Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there! Here's a post I wrote a couple of years ago in honor of my own wonderful mom, Becky. I'm so happy I get to celebrate with her this year, and I look forward to seeing her and giving her a big hug a little later today!

Little Becky Bartram
What a cutie!

Happy Mother's Day, everyone! Today, I dedicate my blog post to my Mom: Rebecca Elizabeth Bartram (Brittain Santos). Mom was born in 1946, in Livermore, California, to John Bartram and Donna Madsen Bartram. She's the third of four children, including her older brother and sister, Jimmy and Brenda, and her younger brother, Clay.

Mom grew up around the Livermore valley, where my Grandpa John worked as a cowboy (for the Harry Rowell Ranch as well as riding rodeo). She met my dad, William Lee Brittain, when she was a teenager, and they married on September 12, 1964. They soon started their family with my younger sister, Cindy, and me. We moved around the Livermore area (with short stints in San Luis Obispo and the Reno, Nevada, area) until we settled outside of Tracy, California, in 1974.

Mom, Dad and me
Mom was always very involved in Cindy's and my activities. She worked at our elementary school and was an active leader of our 4-H group. In fact, Mom and Dad took it upon themselves to learn all they could about raising sheep so they could lead our 4-H sheep group. She schlepped us to our other various activities: Cindy's gymnastics practice and my marching band competitions, for example. She also fostered our love of crafts and Halloween: to this day, I refuse to purchase a Halloween costume when my Mom instilled in me the creativity and ingenuity to conjure up my own! I appreciated Dad and Mom helping me through college -- I was the first one in my family to get a university degree, and I can't tell you how much their support meant to me. Whatever we were into, Mom was a staunch supporter and we could always count on her encouragement.
Cindy, Mom and me at Mom and Rodney's wedding
I have to say, Cindy and I are very lucky daughters. My mom has always been a great parent, and she has a real knack for knowing when it's appropriate to be the "mom" and when it's ok to be our friend. As we've both grown, our relationship as women has truly blossomed. I've had fun going on vacations with Mom (alone and with Dad) and just hanging out with her. We still reminisce about our mother/daughter trip to New Orleans and pilgrimage to Graceland.
Grandma I-U and her boys, Liam and Evan
Mom has also developed a special relationship with Cindy: they are both mothers now and share that wonderful bond. She's the best grandma (or I-U, as they call her) to her boys, Liam and Evan. When Dad passed away in 2003, we all went through a rough patch together (and still do sometimes), but we knew we could count on each other to be strong for each other, or just to cry on each others' shoulders. I honestly don't know what I would have done without Mom and Cindy during that time.
Mr. and Mrs. Rodney Santos
Mom has now embarked on a new adventure in her life. She met a wonderful man, Rodney, and they got married last year. Cindy and I are so happy that she found love and companionship again, and that we're able to share in their new life together. I'm not able to spend today with Mom (we're celebrating our birthdays together in a couple of weeks, though), but I look forward to calling her first thing to thank her for everything she's done for me, and to tell her I love her.

Happy Mother's Day, Mom!

Isn't she beautiful??


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Colleen. We just had a lovely day together. Happy Mother's Day to you, too!