“Surely you are not going out in this weather!” It was one of my mother’s favorite comments.
“But Mom, my car has a roof over it,” was always my ready reply.
“Be sure and call me when you get there.” This could have been stitched into a sampler. We always heard it when we were leaving for home or on a trip. I have to admit I say it to my family as they’re going out the door.
“Do you think I’m made out of money?” This was every parents’ mantra.
“Don’t ask me how I know. I just know” We had to assume our mothers’ had super powers that could see above and beyond every situation. This was her pat answer that always signified the end of an argument. We were to use it later with our own children.
I remember when my 11-year-old son smoked his first cigarette. I came in from shopping and found him lying on the couch. His face was green and he was obviously sicker than a dog. I got a cool wet washcloth and wiped his face with it.
“You’ve been smoking, haven’t you?” I said.
“How do you know?” he asked. I didn’t tell him, but I had experienced the same thing when I was his age.
It turned out that he and his friend had tried it thinking it was a grown-up thing they wanted to try. I had done the same thing myself when I was his age but I didn’t tell him. So it isn’t always clairvoyance that guides mothers, it’s “been there and done that.”
“I don’t care if your friends’ mother lets her stay out ‘til past midnight. In my house I set the rules and as long as you live under my roof, you’ll be home when I say so!” Signed, sealed and delivered. What she said was law. We kids thoughts she was a dictator. Later, we set the same rule for our offspring.
“I said no, and I mean no.” How many time did I hear this? It was the final answer to any argument. There was no discussing it, no negotiating.
We thought of our mothers as jailers and wardens and someone who just wanted to curtail our freedom…fun. But in our later years, when we began raising our own children, we realized she was giving us boundaries that made common sense. It was a blueprint for living. And we owe them more than we can say.
Thank you Mom.
Pumpkin Pecan Bites
1 package (18-1/4 ounces) spice cake mix
1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
36 pecan halves
CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 to 3 tablespoons milk
In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, pumpkin, eggs, oil, cinnamon, baking soda and cloves; beat on low speed for 30 seconds.
Beat on medium for 2 minutes.
Fill paper-lined miniature muffin cups two-thirds full.
Press a pecan piece into each.
Bake at 350° for 17-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
Frost with cream cheese frosting if desired.