I Remember Mama – A Mother’s Day Tribute to My Mother

Posted by: Eileen A. Souza

In 1948, there was a movie called “I Remember Mama” starring Irene Dunn as Mama. From 1949 to 1957, there was a TV series called “Mama”, based on the movie, starring Peggy Wood as Mama. In these stories, the eldest daughter in this Norwegian family, reminisces about her life with her Mama.

Marguerite Noble 1925 age 7

Marguerite Noble 1925 age 7

This Mother’s Day I remember my Mama or Mom, Marguerite [Noble] Furlani aka Mickey. She was a great bowler and could have gone Pro (10 pin) if she hadn’t had a family. She collected ceramic dogs with glass gems for eyes. I have those dogs now. She also collected salt and pepper shakers.

She taught me everything I know about cooking. I made shoo fly pie, pot pie or bot boi (a Pennsylvania Dutch soup using flat noodles) and potato bread with the best of them thanks to her Pennsylvania German heritage.

They used to call her gas-a** Mickey because she was always busy running around town. I remember when she worked at the Sweet Shop and I would stop in for breakfast—usually a bacon sandwich with grape jelly (I can hear the groans but it tastes great).

She delivered prescriptions and other orders for Cook’s pharmacy in an old Chevy panel truck, later in a VW bug. I bought the panel truck for $25 but it only lived a month. I don’t think I got my money’s worth.

I remember our Christmases. Although we did not have much money, as children we did not really feel it. It was only later in life that I learned what she had sacrificed to provide these wonderful Christmas mornings.

I remember that her favorite flower was the gardenia. I remember that she seemed to live on a diet of Tastykakes but never gained weight. I called it the Mickey Furlani diet.

L. to R., Marguerite Noble Furlani, Eileen Furlani, and Lorraine Gunther Noble

L. to R., Marguerite Noble Furlani, Eileen Furlani, and Lorraine Gunther Noble

Most of all, I remember her taking care of me through my many illnesses and broken bones. I broke my left arm (I’m left-handed) three times as a child. The first time I was four. And fell down the back steps into a pile of bricks wearing my Mom’s high heels. The second break occurred when I was in second grade and fell out of a tree. The third time, I was racing in a roller derby, fell and someone skated over my arm (by accident). By this time, my Mom knew the routine; so, she made a makeshift splint using a rolled newspaper, told me to sit down and eat my supper, then we went to the emergency room.

I lost her too early to COPD at the age of sixty-seven. Mom, you will always be with me in my heart and in my memories.

Marguerite Noble Furlani (1918 - 1985)

Marguerite Noble Furlani (1918 – 1985)

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4 Responses to I Remember Mama – A Mother’s Day Tribute to My Mother

  1. Janice Brown says:

    I love your story. Such fun memories, thank you for sharing these personal stories. Your mom was beautiful and I can see she passed some of her genes to you!

  2. Thank you for your lovely comment.

  3. Maxine Furlani says:

    The Furlani surname is interesting. My husband is Furlani from near Trieste Italy. Originally ,now Canada.
    Any Italian roots???
    Just starting to blog

    • Thank you for your comment. Nice to here from another Furlani. My grandfather came to Pennsylvania from a town called Vigolo Vattaro in Trentino province, Italy. For more of my blog posts about my Furlani ancestors, use the search box to search for Furlani.

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