Inland SoCal Moms | Encouragement for Moms – Super Mom

I stared at the bag of potatoes, wishing they were self-peeling. Only three hours before on the way home from our work meeting my best friend complained about the mess she was destined to return home to. I thought about what a wonderful homecoming I was bound to have since my husband was off from work today. Somehow she walked into a clean house, dinner cooking, and a dozen roses. I returned home to chaos, disagreements, and pork chops and potatoes that wouldn’t cook themselves.

Shape of the heart

The house phone rang. I hoped it was my husband, apologizing again for the mistake he made and wanting to proclaim his love to me. Instead, it was my mother-in-law. I sighed. They’d be in town tomorrow. What was so urgent that she needed to call in the middle of my already horrible day?

“We’re in town!” my mother-in-law chimed.

“A day early?!” The moment the words left my mouth I realized how horrible they sounded.

“Are we?” She laughed. “Oh well. We’re here.”

“Great.” I plastered a smile on my face to attempt to feel happy. “You can come over for dinner. How about 6?”

I glanced at the three pork chops defrosting. Hopefully they had a big lunch and weren’t hungry.

I hung up and took a quick inventory of the house. I had wisely told the children they could put off their chores until tomorrow morning so everything would be clean when Grandma and Grandpa arrive, but, of course, the children were out with their father and not due home for close to an hour.

I became a whirlwind of activity. In the midst of peeling potatoes, I called my husband.

“Your parents are here.”

“A day early?”

I ran down the groceries I needed him to get. “And see if they have a Macy’s gift card. You still need to get your mom a present.”

With my music blaring, I kicked myself into Superwoman mode. In one hour I vacuumed, swept, decluttered the dining room and kitchen tables, washed all the dishes in the sink, cleaned the kitchen counters, and had the pork chops and potatoes cooking.

“Wow,” my husband exclaimed when he walked in. “Impressive.”

Fifteen minutes later when the in-laws arrived, the children had the table beautifully set and dinner was on it.

“You feel hot!” my mother-in-law said when I hugged her. “Are you sick?”

“Just been running around all day.” I smiled.

But, of course, the work wasn’t done. Once everyone sat down, the serving began. I was up and down to fetch salt and pepper, more napkins, and butter. As the other adults enjoyed their meals, I helped the kids serve themselves. I wanted to relax and enjoy the conversation after I finished eating, but just as potatoes don’t peel themselves, neither do dishes wash themselves. It’s true – a mother’s work is never done.

“You owe me.” I plopped down beside my husband on the couch after his parents had left.

“I do. The house looks amazing. Dinner was great. Thank you.”

I sighed, leaning against him. I had been so mad at him earlier, but then I didn’t have time to remain angry. It was definitely for the best.

On days that I feel more like a maid than a mother, a disciplinarian instead of a homeschool mom, and laundry service rather than a devoted wife, I need to remember that all of these undesirable tasks are my way of showing love to my family. Sometimes my reward is flowers and “thank you”, but other times the reward comes in their laughter and smiles. The reward comes when my kids help one another rather than lash out at each other. It comes in knowing that my labor, though overwhelming at times, is making life better for them. After an evening of serving my joy came from the joy in my kids’ hearts and conversations with Grandma and Grandpa. Sometimes the biggest blessing comes in being the blessing.
Take time to look past the dishes and remember the great dinner conversations. As you scrub the kitchen floor yet again to remove the mud, jelly, or who-knows-what-that-is from the tile, be grateful for the little hands and feet that left the mess. Your work for them is your gift of love, even if they don’t realize it. That’s what being a mom is all about.

Kelly Harrel

Writer at Inland Moms
Kelly Harrel is an amazing wife to her husband, Jeff, and "the best mom ever" according to her two children. In her spare time, Kelly writes Inspirational Fiction novels, blogs about life lessons, and speaks to women and girls. She blogs at


  1. catrina says:

    I loved this kelli! so true, sometimes the biggest blessing IS being the blessing, i have never thought of that before. i love that perspective!

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