Happy Friday y’all! It’s been a crazy week around here. EJ has been running a fever for about a week so we ended up spending some time at the doctor this week. It’s always heartbreaking to see your baby in pain.
Last year I shared life lessons my dad taught me for Father’s Day; so this year I thought it only fitting that I share some life lessons I’ve learned from my mom. My mom and I haven’t always had the best relationship. I was definitely a daddy’s girl growing up, and my brother was a mama’s boy. We’ve yelled and screamed at each other more times than I’d like to admit, but at the end of the day when I need advice or want to vent I always call my mom.
Our relationship grew after I had Little A, and I’m so glad I can count on her to be there when I need her. Even just Wednesday, I was stuck at the doctor with EJ and needed to pick Little A up from school. I called my mom and she dropped everything to pick her up for me. Definitely one of the benefits of having parents close by.
My mom didn’t have it easy growing up. She lost the vision in one of her eyes as a child and got teased often for it. Kids can be cruel and it makes me so sad to think of her being bullied as a child. But she overcame her limited vision and is so talented when it comes to interior design. She just has an eye for it (pun intended, love you Mom!). Growing up, we’d never buy my dad the power tools; they were always for my mom. She used to build and refinish furniture all the time. I always wish she’d opened up a boutique shop to share her amazing talent with others.
My mom has always been very frugal (or cheap, however you see it) and even though it drove me nuts growing up (still does sometimes) I’ve learned a lot from her when it comes to budgeting and finances. She’s the reason I was able to buy my first house right out of college!
Here’s some of the best advice my mom has given me.
We were never late to anything growing up and that’s 100% because of my mom. She has great time management skills and always made sure we were on time and looking our best. She always dressed us nicely and did my hair (except in braids…my mom never could braid my hair….probably why I can’t braid now either) so we looked put together and not frumpy or messy.
The rule of thirds
Like I said above, my mom is a great interior decorator and taught me all about the rule of thirds when it comes to styling. Styled bookshelves, desks, bedside tables, etc…all should have items styled in groups of 3, curtains should be 1/3 the width of the window, photos in groups of 3. I’m still not the best at this but my mom can come in, take what I have, and make it look 10 times better than I did, always using the rule of thirds.
Always take property tax into consideration when purchasing a home.
Totally random, I know. My mom is obsessive about property tax. It’s the first question she asks when we mention areas we’re looking at for houses. But as annoying as this is most of the time, when I look at houses I always check what the property taxes are. It can be a big deciding factor on purchasing a home.
Road trips are essential family bonding time.
Y’all I hated road trips as a kid. My parents knew it was time to sell our motor home when it was parked outside of a hotel….because I refused to camp again. Yes, I was that child. But now I love road trips. I love seeing new sights that I never would have seen if we’d have flown somewhere, and I have so many great memories from all the road trips we took. I hope that my kids will love road trips, but at least I can empathize if they don’t.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to feel fulfilled.
I talked about money a few times in my post about my dad, but really my mom was the gate keeper of the money in our family. My mom was always the cheapskate when we were kids. Except for certain things, (like my bedroom set that she had shipped from the east coast; the same bedroom set I still have today) she didn’t buy overly expensive things. My parents didn’t buy a brand new car until I was in 7th or 8th grade. Even though my dad made the money and my mom stayed at home, she did the budgeting and kept our heads above water. We didn’t live a lavish lifestyle, but we had everything we needed. They put me through college, bought me my first car and taught me how to save and budget. Not a lot of parents teach their kids about money, but I’m sure lucky that mine did.
It can be fun to thrift shop.
Another thing I absolutely loathed as a child, but now love. My parents are big fans of “antiquing.” Anytime my mom would see a new antique store we’d have to stop. You never know what you will find in there, she’d say. Same with thrift stores. I was embarrassed to be seen in the Goodwill or Salvation Army (except during this vintage clothing phase I went through in middle school) but my mom was always able to find some great pieces of furniture there, and transform them into something that looked brand new.
At the end of the day, no matter how big the fight was, your mom will always be there.
We have had some epic battles, like the time I came home from my senior trip to Cancun with a henna tattoo and my mom thought it was real. She was on the phone to my university to cancel my registration because she couldn’t let me out of her sight. Yep, we fought hard, but we loved hard. Our relationship may not be perfect, but when I need my mom, she’s there for me. I’m so glad that today my mom and I have a better relationship than we ever have. I can see things the way she does, understand why she did what she did when I was growing up, and I respect her for it.
I love you Mom. Happy Mother’s Day.
What’s the most important life lesson your mom taught you?