Mom with the Three of Us
One of my favorite pictures of the three of us with my mother, it was our first snow

One of my mother’s favorite sayings is “Give me my flowers while I’m still living.” Meaning, don’t celebrate me and talk about how much you love me after I’m gone, tell me now while I can appreciate it.  I used to think that was such a hard thing to say until my father passed away a few years ago and I wrote a post about how much I loved him and would miss him.  Seriously, it’s so much easier to tell people you love them while they’re still with you and it’s better for the soul.  So, Mom, here are your flowers…

My sisters and I were raised in church.  In fact, we used to joke that when we were released from the hospital our first stop was the church.  Which really isn’t that far from the truth since we had to pass by the church to get to our apartment.  Anyway, suffice it to say, we were in church a lot.  During my early years, I thought everyone was in church 5 to 6 days out of the week, it wasn’t until my teen years that I realized we were, um, different.  That was also when I began to resent all the time spent sitting on those hard pews.

I wanted to be like the other kids in school ~ go to dances, attend parties, hang out at the clubs, listen to Michael Jackson or Prince, anything but gospel, but Mom wouldn’t let us.  Nope, we had to have ourselves dressed and ready for that 2 hour drive to church every Sunday morning and a couple of times during the week.  Yes, our church was 2 hours away from our house.  Do you know how hard it was to do homework in a moving vehicle?

As I grew older, I strayed from the path that she had set me on, I even tested pushed jumped way over the boundaries when I lived at home.  How she survived me, I’ll never know! But now that I’m older and have children of my own, I understand what she was doing and I truly appreciate it.

Mom, if you’re reading this, and I know you are because all moms read their childrens’ blogs don’t they, I want to thank you for the nights you spent listening to me as I recited the books of the Bible for Sunday school.  Had to earn that penny candy from Elder Osbourn.  I want to thank you for the hours that you spent praying that I would survive whatever craziness I had gotten myself into that day.  Remember the celebratory phone call on my 21st birthday because everyone was soooo happy/surprised that I made it?  But, most of all, I just want to thank you for helping me to learn the meaning of God’s love.

While heartfelt and truly appreciative of everything that my mother has taught me over the years (and continues to teach me), this post was written to raise awareness about the Heart of Haiti Project and how you can help women help their children through the purchase of handmade goods.

About the Heart of Haiti Project

The Heart of Haiti Project is an initiative founded by Willa Shalit (daughter of Gene Shalit) and her company,Fairwinds Trading, a for-profit company that uses business as a strategy for economic empowerment of people, especially women, in the Majority World. The Majority World is where two billion of the world’s three billion people live, in poverty.

Through a partnership with Macy’s and their Shop For A Better World’ initiative, Heart of Haiti offers artisan-crafted decorative arts and jewelry for sale. All income derived from sales of the products on the Heart of Haiti site enhances an artisan’s family’s nutrition, educates children, and brings access to healthcare and dignity.

Information was taken from Clever Girls Collective.

To view the Shop for a Better World/Heart of Haiti collection in its entirety (including just added items for Spring), please click here.

Please use the Promocode:  CLEVERGIRLS to receive 15% off all Heart of Haiti and Rwanda Path to Peace products for Mothers’ Day gifts purchased between 3~8 May 2011.

Disclosure:   I was selected for this very special “CleverHaiti” opportunity by Clever Girls Collective, which endorses Blog With Integrity.  All opinions are my own.