Sunday, April 17, 2011

Mother's Day Giveaway - Bless Your Mom

Pin It Now! Mother's Day is next month. And I'm doing a Big-Mama giveaway. Forget the rubber chicken, the doll hairs, the unlimited supply of air . . . one mama is gonna be blessed by legitimate, mama-made stuff worth over $250! Actually, a lot of mamas (including your own) are going to be blessed. Just one is going to blessed by cool stuff. But she's gonna have to earn it.

(This is my mom back before there was electricity and cell phones. You'll hear more about her on my Mother's Day post.)

Here's how:
(And this is mandatory to win all swag. No free and easy comments here.)
Below I have posted an excerpt from my book Totally Desperate Mom. There are five questions (in blue) about moms.
1. Answer at least four out of five of those questions about your mom. If you don't know your mom or have nothing nice to say about her then answer at least four out of five of those questions talking about a motherlike figure in your life. Remember this is supposed to be an encouragement to your mom and all moms so keep it positive please.

2. Post your answers on your blog and link back to this post.

3. Come back here and link up with MckLinky and leave a comment saying that you did so. If you don't have a blog you can post your answer on in the comments of this post. Entries will be accepted now thru May 7th at 11pm PST. Must be 18 or older to participate. Only for U.S. residents (sorry, shipping is too much). Winners must respond within 4 days or another winner will be picked.

4. On Mother's Day, May 8th, I will pick a winner based on whose mom sounds the coolest. Just kidding, will pick the winner.
So here is the excerpt from Chapter 14 of Totally Desperate Mom:

Encouragement for the Motherhood

I sent out an e-mail to some friends that asked them some questions about their moms. These are people I really respect. And I also know and respect their mamas. I am not sure they called their moms “blessed” when they were preschoolers, but they certainly do now.

1. What is your best childhood memory with your mom?
Aaron: For some reason, the one that stuck out the most was that I used to go home from school during lunch when I was six, and I would eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at home. She’d be there making me a sandwich and ask me how school was going. The other is probably watching my mom sing at church when I was a kid—still with a hint of Texas hair, even though we were in California.

Nikko: My best memory is baking with her and helping her clean up (when I was very young). I loved to lick the blender things. When I was a few years older I would have visiting time with her in the sitting area in her room. She had visiting candies. We would chat about life.

Tyler: My mom threw us the best birthday parties. When I was a baby, my parents turned our house into a cardboard castle, made us all swords and shields, and had a jousting tournament in the backyard with bananas. When I was old enough, she put together a cowboy birthday, a 101 Dalmations birthday (including a Milk- Bone “Easter-egg hunt”), and a Toy Story party where we made our own Mr. Potato Heads out of real potatoes.

April: When we were having a hard time calming down for bedtime, my mom would sit in the hallway outside of our rooms and sing and play guitar until we fell asleep. She did this for years.

2. Was she consistent in her discipline? (Hint: Please say no. But if the answer is yes—don’t lie . . . unless your mom taught you to lie.)
Aaron: I can’t really remember my mom letting me get away with a lot, but I don’t remember her coming down on me a lot either. So, I’m sure she was inconsistent throughout the years, but generally she was pretty fair.

Tyler: I feel like theoretically I would have to say no. But honestly, I think she did such a good job raising me and my brothers as three different people that my retrospective feelings of overall fairness kind of drown out any memories of a tyrannous and inconsistent motherhood.

Nikko: Yes, unless I made her really upset, then she would wait until she cooled down to deal with me or she would drive really fast.

April: It took her a few years to figure out what worked for each kid, and then she stuck to it.

3. Did you ever make your mom cry because you were so unruly or disobedient? (When I pushed my mom too far she would say, “I quit. You can go find a new mom.” That was her form of crying.)
Aaron: I can remember her getting upset when my brother and I would fight. Most times she just blew it off as boys being boys, but eventually too much would upset her.

Tyler: In a house full of self-proclaimed funny boys, it was easy for my mom to feel like we always had to get the last word or that we were always trying to outdo her. This made us interrupt her a lot. Sometimes she would just say, “Forget it,” and quit trying to tell us whatever it was she was trying to say. We would then usually get mad at her for giving up (which was totally fair, right?), and sometimes she’d end up telling us and sometimes she wouldn’t.

Nikko: Many, many times. I was a selfish jerk. But now I’m married.

April: I was argumentative. Sometimes I ran her ragged. I had some horrible friends in high school, which upset her a lot.

4. Do you remember any of the special things your mom did for you?
Aaron: My mom used to always give us our birthday dinner on the “special plate,” which was red and said something like “you are special” along the border of the plate. She also used to heat up chocolate chip muffins for me for breakfast.

Tyler: In elementary school, mom used to always write notes on the napkins of my lunches. That evolved into her yelling, “Don’t take drugs!” out of the car window in junior high and making me give her a hug every time I left the house to drive myself in high school. Now she sends me postcards every week or two while I’m down at school. They are full of questions she knows I won’t answer, but I love to read them because it makes me feel like she feels like we’re having a conversation. And that makes me miss her a little less.

