Margie Eades. What is it about her that makes her so SMARTY? She is real. She is honest. She is kind. She is thoughtful. She is empathetic. She is heartfelt. She listens. She really, really, really listens. She is a survivor. Her smile lights up a room. Her faith inspires people. She is an amazing person, mother, mentor and friend. She is my prayer warrior. When you are around her, you feel like you are at home. Her stories remind you that she is human and life is a constant struggle. She will keep you in stitches!
You are probably thinking, there is just no way Jenni Strazz — you are exaggerating! Nope. I promise you, I am not exaggerating. Just read what others say about her,
“Margie is a woman of strong faith who touches everyone she comes into contact with. She continually goes out of her way to make a positive impact on others lives, especially moms. Margie is a blessing.”
~ Lauren Burke
“Margie is a wonderful friend, mother and grandmother. She makes time for the causes that affect many of us, like cancer research, and the moms that just need a little help. She has been incredibly supportive through one of the most difficult times in my life and I consider myself very lucky to have her as a friend.”
~ Erica Miller
“Margie has a generous heart. Her dedication to St. Gabriel’s Christian Mother’s Group is extraordinary.”
“Who doesn’t love Margie? Let’s see, I have known her through CMG since 2004…What are my initial thoughts when I think of Margie… her light, truly she beams with God’s Grace. She gives the very best prayers, too! Her subtle humor, wears her heart on her sleeve. She’s adored and adorable to me.”
“Margie is an inspiration to all that she touches. She embodies what it like to be a true Christian.”
~ Michelle Mangan
“Margie has been such a great source of warmth and welcome for me and my family since moving to Charlotte. Her enthusiasm and faith are beautiful traits that I admire. Margie has shown such loving care for all the mothers in the Christian Mothers’ Group and it even extends to my mother in Virginia who Margie has been praying with. Thank you, Margie!”
~ Erika Lopez
“Margie is so thoughtful, caring, giving and so considerate about others feelings. I admire how she keeps it all together to touch so many lives.”
“Margie has a knack for making everyone feel welcome – whether you are a longtime CMG mom or a newbie. Margie gets you involved and connected. She recognizes talents and encourages you to use them to support the community. Personally, I have served on the Clergy Appreciation Committee and love attending the monthly meetings, especially the parenting topics. Margie models a deep personal faith and a rich prayer life and includes everyone’s intentions in her prayers. She is amazing in her zest for the Christian Mothers’ Group and I have been blessed to know her. We are all so lucky to have her connecting the wonderful women of St. Gabriel community.”
“I love how warm and welcoming Margie is. I met her for the first-time last year and instantly knew she was special. I love that Margie keeps it real. She is honest. Not every day is a good day and she tells us that -but at the end of the day- you are thankful for it all.”
“Margie in one word is my Fairy Godmother. I truly believe it only happens in fairy tales, but, I am certain she is mine. I am truly blessed to have her in my life. She is my angel that God sent me. I give thanks to God and the Blessed Mother for her in our life. She is my new mom and my guardian angel here in Charlotte. My family and I love her with all our hearts. She truly changed my life. She has showed me to be a person who gives herself to others and not asking for anything in return. I will need a book to say everything she is to me and my family. We are truly blessed and grateful to God and the Blessed Mother for her. Like my son would say, Margie, we love to the moon and back!”
“Margie is a ray of sunshine. She was one of the first people I met after I moved to Charlotte. She is one of those people that you aspire to be— warm and so generous, and she tells the best stories. You’ll be in stitches!”
~ Erin Smith
“I met Margie shortly after I lost my mom. Margie welcomed me in the CMG ministry, and has become a dear friend and surrogate mother of sorts to me. She checks in on me, has an interest in my children, remembers to have a mass said for my mom each year, and keeps me in her prayers. She plays a special role in my life and I am so thankful for her.”
…. And this is a just a few of the responses I received about Margie. Without further ado, I would like to introduce you to this week’s Smarty Mom, my Prayer Warrior: Margie Eades.
Neighborhood: Carmel Estates East
Alma Mater: Clemson University, GO TIGERS!
Number of Children: 3 sons Ages 35, 33, and 30
Number of Grandchildren: 2, ages 4 and 2
October is a special month for you and your charity. Can you tell us a little bit about your charity? What is it called? Why you started it? How others can get involved?
I had breast cancer 8 years ago. I had always been active in the Rally for Cure Golf Tournament with the Susan G. Komen Foundation. I found I had family and friends with various kinds of cancer. I talked to my oncologist about supporting a local cancer institute and Dr. Richard White encouraged me to follow my heart. So, five years ago, I started Charlotteans 4 Cancer Cure (C4CC) to support the Levine Cancer Institute (LCI). It really impacted me this year when my husband, Keith, received treatments there for Prostate Cancer.
Charlotteans for Cancer Cure (C4CC) is held every October at the Carmel Country Club. It includes a golf tournament, dinner reception, raffle and silent auction. All proceeds benefit the Levine Cancer Institute (LCI) and their clinical cancer trials and related research. Over $100,000 has been donated in the first four years and the results are yet to be tabulated for the 5th Annual Charlotteans 4 Cancer Cure held earlier this month. If you would like to donate or find out more information, please visit: www.givecarolinas.org/C4CC
You are mother to 3 boys. How did you survive? What age do you think was the hardest? Why? Do you have any advice for moms of ALL boys?
Yes, I absolutely raised three boys, which was so different than what I had grown up with, since, I had no brothers and three older sisters. I survived through the grace of God, because, it was not easy when they were teenagers. There seemed to be a constant challenging of authority and they assumed everything in life was negotiable. It was having other mothers to pray with for patience, forgiveness and unconditional love that helped me grind through the hardest times.
