ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

A Woman's Resilience and Strength: How My Mother Left Me

Updated on January 15, 2014

Strength and Resilience

My teenage daughters give me strength. They inspire me to work harder, to give them a better life than what I had at their age. We also laugh around most of the time. It makes them feel better when they see me happy. I felt better when I saw my mother smile. Especially at times when my heart aches, laughing more with them helps ease the pains of my life.

We plan mini and grand vacations months ahead to build the excitement. We talk a lot about the future -their plans after college, the care they will provide for me and their father as we age, and our dreams to acquire similar material things.

Not all days are always happy-together. In 2011, at the height of economic crisis in the United States, I was out of work for many months. We need to save money. We need to save gas. We don't drive around frequently on weekends anymore. Eating out on Friday nights is beyond budget.

I learned from my mom not to don't dump my emotional baggage on my children. They already have their own sources of stress. They definitely experience a lot of pressure in school and my girls should be coming home to a secure and a lesser-stress abode at night.

I have to deal with my scarce financial resources in a matured way. More than before, it is now necessary to be resourceful and use my ingenuity. I need to be resilient.

A slice of ready-mix cake with fruits and chocolate syrup
A slice of ready-mix cake with fruits and chocolate syrup | Source

Home-made Meals

I surf the web and cook "something new" on weekends, eliminating 95% of our eating-out once a week activity. My daughters experimented on their cooking abilities too. They remember how my mother taught them to cook egg and other simple foods. They discovered that they can make delicious meals from what is available in the fridge.

We exchange praises in our discoveries and show appreciation with each successful recipe. We are imitating the food network show, to entice others, we eat with gusto!


Movie time at home

We like watching movies. Going to the movie house on weekends before twelve noon saves us almost fifty percent (50%) from regular price. We also make cinema alternatives at home:

  • Renting movies (like DVDs) from the library is free
  • Red kiosks inside the grocery rents a movie for $1 a day
  • Signing up with Netflix offers free movies during the 1-month trial period. You can cancel subscription after the trial period and do it over again after six months.
  • Borrowing DVD from family and friends

We pop our own popcorn and drink our favorite green tea from Costco. We make comments during the film, rewind funny or mysterious scenes. No movie rules to follow.


The tourist spots, museums, parks and beaches

I am flipping the pages of City tour guides and brochures, asking friends where the good picnic areas are or surfing the web for interesting tourist spots around. The beach became our regular place to visit.

I have few criteria in mind to consider where we will be going to, deferring the long distance driving even if it is worth the trip.

  • It needs to be within 10-15 miles in distance
  • It offers a unique perspective
  • Its is free

It amazes me that there are many interesting places within my neighborhood which I will not be able to discover if I have money to spend in the mall on weekends.The small museums enriches our cultural knowledge. The parks and beaches gives us refreshing air of solace and tranquility.


Home garden, fresh and pesticide-free

I usually buy my herbs at the grocery store and they are a bit expensive. I toss out half of it when the leaves turn brown after a week. The idea of gardening sounds like my father who grew up as a farmer. They have a farm land to plant herbs and vegetables. How can I do that in my apartment? Flower pot is the answer!

It took me less than an hour to plant my favorite herbs at home. A friend who also advocates home gardening was visiting that time helped me to put it together. My total initial investment is $25 for the plants and soil:

  • Basil
  • Thyme
  • Oregano
  • Rosemary
  • 25 lb potting soil

Since I am already making home-made meals frequently, I can now conveniently pick my own fresh, pesticide-free herbs through my kitchen window. At night, the rosemary is like a hint of perfume in the patio.

Just for Laughs

Surgeons Know Best about Engineers

Five surgeons were taking a coffee break and discussing their work.

The first said, "I think accountants are the easiest to operate on. You open them up and everything inside is numbered." The second said, "I think librarians are the easiest to operate on. You open them up and everything inside is in alphabetical order." The Third said, "I like to operate on electricians. You open them up and everything inside is color-coded." The fourth one said, "I like to operate on lawyers. They're heartless, spineless, gutless, and their heads and their butts are interchangeable." Fifth surgeon said, "I like Engineers...they always understand when you have a few parts left over at the end..."

Time to Explore the Personal Interest

My mother always emphasized that a good way to maintain my usefulness and self-worth is to remain productive. Being out of work is not a life threatening situation. Though economic hardship has greatly affected our lifestyle, there is time and opportunity to plan and re-direct my efforts to become economically fruitful again.

I recently explored an interest that is long been over due. Doing a lot of research work before, writing becomes more interesting as the years went on. But this time I wanted to write something for myself. I accidentally stumbled on this website called HubPages. It offers a platform to write topics that you can publish in the internet. Joining HubPages (HP) allows me to publish my articles which can also possibly provide a decent passive income in the future.

Come and join HubPages for free! Click here.

There are standout features in this website that help writers get the best out of its ability :

  • It allows members and readers to post comments that help improve your topic or gives you an opportunity to write a new topic.
  • It allows you to link other writer's relevant and helpful topics to your hub for further reading and reference.
  • You can re-edit your own work even after you published it. This feature allows the writer to continuously enhance or update on the hubs.

There are other sites out there that can also publish your articles. It is up to you to decide which of these websites you like to be affiliated. If you will ask me at this time, writing itself is already rewarding for me. The future passive income from HP is a bonus that I can't refuse.

