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Mother’s Day Snail

It’s Mother’s Day weekend and everywhere I turn, there are ads out for gadgets, flowers, candies…etc, that no Mom can do without. “What do you want for Mother’s Day?” the kids ask. “Clean your rooms, and don’t fight,” I say. They roll their eyes. “No, really,” they insist. “Really,” I answer.

I don’t really want anything material from them. Don’t get me wrong. I love receiving their homemade cards and it warms my heart when they give me flowers or make me Mother’s Day breakfast in bed (…until I inevitably wander out into the kitchen and see that there seems to be a Grand Canyon sized gap between my definition of cleaned-up and theirs). I just don’t want them running out to buy something at the store because they think they need to in order to properly “celebrate” me on Mother’s Day.

So…when I slowly opened my eyes this morning and was greeted by an excited Little Man holding a snail with a beautiful pink shell and a really long neck (I’m talking please-take-a-step-back-so-it-doesn’t-actually- slime-me long), I thought to myself, now THIS is the perfect Mother’s Day gift. No…NOT the actual snail itself…which kind of looked like some sort of body snatching alien…the way it was sizing me up… and reaching out towards me. It was the fact that Little Man was so excited about his find. It was that passion for nature, glowing so brilliantly in his eyes… a passion he was busting at the seams to share with me, his mom.

Another recent family moment, which could be categorized as anything but perfect, pops into mind. Now, this may not seem like an appropriate Mother’s Day topic… but bear with me. Here, in our new southern home, we recently learned about an annual occurrence, and by learned I mean in a baptism-by-fire kind of way. Just the other night, as we were nearing the end of our dinner, my Moon noticed something flutter up to the hanging lamp above the table. “A moth!” she called out. “Poor thing!” added my Sun, as she reached up to trap it in her hands. She motioned for Little Man to open the door so that she could let it outside. And that is when all hell broke out and we learned about THE SWARM. Apparently, every year, right around Mother’s Day, the termites begin to swarm. They are attracted to the light, and so the locals know to keep the lights off or very low during these events (I feel like this should have been included in some kind of welcome pamphlet). So, as Little Man opened the door in order for my Sun to free the little “moth”, 100 of its closest friends took advantage of the opportunity to storm the house and head straight for the kitchen light. Initially, there was chaos and screaming, but I was impressed at how quickly it turned to an organized family effort to vanquish the enemy. There were flyswatters, Dustbusters, and vacuums. Even the animals were getting in on the action and we were triumphant (though completely and utterly grossed out) in no time at all.

THAT is what I want for Mother’s Day! I want them to share their passions with me… to come to me when they are unsure about things… AND to fight along side me in order to vanquish threats to our family tranquility.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY to all you moms out there. May you have a peaceful, yet adventurous day with your offspring!

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