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Lady in Red-Happy Birthday (Story)

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mars92 Posted: Sun, Nov 20 2011 11:26 PM

The Lady in Red –A Story For Her Birthday

 

She wasn’t like most mothers.  She didn’t bake cookies or cakes for us.  You might get a pie out of her at the holidays.  I won’t remember her because of her outstanding cooking and in self-defense I learned to cook at an early age because we ate a lot of TV dinners.   My mother owned her own business as I was growing up, a beauty shop and usually worked six days a week which didn’t leave much time to take care of a house and cooking.  I always wanted her to make cookies for my brownie troop but knew that wasn’t my mother nor could she ever be home room mother.  I wanted the “Leave it to Beaver” mom, and I didn’t get it.  She didn’t have a lot of time for me growing up and as a result I had to fend for myself most of the time.  But the time we did have together was memorable if not down right hysterical.  One of her favorite sayings was you didn’t want a “normal mother” did you? You didn’t want a fuddy duddy, did you?  And we would laugh because we knew she could never be June Cleaver!

 

On Sundays my Dad would go to a small local airport for flying lessons while we had to go to church with mom.  When asked where our Dad was, Mom never blinked an eye to the Priest and said, “His place of worship is at Falcon Field –he’s flying, but the children are with me, they never miss a Sunday unless they’re sick.  Oh, how true that was!  As I got older, I tried so hard to sleep late and miss the earlier services, but the Lady in Red informed me the 11 am service was waiting for me and I could just walk myself right to church and many times I did.  The consequences if I failed to do so were not pretty. The Lady in Red could think up all kinds of torture for you ranging from various sorts of cleaning to never leaving the house.  I gladly got ready for the 11 am service even if there were only elderly people there. They greeted me warmly with, “how’s your mother, I bet she was at the earlier service, today? Yes, ma’am she was, she will be sorry she missed you.   I knew if I wasn’t polite it would be reported back to my mother and that was one thing she would not tolerate was disrespect to adults.   It could be blazing hot and you just wanted to get home from church, but if an adult asked you a question, my mother expected you to give them a full response like you were at a garden party. She expected you to be a brilliant conversationalist at the age of 7; at that age I was rather shy and didn’t like talking much to adults.  But the Lady in Red was very outgoing and expected her children to be the same.  Her favorite saying to me was, “in order to have friends, you have to BE a friend.”  So if I complained I didn’t have enough friends, out would come her favorite saying.  I  learned a lot from that saying of hers.

 

But she did make the most of the “moments” she had with me and it was discovered when I was about 7 or so I had severe asthma and allergies.  As a result, severe asthma attacks resulted and little colds turned into pneumonia and bronchitis with lengthy hospital stays. They had to remove the carpet from my room and replace it with vinyl tile and I remember thinking how ugly it was and only kitchens had vinyl.

In order to make me feel better about the process, the Lady in Red redecorated my room.  They didn’t have Cinderella comforter’s sets in those days and you could call it redecorated. You had to be creative. 

 

We lived in a middle income neighborhood in a ranch style house.  My room was average size but the unique thing were the built in bookcases. I thought they were so cool because I loved to read.  My favor color at the time was lavender and The Lady in Red bought beautiful white wallpaper with lavender roses and wallpapered one wall by the window.  She bought lacy priscilla drapes for the window and they looked like a lacy petticoat. She hung a shade underneath to block the sun. She bought a matching lacy bedspread and put a lavender sheet underneath. The effect was simply stunning. But she wasn’t done; she sat for hours on her day off from her beauty shop and cut out those roses from the wallpaper so she could paste it on another wall forming a trellis.  It was like being in an English flower garden all the time and it was my room.  Suddenly the white vinyl with the tiny gold specks didn’t look so bad anymore.  

 

I look back and remember my English garden bedroom and think about my mom who had so little time off from her business sitting in our kitchen with her feet up cutting out the roses with manicure scissors. What a gift of love that room was. 

 

Thank you, Mom. I loved that room. It was simply gorgeous. Happy Birthday to you in heaven.   I miss you so very much and think of you everyday.

I love you,

Your daughter,

Marlene

 

 

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Nana replied on Sun, Nov 20 2011 11:36 PM

Marlene

Another wonderful story about "The Lady in Red".   I feel as if I know her after your stories.   Thanks for sharing.

Vinton, Virginia

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Barbara replied on Sun, Nov 20 2011 11:44 PM

OH Marlene , this is just beautiful , I would have loved to see pictures of that bedroom ,sounds like your " Secert Garden". what a wonderful place it must have been..Ijust bet she was a very intresting woman .Barbara

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EAT!! SLEEP !! QUILT!!

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Patti replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 12:48 AM

I was so excited to see another Lady in Red writing.  I love the way you write these, makes me feel  as if I knew her and could see her.   and brings memories of my Mom.

Patti

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gini replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 1:55 AM

you do such lovely tributes to your mother.  she must have been quite a woman

gini in north idaho

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mars92 replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 8:30 AM

Thank you everyone. I especially like to share a story of her with you all on her birthday. She would have adored each and everyone one of you. And she would have went simply "ga ga" over your beautiful quilts and now you know where I get it! LOL

Hugs

Marlene

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Karla replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 9:00 AM

Since I'm fairly new, this is the first "Lady in Red" story I've seen and it brought back many memories of my mother, who I miss so much.  She wasn't a normal Mom either...but unlike the "Lady in Red' she was shy and didn't participate in much. 

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Marlene--

Thank you for sharing your beautiful Lady in Red Story.  What a wondeful way to remember your mother and I'm sure she read it in Heaven with a smile on her face

 

Kissimmee, FL

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Flojo replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 2:39 PM

All though our Mothers are so different, each gave us the one thing that no one else could.  That Special Mother Love.  God Bless them ALL.

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mars92 replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 5:51 PM

Karla:
this is the first "Lady in Red" story I've seen and it brought back many memories of my mother, who I miss so much.  She wasn't a normal Mom either...but unlike the "Lady in Red' she was shy and didn't participate in much. 

Karla

Glad you liked your first Lady in Red story, there have been others.  I will friend you or you can friend me and send them to you, if you would like. Although your mother may have been "shy",  she was still loads of fun!  Isn't it great to have these memories of our moms? They are the best.  Now they are together talking about us! :) Don't worry your mom won't have a chance to be "shy" with the LIR around, they are already fast friends I am sure.

BTW, she was the one that bought Ms. Cricket for my son-and who ends up w/ Ms. Cricket! Me! LOL  That's another LIR story!

Hugs

Marlene

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mars92 replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 5:54 PM

Joyce Brenden:
I'm sure she read it in Heaven with a smile on her face

Joyce

Glad you like my story and I like to think my mom did too. : ) 

Hugs

Marlene

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Marie replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 5:57 PM

Marlene another beautiful tribute to your mom, Bless you.

Millbury, MA

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Angele replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 6:08 PM

mars92:
The Lady in Red –A Story For Her Birthday

Marlene, thank you so much for sharing this story with us.  Your mother left great memories for you.  And I am sure she is smiling.

Angele

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Marlene, I loved the "Lady in Red" story.  This is my first one that I have read and it is such a beautiful tribute to your mother.  Thanks for sharing.

Margaret

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MNnancy replied on Mon, Nov 21 2011 9:00 PM

mars92:
BTW, she was the one that bought Ms. Cricket for my son-and who ends up w/ Ms. Cricket! Me! LOL  That's another LIR story!

And I was just about to ask if your son had the chance to know your amazing mother.  I guess he did.  I'll look forward to reading the Ms. Cricket story - maybe on her next birthday?


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