Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I'm back!!
I certainly did not mean to be gone so long. I apologize sincerely for my absence, but thank you so much to those of you who continued to send me sweet comments and e-mails. Especially to you Jacqueline for even writing about me! To the followers who dropped me..... I must say I don't need fickle friends anyway.

So, where have I been?
At the mum shop of course. Slaving away over ribbons and bows, hot glue and bears, trinkets and bells, red and blue, white and silver.... It's all a blur now.

Texas Homecoming Mums 101:
The tradition of Homecoming mums supposedly started in the 1920's when boys would give their special HC date a live mum corsage with ribbons in their school colors to wear to the HC Football game. Over time glittered writing began to appear on the ribbons, trinkets were added, bells, bells and more bells became the rage, and eventually in the 1980's the real mum flower was replaced by an artificial flower. The ribbons got longer, bears or school mascots made appearances in the center of the flowers, and the trinkets and decoration became a sort of scrapbook of the couples interests and activities.

Seniors are traditionally solid white and silver. Some kiddos choose to have a bit of the school colors mixed in, their favorite colors or their future college colors.

Underclassmen's mums are in the school colors.

Girl's mums are long and are pinned on or have a ribbon to hang around their necks. They can be quite heavy.

Boy's mums are shorter "Garters" worn on bands around their upper arm. Cowbells make these too heavy to stay on, so they are generally loaded and I do mean LOADED with smaller noisy bells.

These lovelies can be quite expense, well over $100, so a number of years ago our high school PTA decided to open our own "Mum Shop" run by parent volunteers to save money for the kids and raise money for the school. We rent a store front a block from the school from June through our HC date, and settle in making the mums from start to finish. A lot of the basic ribbon cutting and construction is done by the students earning them service hours through their various clubs and organizations. There are mothers who make the name loops, braids, fluffy bows,dress bears and finish (putting all the wonderful goodies on), not to mention the sales staff. I am a finisher, bear dresser and bear designer (I am very proud to say). We are able to make a much nicer product at half the price of a florist. This year we made 1,000 mums bringing in around $50,000. About $35,000 of this should go directly back to the school. Volunteers sign in their hours under their children's organizations, so the money is divided by the volunteer hours.

Do you think we are crazy??!!?? Not at all. This is my favorite volunteer job. I get to visit with other mothers and friends that I only see at this time of the year. People take time off work to volunteer, and believe me, this is one time I truly know every bit of gossip out there!! Our kids get away with nothing from August to October.

What is crazy is the entire week it took to recover and catch up on sleep. This could have something to do with the fact that I chaperoned my Senior's after party at the lake for two days, another story for another day.
(Click on the following pictures to see the details)
Tripp's Senior garter. The theme this year was "Vegas", so his has some Vegas goodies as well as a Swim Bear sporting his State Medal!!!
Callie's first mum!!!! As a freshman, hers is all blue and red. You can't see it very well, but her bear is a Softball bear with a bat and ball, and giant bow on her head.

There are "group" mum exchange parties where the couples all get together for desert and to exchange their mums with their dates. The parents are invited to take pictures. Callie and her date both had games that night, so they just exchanged at our house.

The bottom of Callie's date's garter.

The bottom of Tripp's date's garter. Check out her cowbell with the hat. We added red in with the traditional white.

Tripp's date's mum modeled by me!!!!

Callie's date's, Tripp's date's and a garter for the swim coach just to annoy him. He is from Michigan and just can't understand why we do this.

Happy Homecoming fellow Texans!!!!


  1. LOVE THIS!!!! Brings back so many memories of high school in Denison! Do the teachers still make the students "tape" the bells to silence them? That always annoyed me, loosen up for ONE day for goodness sake! These mums were insane! Did I detect an "extra support" system around the girl's neck? Gotta Love Texas!

  2. Wow Kimberly, no wonder you haven't had time for blogging. What a busy mummy you've been !!!!
    These are works of art.... and didn't you make a lot of money ?
    Well done you and the others for giving your time to this. No wonder my party favour was so lovely. XXXX

  3. Wow!! you have been very busy indeed!! This is amazing and gorgeous, they are lucky to have someone creative like you get so involved in this project. We don't have anything like this, wish we did.
    glad you are back, I missed you

  4. Looks like a very glittery and fun tradition..

  5. Those are awesome. What a fun tradition! That's such a great idea that y'all volunteer to help save the kids money. Nice job, Kimberly!


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