This week four friends have shared unique memories of their mothers with us. Here are parts one (the storytelling) and two (the mashed potatoes) and three (the laughing) and four (the imagining) in the series.

It’s been a gift to unwrap each of them and wonder what my own kids will treasure. The things I never could have imagined they would remember. Way beyond the laundry or dishes or craft projects gone wrong, what things will they take away from my mothering I never could have expected? Never could have planned for?

Today’s your turn. What did your mama do that makes her your mama? Let’s unpack those memories today. Let’s trace our fingers along the lines of the unexpected. The ordinary beauty in a day of motherhood. The food or the laughing or the dancing or the story telling.

Where is your memory buried?

In just five minutes. Tell me all about what your mama did that made her yours….
{and don’t forget to spend some time commenting on the post of the person who linked up just before you}


She danced. Like a lunatic and without embarrassment. In the driveway, around the sagging brown sofas, in dad’s arms and while cleaning out the pool with that long scoop thing. She danced to Bruce Springsteen and Ladysmith Black Mambazo and she reminded us all that we are alive and beautiful and beloved. We would dance with her. We would laugh and dance with her and dad would do the two step that is really the only dance he knows how to do, just reinventing it depending on the tune or the beat or the occasion.

It’s never stopped. We’ve kept on dancing long after we couldn’t hear the echoes of her laughter anymore. We’ve danced at weddings and loved and held one another at funerals. I’ve danced a thousand miles of carpet carrying sleepy babies, begging them to close their eyes and let the music wash over their fever, their temper or their frustration.

Pete danced me into his arms on a wooden floor overlooking a golf course on that August afternoon when Aunt Marcia, Aunt Kim and Aunt Ruth all danced too. They laughed and Nazarene danced for just a moment and I felt their love like waves of music caught up in the moment. Josh dances me around any room and I love that quality in a brother. All those lessons paid off long after the girlfriend left.

We are a family of music lovers and rhythm makers and when an evening winds down around that old pine dining room table at the top of a steep hill there will often be music and dancing. A touch of something new and something old and family that holds hands and arms and faith and memory around the mother who made us and gave us this way to laugh between beats, when days feel tired and broken, there will always still be dancing.