Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom

Today is Mom's 85th birthday. We are so lucky that she is still living on her own, in her own house. She has not been feeling well the past few weeks and her mind doesn't always work when she wants it to. But this is Mom and we love her no matter what.

She has been the most wonderful mother to us. She birthed a son and two girls and helped raise her husband's son and never complained. She went to work when I was in first grade and worked until Dad retired. It wasn't easy work. It was always factory work, or as she called it piecework, whether it was winding armatures or packing shoes. She would come home, do all the laundry, cooking and cleaning. Dad was working two jobs and never had time to help her. He kept the yard done and the car running.

Before Mom was married she worked at the airplane factory in Kansas City. She was a Rosie the riveter. This was something she was always proud of. When I found this quilt panel of Rosie, I just had to get it for her. I know it says we can quilt it, but she also quilts. So I thought the pair would be great for her. I embellished it a bit and machine quilted it.

In case you don't know about Rosie here is a little history.
Rosie the Riveter was one of the most widely known personas of the 1940s. With her sleeves rolled up, hair in a kerchief, and a determined set to her jaw and eyes, Rosie had it all: beauty, sex appeal, and attitude. But Rosie the Riveter was not a real person. She was an advertising campaign, and eventually, an icon of a small percentage of women who stepped in to fill men’s traditional roles in factories during World War II.The Ad Council, at the government’s request, created Rosie the Riveter to persuade women to go to work, not as secretaries or nurses, but in factories. When more fighter jets and artillery were needed, car manufacturers were asked to turn their buildings into munitions factories for producing the weapons of war. However, the men who could build them were in short supply. How could the war be won without weapons? Women were the answer, but first they had to be convinced.Rosie the Riveter and her can-do attitude has become a feminist icon, but in the 1940s women did not have a chip on their shoulder. Most mothers preferred to stay home with their children. It was considered vulgar for a woman to take on a man’s work. Back then, women were generally viewed as weak creatures, highly prone to fainting at any hint of alarm or crudeness.Prior to World War II, women were limited in their choices of work. Those occupations deemed “suitable” for women were few and selective: secretaries, librarians, teachers, and nurses. No doubt there were many talented women who chaffed against the confines of society. Along came World War II, ushering in their big opportunity to prove themselves.


Tipper said...

Your Mom sounds like an amazing woman-I hope her Birthday was happy!!

Yolanda said...

I am so glad you stopped by for a vist.