Sunday, November 15, 2015

Day 15--The Mother-in-Law

My in-laws with Hannah hours after she arrived

Every once in a while I will run into someone in Fredonia that doesn't know Andrew's family and I will get asked with a cringing face, "What is it like living so close to your in-laws?" Mother-in-law jokes are popular and I think some people are fascinated when I respond with, "wonderful!"

After the purchase of our new house, I am more thankful than for my mother-in-law.  I am not a gifted home decorator.  I love to cook, bake,and throw parties but hand me a decor magazine or ask me to pick out a paint color and I feel overwhelmed.  I can tell you if I like certain things together but managing to take a random group of materials and make them into a room is a skill I don't possess.  I've done my fair share of looking at Houzz, reading Better Homes and Gardens/Country Lving, etc. but my main mode of decoration is to put some pictures up and call it a day.  Not so for the charming lady who lives up the road and is the mother to my husband.

Walk into her home and you will feel at home.  From carefully hung pictures/baskets/quilts, to beautiful curtains, stitched pillows and refinished furniture, every room looks carefully planned and put together.  I understand that part of it is that she has lived in her house over twenty years and I about six weeks but without some serious help, it might never get there.

Which is where my mother-in-law comes into the picture.  Not only did she and my father-in-law spend a day here unpacking for us right after we moved in but, she is happily helping me decorate.  When trying to pick out a rug for our living room, I asked her to look and obviously bought what she liked.  (It is beautiful and looks wonderful in our living room).  Yesterday she watched Hannah for me while I taught Bodypump and after class she showed me curtains she'd ordered for my dining room, fabric she'd purchased for pillows for our living room and told me she'd ordered the paint for the buffet she found and is redoing for our dining room.  I've had a little input, but since I did stand in TJ Maxx before we moved in trying to decide on a shower curtain for about 20 minutes, I've mostly said, "Whatever you think looks good!"

Beyond her patience with my lack of decorating skills and willingness to help, she is an incredible blessing in both my life and the lives of my children.  She is a doting grandmom who is supportive of our parenting decisions, a constant source of encouragement, a sympathetic ear and someone I deeply admire.  She is a wonderful cook and Andrew had pretty high food expectations when we first got married.  When pregnant with Hannah, she fed me more times than I can count and was willing to help whenever we needed it.  I hope that one day when I fill the mother-in-law role for Ben and Caleb, my daughters' in-law will feel even the tiniest bit of admiration and love that I feel for her.

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