I Know Her & I Love Her! – Georgine Schottler

I’ll be breaking up the “deep questions” posts with profiles of people that I know & love! My intent in doing these profiles is to inspire myself and others by celebrating beautiful human beings and what makes them so fabulous. To share why just KNOWING them will lead you to LOVE them.

Here’s my first profile: Georgine Schottler, my AH-mazing Mom!

mom-dad-eli

Here’s 10 things I know about my mom that makes me love her dearly—

  • She has a huge heart full of love. Imagine this—you’re 23 years old and already raising 6 children with another on the way! Only 2 of the kids were her own. She took in her 2 younger siblings in April 1962 for a year because her parents had fallen on hard times. Then in July 1962, she and my Dad were driving home from church reading the bulletin. She saw a note about two children, Doug & Johnny, that needed a foster home. She immediately told my Dad to turn the car around so they could go pick up those boys. They have remained a part of our family ever since. She went on to birth 9 more children (11 in total)!

moms-22nd-birthday

  • She has the ability to make anyone feel like the most interesting person in the room. Because she is genuinely interested in learning about people, where they come from, what they love to do, and so forth. She will strike up a conversation with anyone asking all kinds of questions—big & small. We share this love of big & small questions. 🙂

raising-me

  • She lives the value of perseverance. The best example? She’s stayed married for 57 years! I love my Dad dearly (he’ll likely be my next profile) and she does too. But he constantly pushed the limits of her sense of financial security to build the farm into the great thing it is today. The running joke is that my Dad never stepped foot in a casino because he gambled everyday as a farmer. But she persevered through it sticking by him to live out his dream of building his own farm from nothing. And they did it!

at-the-reception

  • She loves learning. When I was in middle school she decided to earn her college degree from UW-River Falls at the age of 57! I know she worried about being able to do that while finishing raising her youngest child (I was 11 at the time, 15 when she graduated) and balance the bookkeeping for the farm. But what she probably doesn’t realize is how many valuable lessons she taught me by prioritizing this for herself. She demonstrated bravery, tenacity, courage, and fearlessness by pursuing this dream. She also continues to support my own learning in all things—both of my parents do really. Most recently, a woodpecker made an appearance in the woods while Nate & I were visiting. She immediately said “Get the Encyclopedia! Let’s see if we can figure out what kind it is!”

love-of-children-or-learning

  • She stands up for what she believes in. I remember my mom writing letters to the Bishop, the Pope and potentially others expressing her opinion on certain matters close to her heart. When I asked my mom to confirm my memory that she’s done this in the past, she again relayed her passion for a particular issue (though she hasn’t written to them on this one…yet)—

It still confounds me when we are reciting the CREED that the printed word reads MEN (not men and women).  I do not understand why that is not corrected, but I won’t let the language move me from my faith. Of high importance is allowing women to become priests.  Priests marrying? No objection there either.

  • She is incredibly faith filled. Prayer group, Friday children’s masses, starting the rosary every time we crossed over the old Stillwater bridge, stations of the cross on Friday, singing hymns for the folks at the nursing home. One of my favorites was how we’d say this prayer as we waited for the bus each morning—

angel-of-godWe could say it REALLY fast if the bus was already waiting. 🙂 Whenever I’ve struggled with something to this day she asks “Did you pray about it?”

  • She lives passionately and joyfully. I recently asked my Dad “What made you take an interest in mom?” His answer: “She was a wonderful person. Cheerful!” Her smile lights up a room. Anytime she talks about her flowers, her latest thrift store find, family history, the book or article she just finished and what it taught her, her children, her grandchildren, and now her great grandchildren–pure joy. At my last visit she spoke with a level of energy & enthusiasm describing in detail her grandson Eli’s drawing of a lion. Her passion is contagious and unparalleled!

her-youngest-siblings

  • She believes in charitable giving. Even when cash was tight for my parents, she picked 25 charities each year to give to. She still does to this day. Literally! Today she sent me an email on this (at my request as I was fact checking a few things)–

It has become habit regarding WHO gets donations each year. I will refer to the previous year’s check register to see if I’m doing what was done in the past.  What is the bottom line is to contribute a specific total amount each year and it is now over 25 charities.  Today I sent off five donations; they were supposed to be mailed yesterday!