If I could offer advice to a mom of boys, I would tell them these two things. One, it is important to take an interest in our child’s activities and learn about them. I have always loved sports so it was a natural fit for me to attend their events… I didn’t, however, know much about fishing or wrestling. So, I had to push myself to educate on activities that were new to me. Secondly, create a “kid” friendly home and encourage your children (boy or girl) to have their friends over. It is a great opportunity to monitor what is going on and to demonstrate the values that your family holds dear to their hearts.
Is there a tradition/ritual that you did with your boys that you hope they pass down to their children?
Faith. My faith is very important to me and it is my desire that my sons would embrace and choose faith in our Lord for themselves… not because mom or dad “sad so” or “made us go to church every Sunday.”
What was the key to instilling faith into your 3 boys?
It’s very difficult to share faith with sons if it’s not a vital part of my daily routine. It is a continuous challenge. I love to participate in church programs that help me grow spiritually, so, I can help provide a godly foundation for our sons, daughter-in-law and grandchildren. There is no “perfect mom.” Parenthood is hard. It is so critical to be available to your children when they want to talk or ask for advice. When I do “lose my dignity” with these three sons, I can’t think of anything more important than to ask for their forgiveness as well as their prayers for me to be a better mother and wife.
Do you have a favorite funny family story you would like to share?
There were days that I dreaded when those three rambunctious boys would bold through the door after school. I remember praying for more patience; so, I wouldn’t start gritting my teeth and getting frustrated within minutes of their appearance. My middle son, who was about 13 at the time, asked me about 30 minutes after they came home from school if I had been to Christian Mothers’ Group that day. I proudly said, “Yes.” He respectively replied, “Mom, I really don’t think it helped you today.” I then explained, that it did work because, they got an extra 30 minutes of patience and love that they may not have gotten if I didn’t go to the meeting.
Christian Mother’s Group
You are the president and founder of the Christian Mother’s Group at St. Gabriel Catholic Church. Why did you want to start this ministry?
In the first eight years of marriage, we lived in Minneapolis, Cincinnati and Atlanta. When we had three boys under five years of age, Keith said he wanted to take a new job in Charlotte. I was devastated. I was just beginning to feel at home in Atlanta. I have to admit, I wasn’t the supportive wife; but, I soon realized that I needed to make the best of this situation. I am an outgoing person and was struggling to find other moms with similar values and interests. I put a blurb in the church bulletin and asked moms to gather for a brainstorming session. I had hoped we could develop a ministry that would support moms raising their children and enriching their faith and home life. Initially, I must admit, my motives were rather self-serving. I wanted to find networking to help me be happier. That was the beginning of the Christian Mothers’ Group at St. Gabriel Catholic Church and I am still president in our 29th year. Now, I feel called to mentor and encourage mothers to be the best moms, friends and wives they can be.
How long has CMG been active? How many current members are there?
We are in our 29th year. There are probably 100 active moms and hundreds more on the email list.
What are some things you do as a group?
We have monthly meetings along with a variety of events for moms/families that balance their lives with spiritual, social and service opportunities.
If someone is interested in learning more about the group, is there a website they can visit?
For more information go to: www.stgabrielchurch.org/cmg
You have an amazing ability to speak from your heart. If you could share a prayer with our Smarty Readers what would you say.
Dear Heavenly Father, you have entrusted me with this child/these children and I need to rely on you for wisdom and discernment. Please help me love my children unconditionally as you love me. Life is so demanding and I sincerely ask you to help me find time to balance my days with grace and mercy. Help me to remember that life on earth is so short compared to eternity. I need strength to prioritize what will encourage my family to choose to follow our Lord so we will be in heaven forever. I take this vocation of motherhood very seriously and know I need divine help to assist me on this journey. I am humbled that I have been blessed with these children and have a grateful heart for my calling life. Amen.
Get to Know You:
What is your favorite holiday with your family?
Christmas. The holiday of Christ centered and the joy of giving to family and those less fortunate is so grace filled.
What is your favorite family outing?
This is a tie…I love playing golf with my family…no phones, no TVs, etc. to interfere with family time. Another favorite pastime is going to Clemson football games. This has been a tradition in my family since I was a little girl growing up in Clemson. Not only do I share this my immediate family but with my sisters’ families and their grandchildren.
Favorite place to eat.
At home sitting around the table…it doesn’t get any better than that!
Do you have any pets?
Sam and Nellie, brother and sister, our 10-year-old English Springer Spaniels.
What is your favorite kind of prayer?
Any spontaneous prayer from my heart reflecting my desire for grace concerning any specific intentions or my need for His strength and wisdom.
What book are you currently reading?
I am not a big reader. I am in a church group that is studying the book, Who Does He Say You Are?
What is the last thing you made in your kitchen?
Margie’s Poppy Seed Cake
1 box of yellow cake mix (I like Betty Crocker)
1 pkg. of instant vanilla pudding
1 cup of hot water
¼ cup of poppy seeds
½ cup of vegetable oil
¼ cup of orange juice
¾ cup of sugar
½ tsp almond extract
½ tsp butter extract
In a mixing bowl combine all ingredients except the glaze. Spoon into a greased loaf pans (2 large or 4 small). Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the knife comes out clean. While cake is baking, mix the glaze. Let the baked cakes sit for a minute or two to pull away from the edges just a bit, then pour the glaze around the edges and on top while in the loaf pans. Let it sit until it starts to crystalize, then flip over and wrap in tin foil.
Thank you, Margie, for being SMARTY! Charlotte is a better place with you in it! XOXO