Saturday, May 31, 2014

My Mother Was My First Teacher

Mother’s day is a time to reflect and remember all the wonderful things a mother does.

For me I remember great smells coming from the kitchen. She was the best cook around and we always found extra children at a very long table which was a gathering spot for a family of ten. There were always three vegetables, a meat, salad, homemade bread and a wonderful dessert. And, not like many families of today we ate together. Each of us had a chance to talk about our day. Our birthdays were celebrated by our mother cooking the birthday celebrant’s favorite dinner. Needless to say we had her famous fried chicken a lot.

The number one thing I remember about our mother was what a great teacher she was. In fact, she was our first teacher. On the weekends that old long dinner table served as the family desk. It is where we did our homework. She always said learning was our job Sometimes she would place an object like a vase or a lamp in the middle of the table. With pencil paper and crayons we began our adventures in art. We played an I Spy game in which each person had to give clues to something they saw in the room. The person who got it right also had to spell the object. We also played I Spy in the back of our father’s truck and we went down the road. My father had built a truck bed that had side boards and seats for all the children; eight of us five boys and three girls.

We did not have TV it was not invented yet. We did have an old cathedral shaped radio which we listen to in the evening when all the chores were done Hi Ho Silver, Name that tune, The Kate Smith show were among the family favorites.

For fun we played Chinese checkers, checkers, pickup sticks and cards. Because there were so many of us we could have our own choir. Taking care of each other was a number one rule in our house. We did the dishes together. The boys took out the trash while the girls did the sweeping and dusting. As soon as we got out of bed each morning we made it. We always hung up our clothes and helped younger ones do their chores.

There are so many things we learned with our mother’s nurturing. Let me list a few:

We learned to share with each other and our friends and neighbors.

We learned to make the most with what we had. The word improvise was an early vocabulary word for us. If we didn’t have something we made it. We grew our own food, raised chickens, and caught our own fish. Our father made our crib, carved the needle he used to knit the net and caught our fish.

We were taught good work ethics and that hard work will always show through.

As I reflect I can she my mother’s big brown smiling eyes. Together she and our dad made a house of love and dreams.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home