is the greatest sacrifice someone can offer. (I should also mention she is a great leader because she convinced my stepdad to help on the first flight and my sister to help with the second).
Even though I don’t tell her enough, I am so thankful for my mom. And I love how she raised me.
What do you think your mom got right when raising you? We would all love to see your reply in the comment section below!