Always Listen To Your Mother


Over the last few years, several friends of mine have become new mothers. With Mother’s Day only a few days away, I wanted to take time to honour all of them, along with my own amazing Mamma, my two wonderful grandmothers and all the other moms out there.

It’s a funny thing about moms, they seem to have an uncanny ability to always (a) be right, (b) tell it like it is, and © come up with the perfect expression for any situation. It’s this last piece that inspired today’s post.

My mom has a whole library of odd, yet, totally apropos expressions that she pulls out whenever the situation fits. Here are three of my favourites. Hopefully you’ll find the appropriate time to use them in your own life, just like I have.

Happy Mother’s Day everyone. And remember, always listen to your mother.     

Three of my mom’s most well-used, well-loved and well-placed expressions:

The juice isn’t worth the squeeze.
This is a punchy way of weighing risks and rewards. My mom pulls this one out when trying to talk me out of my latest labour-intensive, quasi-ridiculous endeavor, including trying to build my own headboard, make spanakopita from scratch, or order a custom-designed dress. Thanks to my mom, I’ve saved countless hours and frustration and never once have I said, “damn, I really wish I had made the phyllo on this spinach pie.”

You’ve got a bee in your bonnet.

According to The Phrase Finder (yes, that’s a real thing), the expression “a bee in your bonnet” speaks to “the state of agitation one would be in when finding a bee inside one’s bonnet.” Well I’ve never worn a bonnet and I’ve been lucky enough to never have a bee stuck in it, but this is my mom’s favourite expression when I get hold of an idea and I won’t let it go – usually applicable when I’ve seen a great new jacket/dress/purse, take your pick. Once, when we were in Paris, I became obsessed with this beautiful necklace at a small jeweler in St. Germain, but it was a bit out of my price range. On our third trip back to the store to check it out my mom said to me, “just get it, or else you’ll have a bee in your bonnet all the way back home and I’ll never hear the end of it.” And that settled that. 

In for a dime, in for a dollar.
This is another of my favourite expressions which is apparently an update of the old English proverb, “in for a penny, in for a pound.” In our household, it’s basically always meant, if you’ve decided to spend money on something and it turns out to cost a little more, go for it, because you’re already in. It’s kind of the unofficial credo that guides our financial planning, and not surprisingly, an expression that often gets pulled out while standing in front of the season’s newest collections, trying to rationalize why you just have to have that new purse! In the Paris necklace story above, it was used in combination with “a bee in your bonnet” to seal the deal.

Sidenote: I wear that Paris necklace ALL. THE. TIME. and am so happy my Mamma convinced me to get it. Because seriously, I totally would have had a serious bee in my bonnet for eons if I had left Paris without it. See? She was right again.

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