The great Irish writer and poet Oscar Wilde once wrote: “All women become like their mothers. That is their tragedy. No man does. That’s his.”
And while I have no idea who his parents were – if they were kind or stern, or if Oscar was, in fact, a mama’s boy, his words ring true, especially to those of us who may need reminding about how extraordinary our mothers truly are.
I tend to be one of those who likes to pooh-pooh all the “special days” during the year. My pessimism leads me to think that Valentine’s Day, anniversaries and even Mother’s Day have become nothing but marketing events. I’m not sure why Father’s Day doesn’t get its due in all the advertisements in the paper or on television. In fact, if anything, Father’s Day should have the brunch and all-you-can-eat buffet. We may be more appreciative.
However, just like Oscar, we “sons of amazing, amazing mothers” need to give thanks, pay tribute and spoil them. So this year – now mom, if you are reading this, I am about to reveal what I got you for Mother’s Day, and if you prefer to have it be a surprise, go ahead and skip to the comics page – I went with the symbolic gesture of purchasing a plant in her name for the Needham Elementary School garden. (She has seen her children and grandchildren matriculate through Needham.)
Her plant is described as a “bee and butterfly plant,” which fits her well. She has become quite the photographer, with flowers being her primary interest; her favorite creature in the world (outside of her son) is the ladybug.
The plant, along with many other choices and opportunities, is part of The Garden Project of Southwest Colorado’s “Grow a Garden Fundraiser.” All proceeds will go toward three showcase gardens: Manna Soup Kitchen, the Ohana Kuleana Community Garden and the garden at Needham.
The process is easy: visit www.thegardenprojectswcolorado.org and click “Mother’s Day Fundraiser.” You can order anything from garden art supplies to gardening gloves to plants to educational opportunities, and for those of you who really want to get in mom’s good graces, a tool shed. Now, you tell me, what mom would not want a tool shed donated in her honor? Who wants their shovels and rakes getting rusty? Their frost cloth just blowing in the wind for all to see?
I know mine wouldn’t. But mom likes ladybugs, so ...
For those of us who may struggle with ideas for presents or like to shop last minute from the desk chair, this works great. Everything can be purchased online, The Garden Project will send your mom a handwritten card and the donation is tax deductible. And perhaps best of all, you will be supporting a local nonprofit, very cool projects and amazing schools.
And you’re doing it for your mom.
So mom, I love you. I love that you are a role model for your three granddaughters, that you are a community leader and that you always have been someone who would give her last dollar, her dinner, her time and her heart to those around her. You epitomize the definition of sacrifice, hard work and success.
I am proud to be your son.
And I’m not lying when I tell you that many of things that I did wrong growing up were actually your daughter’s fault. I was just covering for her.
firstname.lastname@example.org or 382-6464. Darrin Parmenter is director and horticulture agent of the La Plata County Extension Office.