How I Spent My Mother’s Day

On my very first Mother’s Day, when Chandler was just five months old, I woke up with Bells Palsy*, thought I had a stroke, and went to the emergency room.

For those of you who don’t know what Bells Palsy is, it’s a form of facial paralysis, where half your face is frozen and the other half works just fine. I could not close my left eye and was constantly drooling. So attractive. (On an up note, the frozen side was completely wrinkle free – attractive indeed!)

The ER doctor told me that the cause was most likely stress. (Don’t ever let anyone tell you that motherhood isn’t stressful!)

When I asked him how long it would last he very nonchalantly told me that it could be permanent. (Asshole.)

I dare you to top that with your “I had a crappy Mother’s Day” story.

That Monday I went to a Chinese neurologist who mixed old world and new world medicine and hooked me up with a mad prescription of acupuncture and Prednisone. I recovered in about six weeks.

So… needless to say, every Mother’s Day since -even the ones that I’ve hosted and had to spend all day Saturday cleaning have been wonderful.

My kids are older now so I no longer get school projects as Mother’s Day gifts.

The potpourri in this decoupaged holder mostly smells like dust these days.


Chandler was so proud of himself when he made this.

No more acrostic poems.

How much did I swoon when 5-year-old Marley told me I was pretty AND hysterical? (Answer – A lot!)

No more handmade cards or laminated signs permanently magneted to our refrigerator .

Tell your kid “I work so hard” enough times and they’ll have their preschool teacher make a sign that says so.
Yes, I do keep ALL of my Mother’s Day gifts.

I do get breakfast in bed – a crumb donut and coffee. To be honest, the kids enjoy the donuts more than me and I really only eat them because it makes the kids so happy. (Yes, even on Mother’s Day it’s all about the kids.)

Chandler clipped some roses from our garden.

Sweet, but I don’t think he’ll grow up to be a florist.

And then left the rose clippers on the kitchen counter

Guess who put these away?


Then we went to breakfast. (Because that donut? I was hungry 5 minutes after I ate it.)

For the last few years we’ve been going to the local Boy Scout troop’s pancake breakfast. It’s all-you-can-eat pancakes, eggs, ham, fruit and bagels. The Boy Scouts are the waiters and the dads cook the food. There is always a wait, the  food is cold or lukewarm at best, and the Boy Scouts are pretty terrible waiters. (They try hard, but they are after all, children.)

A Mother’s Day Feast!

Hmmm… a wait, lukewarm food, and bad service…

Not much different from going to a fancy restaurant for an overpriced Mother’s Day brunch if you ask me.

Except that this brunch only costs $5. And everyone in town is there. It’s my suburban town’s social event of the season. (Yeah, I might live in the suburbs of Los Angeles, but trust me, it’s still pretty Mayberry.)

It’s held at the clubhouse of a beautiful lake that looks like you are in some vacation dreamland rather than five minutes from the suburbs of Los Angeles.

Malibou Lake (yes I spelled that right!)

There are baskets that are raffled. I’ve won one in the past and so has my mom. This year Marley won one. (Hardly fair, since she’s not a mother!)


I’m sure it won’t shock anyone to know this is the basket I was hoping to win.

All the moms get a pink carnation. (Hey, only the best for moms right?)

My kids dress up. (Well… dress up-ish.)

One happy mom.

It’s nothing fancy. And sure I’d rather be at the spa at The Four Seasons like my good friend Sophie (okay maybe not everyone in town goes to the Boy Scout breakfast). But it sure beats the ER!

And honestly… it’s just lovely. And there’s (almost) no place else I’d rather be.


*BTW – Just so you know, I KNOW it’s Bell’s Palsy and NOT Bells Palsy, but people who search the term on the world’s most popular search engine don’t seem to know that, so yeah, I risked looking stupid just so I could show up in search engines. Go ahead and say it – I’m a search word whore!

3 thoughts on “How I Spent My Mother’s Day

  1. Hilarious as always, Charlene- sounds like you had a fantastic Mother’s Day, especially compared to some of the others. Best of all, you look so freakin’ awesome in the pic of you with the kids! How do you do it?

  2. Love this. I got my first art project this Mother’s Day and plan to keep them all. Now I won’t feel sappy doing so. I’m going to skip the Bell’s Palsy part though.

  3. That is beyond crazy. I don’t know how you didn’t lose your mind. That coupled with sleep deprivation….ugh
    But I love your art projects and that you set such a good example for your kids with the pancake breakfast….you all look so fabulous!

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