My mother is fabulous. She’s smart, funny, and even in her 70’s, still one of the coolest women I know. I hope that my kids think I’m as cool as she is one day. But she does have a distinct advantage. She got to be a mother in a much more carefree time -unencumbered by pesky worries about things like GMOs or UV rays or seat belts. It must have been a great time to be a mom. I know it was a great time to be a kid. Here are 12 reason my mom, and other 70’s moms, were awesome…
- She encouraged us to be Free to Be You and Me. It’s alright to cry. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover. Mommys are people. Everyone hates house work. Don’t dress your horse in galoshes. These were important life lessons
If your mom didn’t happen to buy you a copy of Free to Be You and Me when you were little, I encourage you to listen to a few of the songs online. To say that this album’s messages about equality and gender stereotypes were a bit heavy handed is putting in it mildly. But with performances by stars like Alan Alda, Mel Brooks, Carol Channing, and Michael Jackson, it’s hard not to like it. Besides it’s just so 1970’s.
- She smoked. Of course we know now that smoking isn’t cool. But at the time not only did it look cool, but our moms’ smoking inspired us to make some funky ash trays in art class.
- She bought us candy cigarettes. So we could “smoke” too.
- She quit smoking. Kudos, Mom. And I thought it was a bitch to give up Diet Coke.
- She wore turquoise rings that tapped in perfect time against the plastic steering wheel of her station wagon – while she sang along to I Am Woman by Helen Reddy on her 8 track tape player.
- She played bridge. In the afternoon whilst smoking and drinking strawberry daiquiris.
- She embroidered denim shirts for the entire family. And our cousins. And the babysitter. And her bridge club.
That’s right! This masterpiece is still hanging in my closet. A butterfly, a dragonfly, a partridge, a heart, and a field of flowers all on ONE shirt. Be jealous.
- She taught us The Hustle. I remember learning this at Vacation Bible school – right after Kool Aide and Little Debbies but before we made a God’s Eye out of yarn and popsicle sticks.
- She took us to see Grease. Of course she was horrified when she realized it was about teenage s-e-x, but we had no idea – not even after listening to the album 47,000 times.
- She could bring home the bacon and fry it up in the pan!
- She took belly dancing lessons. And tolle painting lessons. And calligraphy lessons. And Parent Effectiveness Training. Of course we may or may not have been left in the care of an 85 year old woman who fed us butter and sugar sandwiches for lunch, but we survived.
- She read Erma Bombeck. Whose writings are just as applicable and funny today as they were 35 years ago.
Of course my mom was cool in the 80’s too – with her Jane Fonda workout tape and her Julia Sugarbaker shoulder pads, running around with her Color Me Beautiful Swatches in her purse. I wonder what things about me will stand out for my kids someday. The way I wear yoga pants all the time? My spinach brownies? This blog? Hmmmmm? Maybe I should learn to embroider.
If you had a 70’s Mamma who you thought was cool, comment, share, or like. I’d love the hear from you.
Disclaimer (because my mother will read this): My mom actually quit smoking shortly after she had me, but my grandparents sill smoked, so I got to make ash trays for them. Also, her bridge club met in the evenings, not the afternoons. Afternoons were for taking us to the pool where our unprotected skin soaked in hours of UV rays. But she never let us go in swimming for at least an hour after eating.