Nikko: She cooked me a million meals, bought clothing and school supplies every time I needed them, took us on vacation, made Christmas cookies, prayed for me, always made Christmas special, and always made my birthday special.

April: On our birthdays we had special birthday dishes. She was really good at taking care of me when I was sick. I still want my mom when I’m sick.

5. Did she teach you anything really significant?
Aaron: I think my mom taught me a lot about how to treat others regardless of how they hurt you. She taught me to take the high road, to turn the cheek in love, and to bite my tongue. I learned just to respond well and in love.

Tyler: She taught me that the home you’re in charge of is a powerful thing. It can be a place of abundance and safety and should be shared with anyone who needs to feel those things, especially if their home isn’t as full of love as yours. She taught me to give out of your substance and not out of excess, even if you think the person is annoying. Everyone deserves to be taken care of once in a while, and if you can, then do it.

Nikko: My mom taught me how to sacrifice for someone you love and how to trust the Lord. April: She taught me how to sing. The biggest thing she taught me was something I didn’t realize until I was older—patience and self-control.

How about that? Mom, I remember the meals you made me and the chats we had. Mom, I remember how special you made me feel on my birthday and the way you cared for me when I was sick. Mom, you taught me how to love, how to sacrifice, how to trust God, how to share with those in need. And this was all while I was tormenting my brother, arguing with you, being a jerk, fighting to get the last word, and peeing my pants. (Okay, I had to add that last one because, well, you know.)

TDM, you are making an impact on your children far beyond what you can see. I hope this encourages you as it has encouraged me, because sometimes it is just hard to see beyond the next dirty diaper.

The prizes? Only worth over $250!

1. A custom-made necklace from Christine at Q Handmade Jewelry (up to $130).
I met Christine last year when I spoke at her MOPS group at Calvary Community Church in Westlake Village. She ran the audio/visual gal and she was so helpful!
Here is a sample of one of her beauties - you might spot this necklace on Emily Maynard of The Bachelor. She loves her Q Handmade necklace and talks about it here. Check out the different necklace options at the Q Handmade Jewelry website.

2. A stylin' ring of your choice from Heather over at Angel Face Designs and a limited edition "Love Your Mama" pack of earrings. You'll have to head over to Angel Face Designs to see just what that pack looks like.
I met Heather through a mutual bloggy friend a few years ago. And she goes to MOPS at my church! She and her two daughters are adorable and have serious style.
There is a ton of cute jewelry in Heather's store, but here is a pic of one of my favorites rings. Go check out other ring choices!

4. A pair of customized flip flops (your pick) from Kristin at the little dragonfly for you or your mama or your kid.
I met Kristin several years ago through our mutual friend Stacy. You know, Stacy whose hubby surprised her with a renewing of vows ceremony and reception? Shiloh and I enjoyed spending some time with Kristin and her hubby at the reception.
Here are two samples of flip flips, but head over to her etsy shop to check out the rest.

5. Your choice of 2 soaps
, 1 body balm, and 1 lip balm from Alicia at Eco Friendly Homemaking.
Alicia is the only one of these prize-givers that I don't know in real life. I don't know how we found each other, but I like earthy, non-chemically products so I invited her to join us. She sent me some lip balm and moisturizer and I dig 'em!
Here is a sampling of some of her stuff, but take a look at her other products!

6. A darling headband by Erin over at Haut B Blue.
I met Erin in real life through a mutual bloggy friend and another friend from college virtually connected us before that.
I don't know exactly which headband Erin will be making for you, but they will be something like the ones my girls are wearing in this photo.
Check out some of her other sweet creations over at her Haute B Blue shop.

No big deal. You're probably so over that one. Head over to my website to check out my other books. Just kidding, I haven't written any other books. But you can head over there to see if I am speaking in your neighborhood any time soon. You could come and bring me a coloring book and some crayons.

So how about I add a $20 gift card to Starbucks so you can go there to read my book? If I could mail you a babysitter, I would. But you're own your own for that. And
I know, I know, Starbucks is not mom-made, but I know a lot of moms keep Starbucks in business so let's roll with it for now.

Please tweet about this giveaway because I think it will really be an encouragement to the Totally Desperate Moms of the world!

Please go visit these wonderful prize givers and leave a comment, follow them, or tell them you like their hair.

Now go write about your mom and come back here and tell us about it!
Pin It Now!


Jamie said...

i'm definitely the overachiever - was i an inspiration to you? :)

Becky said...

I linked up, yo. Werd to our mothers!

Unknown said...

I love all these mom stories! Greatest thing ever.

Jessica said...

This was really REALLY fun to do. Here's the link to my questions:

Thanks for hosting this :)

Melissa said...

