By Jennie Montgomery


Hashtag affluenza—not a phrase I had expected to hear my 83-year-old mother throw out there!

We were watching a cable newscast during a recent visit when she gave me her take on that mom who fled the country with her teenage son. My Mama actually said “hashtag!”

She loves words and is all-in when it comes to playing word games with the family. Not talking about Scrabble here, but Apples to Apples and its evil cousin, Rotten Apples. (Nothing makes my kids lose it like hearing their Nana read—let’s say “ambiguous”—answers to fill-in-the-blank racy questions.)

I got some good laughs recently, but mine came from much more innocent material: phrases my kids once said…little gems I found tucked between pages of old photo albums. Maddy-in-the-Middle was clearly the leader of the pack when it came to organizing group efforts, whether it was making Mother’s Day cards or birthday greetings. She had (and still has) the ability to rally the troops and get them to follow her lead.

Check out this one: “Dear Mommy, we just wanted to let you know that we love you very much. Zack too, even though he can be a BIG crybaby.” (Ha! Calling out her big brother in the middle of an elaborate design intended to make me forgive whatever they had done. I see a future politician there!)

And this sweet poem from Sky Baby, whose good intentions got a little mixed up: “Roses are Red. Violets are Blue. But they both are just as pretty as you.” (Illustrated with one red flower, one blue flower, and one stick figure lady with enormous black hair.)

Zack prefaced the following Mother’s Day poem with this zinger: “Dear Mommy, you love me and take care of me and stuff. Please don’t die.” (No beating around the bush here…just making a statement and a request with minimal words.)

    M- makes my lunches

    O- other stuff too

    T- the best mom in the world

    H- has a really cool car (A mini van?)

    E- earthquakes don’t scare her (Oh really? Yep, that’s me: “Bring it, Mother Nature!”)

    R- she’s on the radio (well, WJBF-TV did simulcast on 87.7FM way back in the day!)

This article appears in the February 2016 issue of Augusta Family Magazine.
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