With May comes Mother’s Day (and in my family a slew of birthdays as well, including a penpal in Australia and a childhood girlfriend who share May 13th with my youngest grandson) – so I thought I’d share some momisms with you- some you may have seen or heard before but since they all ring so true one wonders if women come automatically fabricated with the momism gene? I think my mother’s all time favorite may have been “Cry and I’ll give you something to cry about”. Mom was also good at reminding us of the starving children in Europe especially when we were having liver, brains, kidney stew or whatever else looked unappetizing but you knew you were going to sit at the table until you ate it. Not too long ago I discovered my younger brother Bill’s trick for getting out of eating whatever mom was cooking. (He confessed). He’d call home to see what we were having for dinner and then hang around at Aunt Dolly’s until she would ask him if he’d like to stay for dinner. Aunt Dolly was a fantastic cook; she learned at the elbow of my paternal grandmother. Aunt Dolly was married to my dad’s brother John, whom the family all called Hans.
Anyway, here are some momisms for you to ponder this Mother’s Day…
• Money doesn’t grow on trees.
• Don’t make that face or it’ll freeze in that position.
• If I talked to my mother like you talk to me….
• Always change your underwear; you never know when you’ll have an accident.
• Be careful or you’ll put your eye out.
• What if everyone jumped off a bridge? Would you do it, too? (I heard this one most when I was a teenager and wanted an article of clothing everyone was wearing, like poodle skirts or suede jackets).
• You have enough dirt behind those ears to grow potatoes!
• Close that door! Were you born in a barn?
• If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.
• Don’t put that in your mouth; you don’t know where it’s been!
• Be careful what you wish for, it might come true.
• Don’t eat those, they will stunt your growth.
• If you don’t eat those, you will stunt your growth.
• Whatever will be will be. Mom only used this when something bad happened or when you experienced a disappointment. In California you would say “que sera sera” – Doris Day took this a step farther and made it into a popular song in the 50s.
• It doesn’t matter what you accomplish, I’ll always be proud of you. (Conversely, if you didn’t study or got bad grades, your mother would warn you that you would end up a lazy good for nothing bum like some people she could name. No indication she would be proud of you then! )
• I hope that when you grow up, you have kids “Just Like you”! (Also known as the “Mother’s Curse”)
• Because I’m your mother that’s why.
• This is why we can’t have nice things. (This is what you heard when you or a sibling tore a curtain, broke a dish, or tracked mud in on her clean kitchen floor).
• If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times. (yeah, she did tell us a thousand times).
• Eat your vegetables, those children in Europe (China, Africa), would be happy to have some liver (or rice or cabbage) to eat. I would have been happy to send it to them.
• If you fall out of that tree and break your leg, don’t come running to me.
• “Cheer up, the worst is yet to come.” Usually said in advance of grounding.
• Someday your face is going to stick like that.
• Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.
• Yes, I *AM* the boss of you.
• Because I said so.
• Just wait till your father gets home.
• No dessert till you clean off your plate. (Well, to tell the truth we rarely had dessert when I was growing up. You just had to sit at the table until you finished eating whatever was on your plate).
• I brought you into this world and I can take you OUT !! (Mostly said after one of us had done something really bad).
• I’ve got eyes in the back of my head, that’s how !
• Get that thing out of your mouth! (or nose)
• Just you wait until you have kids of your own – then you’ll understand
• You tell that bully to cut it out or you’ll tell the teacher…
• I slave for hours over a hot stove and this is the thanks I get?! (Especially when dinner was Hasenpheffer)
• Honestly… You’d lose your head if it wasn’t screwed on!
• Bored! How can you be bored? I was never bored at your age. (or, get the mop and broom and start cleaning the floors. That will teach you not to complain about being bored).
HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!