'What are we going to do?' Liam asked yesterday, Mother's Day. It was mid-afternoon and the three of us had gone round and round in circles trying to decide what to do together to mark the occasion. The weather couldn't have been more glorious and there were plenty of free things we could have done - more than anything we wanted to go tramping - but the main obstacle was that my car's petrol tank was on empty and we couldn't afford to put any petrol in it. 'See? Just goes to show that money does bring happiness', Liam said sagely. 'Not necessarily!' I quickly told him. 'You can have nothing and still be happy - and you can have everything and still be miserable '. 'True I guess', he pondered. 'But even just ENOUGH would be nice!' I had to agree with him there. I mean, after all it WAS Mother's Day. I had made it plain to the boys that I didn't want any fuss, no presents, they needed to save their money. 'It was my choice to become a mother, you don't have to thank me for it!' I told them firmly. But when the morning came around I have to admit I felt a little sad. The boys were feeling bad too - it just didn't feel right not celebrating the day together, especially now when we were more of a team than ever!
So round and round we went, until around 4pm when the sun was beginning to depart and the evening chill began to set in. And we finally agreed on a plan. It was Mother's Day, therefore I should do some mothering and teach my children something valuable. It's been decades since I learned how to roast a chicken but a few days ago I saw the Free Range Cook, Annabel Langbein making 'Easy Roast Chicken' on TV and the way she did it just made my mouth water so I thought it would be a great opportunity for the boys and I to give it a go. 'Once you know how to cook a roast you'll always be able to feed yourself!' I smiled at Liam. 'Yeah - as long as I don't mind waiting a couple of hours!' came back the reply. Even so, the boys got stuck in and the recipe was as easy as its name suggested. Before we knew it, the chook was in the oven and the most delicious smells began wafting from the oven.
While dinner cooked, we decided we would risk the empty petrol tank in the hope it would get us two minutes up the road to the video shop. It did and after much deliberating we used our bonus points to pick up a free movie - 'Life of Pi'. Fortunately the car also made it back home and as one son chopped a basket of kindling and the other filled up the wood basket, we lit a cosy fire and settled in for the evening. The chicken was a resounding success, so delicious and succulent, with golden brown skin crisped to perfection, just like Annabel said. Carving the blasted thing was not quite so perfect, I think the boys have quite given up on their mother in that department, but it did make for much hilarity!
Dinner over with, we sat down to watch 'Life of Pi'. What an amazing movie - I don't think I have ever seen Liam so mesmerised by a film, he was literally on the edge of his seat, eyes full of wonder. You don't see that much in your average 16 year old boy these days. His enjoyment was almost as wonderful to watch as the cinematography! 'Good movie Mum!' he said as the credits rolled. Coming from Liam, that is praise indeed!
We may have started our Mother's Day late but we certainly made up for it before the end of the day. It was my first Mother's Day with no presents, flashy lunches or home made cards. In fact, Ali even forgot to say 'Happy Mother's Day' at all! But it didn't matter because my boys gave me what was more important - their time. We had heaps of fun, we didn't spend a cent and I was one very happy, contented mother. In fact I think it was quite possibly my best Mother's Day ever. Although thanks to 'Life of Pi' I'm not quite sure how long the enthusiastic yelling of 'RICHARD PARKERRRR!' around the house from both boys is going to last. I have a feeling it may be some time...