Countdown to Mother’s Day – What My Mother-in-Law Taught Me

Once Upon A Time…

My mother-in-law Trudy once hit me in the head with a shovel on Mother’s Day.

An innocent looking Trudy with Danielle

Gardening was one of her favorite things in the world. So, one Mother’s Day she and Danielle attacked our outdoor garden space in Brooklyn with impatiences, magnolias and begonias all going in at a frenzied speed. Somehow in the manic planing session I was a recipient of a head shot from a shovel.

Our “Garden” in Brooklyn and the legendary shovel

Which is my way of saying never get between my mother-in-law and her flowers. Or her plants. Her apartment in Queens resembled an overgrown jungle; meanwhile, Danielle could kill a cactus. My mother-in-law loved her vegetation and as my dazed expression below shows, you did not want to get in her way.

Myself with possible concussion

With Passover and Easter in the rear view mirror it IS time to think about Mother’s Day. My mother passed away when I was young so everything lesson learned from Mother’s Day really came from Danielle’s mother.

There are rules to learn…

Here were her simple rules of getting flowers on Mother’s Day:

  1. Get some flowers or a plant.
  2. Get some flowers or a plant that look good. Trudy was okay with the concept of Stop & Shop flowers for a random weekend that we were visiting. Mother’s Day required something that should live more than the week and, even better, be meaningful.
  3. Do something together. Before the kids were born, even if Danielle was working, I would make sure to take Trudy out to brunch and a Mets game. She loved the time together. She also loved yelling at the Mets.
  4. Rain checks are acceptable for #3.
  5. The thought matters, though execution is equally as important. Your loved one will notice if you give half-effort and they might even smile at you and say thanks. Impress them by making a full effort and being with them.

So it’s the countdown to Mother’s Day. Think about everything now, so you can help make Mother’s Day memorable for the right reasons.

Trudy, Danielle and Sienna on Mother’s Day

Though Trudy is no longer physically with us, her wisdom remains when it came to flowers and plants. Or that this is the time to spend together. Even if you need to wear a helmet.

Have a happy day. Feel free to share your Mother’s Day memories or traditions below or via Instagram.

About Wayne:
Wayne Parillo is a relative newcomer to Long Island and co-hosts Drinking and Thinking on Long Island with Sean. Sean provides his wisdom as a long time Long Islander to Wayne, while Wayne gives an outsider view trying to fit in.