My mom and I were a lot alike in many respects.

Tomorrow we will pay tribute to and express our love for our Moms! I lost my Mom three years ago, but as you have learned from my Saturday columns, she remains a profound influence in my life. She helped develop me into the person I am today, including introducing me to the joy of design. My Mom never got to see the columns I write for all of you dear readers, but I know in my heart she would have enjoyed them.

My mom and I were a lot alike in many respects. We loved to laugh often, long and, yes, loud at times! She was an amazing role model who became a strong and powerful woman after the loss of her daughter and my sister Kay. She helped change the way law enforcement deals with families in times of tragedy. She stood shoulder to shoulder with other moms who had lost a child in such a heartbreaking manner. As she often said, she chose to become a “dove” rather than a “hawk". I not only loved my Mom, I respected the amazing woman she became out of necessity. So, as I have done in one other column, I am deviating from the subject of design—at least the material stuff. Instead, I will devote this column to Moms, one of God’s greatest designs!

To give you an appreciation of my Mom, let me share one of the last silly—and if I may say so myself—hilarious stories that involved Mom, her sister Carolyn and myself. I was blessed to have my Mom as a roommate for the last nine months of her life, and this took place about a month or so before I lost her. As she did on most days, Mom stood with her walker in front of the fireplace, even though it was March. I often turned the fireplace on for her as she liked to “warm her old bones,” as she would say.

My aunt I were in the kitchen, a mere 20 steps away. As the three of us visited, Mom started to lose her balance. I made a leap towards her, but down she went. Within seconds my aunt and I were at her side checking for injuries—thank goodness there were none. And then the round of laughter began as she lay there, unable to rise due to replacements in both knees. As my aunt and I sat on the coffee table pondering how to get her upright the laughter was loud and yes long. We sat like hawks perched above her, trying to figure out how to help her to her feet.

As I sat, I thought, “What would Dad do? Smart reliable Dad. Then it dawned on me-roll her onto a rug, pull her to some steps, stick her feet over the steps, sit her up, and get her to a standing position, perfect! Being a designer, I have rugs of all sizes scattered about my house. I quickly snatched the entryway rug and my aunt and I rolled her onto it.

Now you have to understand the laughter is just about taking over our ability to function. During the trip to the back door, which was about 15 steps away, we had to stop several times to take control of the giggling from all three of us.

Finally, after about 10 minutes, we made it to the back door. With Mom in position on the rug, I brought her feet out the door and over the steps. My aunt and I sat her up, and after another round of uncontrollable laughter, I went outside and stood her up! Oh Dad would have been so proud of our old-fashioned ingenuity! Once I had her up, I turned her around and brought her back inside. I swear all of our sides literally ached from the hilarity.

This is the Mom I have the joy of remembering! I will forever be thankful for the years, and the final months, I had with her and the joy she brought to my life. I will leave you with a poem I wrote for her recently. Do me a favor: If you are fortunate enough to still have your Mom in your life, give her a good hard hug and laugh together today! If you are like me, find a beautiful memory and let yourself smile…..just smile!

Poem to Mom on April 27, 2013

Today is the day I lost my Mom,

She left this world in a relative calm.

I watched the monitors slow and then stop,

My own heart took an immediate drop.

I had grown to adore her whacky quirks,

And to admire all of her wonderful good works.

Some days seem harder than others,

She stood tall among all Mothers!

So here is to you sweet Mom of mine,

You were absolutely divine!

And I miss you!

And to all Mother's on this day

I will share the first poem I wrote

to my Mom in first grade!

Mother Oh Mother, so pretty and gay,

I hope you have a nice Mother's Day!