| May 10, 2007

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Feature Article - May 10, 2007

Remembering Momma

by Ann Elvins

Remembering Momma: she usually did the ironing late at night on a wooden board covered by a white sheet held tight with huge safety pins. The clothes fresh from the line always smelled so good as the hot iron took care of the creases. It was a basket of cottons

~ none of those fancy wash and wear fabrics that we have today. The light bulb removed

from the overhead fixture, the cord from the iron swayed back and forth as she shook the

Pepsi bottle now filled with water to take care of the more stubborn wrinkles. Topped with


a cork sprinkler purchased at the five and dime store, it was a necessary tool as cotton was best ironed while damp. There was no streamline steam iron in my childhood home. Laundry took most of the day as the clothes made their way from the wringer washer to the Beattie rinse tub, back through the wringer, then off to the clothes line.

We would chat about little things like that as she prepared to iron. In my pajamas, I would sit with her and squeeze the margarine. How many remember the white plastic package with the red dot in the middle? My hands would tire long before the colour was even. And, as I complained, Momma would smile and say ~ "'A man's work is from sun to sun, but a woman’s work is never done". She worked non-stop as a mother and if she were here today her loving labour would be valued at almost $140,000 a year.

Recently, some 40,000 mothers responded to a survey conducted by an American research

company. The findings - a typical mother puts in a 92-hour work week. She has at least 10 jobs including; housekeeper, teacher, cook, computer operator, laundry machine operator, janitor, special events co-ordinator, van driver, chief executive officer and psychologist. Even those who work full-time outside the home put in more than $85,000 worth of unpaid work as a mother during the year. So this Sunday make sure that you give a well-deserved hug to your in-resident doctor, scientist, banker, chef, nurse, coach, maid, chauffeur and seamstress - also known as just "Good Old Mom".

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