Hand Me Downs: A Tribute to Moms

We at Legacy Coalition thought it would be fun to share some of the things that our mothers taught us as a way to honor them. We have passed down these special lessons, sayings, or thoughts to not only our children but now to our grandchildren as well.

As you read through our favorite ones, we hope they will spark a memory of things your mom would say or do. It could be funny, silly, or downright serious.

1) When taking a bath my mom would sing, “Suzie, Suzie, in the tub, mommy [grammy] forgot to put in the plug, oh my goodness, oh my soul, there goes Suzie down the hole.” I have sung that to each of our children and now to our grandchildren.  The grandchildren beg me to sing it to them! Another silly one that has been passed on is “Ooey, gooey, was a worm. A fat little worm was he. He climbed up on the railroad tracks the train he did not see. Ooey, gooey.” The more dramatic the recitation the better. Each grandchild is thrilled to share this with their friends.

2) My mom has been absolutely “bonkers” over my three children. From the start, she’s been an all-in, intentional Christian grandmother. She’s been bold with her faith and has been able to say things to them during their lives that would not have been as well-received from me. Their mutual adoration of one another gave her a voice in their lives I have not always been able to have. I clearly see the many ways the Lord used my mom – in a much better way! It really does take a whole team to come alongside our kids in their faith journey. I’m so thankful for the godly influence of my mom in their lives. Her boldness and being “bonkers” over my children has given me encouragement to do the same for our granddaughter.  

3) My mom always taught us to be giving, caring for others, and loving. She would say “The middle letter of sin is I.” I never forgot that.

4) My mom passed on her love of family and food. This was especially evident at every visit. She knew what each grandchild’s favorite meal, snack, and sweet was, being sure there was plenty of it available. My adult children still speak of the humongous container of cheese balls and packages of Mentos candies that were stacked up on the kitchen table. I find myself stocking up on my grandchildren’s favorites in preparation for their visits.

5) On car trips, mom would lead us in singing what she called car songs. Some of the favorites were “Oh Susanna” and “Down by the Station.” Now my grandchildren ask to sing car songs when we go on trips.

6) Mom loved puzzles. She always had one out. When she passed away, each grandchild and great-grandchild got to pick one as a keepsake. These are precious treasures in each home.

7) Mom taught us nursery rhymes. One of my favorite lines was “I love you a bushel and a peck, and a hug around the neck.” I shared that with my kids as well as the grandkids. Now when I text “I love you a bushel and a peck” to my older grandchildren they will answer back with “and a hug around the neck.”

8) I remember her welcoming new members into our community with a Blessing Box. The Blessing box which usually consisted of a basket containing the below items – each standing for something we were praying for the new family. As a mom and now a grandma, I have continued this tradition.

  • Bar of soap…so your health will always be good
  • Salt in shaker…so your life will be well preserved
  • Loaf of homemade bread…so your table will never be bare
  • Jar of honey…so your fellowship will always be sweet
  • Heart…that love will always dwell therein
  • Fresh fruit & veggies…fruit of the Spirit will abide therein
  • Scripture verse…that God will be present

9) One piece of Mother’s advice that I continue to use today is: “Always ere’ on the side of grace!” To me, it meant to always go the extra mile to avoid hurting someone’s feelings. 

10) Here are a few quick sayings that come to mind:

  • “A penny saved is a penny earned.”
  • “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
  • “When you meet temptation turn to the right.”
  • “Do unto others as others as you want them to do to you.”
  • “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
  • You can clean the whole house with baking soda and white vinegar! 
  • When exasperated my grandma would say “pershaw” or “Sugar!” So that’s what my grandkids hear me say.

11) Tea parties complete with cream and sugar and sweets was always a fun treat with Mom. I kept up that tradition. In fact, currently, I am doing a Bible study with my granddaughters. Each week instead of saying let’s get together for Bible study I say “Come for Tea.” It has been a special blessing!

12) My mom, Evelyn Wheeler, had heart problems since high school. She was, therefore, limited in physical activity. We lived in a 2-story parsonage. She could only handle the stairs once a day. So, anything that needed to be carried upstairs, she would place on the landing. We lived by the motto “Never go up empty-handed”. We kids automatically grabbed whatever was on the landing and carried it up as we went. I’ve decided that’s a good motto for LIFE:  as we anticipate eternity – “don’t go up empty-handed.”  

What lessons or silly poems, sayings, or practical tips have you learned from Mom that you are passing along to your grandchildren?

Maybe it’s even a game like jacks, 7-up, hopscotch, or marbles. It could be a recipe or family story that will be lost if you do not share it. It’s been said that “copying is the best compliment.” What are you copying from your mom?

Share your memory in the comments below, and plan to share it with your grandkids this week as a way to honor her. What will they pass along to their grandchildren who are yet to be born?

8 thoughts on “Hand Me Downs: A Tribute to Moms”

  1. I grew up in the heart of Chicago living in a six apartment building on the north east side of the city. We lived on the second floor south apartment. This was way back in the 40’s and 50’s when there were ‘hobo’s’ (not homeless), guys who were unemployed and hungry looking for something to eat. It was not unusual to find a guy eating a sandwich on our back steps from my mom. Our place was marked: “There is a nice lady on (address) who will give you something to eat. She never turned anyone away. Good example for me.

  2. My Mom used to pour lemonade into ice cube trays and give us frozen lemonade cubes to melt in our mouth on hot summer days. They were refreshing, inexpensive, and contained controlled sugar content.

  3. When our first granddaughter came along , of course we were over the moon. About 4 years old, we started the tradition of a Grammie “B” Day. She and I would go to a toy store, get her hair cut, and go out to lunch. Those times continued with each little girl- I had a Grammie “G” Day and now our youngest can’t wait for her Grammie “T” Day!! It is such a blessing to have each of them alone and learn from them and them from Grammie!! We have moved closer now and so it is easy to schedule those days and they ask all the time – “when is it my turn?” ❤️❤️❤️

    1. Legacy Coalition Blog Team

      what fun! Thank you for sharing with us. Those memories will be cherished forever.

  4. Like one of you, my fondest memories with my grandparents are centered around favorite foods and special meals. My parents provided those same memories for my children. Now I have two young grandchildren and we look forward to our “spend the nights” where we together cook a specially planned breakfast. Our whole family is devoted to “family dinners” where we cook meals and preserve fresh fruits & vegetables together! Great fun!

    1. Legacy Coalition Blog Team

      Wonderful memories in the making, thank you for sharing! May they pass it down to the next generation and beyond.

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