A local mother was pleasantly surprised when she found out she had won the Wapakoneta Daily News “Mother of the Year” contest, when staff members from the newspaper showed up at her doorstep.
Jordyn Laman, a seventh-grader at Wapakoneta Middle School, wrote an essay about her mother, Debra Laman, which won her the contest.
“I was at the dentist office, and then I got a call from my mother-in-law saying I had to go home immediately,” Debra said. “I thought, oh no, something was wrong.”
So Debra’s mother-in-law came to the dentist to wait for Debra’s children to be finished with their visit as she ran home.
When Debra got home, she heard from her husband, Mike, that everything was OK, and shortly after her arrival, staff members from the Wapakoneta Daily News showed up at her house and showered her with gifts from participating local businesses, including gift certificates
Debra immediately gave her daughter, Jordyn, a hug as her body was shaking in shock.
“I’m still shaking,” Debra said minutes after the surprise. “I had no idea. I was scared when my mother-in-law showed up and said you had to go home immediately.”
Debra knew Jordyn had entered the contest through a project in her language arts class, and saw a rough draft of her daughter’s essay while Jordyn was typing it at home on the computer.
“She was like, ‘Mom, I don’t know what to write about,’” Debra said. “When she asked me I said, ‘I don’t know.’ ”
Debra said she then pulled out a letter her son wrote to her on Mother’s Day when he was in second grade, but Jordyn had something different in mind.
Debra is the mother of three other children, Jacob, 16, Jessica, 15, and Jonah, 12.
“My teacher (Kristi Fisher) thinks I’m really funny,” Jordyn said. “So I thought I’d be funny and use sarcasm.”
Jordyn began her first paragraph by saying that “I don’t really think she is all that special. Sure she does a lot for me, but she also does a lot for my whole family...She cooks some, maybe three meals a day for a year, that’s only like 1,100 meals, McDonalds does like a billion, so she’s not even close.”
The 13-year-old knew she wanted to use some sarcasm for her essay about her mother, and she showed the essay to her father before bringing the rough draft to her class.
“She was afraid she would get in trouble at school for doing sarcasm,” Mike said.
Mike then told his daughter that if her teacher did not like it, then she could always rewrite it.
But the teacher and the class enjoyed the essay.
“My teacher ended up reading it to every class,” Jordyn said. “She told me ‘all the kids liked your essay.’ ”
When Debra was asked what she thought of the essay, she said, “It sounds like her.” Debra told her daughter she did a good job.
Jordyn concluded her essay with “In the end, sarcasm gets a good laugh and that’s just what my mother likes a good laugh.”
“This is the biggest Mother’s Day gift I’ve ever received,” Debra said.