Mama's Spring To-Do Lists

Chaloner Woods/Hulton Archive/Getty
She's got two of them—one for her and one for Daddy.

What are Mama’s favorite things about spring? Well, that’s mighty hard to say. This could very well be the season that suits her best. She loves everything about it: spring plants and flowers, spring clothes, spring shoes . . . And she appreciates the way spring puts her formidable organizational skills to work.

“Southern springs are like a good blueberry buckle—warm but not too hot, with lots of color,” Mama explains. “That’s why spring activities are so energizing! Think about how much more fun it is to plant azaleas in the spring (after Daddy digs the holes) than to winterize your rose bushes when it turns cold. And winter weather has a way of dragging a girl’s spirit down, right along with her wardrobe—all that wool—all that black, brown, and grey. Cashmere has its place, of course, but the minute I open my last Christmas present, I’m ready to break out the seersucker.”

Now, anything worth doing is worth doing right, Mama says, and the season of renewal is no exception. It requires preparation because there is much to be accomplished. For years, she has been making two lists of things to do in the spring—one for her and one for Daddy. That way, she doesn’t forget that her ivory pumps need replacing, and he doesn’t forget to wash the windows. (He couldn’t live with himself if summer should catch them with cloudy windows because she neglected to give him that helpful little nudge.)

She begins by making her list and then jots down corresponding spring activities that Daddy will just love. Does he ever have an opportunity to compare their lists? No. But you can take a peek.

#1

Mama:
Purge my closet of everything that says “cold and grey” and haul it to the dry cleaners to be winterized and put away. Purge last year’s spring clothes of anything that makes me look old, fat, or unfashionable.

Daddy:
Go play golf. That way, he'll be gleefully sinking a putt while I'm ridding his closet of everything I don’t like.

#2

Mama:
Spend a lovely morning shopping for new azaleas, roses, and gardenias to freshen up my garden.

Daddy:
Drive the truck, load the plants, pay for everything, unload the truck, and dig all the holes. Also, we need fresh pine straw, sweetheart.

#3

Mama:
As exhausting as it will be, gather all Belk’s coupons and establish a beachhead at the mall. There’s expansive territory to be conquered here—an Easter dress and shoes, a new handbag, a new suit for Daddy . . . he has no idea how hard this is.

Daddy:
That grass isn't going to cut itself, honey bunch!

#4

Mama:
The new drapes he hung for me yesterday make the sofa look so tired now. What to do . . .

Daddy:
Wait here for the furniture truck while Mama runs to Hobby Lobby for some Easter décor.

#5

Mama:
Nothing says “spring” like a new haircut. I think I’ll have Baby Girl get on that internet and print out some “over-40 glamour cuts” for me.

Daddy:
You know what would be fun? A visit with all your buddies down at the hardware store! Oh, and while your there, could you pick up some paint so you’ll be all set to do the porch tomorrow?

If you think Mama's feisty, spend a little time with Julia Sugarbaker:

From social affairs to her beauty queen sister, Suzanne, Julia had fiery commentary on everything and everybody. Don't cross her, bless your heart.

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