1. When she told me: “I can be your friend, if you let me”. (I know she won’t remember this but I do)
Now that I look back it was the silliest thing but she made the very best of the opportunity (smart lady). I was probably 9 or so and I had this stupid crush on a boy, I don’t know how she found out about it but she sat me down and asked me if what she heard was true, I remember being SO embarrassed. She told me that I could trust her and that if I ever needed her to keep a secret I could count on her. But the best part of the conversation for me was the fact that I realized that she was open and “cool” enough to talk about things like that with her. I know it doesn’t seem like much of a childhood memory but for me it’s been the best because to this day I can still go to her and talk about ANYTHING, and I mean ANYTHING.
Granted, I can be more “open-minded” than she is and I can freak her out sometimes with my views of life and such, we disagree on a lot of things and if you ever listen to the both of us having a regular conversation you could swear we are arguing, but that’s just how it is with us sometimes and I love that we can agree to disagree. Despite our differences we get along so well and I miss her the days we don’t Skype, she’s the best friend a girl could have asked for.
2. If there is one thing my mom does not tolerate is lies, so the truth? She’s a teacher and a very strict one for that matter, and yes, she was very consistent with her discipline, also (as if I haven’t told her enough already) she’s always been very uptight about certain things but in the end that “uptightness” might have been what helped her raise me into the woman I am today, and for that I am very grateful.
3. Well let me start by saying that it doesn’t take much to make my mom cry, she’s VERY emotional, she knows it and she doesn’t hide it. That being said, I hate to have to admit this - specially now that I’m a mother – but yes, I have made her cry (more than once). There were so many times I wished I could take back the stupid rebellious things I probably yelled out at her as a teenager, and I’m ashamed to say, even later in life. But the very special thing I haven’t told you about my mom is that no matter how many hurtful things you throw her way, she finds it in her heart to forgive you and not hold a grudge about it. She's really nice that way.
4. Oh, SO many things!!! But my most cherished till this day is when she moved in with us to help care for my babies’ first months of life. I know I didn’t exactly make living with me easy at the time (she kept blaming the hormones) but yet she devoted herself whole-heartedly to the boys and did it with such selflessness, to this day I cannot apologize enough for not showing her then how much I really appreciated her sacrifice of leaving my dad, my younger brother, her job and her life basically, to help us when we needed her the most.
Loving and nurturing my babies? (and helping me through my horrible recovery, even if she made me drink that horrible potion juice she made to boost my anemia) Nope, can’t think of anything more special than that.
5. How to cook (I know my hubby appreciates this), how to do the laundry, how to pick fresh fruit and veggies, how to manage money, to be responsible, to have a sense of independence, high self-esteem, perseverance, to be able to laugh at myself, that it’s ok to make mistakes, to cry if I need to, to be a good hostess, a loving wife, a devoted mother, a loyal friend, a caring daughter, but the most significant one is my faith, how to love Jesus, to serve and be a good Christian, at home, at work, anywhere, did I mention all of this was through example?

Pam said...

Linked up!

Eos Mom said...

Linked up!

Kim Rogers said...

1. what is your best childhood memory with your mom?
Wow, there are a lot.... For some reason the one that comes to mind first is one time when we were in the kitchen and she was cooking breakfast. She was holding a spatula and wearing slippers, and decided to teach me how to "tap dance". No, my mom wasn't a dancer, but she did know the basic shuffle-step that most can do to PRETEND to tap dance. I remember her singing "Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do" shuffling around the kitchen, spatula in hand. I danced right along with her as best I could. It was such a small thing, but it's a memory that has stayed with me :)

2. Did you ever make your mom cry because you were so unruly or disobedient?
I was the peacemaker kid, since my older sister seemed like a handful. I even remember comforting my mom when I was young, because my sister made her cry. I think I tried to be the perfect angel. However, in college, she did cry and say she was disappointed when she found out her perfect child had started smoking... that was a rough night.

3. Do you remember any of the special things your mom did for you?
There were TONS, she was just a super great, loving mom. Whenever it rained, my mom would make hot chocolate and cinnamon toast. When I walked in the door from the schoolbus, I just knew there would be a fire in the fireplace, and hot chocolate and cinnamon toast. It seems like it was EVERY time it rained, but as a mom now, I can't imagine it was. But it sure seemed like it. I always felt so loved and taken care of by my mom. She was a stay at home mom for most of my childhood and always there when I needed her.

4. Did she teach you anything really significant?
Compassion and kindness. My mom taught me how to be a loving, affectionate, mom and human being. She told me she loved me many times a day, something I now do with my kids and husband. She always showed her love for us, and I try to do the same.

Amanda said...

Linked up!

Laura said...

Thanks for the giveaway! This was really fun to do. :)

Barbie said...

Whew...I got it done in time :) Thanks for hosting this.

Megret said...

Thanks for the fun giveaway! Just posted my link. :)

Jennifer said...

I just linked up!

Devin said...

Finally Linked up!

Yay for my perfectionist self.

Thanks again for the giveaway Wendy. It's really a great one.

Dana said...

Almost forgot the comment! Thanks for the reminder. :) I'm all linked up!

Happy Mothers Day!

Jaimie said...

Thanks for the reminder about leaving the comment! I hope I win!! :) (Though I need to tell my mother that I did NOT enter this just to win a contest!) ;)

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