Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

Photo by Larry Mohr

My mother likes to rub it in my face that she lives in south Florida, especially in the winter. Especially if it’s cold where I live in Colorado. Especially if we’ve had snow.

My mom likes to sit on the lanai (I love that word: lanai) when she talks on the telephone. She has a chaise lounge chair out there, and the breeze is delightful. But one day, in a month that qualifies as winter, she said,

It’s two degrees too cold out there.

And she sat in the living room while we chatted.

What difference do two degrees make? We all have our thresholds, not just for the temperature on the lanai, but for all sorts of stuff. Cranky babies, piles of laundry, doggy piddles in the house, the price of avocados. One moment it’s fine, and the next it’s too much or not enough. How do we respond when we’ve crossed a threshold?

For my mom, moving in the house is a small thing and solves the problem. But even when we face big problems, perhaps small actions can help us back to the side of the threshold where things are all right once again.

• What small ways do you care for yourself?

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  1. Wendy Paine Miller on the February 24, 2012 remarked #

    Ha! My mom talks about being out on the lanai (never knew how to spell that until now) in FL. too.

    And yup, I live where it gets cold often.

    Sounds kind of crazy, but I care for myself by making sure I’m getting enough exercise.
    ~ Wendy

    • Olivia on the February 24, 2012 remarked #

      I’m no exercise nut, but I agree that making sure there’s enough movement in my day or week brings great benefit for sleep and stress management, so I do it for that reason.

  2. Norma Davis on the March 7, 2012 remarked #

    From twitter I clicked your site. Mama says drew me in. My mama passt on years ago, but, after raising 12 kids (I’m number ten) she sat and smiled a lot in her old age. Couldn’t remember much, but every now and then would say, “God bless you.” Though senile, she never lost the love of God in her heart.

    • Olivia on the March 7, 2012 remarked #

      Thanks, for looking around, Norma. I hope you’ll be back every Friday to hear what Mama Says.

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