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Peterson: Mom knows best

Nowhere. That’s exactly where I’d be if not for the incredible women who helped raise me, and the smart, gorgeous one I somehow convinced to marry me.

I don’t need a Hallmark holiday to remind me of that.

I’m nothing but thankful every single day for the incredible mothers in my life.

But, since it is Mother’s Day, what better time to pay tribute to the strongest, most resourceful women I know than with a little note of gratitude?

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So, here goes.

To my own mom: Thanks for somehow managing to corral four crazy kids and assorted pets while keeping the house clean, putting the world’s most delicious dinners on the table every night and working full-time to help pay the bills. Thanks for driving us all over God’s green earth for soccer games, football games, baseball games, softball games, basketball games and skiing trips — not to mention trips back and forth from college.  

Thanks for passing along a love of great food, great music and hilarious drink napkins.

Thanks for steering me toward journalism in high school despite my pleas that only the geeks worked for the school paper. Turns out, I’d secretly been one all along.

Thanks for putting all four of us kids through college, and helping to pay for four weddings, and for loving my wife and my two children just as much as I do.

To my beloved 95-year-old Memere, our family’s greatest treasure: I’m so thankful for every minute spent in your presence. I can’t wait to hug you again when this terrible plague has passed and you can come out of isolation.

Thanks for the world’s best pies, the letters of support over the years, the encouraging phone calls and all the birthday and Christmas gifts. Thanks for yelling, “Watch where you’re going, you big fat tub of lard!” at that lady who nearly ran me and my sister over in a grocery store parking lot when we were really young. It makes me laugh to this day.

To my late Grandma Jane: Thanks for all the nice gifts, and for sending back corrections on the thank-you cards I wrote. It absolutely made me a better writer.

Thanks for teaching me manners, and for catching sand crabs on the beach for us when we were kids, and all the great book recommendations. Thanks for coming to visit me in Paris when I was in college. I’ll never forget going to the Moulin Rouge with you and the looks we got from some of the people in the red light district.

To my mother-in-law, Sally: Let’s just drop the in-law part, OK? You’re a mother to me, all the same. Thanks for all the wonderful meals, the thoughtful conversations and the spot-on career advice. Thanks for all the times you’ve shooed your daughter and me out of the house to catch a movie, or get dinner, or even spend the night in a hotel so you can have the grandkids all to yourself. Your selflessness knows no bounds.

To my sister, Jesse: We mockingly called you mom when we were kids because you loved to boss your three brothers around, but, man, what a great mom you’ve become to your two boys. You juggle it all so well — the kids, the crazy-busy job, the old, leaky house that continues to test your patience and the life of being married to a traveling music man.

Thanks for always keeping me in line and for making me laugh with your hilarious stories about my crazy nephew, Chi-Chi.

To my sisters-in-law, Anne and Alex: I know my brothers aren’t easy, but man they lucked out with you two. Thanks for being such wonderful mothers to your boys while juggling such demanding careers.  

To my sister-in-law Elizabeth: You’ve only been a mom for a few months now, but given how you’ve nurtured and cherished every single child who has ever entered your classroom, you’re already a pro. Rosie hit the mom lottery.  

And, lastly, to my beautiful wife, Emily: Thanks for putting up with me. I know it’s not easy. Thanks for running the schedule and telling me where I need to be for parent-teacher conferences or after-school pickup. I may be the editor of this fine publication, but you’ve always been the boss. 

Thanks for saying yes when I asked you to marry me on that beach on Kauai and for saying, “I do” on that beach in Mexico. Thanks for planning the most amazing, ahem, beach vacations ever. Don’t worry, I promise we’ll make up that 10-year anniversary trip when this whole thing is over.

Thanks for keeping me sane during all of this and for patiently leading the charge on home school while working full-time and keeping the house looking spotless. Thanks for making me put down the computer to get the kids out on a bike ride or a little adventure.

Thanks for being the world’s best editor, and taste-tester, and advice giver, and for tolerating my peccadillos — the sneaker collection, especially. I’ve never loved any of those Air Jordans as much as I love you.   

Lastly, thanks for being the greatest mom ever to our two beautiful, high-energy kids. Nobody understands them better than you.

It’s no secret that we’d be lost without you. You’re the glue that holds it all together, so thanks, for everything, from the guy who wakes up every day knowing just how lucky he is.

Happy Mother’s Day.

Vail Daily Editor Nate Peterson is a mama’s boy. Email him at npeterson@vaildaily.com.


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