Thursday, 14 April 2011

My Mum, Brilliant Christmases and The Fugly Jesus Sandals

My mum is the BEST! No fucking questions asked.

When my sister and I were little, we didn't have much money.  We weren't poor or anything, but my dad had to work far away from home for extended periods and he'd send my mum money for us.   So therefore, my mum was a whizz at making tatties and mince last for days on end. She was the master and stretching her pennies as far as they could go.  Hell, she still is!  

But when Christmas came we were spoiled rotten!

We had ten aunties and uncles that would get us Christmas prezzies and on Christmas morning our front room looked like a Santa bomb had exploded.  Stacks of shiney, brightly wrapped presents and Christmassy things EVERYWHERE. 

Yeah, Jesus' birthday was huge in our house and it still is.

Every year, my sister and I were allocated a couch each on which all our loot was stacked.  It was like heaven for a child. We would be opening presents all fekking morning.  It was ridiculous!  We used to use my dad's football referee socks as stockings because they were HUGE and we got more stuff in them.  My big sis used to take one end of the sock and I'd take the other and we try to stretch the socks so that we'd get even more goodies. 

Now, it wasn't expensive or extravagant gifts, some of them would actually be home-made (that's a whole other story) but when you're 7 years old, its quantity that matters, not quality.

During the weeks before Christmas, my mum used to buy us new clothes from Mothercare and make us keep our eyes closed while we tried them on.  

I shit you not!  

We knew exactly what we were getting but we didn't know what they looked like.  Then she wrap them up and when we opened them up we had to act surprised.  One year she even made us try on a pair of dungarees each.  Obviously we could feel they were dungarees but Mum fiercy insisted we keep our eyes tightly closed so we didn't know what they looked like on Christmas morning.  She would threaten us that we'd get a bag of coal if we peeped.  Bless her!

Anyway, this brings me to one of the stories that I will never forget happening in our house-hold.  The story was repeated for years afterward by every member of our family in a different way. The story remains fuckin' legendary.

Here goes :

My mum loved dressing my sister and I in the same outfits when we were little.  Hell, she made us dress the same until my older sister was about 12, so I must've been about about 8 or 9.  My mum's own taste in clothes was pretty hip and trendy but for some reason, her choices dressing her off-spring was totally ridiculous - almost comical.  I always wondered why she got it so wrong for us when she always looks so awesome herself. 

My sister and I both hated dressing the same.  I was just less vocal than my sis. 

Anyhoo, mum had bought us new clothes for some outing we were going to and she presented us the outfits to put on just before we were ready to go.  That day my mum either had a fucking brain hemorrhage or she'd taken cheap drugs because she wanted us to wear green and white striped knee socks with brown leather Jesus sandals!!  She completed the ensemble with identical green and white striped t-shirts and brown fuzzy pinafores.  Versace would've turned in his grave!  My dad was miffed too.  Dad is a Rangers supporter and his girls wearing Celtic colours was almost embarrassing!

Anyway, this day my tweenie sister refused point blank to put on the Jesus sandals.  Mum was livid - she said "You WILL put on those sandals!".  My sister stood her ground, refusing to even LOOK at the sandals.  My sis said they were ugly.  My mother nearly exploded!  She was so angry and yelled "If ye don't put those sandals on now I'll skelp yer arse!".  My sister still refused. 

You must know my sister was a chubby girl.  My mother never saw this through her rose-coloured glasses.  In her eyes were we both perfectly beautiful girls with no faults.  

The worst thing she could've asked my self-conscious sister to wear was thick horizontal stripes around her chunky calves.  She was NOT going out dressed like that no matter how lovely my mother said we looked.  My sister had had enough of the identical dressing.  She had totally outgrown it and let mum know that day. 

She never wore the Jesus sandals.  I wore them to keep the peace.

Don't forget to enter my So You Think You can Vlog Competition.


Matty said...

It's something how you describe Christmas mornings as a kid. Mine were very similar, with piles upon piles of presents. Looking back at it now, it was sort of ridiculous how many I would get. Then on top of it, after that was all done, you went visiting and got more.

