FeathersWith Mother’s Day on Sunday I find my self thinking about my mom, who died in 2006. I thought about her today as I made pipe cleaner rings with my fourth graders that they could give to their moms, grandmothers or aunts.

I hope these children have as wonderful a mom as I did. I hope they feel, as I did, that my mom was always there for me, for all of us, no matter what. She made our family home someplace I always wanted to be, even after I was grown. And I hope they find a letter like I found, while going through her things after dad died.

Mom wrote this letter in 1990 to cousins who lived in Oregon that she had not met at the time. These cousins were youngsters when she wrote the letter, so she told them about herself in language they would understand. The letter hangs on my refrigerator where I can see it every day.  Here’s a little of what she said.

“I’ll tell you about me. I like chocolate ice cream. My favorite color is dark blue. I love to read. My favorite books are Swiss Family Robinson and The Secret Garden. I also like The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, Uncle Wiggley, The Black Stallion books and many others. When I was a little girl I liked “Tarzan” at the movies. We did not have television. It had not been invented…..I like cats and dogs and all other animals……Do you like to watch birds? I thought you might enjoy seeing what color our Blue Jays are so I’m enclosing these feathers I found.”

I can hear my mother saying these things as I read her handwriting. How revealing these choices of books are to me about what mom loved and her boundless curiosity. I now also know why she once painted our living room dark blue and hung jungle print curtains.

And I look at the feathers I found in the yard, that I keep on my kitchen window sill. And I smile.


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