Carrots and Ranch

Because she's worth it!

Last night I was in the kitchen cutting up carrots into little sticks so that Maycee could dip them in ranch dressing for her nighttime snack.  She wanted “mini” carrots.  I didn’t have any.  So, I opted for choice number two.  And, as I was scrubbing, peeling, and then cutting the carrots at 8:15 while the sounds of Good Luck Charlie from Disney Channel played in the background, I felt happy.  I thought to myself, this is one of the things I love most about being a mom.  Not cutting carrot sticks, per-say, but doing these little extra tasks that make my daughter feel loved.  Going the extra mile (while the night before I scrubbed the carrot, peeled the carrot, but didn’t cut the carrot).  I thought to myself, when I die, this is what I want to be remembered about me: Kasey was a good mom.  She loved her daughter.  She made carrot sticks.

As moms in general, we do these nifty little things, right?  But, when you’ve worked a full day and come home to an empty house only to continue-with no help-the cooking, chores,  maintaining playmate status, the extras can be pushed to the bottom of the list if one is not careful.  I try to be careful.  I don’t want to stop drawing pictures on Maycee’s napkins for her lunches each day because it’s too much trouble.  I don’t want to be too tired to arrange her toys before I go to bed at night so she sees a different scene in the morning when she awakes, and exclaims with enthusiasm, “Mommy, were you playing with my toys?”  I want to take the time to have Maycee help me bake the staff meeting cakes I do for work once a month.  I want to do my best to provide those “mommy moments” that only take maybe a few minutes but last a lifetime.

My mom raised me (for all intensive purposes) on her own, as well.  And, my mom is the queen of fine and precious details.  She cut carrot sticks like they were coming out her ears. She made me special after-school snacks complete with little toothpicks for dainty eating while I watched Mighty Mouse, “Here I come to save the day!”.  She sewed costumes and clothes for any occasion necessary.  She took pride and care (and still does) in wrapping gifts and creating one-of-a-kind-make-you-feel-special presents-not just for me, but for work, friends, you name it.  Now that I know how hard it is to not only find the time to get EVERYTHING done, but to also have the energy, all of these memories amaze me even more.  Let’s take it a step further: doing the extras without complaining.  Now we’re really talking!

Not every evening do I find the time to be like Donna Reed adorned in my strawberries and plaid apron (although I do like wearing one).  And, no, I don’t have the husband to boot (ha, that was NOT intended, although I love the pun).  But, when I can cut carrot sticks instead of grabbing a bag of ready made minis I do feel a bit of Donna inside of me.  I feel more like “Mommy” instead of “Wonder Woman”.  Lately, I’ve been increasingly atuned to needing these moments, cherishing them, savoring them.  I don’t know if it’s safe to say that single parenting is growing on me, but it is taking root.  Today, at least in this instance, I feel blessed, and I’m smiling.

If you’re inclined, please share some of the “extras” you take pride in doing as a mom or parent-single or otherwise.  Be happy and give a chuckle.


4 responses

  1. I loved this post, Kase. This is my favorite line, “Kasey was a good mom. She loved her daughter. She made carrot sticks.” I feel like I don’t do enough special little things sometimes but I certainly try given the time and energy I have on a given day. You inspire me to be even more creative at making those little moments that she’ll always keep in her heart and mind. xxoo

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