  • She loves music. She nurtured that love in all of her children. Nearly every time I practiced piano she would be at the other end of the house clapping like crazy when I finished a song. She led the music at our church for years. Every Sunday we’d be up in the choir loft or down front leading the music. Even when times were tight she made sure that our piano lessons, voice, band, choir, etc. needs were always in the budget. When I recently asked her why she said—

Your Dad fully supported piano lessons; that supported my belief that music training was not only beneficial in every sense of the word, but also life giving. My being involved in the Baudette High School Band and the JOY of that is likely contributing towards my conviction:  music was as essential to the soul as milk was to the body.

love-of-music

  • She ALWAYS takes the in-laws side. When Nate & I were newly married I may have called her a time or two to vent about a frustrating conversation we had. She will immediately side with Nate. EVERY. TIME. My siblings and I are pretty sure she’s saved a lot of marriages because of this trait. When I asked her why she does this she said–

For the obvious reason. You never want to give ammunition to the division of a marriage.

For these reasons and so many more…this is why just to know my mom is to LOVE my mom! Love you, Momma!

QUESTION OF THE DAY: Do you know my Mom? Share a comment with something you love about her or a memory you have! Don’t know her? Tell me about a different person you KNOW & LOVE that has inspired you in some way.

mom-me-on-a-bench

12 thoughts on “I Know Her & I Love Her! – Georgine Schottler”

  1. I always enjoyed the love, passion, and interest in all things that Georgine radiated. She truly makes you feel like the most important person in a room! I remember coming over and feeling more than welcome. It was always lovely running into your mom!

  2. Clearly, I know Georgine. I have the pleasure of being her favorite son-in-law… though I’m pretty sure she has 6 of those. 🙂

    It’s not a story, but it is something that I am incredibly impressed by. Somehow, Georgine (and John) have managed to raise an amazingly warm, welcoming, loving, and caring family. For that to happen with a few kids is impressive, but for it to happen throughout the entire family of 12 children, 10 spouses, 30 grandchildren, and 14 great grandchildren (and counting) is absolutely remarkable.

    Not many people get to say this, but I LOVE my in-laws… ALL OF THEM. And as a transplant with none of my direct family around, I feel so incredibly lucky to have such a warm family surrounding me, and without condition or hesitation. I think it’s safe to say that all of that love stems directly from the model that your parents set.

    Thank you for letting me be a part of your family!! 🙂

  3. Shannon, this is beautifully written; I had goosebumps throughout! As her grandchild and neighbor, her house was like a second home. She never minded. YOU know, because I was with you most of the time. 🙂 Her singing and smile, clapping, praying, and snort-laugh–all of it!

  4. As a grandchild-in-law, I think one of my favorite things about Grandma is how welcoming she is! The first time I met her was when I met the whole Schottler clan at a family wedding and even though it was her daughter’s wedding she took five minutes to ask me about myself and my family! She made me feel like I was the most important person to her at that minute, and that is truly a gift! I love how proud she is of her family and how no accomplishment is a small one! She is a smart, witty, and at times very direct woman who shows an inner and outer strength that is compelling and inspiring! Her faith never falters and it was always nice calling her or seeing her when I was pregnant because she would always tell me I had been on her mind and that she had been praying for me and my babies! She has always been supportive and it was always a good day when Casey was deployed and got a letter from his grandma with questions and further prayers for his safety!
    Grandma is an amazing woman and I feel extremely fortunate to be counted amongst her own, for since I have dated her grandson that is always how she has made me feel!

  5. Oh Shannon, you have captured her!

    It’s funny how you don’t feel it happening but the older you get you do start doing things the way your mom did them. She wouldn’t like this… but I’m sharing it anyway, because it reflects the one characteristic you didn’t include that I think is a huge part of her… She is funny! Like the way she swears for babies (not at them). I heard myself saying on behalf of my little Wilhelmina Georgine upon her crying when being put back in her carseat for the umpteenth time in one day, “This is bullshit!” My boys were shocked… and then laughed really hard. I told them I got that from Grandma G. Mom never takes herself too seriously, and doesn’t spend time worrying what others think.

  6. I know her and I love her too! A simply amazing person!! Always seemed to have just the right words at the right time!! Amazing childhood memories at the farm! Pianos always being played, and playing dress up and making movies!! This whole family is amazing! Blessed to know u all!

    1. Awe! What awesome memories. I share the same ones about snowmobiling with you and your Dad. And going to the cabin! And catching a fish for the first time. Cute little Sunnies. 🙂

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