The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Friday, November 02, 2007


Becoming Martha

My five-year-old wanted to be Martha the Hippo last Halloween. Phoebe's a huge fan of the mischievous character from the “George and Martha” children’s books. Like her, Martha doesn’t always behave appropriately. She lights up cigars, skips sunscreen and tells the occasional fib.

I was proud of Phoebe for breaking out of the fairy-princess rut she’s been stuck in for the last three years. Finding a Martha costume, however, wasn’t easy. Hours of surfing the Internet yielded hippo costumes deemed too babyish by my daughter.

Finally, I found one that looked like it might work.

“Ooohh--I like it!” Phoebe squealed when I showed it to her. Too late, I realized it was an adult mascot costume that cost more than my wedding dress.

“Sorry, honey—it’s only for grown-ups,” I said.

“But I want to be Martha!” she wailed, tears welling in her dark eyes.

I hated to see her hopes of being Martha crushed. It was time to step up to the plate. It was time for me to become Martha, too. Martha Stewart, that is.

A domestic goddess I’m not. Yet with Halloween a mere 10 days away, I convinced myself that I could be a crafty mama and whip up a Martha costume. With vague visions of a mask fashioned from felt and pipe cleaners, I drove to the nearest crafts store.

After much trial and error and plenty of cursing, I cobbled together a Martha mask of sorts. It bore little resemblance to the real Martha. Scarred with glue stains, Martha’s face looked more like a cross between an elephant and a crocodile. Her trademark tulip drooped instead of rising perkily behind her ear.

It was Martha to Phoebe, though. And that night she was the happiest trick-or-treater on our block.

By Dorothy O’Donnell


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Hi, I'm Eve. I found you on the blogroll at NaBloPoMo. I'm trying to visit as many bloggers as possible and leave a short message to say hello. I can be found at

I am so in awe of you. I've been a sewer since I was 8, but I'm not into inventing patterns for hippos. Wow! What a mom! This is something my mother would have done. One year she made a bat costume for my sister and turned me into the headless horseman, complete with severed head to carry under my arm. I didn't appreciate it then like I do now.
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