What you SHOULD do for Mother’s Day, I double dog dare you.

Last week I gave you a list of things you should not do for mothers day. Mostly because in my past I was the giver of those types of offerings. Not cool I know, but I blame my dad.

Okay, maybe that isn’t fair either. I have no excuse, I was just thoughtless. Perhaps I wasn’t as thoughtful as I could have been.

I am now a changed woman! Motherhood did that for me. I am envious of those of you who already own the thoughtful gene. It has been work for me, but I am now considered in some circles as thoughtful. About time too, I am now middle aged. I am a slow learner.

To be fair, I often had my thoughtful moments, but my taste wasn’t always appropriate.

When I was 5 I was crafter extraordinaire. I recycled junk and made the most amazing things. I often would take empty tissue boxes and create stunningly hip and fabulous, not to mention groovy, Barbie furniture. Between you and me and the hundreds of people reading this, I never waited for the tissue box to be empty. I emptied it myself, then needed to find a way to dispose of the stack of 4″ tissues without being caught by my mother or grandmother, better known as the Tissue Gestapo.

Sometimes the tissues would be blankets for my Barbies. Sometimes I would use a hair elastic and make Barbie ball gowns with the tissue. I would juggle 3 pieces at a time (my brother taught me how – he can juggle anything). And sometimes I would make bouquets of flowers. Those were the days when tissues would come in UNenvironmentally friendly pretty colours such as pink or blue. The 70’s was bad for the environment but all about clashing colour! For a 5 year old, this was awesome! 5 year olds think all colour works together, and are willing to prove it to the world!

I knew Mother’s Day was approaching because I am thoughtful like that my Kindergarten Teacher told me. We had made cards in school with our handprints on them. I thought my mom should have a gift too because she was the best mom ever! When I caught a salmon, she buried it under our tree to make it grow. Okay, it wasn’t a salmon it was a jackfish – grandpa lied. When I brought home cases of artwork to show her, she placed it in a special spot in the attic for my kids. I learned years later the the “Attic” was a euphemism for “the farm where puppies for to die play”. She always had my hair cut short for ease of care. This required bows be sewn on my undershirts to PROOVE I was a girl. Very thoughtful of her to make sure I had bows on those shirts…my mom WAS THE BEST!

Now because she was the best, I thought long and hard about an appropriate gift. I looked at my stack of tissue, multi colour of course. and decided I would use the same technique I used previously in bouquet making and make a corsage for church! She would LOVE it!!!!

I would explain to you how to make it but it’s too confusing…google is your friend.

All I am going to say is MY flower was bigger and more… more… um… bigger! Than those flowers you can make via those websites. My flower came with a safety pin so my mom could pin it to her dress Sunday morning and show it off to all the other moms and prove to those moms that HER daughter loved her best!

I know you must be weeping with sentiment at this moment and possibly regret because you weren’t as thoughtful as me. It’s not too late. You can make your mom a beautiful tissue flower too. In fact, I double dog dare you.

The Edmonton Tourist contributes a weekly colum every Monday to the Scarecrow Festival in support of ABC Head Start. This mother’s day post was originally published here  at the Edmonton Scarecrow Festival.

Sunday is for Pancakes

You know that feeling when you are doing a regular, not out of the ordinary chore and you are suddenly transported by memory to another place in time? Is it just me this happens to? I highly doubt that, liars…

Today is Pancake Day! Yes I know its lent but I didn’t give up eggs and dairy, just wine and turtles. Turtles have been a challenge but the wine part is going… well lets just it’s going. Easter Sunday I am going to buy a lovely bottle of red to enjoy with my meal…enough said. Anyway, it’s Pancake Day! We have a large electic griddle like my GrandmaE had. It was either the golden brown of the flapjacks or the smell that brought me back to when I was little.

My GrandmaE is about to turn 90. Her surprise birthday party is coming up, shhhhhhhhhhhh don’t tell her. Her mom lived with her when I was little. To distinguish them I called her Big Grandma and Little Gram. Well, Big Grandma has shrunk to the size of a kittle and I could easily carry her around in my pocket. Now she is know as tiny Great Grandma to my kids. They are fortunate enough to have known their great grandparents. Alas, they only have 2 great grandmas now.

When I was small, my brother and I would sleep over at Big Grandma’s house. We would sleep on the sofa or bunk with our aunt and uncle. We would get up Sunday morning and dress for church. After church, grandpa would drive us downtown for Sunday Treat. Now these were the Grandparents who would take us to Dairy Queen in our Jammies with my parents in tow on Friday nights. THE only day my dad took off from University Studying. Sunday mornings were all about The Chateau Lacombe. It was a fancy hotel restaurant that overlooked the river valley. It was not a family restaurant. Kids needed to be “Good as Gold” and have their best manners. For my brother, this was a huge challenge because he had extreme wiggles. My Grandma always said “busy”. Brother is a busy boy. A very kind way of saying mischief needed to be managed. 

As an adult, I look back and think it was an odd place to take us, but I understand Grandpa took us there for Grandma. She loved that place. they were regulars and would show us off to the staff. We always sat by the window and had THIS ViewThis is what kept the brother occupied. He would look for coyotes and eagles, of course he would see all kinds of wild life with his own eagle eyes. Grandpa would order pancakes and juice for us. I secretly wanted French Toast or waffles but never said anything. Best behaviour meant not contradicting my grandfather.

Today I love pancakes. Somedays more than others. Rarely I wish for french toast and waffles, mostly because I don’t want the mess it creates. Maple syrup is my favorite topping. The REAL stuff…not that synthetic cheap stuff that is too sweet. I like the stuff from Quebec that is boiled down maple sap during sugaring season. That and a cup of coffee. The perfect way to start my Sunday…in my Jammies.

Happy Birthday Grandma!