This article originally appeared in “Chicago Tribune”
When I was a kid, my local newspaper held a contest one year for Mother’s Day. The directions were to write an essay explaining why your mother was the best. I was sure nobody could beat my mom, so I crafted my perfect pitch, detailing how my mom “drove us everywhere,” “made my favorite broccoli casserole” and “let me have friends over after school.” I was so disappointed when my mom didn’t win.
Now that I’m a mom, I’m thinking back to that day when my mom’s cheesy broccoli lost to some other cupcake-baking prodigy. And I’m still a little peeved. Because really – how does a newspaper have the right to decide whose mom is the best?
I’m a good mom. You’re a good mom. I bet your kids think you’re the best mom. And personally, I think we all deserve our own newspaper article. I created this customizable Mother’s Day essay so your kids can sing your praises in print. Have your child(ren) answer the following questions, drop their answers into the essay below and hang your winning story on the fridge.
1. Your name:
2. Your mom’s favorite thing to do before she had you:
3. Yuckiest part of taking care of babies:
4. Something your mom did for you when you were a baby:
5. Something you got mad about recently:
6. Three nice things your mom does for you:
7. Your mom’s favorite thing to drink:
8. Smartest person you know:
9. Prettiest person you know
10. Really cool thing your mom knows how to do:
11. A present your mom would like:
 __________________’s Mom: World’s Best Mother My mom sacrificed a LOT to bring me into her life. Before I made my debut in the world, she was
 ___________________________ , which I’m sure was a lot more fun than
 ____________________________ . I don’t think she knew how many hours of sleep she would lose, that she’d have to
 _____________________________ or that she’d literally cry over spilled milk. But even when I kept her up all night or spit up on her favorite shirt, she still found me cute. Fortunately, I grew out of that baby stage, but things didn’t get much easier for my mom. You should know that she can put up with some pretty crazy stuff – like when I recently threw a tantrum because
 ________________________ and she somehow kept her cool. Even when I’m out of sorts, I know she loves me because she still does so many nice things for me, like
 ________________________ , ______________________________ , and ___________________________ . If you could see how much
 _______________________ my mom drinks, you would know how tough her job is. Besides being a super hard worker, my mom is also smart, beautiful and talented. She is smarter than
 ______________________ , prettier than
 ______________________ , and even knows how to
 ____________________________________ .If you can give her any prize for this essay contest, I’m pretty sure she would be happy with more sleep and also
Nicole Radziszewski is a freelance columnist. She lives in River Forest and is a certified personal trainer and mother of two. Check Nicole out on Facebook at Facebook.com/mamasgottamove.