Dark Glass Ponderings

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. -1 Corinthians 13:12

I'm the type of person who seldom sends out greeting cards.  I suppose its mainly because I'm a snob.  You see  I  like to fancy myself as a writer.

In the rare occasion that I must purchase a card for you...be warned.  I will stand in the aisles of CVS for 15 minutes wincing as I pick up each card.  OK, family members ignore this next line.  Sometimes I just ask Liz which one looks the prettiest.  Because none of those cards express what I want to say.  I mean if you can't outsmart Hallmark, how sad is that?!

So it feels lame to write a tribute to my mother now.  My poor husband couldn't get away with proposing to me on Valentine's Day, for instance, and he knew it darn well.

I'm going to take the plunge and risk sounding all sentimental and sappy and cliched.

Since we're so much alike, I know your face looks like a beet right now, Mom.  Bear with me. 

Here in no particular order are seven things I admire about my mom:

1) When you're in a pinch, she's always there.

Like that afternoon when I started having major panic attacks during Moving Nightmare 2009.  We closed on the house we were selling and were in limbo with our new house.  Mom came over right away and helped me write a list of our options.  All while she was in the midst of helping my grandmother who had just had a stroke.

Which leads me to...

2) My mom gives practical solutions. 

Whether its driving my newlywed Grandma and her husband to cancer treatments, packing up her trailer for endless drop-offs during our move, or providing my kids with M&Ms to keep them entertained on a train ride she always steps up to do "the next thing" that is needed.

3) My mom is one smart lady.

I am a research nut.  I admit that I "google" anything and everything whether it be the latest Christian fiction releases or my children's health issues.  Before my children were born I worked in a library.

I'm convinced that my mom's "research" hobby kept my father alive for several years.  During his treatments for liver cancer she researched anything and everything medical.  As a result she became an advocate for my father (and developed a strange love for quantum physics...a love which I do not share...sorry, Mom).

4) My mom and I share the "shopping" love language.

I think I could fill a room with the plastic bags of various and sundry things I leave with every time I visit her house.  Usually these contain clippings of comics with computer nerds that remind her of my husband, other clippings which made her think of me (scary, at times), some sort of food item for the children, and maybe an item that no longer fits her decorating scheme. 

I get it, Mom.  I love to come home with "just becauses" for Chris.  Shopping at a different Wegmans is an "outing" for me.  My idea of the perfect day would involve an hour in Borders.  As my kids dump the stuffed animals on the floor one by one my husband sings the Dora "Clean Up" song.  OK, if you know him imagine Chris singing this in a nasal sarcastic tone.  No, wait, if you know him you can picture exactly how he would sing this song.

Recently I found out we do not both speak the "Goodwill" language.  I think my mom has been to a Goodwill in every city in this country, or at least it seems that way.  I take after the OCD tendencies on my father's side of the family.  My mom and I recently went to a Goodwill store in the Chicago area where I spent the whole time trying to herd two preschoolers around without having them put anything on their head.  I next proceeded to rub antibacterial wipes on every square unclothed inch of my childrens' bodies.  Sorry, Mom.

5) Even the little holidays were special growing up.

I remember how everything in our lunch was heart shaped on Valentine's Day and how you used to make a Jack O'Lantern face out of M&Ms in our oatmeal.  These are the things I try to keep up in my own family.  The best holidays seem to involve chocolate, don't they?

6) You didn't give up on us.

7) You chose to sacrifice your career to take care of our family in an era when all my friends parents had careers. 

From you I learned there are seasons and what I can give to my family right now is much more important than any outside contribution I could make.  I homeschool my kids because I don't want to miss a moment of it all.

Thank you, Mom.


Julia, This is a beautiful tribute to your mom. I have a feeling you are giving your kids the same tender care. I'm a homeschooling mom, too, and there's nothing better:) Bless you this Mother's Day and bless your precious family!


Thanks for your kind words! Happy mother's day to you, too! I agree, I love homeschooling, even though I am just starting in the journey.

Nice. Hope you had a great Mother's Day, Julia. Keep up the good work!

Thanks, Steve. I am enjoying this whole blogging thing!

We call those "just becauses" "Stinkin Trinkets" in our family. I share the shopping love language too!!! It's a universal language in my opinion! :)

Stinkin' Trinkets what a great name. Sadly I don't think Chris shares that language...it amuses him though.

Julia M. Reffner

About Me

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Christ-loving bookworm & homeschool mom of 2 stealing the rare quiet moments to pursue that all elusive writing dream. I also write book reviews for Title Trakk and The Historical Novel Society.


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