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Connecticut River Valley, New England, United States

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

My Greatest Inspiration--My Mother

The most inspirational person in my life is no longer physically with me--she would be 114 years old were she alive--my mother. She made all my clothes by hand until we were able to afford a portable Singer sewing machine when I was about 10. I remember going to a friend's birthday party when I was about 6 years old. Mom wasn't there, for some reason, but I was wearing a beautiful tiered dress she'd made for me--I loved it and felt beautiful in it. I still remember that it was a brownish color with Alice in Wonderland at a dressing table looking in a mirror. At each tier, Mom had sewn brown satin ribbon that tied in bows at the back of the skirt. The mothers at the party commented how beautiful it was and I proudly announced my mother had made it by hand. One woman didn't believe me and lifted my skirt to look at the stitching along the seams. I still remember her amazement and my mother's anger when I told her what happened--that they would lift my skirt and embarrass me. Mom also crocheted, knitted, darned socks! and embroidered. She taught me all those things and except for the crocheting, which. I never got, I still do them. But Mom also had imagination and we looked for pictures in the clouds together and, in winter, along the Taconic Parkway, we loved looking at all the beautiful princesses in their white puffy gowns--the pine trees along the side of the road. She loved dance and theatre and we went to the NY ballet every year to see Nutcracker. Radio City Music Hall was another place we frequented and the Capital and Paramount theatres, not just for the movies but for the live performances. Our numerous trips to the Broadway theaters and going back stage to visit friends who performed on stage are some of my favorite memories. I continued that tradition here in Vermont with my own daughter when she was young. Both she and I have an eclectic taste in music and I'd say that comes right from my Mom. I also think that imaginative musing of clouds and snow covered trees developed my eye for my photography and for the layouts I do in my scrapbooks. I also went beyond Mom in that, having more time for hobbies than she, I write and paint with various media. For my own and my family's enjoyment. I miss Mom every day but I'm lucky to still have her youngest sister, who is now 92. Aunt Shirl is so much like her and encourages me, just as Mom did. Every time I sit down to write, draw, or work on my scrapbooks, music playing in the background I feel Mom looking over my shoulder making suggestions or making a positive comment on my choices.

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