Mom’s the Word!

by Rachel on May 9, 2010

Happy Mother’s Day to all you lil mamas out there!

I was going through the photo albums this morning and I thought I’d share some fun pictures of the mothers I’m thankful for today!

Here’s a funny thing about life: I’ve heard that being a girlie girl skips a generation, and that super-feminine mothers end up with tomboy daughters and then glamour-girl granddaughters. This is certainly true in my family. My grandma likes flowers, dresses, make-up, and doing hair (clearly).

Love that bouffant! It was funny, I was watching “Mad Men” last night and lusting over what it must have been like to wear a girdle and cook everything from scratch like Betty Draper. Then I realized…my grandma basically was Betty Draper!

So, yes, my grandma definitely appreciates the glam things in life, and when she had a daughter — my mom — she expected her to be a girlie little girl as well.

You may know that my mom is the most talented Halloween costume designer in the world, and you can now see that she was one of the cutest babies in the world too! But what’s funny about this picture and all her childhood pictures really is that she’s the least girlie-girl ever. She hated how my grandma made her wear curlers in her hair and dresses. She’s such a tomboy; she would rather have played cowboys and Indians than played with dolls. When she was ten years old, my grandma finally let her cut her hair short.

So when my mom had me, she thought that she’d totally have the little non-girlie-girl to raise without curlers and pink dresses.

Wrong again! It just skips a generation. As soon as I was old enough, I wanted to grow my hair out, put on makeup, and do all that other fun girlie stuff. So I had to turn to my grandma for help. There’s a family legend about the day when I was ten years old and wanted to buy a bottle of nail polish and my mom wouldn’t let me. We were arguing about it; my was mom insisting that if she bought this for me, next week, I’d be wanting to wear red. (Red!!! Only floozies have red nails!!!) My grandma finally intervened and said, “Andrea. She can wear nail polish.” My mom points to this as the “it was all downhill from there” moment in my lifelong obsession with beauty products. Perhaps. Two years later my grandma tweezed my eyebrows for me while my mom was at work and really, I think it’s been all downhill from there.

The whole thing about skipping generations kind of freaks me out, so this is why I hope that when I have kids, I have all boys…and preferably one gay one.

Another funny thing about Mother’s Day: when I was a kid growing up in Chicago, I used to model. And not like “model”…I actually did. One year I did a big ad campaign for Marshall Fields for Mother’s Day. This ad was all over the city — me with a woman that everyone said looked a lot more like my mom than my real mother does.

But…wrong again! Because the other funny thing about my mom is that she has the strongest genes in the world. Seriously, my brother and I both have her exact face. (I mean that picture of her as a kid totally looks like Preston in drag.) Sometimes it’s harder to tell with me because obviously my skin is darker, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen my reflection in a window and thought, “Oh I didn’t know my mom was here!” It’s so bizarre. It’s even more obvious with Preston…comparing baby pictures of the two of them is a little creepy.

It’s funny though, as you get older, the ways in which you find yourself resembling — both physically and in behavior — the women in your family. When I hear my grandma or mom call up a company to bitch them out for something they don’t like about a product, I just sigh, look at my inbox full of e-mails from companies that are all, “Dear Miss Wilkerson, Thank you for expressing your concern with our product…” and I’m just like, “Well, we all know where I got that.”

Are you becoming your mom? Or are you more like your grandma? And did the girlie gene skip a generation in your family too? Juuuuuust curious!

Hope you’re having a fab day with the women who made you the way you are! (And by the way, the stories about moms and technology that you shared on Friday made me literally LOL. A mom who can’t say “balls.” A “MyFace” account. Texting “like a blacked out college kid had gotten ahold of her phone.” Killing me.)

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dori May 9, 2010 at 12:49 pm

OMG these pictures!! I love that you were a model, how did you get into that? You look so adorable. And your face in the pic with you and your mom — I want to go into that picture and just smush you. I love how you would prefer a gay child — very different from many other people!
.-= Dori´s last blog ..The Bar Method NYC Review =-.


2 Diane May 9, 2010 at 1:10 pm

I’d never heard that bit about girliness skipping a generation, but it’s totally true in my fam as well! My mom is a college athlete tomboy who hasn’t worn makeup since her wedding. She gave birth to two girls who wouldn’t be caught dead in public without their eyeliner.

Your grandma is FIERCE, btw. Love it!


3 Lindsay May 9, 2010 at 1:49 pm

Cute pictures! The girliness sort of skipped in my family. My grandma loved clothes, makeup and jewelry, and even when she was older and didn’t go out much, she still would make sure she had cute stuff. My mom was a definite tomboy and really doesn’t care much about that kind of stuff now. I’m not super girly, but I care more about that stuff than my mom and am definitely more concerned about clothes and stuff like that!


4 Jocelyn @ Peace.Love.Nutrition May 9, 2010 at 1:50 pm

So adorable! Love the old photos. I’m a girly girl and my mother and grandmother are not. When I wanted to learn how to do my hair and make up I always had to turn to my friends! Love the baby model pictures- I used to model when I was a kid also. I got fired though because I would cry too much. haha

Love my mommy! I got her a great accupressure mat for Mother’s day! She loved it


.-= Jocelyn @ Peace.Love.Nutrition´s last blog ..Green Monster Love =-.


5 sarah @ syrupandhoney May 9, 2010 at 6:06 pm

That photo of baby you with your mom is sooo adorable! I’m a lot like my mom when it comes to personality, but the funny thing is she thinks I’m just like my dad. Oh well.
.-= sarah @ syrupandhoney´s last blog ..Sweet Potato and Bacon Frittata =-.


6 Valerie May 9, 2010 at 6:29 pm

You look soooo much like your mother! You two make the same faces…lol. But if the girlie-ness skips a generation, you better not hope for a gay boy! A super-masculine gay man will drive you crazy. You’ll be sobbing “Why won’t you go shopping with me?” Ha!


7 Rachel's Mom May 9, 2010 at 10:31 pm

I have a terrible memory, but I still remember the name of that fateful bottle of nail polish. It was brown, and it was called, “Tootsie Roll!”


8 Kat May 10, 2010 at 2:39 pm

I’ve not noticed the resemblance between you and your mom before, but in that closeup of y’all when you were a baby, your eyes are the exact same! That’s so cool! I think my grandma, mom, and I all have a pretty good balance of girlie-girl and tomboy in us. We can play with jewelry and makeup all day, but we’re not afraid to play in the mud, either!
.-= Kat´s last blog ..Copycat Chef =-.


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