Posted by: Admin | July 12, 2010


So, my bright, brave, beautiful girls, has the title of this post got you quaking? Worried what your mother’s going to make public? You might be horrified that the whole world is now exposed to the “mum-isms” that embarrass you so much (such as my off the cuff remark on the radio on Friday about being top heavy with men), but actually most people don’t take me that seriously 😉

Family is your foundation, 1990

No, this is my way of imparting my priceless pearls of wisdom across the miles, sent with love (and only a little devilment!) You’ll have heard some of it before, but it bears saying again. Some of it will apply to you, some won’t, but I’ve lived a little, so this is hard-won intel here. Pay attention.

So, as you go through life as the strong, independent young women that you are, please remember the following:

  • Men always feel better about themselves if they think they know more than you. Sometimes, if you love them, let them think it – it’s good for their mental health.
  • You are beautiful. Believe it – you’ll know it’s true in thirty years when you look at old photographs and remember how you hated your nose/chin/thighs, whatever, by which time it’s too late to enjoy being young and gorgeous.
  • Life is too short to spend it worrying. Apart from a little light long-term planning, take each day as it comes and roll with the punches.
  • Never, ever say “that’s just my luck” when something bad happens, or it will be. Trust me.
  • Always take responsibility for your own health. If you eat lard, you’ll get fat, smoke too much, you’ll drop dead, drink too much, you’ll wake up with your knickers on your head.
  • Never be afraid to wake up with your knickers on your head.  It shows character.
  • But try not to wake up with someone else’s underwear about your person.
  • The best contraception known to woman is the word “NO!” If you can’t remember that, you’ll never remember to take a daily pill.
  • Find something to laugh at EVERY SINGLE DAY.
  • When life gets tough, stay cheerful. A long face gets slapped more often than a smiley one. Plus frowning means all your wrinkles will point downwards.
  • Nothing lasts forever – bad or good. Accept that and you’ll appreciate what is.
  • In the Western world, Life is rarely as hard and complicated as most people perceive it to be. Keep it simple.
  • Cultivate “an attitude of gratitude”.
  • Remember where you came from, but never look back.

    Sister, sister, 2007

  • Except to say hello to your parents every now and then.
  • Don’t labour under the illusion that I want you to phone me every day. I have a life. But you are still part of it, so try to fit in a weekly call.
  • Always listen to your intuition – better to be safe and look an arse than sorry and fall on yours.
  • Believe in yourself – you are without a doubt two of the brightest, most precious souls currently gracing this planet. And I am not biased.
  • Stay interested in life. It’s very interesting.
  • Always look for the good in people – there are more good people in this world than bad. Most are simply doing their best to get by, just like you.
  • Never say “I’m not a feminist, but…” The basic definition of a feminist is a woman who values herself. That’s it.
  • Always listen to advice respectfully, but never feel obliged to take it. Not even mine.
  • Be frugal with money. Strive to want what you have rather than have what you want.
  • Never miss an opportunity to help someone else.
  • Remember – how you feel is a matter of choice. Choose to be happy.

That’s all the wisdom of my years distilled into a few hundred words.  As you know, I don’t always manage to live this way, but I do try. At the end of the day, in the words of the song, the love you take is equal to the love you make, so make sure you make lots of love. Er… maybe I’d better stop there, girls. Wouldn’t want to embarrass you.

Love Mum xx



  1. aww, thanks Mum! (p.s. I would like it to be known that I do remember to call!) x

  2. Yep, they will be well and truly embarrassed by this excerpt from your Autobiography.

    Love it!

  3. Well done Jo!
    Think this is my favorite entry so far!
    Keep up the fantastic work!

  4. All absolutely true and incredibly accurate!!! Love it
    : ) X

  5. Thank you all for the feedback. Good to know that my blatant exploitation of my children has provoked a reaction!

  6. Haw-haw! The boys will be nervous now, and hubby no doubt. Read in a book the other day ‘children are gifts that take a lifetime to unwrap’ and you could insert mothers into that statement at the moment

  7. I like it! Funny how the wrappings are starting to fall away now that I don’t have to think about anyone else (apart from Hubby, of course, but he’s a grown up now. Almost).

  8. Jo, what a beautifully written piece, that brought a tear to my eye, very proud of my two beautiful nieces. Keep up the good work sis xx

  9. thanks mum!! a lot of this applies to me hey? i do try and take your advice as much as possible especially about the knickers 😉 love you xxxxxx

  10. Beautifully written piece for your two lovely daughters – I am sure they will take at least a little of this away in life with them – love the knickers bit lol

  11. Welcome to project50, Marie. I take it you are no stranger to wearing your knickers in unusual ways? 😉 Jo

  12. […] viewed posts have been The Saturday Interview with The Wartime Housewife, Letter to my Sister, and Letter to my Daughters. Interestingly, it’s the more personal posts that attract the most comments, although these […]

  13. […] click “letters” in the category cloud and a list of letters would appear, including “Letter to my daughters”. If you’d like to see more Interviews, click that link and so […]

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