Monday, May 9, 2016

Happy Mother’s Day

This holiday is viewed as sacred by some and scorned as an advertising gimmick by others. For me, at least this year, it is a special day because I hope to celebrate the birth of another grandchild whose mother is due any day.

Besides being the mother of six myself, I have a lot to do with mothers in our work at Living Books Library. I saw 19 of them this week, some young, some old, some with a troupe of children accompanying them, some on their own. We are all intent on the same things: raising lovers of books and learning. These efforts are only part of our higher goal to raise lovers and knowers of God and a generation who will increase His Light in the world.

The mothers of the children in our library are worthy of honor for the daily and constant sacrifice and efforts they pour out for their children. My oldest daughter, mother of two under two, herself rises early twice a month, packs them and all their paraphernalia into her car, drives 30 minutes to the library to be available to these mothers in selecting books—in addition to physically handling a few thousand books coming and going throughout the day, then packs the children into the car and returns home to get dinner on the table and get her children to bed. Still, I know they don’t go to bed without her reading stories.

In addition to what our children learn about mothering from the blessing of having one themselves, our children are learning about mothers apart from their own, for they meet them in the pages of the books they carry home. I have spoken and written often about the influence of some of these mothers in my own life. In my preschool years, I learned that there were wicked mothers and gracious mothers. Then, as I grew, I discovered through books that there were children who had no mothers at all, which in itself was informative for me to consider what life without my mother would be like.

I was blessed to have my mother until two years ago, but again, I honor her today for all she was in my life. I also thank her again for all the hours of reading, for ensuring that I learned to read myself, and for being a reader and talking about books with me. She is far more precious to me than the mothers I’ve met in literature, but is responsible for introducing me to them. Consequently, I am thankful for Marmee March, Mary Emma Moody, Caroline Ingalls, Mrs. Moffat, Tiny Tim’s mother, Mother Carey, and Marilla Cuthbert, who was more than a mother to Anne.

Last, I wish to thank all my known and unknown mother readers here, for giving your children life, and a life full of books besides.

For the joy of reading,



  1. Great words: a life full of books.

  2. What a wonderful post, Liz! I sat and thought of the literary mothers I love. And you know, besides the ones you mentioned, I could only think of a few! So many of the books I love feature orphans (Heidi, Philomena), or children without mothers (the Penderwicks, Winn-Dixie, Emma), or irritating mothers (Mrs. Bennet), or mothers you never meet (Narnia). Still, I came up with a couple more: Irene's Grandmother (Princess & Goblin), Mrs. Ray (Betsy-Tacy), and Mrs. Walker (Swallows and Amazons), for all of whom I am grateful.

    1. Kimberlee,

      Oh, I forgot about Mrs. Walker--what an exemplary character of Mason's principle of masterly inactivity. Excellent.