Sounds like you and your sister were close growing up. I can remember my mom making me wear some unusual things too. Back then, parents just didn't seem to grasp the "humiliation" factor when it came to having to face your friends in some of those get-ups.

Bravo to your sister for having the spunk to stand up. She's a brave one.

Madeleine said...

What a great tribute to your Mum. There's some great material for a novel too. :O)

..R May A.. said...

loving this post :)
love your writting style!! x

Brian Miller said...

yeah mine were much the same we each were given a couch or chair ...i totaally would have ...rocked the jesus sandals...i broke mine about 2 years ago and can not find a good pair

Joker_SATX said...

I remember when My mom got my daughter a dress that my daughter thought was ugly. And the conversation went like this:

Mom: "but you have to try it looks much better on."

Daughter: "On what? On Fire?"

The afternoon progressed downhill from there.

blueviolet said...

Good for your sis for sticking to her guns! You two were so cute!

A Daft Scots Lass said...

Matty> She still is the brave one

Mad> Would love to do that one day

RMay> Thank you!

Brian> Oh no, don't buy another pair! Your poor wife!

Joker> sharp kiddo :-)

Blueviolet> WERE???

Leah said...

I used to dress my daughters alike when they were little.....same outfits, but in different colours. AND usually from Mothercare!

Our Christmasses are still the same, PILES of prezzies that take forever to wrap. You ever tried to wrap a nail file?? Yep, they still love quantity.

They do get one good present each though - now they are in their 30's the good presents don't come cheap!

Kelly said...

LMAO over your funny "dress up" story. My mom made me wear shiny gold pants when I was 12 back in the Swingin' 70's. I can easily see your sis' point in not wanting to wear those green striped socks. Especially with the Jesus sandals. Take care.

Melanie said...

great story!!

G-Man said...

Love your little walks down memory lane...

Nolens Volens said...

Wow. I never knew lean times until I was out on my own after college. Your mom is now eligible for sainthood. :)

Yes I Blog said...

New follower from Blog Frog!!!

LOVE you already!!! LOVE! LOVE! LOVE! Awesome way with words girlie!!! I'll be back for more!

Aaron M. Gipson said...

Oh good Lord, your poor sister! Those socks look and sound like something from a Dr. Suess book, and the tweenie years are the most self conscious. For me it was parachute pants and neon orange shirts with no sleeves. Miami Vice really did a number on the locals in Miami / Dade County back in the 80's...

But the REST of Christmas morning sounds like a blast! And you're right about kids being more into quantity than quality at that age, my boys are the same.

Copyboy said...

Hey I'd like to think I was the inspiration for the post.

A Daft Scots Lass said...

@Leah see my mum was not the only one.

@CopyBoy indeed you were

@Aaron what? I love the Miami Vice look

@Yes I Blog look forward to seeing more comments from you. thanx for stopping in.

@Kelly I'll bet you still have those golden jobbies

@G-Man thanx for popping in, dude

@Nolene she already has the title and crown and wears it proudly.

janie said...

OH HELL gILLIAN - I SO needed that good laugh - thanks !! I so remember that Sunday....we were to go to Gran Morris' for one of our 'intermittent' Sunday visits to the horrid old woman who made me eat butter and drink milk and sit still. Mum always had to get us dressed in 'Sunday best' to appease ol' Matty Morris. We couldn't touch a darn thing in that house of trinkets. What a tease for two wee girls who wanted to play with all those pretty things! She was like a magpie! Anyhoo...I did kick up quite a 'ruckuss' that day , eh ? And , i WAS forced to wear the outfit. I was LIVID , walking down that country lane to Hurlford that day. Yip , that day marked my passage to 'teenagehood' !! Thanks again , you write so well - it really took me back to the 'moment' ;)

MaidInAustralia said...

Thank you for reminding me that all Mums can be weird. My Mum was very religious when I was a kid and we only ever got one present - because otherwise it would be wasteful. Often mine was a new bible or a devotional book. Sigh. Nothing like your Christmasses. I would have happily wore the socks and sandals in return for a couch full of pressies.

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