Jayne Chase Loseke is a children’s author in Oregon. She has four lovely children.
Contact Jayne at jaynel [at] portlandwritersmill [dot] com.
Each year on Mother’s Day my family gives me the gift of yardwork. Dave and I spend Saturday collecting dirt, rocks, and bark dust. After buying flowers and writing up each person’s job assignments, our family shows up on Sunday to help out with yard work. I feed them brunch and dinner before and after the day’s activities. When they feel they are done they find me and show me their work. If the job is done well, they are free to do what they want for the rest of the afternoon. When everyone is done we go inside and have a big dinner. My family calls this “Mom Slave Day.” That’s ok. I call it Mother’s Day. These kids are great kids. I know the only reason they are pulling weeds, planting flowers, hauling dirt, rocks and bark dust is because they love me.
We have fixed fences, planted flowers, strawberries and blueberry bushes, laid down river rock, bark dust, and even installed stone steps. My oldest daughter is married now, and her husband also participates in our tradition. My husband helps, too. I appreciate the love they show me by helping our yard look nice and spending the day together. My family is a constant blessing. They speak my love language each year on Mother’s Day when they all show up and we work together to do yard work. They value me and care for me. I am truly blessed.
I am the oldest of four children. When I was growing up in Nebraska our family didn’t have an excessive cash flow. So mom taught us how to sew. We sewed our clothes, pillows, blankets, and curtains. Mom even learned how to sew underwear! I sewed myself a swimsuit in high school. In fact, I sewed all my clothes when I was in high school: jeans, a denim hat, tank tops, skirts, blouses, a Homecoming dress, and my cheerleader summer uniform. I started working at 14 so I could earn money to buy fabric. While dating my husband I sewed him dress pants, a white shirt and a houndstooth sport coat. After we were married I sewed maternity clothes, baby clothes and baby bedding. (By the way, crib sheets are one of the easiest things to sew.) As our four children grew, my sewing dropped down to mostly Halloween costumes (though I did find time to sew Dave two Santa suits.)
Few of my peers sew these days. That moves me to the top of the list for volunteer moms to sew. When my son Joe played Little League, I helped sew the team banner. When Max and Joe were in Cub Scouts and their dad was Cubmaster, I helped sew Arrow of Light banners for all the scouts in our Pack. When Dave and our boys transitioned to Boy Scouts, I sewed the neckerchiefs for their Boy Scout troop. One year for Christmas I sewed Dave and all our kids bath robes. We called it the Great Bathrobe Christmas. 🙂 But our four kids were busy and their school activities continued to need seamstresses. Marching band and school plays were always on the look out for moms who sew. So I helped hem marching band uniforms. And when Katie was in grade school I helped sew costumes for her school play. This year I am sewing costumes for Katie’s school play, again. The kids are knights, a princess, guards, and ladies in waiting. They appreciate my efforts. Katie says the costumes make the difference between Readers’ Theatre and a play.
I don’t save money by sewing anymore. It is now cheaper to buy clothes and house linens. I don’t sew as much as I used to, but I am glad I know how to sew. I enjoy it. I especially enjoy sewing for others when I see how happy they feel. Often I will pray over the garment I am making and pray the person who wears it will feel the love of God enfold them when they wear my clothes. It blesses me to bless others. Surely that is how God intended for us to interact with one another.