Mama’s Birthday


What do you buy your Mother for her birthday when she turns 97 years old? We used to ask her, “What do you want for your birthday, Mama?” and she’d always say, “I just want my babies around me for my birthday.”

When we were kids, we made her cards or drew a pretty picture or embroidered a handkerchief.  After I was old enough to get a job, I remember the thrill I felt when I bought her something with my very own money.

She loved to celebrate our birthdays. We always got something for our birthday and usually got to eat out.  Since there were 4 of us kids, we ate out at least 6 times a year—once for each of us, once for Mama, and once for Daddy. We usually ate out for Daddy’s birthday even if he wasn’t home for the weekend, since he worked out of town. That seems so cute to me now, that we celebrated Daddy’s birthday without him.

We ate out usually on Sunday after church. And we seldom celebrated on our exact birthday. In fact, Mama always said that we celebrated our birthdays all month. I realized when I was grown that she didn’t always have the money on our birthday, so when she got the money, we celebrated.

I don’t remember any of the presents Mama got me for my birthday, but I haven’t forgotten the times we ate out.

How did Mama do it, raising four kids basically on her own, since Dad was gone so much? Well she kept us in church and in school activities, in Camp fire girls, and school plays, plus piano lessons. Two of us played in the band and two sang in the chorus.

What is the one gift that would make Mama the happiest on her birthday? Having all her babies around her one more time.

“When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. “  II Timothy 1:5.

Yes, my mama’s name is Eunice too, just like Timothy’s.



Call Her Blessed

My sister and I had our children just 6 weeks apart. Her twins were born in June and my son in July so we called them the triplets. Mother bought three little matching outfits several times to dress them in for pictures. We didn’t live in the same town but we were frequently at our mother’s at the same time.

One week I stopped in Tulsa and picked up my sister, her older son who was 5, and the twins, and took them home with me since their dad was working out of town and the kids were all sick. My own son was sick too, so we called Mom to see if she could come down and help us. She took off work the next day, hopped the bus, and was there before I got off work.

At that time I was commuting 40 miles one way, carpooling with some other girls, to Tulsa where we worked for the phone company. Mom stayed at my home with my sister and all 4 sick kids, 3 of them 18 months old. One of the twins was diagnosed with pneumonia, but since they didn’t have insurance, we took him home and turned one bedroom into a hospital room, complete with a makeshift tent for the humidifier.

The baby was sleeping on a roll-away bed, and while the women were out of his room thinking he was asleep, he was hot so he crawled back under the bed into a corner where it was cooler. The doctor had given him a new medicine, and Mother joked that she needed some of that medicine to keep up with all those kids. And of course, through it all, Mother was praying for each child. She still does.

Our kids are all grown now and we have grandchildren  and great grandchildren now. Mother at almost 97 years old even has a few great great grandchildren.  Do you know what she is known for in this family? Her hugs and kisses. Her helping hand.  Taking care of all the grandkids while we worked. Her great home cooking.

Proverbs 31:28, 30, “Her children rise up and called her blessed. . . .Charm is deceitful, and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her own works praise her in the gates.”

The Lottery

“If I ever won the lottery, (I don’t play the game or gamble) the first thing I would do is…….” Quite a question. Most Christians will say, “The first thing I’d do is pay my tithes.” Others say they would travel or buy a new house or car. I’d love to travel.

I’ve always wanted to go to Jerusalem and the Middle East. Walking where Jesus walked, going to the place where he was probably born, and being baptized in the River Jordan—all places I would love to visit.

I’d love to go to Ireland, the motherland some of my ancestors. I’d love to walk the hills and valleys of the old homeland.

Or Alaska—especially the Inside Passage, which is the waterway along the shoreway where the ships travel along the coast. I’ve heard that passengers traveling the  cruise lines often see whales and dolphins cavorting in the water.

But what we say we would do if we won a million dollars is really what we would do if we don’t.

Many of those who go on cruises haven’t won the lottery. The ones who give a tithe of their paycheck also would give a large amount if they came into money.

And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17.

Either way, whatever we do should be done in Jesus’ name, so that the credit goes to Christ Jesus and not to the lottery.