How do you define Mom?

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As I approach my first Mother’s Day as a mom, I can’t help feeling emotional as I think about what being a Mom means and how I have come to know it.  The definition can not be found in a book… it is too deep, too personal, and too rooted in your own history.  I can be a positive or negative learned behavior.  One pieced together after years of internal dialogue, subconscious decision making and an inherent book of rules you had no idea you had written until they start to play out in front of you.

So many of you did not get the chance to meet my Mom and I am left with words and images that do not even begin to cover who she was and the impact she had.  Julie Ann Farr died before digital photography, facebook and the world of smartphones took over.  While I can only imagine she would have struggled with the technical aspects, she would have reveled in the resulting communication opportunities.  She used to call to warn us kids of potential bad weather or traffic… often starting calls with a “hi and howdy” before leaving an epically long voicemail.  My Mom could switch from yelling to a perfect phone voice in a millisecond.  She smiled often, cried at emotional TV commercials, and laughed with her entire face.  She fed popcorn to our dogs, talked to the cats and supported the pet turtles, bunnies, hamsters and fish that joined and out of our house throughout the years.   My Mom was inherently creative but cooked recipes word for word from articles she found in newspapers and magazines.   She came to all of our sporting events, knew all of our friends, and felt our struggles almost deeper than we got them for ourselves.  She folded laundry, endless laundry, on the couch while watching soap operas.  Julie Farr was silly and fun, loving and selfless.

I want nothing more than to follow the trail laid out for me by my Mom.  She defined the word in her everyday actions.  She did not ask to be remembered but there is no way to forget her.  She was everything important and I see her face in my daughter when she smiles and throws raspberries my way.  At 7 months in, I know it is early, but… Ellie June has her disposition.  While my Mom did not meet my husband, my daughter (or my dogs who are and have been family), I know she would have loved them all.  I take that love forward.

I have made it a tradition to do mini shoots on Mother’s Day in her memory.  I wish I had a million more photos of me with her.  SO, I offer that to you.  The weekend is sold out, as it does every year and we are doing happy weather dances in hopes of a three gorgeous days.

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I love that my Mom through her face into this portrait with my Dad and I

Farr Family_Old Time PhotoFarr Family-fireplaceHalloween_Julie HairdoJulie and Don sitting by the pondJulie and MarthAnn DahlenJulie Don snow angels 031983_Farr Family Cowfolk1992_Family Ski Trip1992_Julie Don_looking good

My parents were married almost 40 years when she passed away.  I am not sure how they did it, they are very different people, but it is a great act to follow.

Julie and Don partying hard-cropJulie and Laurie

Farr kids_young teensTeenagers, my parents had to deal with FOUR of us at the same time.  This photo pretty much sums up the spread of attitudes.

Julie and TexJulie and will on couchJulie Farr_Dad Favorite-file typeJulie_and_her_beautiful_girls

My Mom and her three daughters

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