Monday, February 21, 2011


If you consider yourself a "mommyblogger" you have this great lady to thank!
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Most of us were in diapers when she exploded onto the national scene. Long before we could even imagine such a thing as Twitter parties, Klout scores and Facebook groups, she was there.

I vividly remember my mom and her friends when they were my age, laughing at Erma's column in recognition at the challenges that faced the modern mom.  A generation ahead of re-tweeting and wall-posting, women clipped Erma's columns and mailed them to each other, with passages underlined, circled and often with comments like "That's my David!"  I also remember how they passed around battered copies of her many, many books to be enjoyed on those rare occasions when Mom could get enough time to sit down with a cup of Sanka and read, for Pete's sake!

She wrote with accessible, limitless humor about not only the joys of motherhood, but the most profoundly challenging moments of a mother's life as well. Erma and her husband had adopted a daughter after they were told it would be impossible to have children-then they birthed two sons. Any blogger can relate to Erma's story: she started her career writing on a plank that had been propped up on cinder blocks in her bedroom. Her first professional gig, writing for her local paper, earned her exactly $3 per weekly post, ahem, column.

Eventually she would be a nationally syndicated columnist (her column ran from the mid-60s to the late 90s) and best-selling author. Most of her books, like my personal favorite Motherhood: The Second Oldest Profession, are still a relevant read today. And questions like "What kind of a mother would wash and dry a measuring cup after it only held water?" still make me laugh.

Erma died in 1996 from complications of a kidney transplant. But her words still hold a treasure trove of wisdom for all of us. I know that whenever I have a particularly bleak day, I bring to mind what is perhaps my favorite Bombeck nugget, "If you can laugh at it, you can live with it."

On behalf of mommybloggers everywhere,
Happy 84th Birthday, Erma! We love you and thank you!

-Nacho Mama

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