Resilience - Lessons from Grandma

During my financial trying times, i did not wait for the girls to ask me why is it that I did not have work. Neither did i feed their discouragement or resentment of our life's down turns. Early on, I already told them the words my mother gave me.

My mom constantly says, "We need to accept that there is time for everything. A time to be happy, a time to be sad. A time to be abundant and a time to have none" and she continues, "Always make it a habit to save money for the rainy days."

I subconsciously pass to my children my mother's wise sayings. She imparted her wisdom to me while I was living with her, as necessary as she feels she needs to do. My mother uttered these words twenty five years ago yet it remains fresh in a daughter's mind. I hope my girls will also remember me, in times they need guidance the most, and I can no longer be with them like their grandma.


Copyright © 2012 The Girls. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without permission prohibited.


Submit a Comment
  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    7 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Thank you very much stessily for your kind words. I appreciate you stopping by! Blessings to you and your family.

  • profile image


    7 years ago

    the girls, Your tips and suggestions are excellent and encourage rapport, creativity, and togetherness. Your kitchen herb garden looks charming and healthy and also fragrant.

    Thank you for sharing your personal experiences and lessons with resilience and strength.

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    7 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Thank you sgbrown fro stopping by! I appreciate your kind words. Blessings to you :-)

  • sgbrown profile image

    Sheila Brown 

    7 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

    You have some wonderful tips and suggestions. Times are hard everywhere these days and I am sure that your information will be helpful to many! It sounds like you mom did a great job raising a wonderful daughter! Voted up and useful. :)

  • TeachableMoments profile image


    8 years ago from California

    Beautiful hub with lots of great advice. Times are hard for many people and your words of hope and strength will bring comfort to those who may feel down. Thank you for this hub. Voted up.

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Just hang in there! Things are turning out for the better in our profession. It has a slow start both for CA and FL. But in other states like Texas, finance is in demand. Businesses are coming back to life, though they still have the wait-and-see attitude this 2012. Blessings to you and your family always :-)

  • teaches12345 profile image

    Dianna Mendez 

    8 years ago

    My hubby, who is also in finance, had his position cut last year. Since then, we have learned to cut back on many things and your hub has encouraged me on how others are making things work through these tough times. Enjoyed the read and the advice.

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Hi The Dirt Farmer, thank you for stopping by! My herbs have already given me more in return since I invested in them. It's practical, healthy and my dish looks "sophisticated" sometimes....

    I learned my mom's lesson by heart. The innocent victims needs to be protected at all times. Whatever the effects are, it sometimes lasts a lifetime.

  • The Dirt Farmer profile image

    Jill Spencer 

    8 years ago from United States

    Good advice all round. Parents really do often unwittingly place burdens on their children, burdens that are hard to put down.

    On a lighter note, your basil looks great. I'm so bad at raising it in pots & and always seem to water it either too little or too much!

    Enjoyed your article!

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Hi Jelliebean! I appreciate your heart-warming comment. Inner strength is a quality that both of us should be proud of. On several occasions, I have been using the natural products too. It is less expensive and less chemicals we breathe at home. Thanks for stopping by :-)

  • Jelliebean profile image


    8 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland

    This is so well written, thank you for making this hub. I find myself in this situation at present and I'm currently building up my windowsill herb garden (somewhat slowly). Luckily, budgeting comes naturally to me being a typical Scottish meanie but it's never easy until you find that others are finding themselves in the same situation. I also like experimenting with natural and inexpensive products like vinegar, baking soda, salt and lemon juice around the home.

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Thank you Precy! That's amazing and a very good idea that you can grow bitter melon in a pot. Your mom certainly knows how to manage those vines :-)

  • precy anza profile image

    precy anza 

    8 years ago from USA

    Great hub! And those gardening with pots is a great idea. My mom have some basil and oregano too, and the bitter melon which we have every year in a pot :)

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Thank you Derdriu (and Gusty) for the warm welcome! I appreciate your comment :-)

  • profile image


    8 years ago

    the girls, What a helpful, practical, useful summary of ways to enjoy leisure time and meals on a tight budget! In particular, I like your gentle humor which never strays from the courage to try new things and from a positive outlook. Also, your suggestions regarding entertainment at home and in free places such as scenic natural areas are great! It's especially welcome to read about your herb garden since they add beauty and fragrance while being eminently utilitarian.

    Respectfully, and with a big welcome to HubPages, Derdriu

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    @jpcmc, I truly agree with the blessings you mentioned. Thanks for stopping by :-)

  • jpcmc profile image

    JP Carlos 

    8 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

    Strength is important when facing problems. I guess the Lord will not give us problems we can't handle. moreover, it's great you have a mom that supports you. Her wisdom sure comes in handy. Great job on the hub and with your family. I wish you all the best.

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    8 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Thank you oliversmum for your kind appreciation and support! Part of my strength comes from reading and knowing inspiring stories from other wonderful women too! Best regards

  • oliversmum profile image


    8 years ago from australia

    the girls Hi. What an inspirational and caring mum you are to your "girls",as was your mum to you.

    It may be nice to eat out,but as you have shown, you don't need a lot of money to be happy and eat well.

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading your hub,thank you for sharing it with us.Voted up.:):)

  • the girls profile imageAUTHOR

    Theresa Ventu 

    9 years ago from Los Angeles, California

    Merci Graes! Your home garden is awesome. Thanks for being an inspiration too.

  • profile image


    9 years ago

    Well done! All good tips for the family. I must say that I do the same. Keep it up :-)

    Love the herbs in the pot *wink*!!!


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)