#FarrisStory: 'mother who taught us the value of hard work and the value of enjoying life as well'

"I was born in 1957 in a small TN town and my Dad passed away when I was less than a year old. My Mom was left with 4 kids and no job. She got a job at the shirt factory in town and worked there for the entire time I was growing up. She would get up and cook breakfast for us, go to work, come home and cook supper. She kept our house clean and our clothes washed and always had time to spend with us somehow. My Mom had a great singing voice and loved music. She never criticized whatever type of music any of us listened to either, it was all good to her. She always had a smile, or better yet, a laugh. We never had a lot, but we had enough and more than some. My sister, who was 12 years older than me told me, 'I don't know how any family who was so dirt poor could spoil a kid the way we did you' ... I was very fortunate to grow up in rural TN in the 60's with a mother who taught us the value of hard work and the value of enjoying life as well. Whether we were hoeing out our large garden, cutting and housing tobacco for our Grandfather and/or Uncle or even if we were playing ball in the yard, she always had a laugh and was an inspiration to us all. When the work was done, we were free to be kids and enjoy growing up. She was stern when she needed to be and made sure we were in Church as often as she could and was pretty handy with a keen switch as well, if needed. But she was an inspiration for teaching me that I had to work for what I had and to enjoy life no matter what I was doing. - Billy from Summerville, GA