July 1, 2009

when great minds are nourished

president gordon b. hinckley once said, "you know that your children will read. they will read books and they will read magazines and newspapers. cultivate within them a taste for the best. while they are very young, read to them the great stories which have become immortal because of the virtues they teach. expose them to good books. let there be a corner somewhere in your house, be it ever so small, where they will see at least a few books of the kind upon which great minds have been nourished."

in sunday school a week and a half ago the above quote was read and i immediately thought back on my childhood. my mother is an extremely intelligent woman -- a college professor with a library of children's books and young adult novels. while growing up, the children in my family were never at a loss for reading material. momma would gather us on her bed at night and read aloud to us from beautiful literature: anne of green gables, little women, forgotten carols,
and more. as i got older, momma would still have me cuddle up in bed as she read aloud the alice books by phyllis reynolds naylor. some of my fondest memories come from having those books read to me -- we would cry together, laugh together, and dream of what the future might hold.

my momma and i have been through a lot together, and mostly trial upon trial. i truly do not know how she survived my adolescence. maybe it was because of the beautiful memories we were able to create when she read to me. she says i was a kissable child, one who loved to snuggle and hug.
... she says i still am.

despite my adolescent troubles and other problems that were beyond our control, i believe i have grown into a mature, responsible, and kind-hearted young adult. i attribute a lot of that to the way i was raised. i am grateful for my parents. i am grateful that they understood the importance of education and their continuation of nourishing their own minds. momma is an especially great example to me. as i have learned about her life and the things that made her who she is, i appreciate her even more.

families are not perfect - and that's surely true with mine - but i wouldn't trade them for the world.

momma's birthday is may 26th --- my half-birthday! i neglected to write a post about her during the very important "appreciate mom" month (may), but i guess it's better late than never. so this is to you, momma:

thank you so much for who you are and who you have helped me become.