Published May 10, 2013
Editor's note: In honor of Mother's Day we asked Fox News Channel anchors and analysts to share the best advice their mother's ever gave them. Here are the responses we received. We hope you'll enjoy reading (and watching) them as much as we did.
Stuart Varney, Fox Business anchor, host, "Varney & Co."
One more editor's note: Mr. Varney believes his mother's advice is better understood by listening than by reading. Please watch the video above to experience his story of his mother and the best advice she ever gave him. (You won't be disappointed!)
Gretchen Carlson, co-host, "Fox & Friends"
Each Mother’s Day I’m grateful for my mom Karen Carlson. But especially so this year. Last December, my mom had a serious health scare that forced me to contemplate the idea of losing her for the very first time. If you’ve never had one of those really scary phone calls, trust me. It puts life in perspective pretty quick.
My mom grew up in Chicago, the daughter of a minister who was a tomboy and smart enough to skip several grades. After moving to Minnesota, she graduated from high school early and received her college degree by 19. She met my dad at a Christmas Tea after seeing him standing at the punch bowl. And promptly announced to my grandmother back in the kitchen the man out in the living room would one day be her husband. Fifity-three years later they are still a great couple.
Growing up, I was lucky enough to have my mom at home. She spent countless hours helping me practice my violin and driving me all over the place for my lessons and recitals. She was also an avid volunteer in our community and our church. We always knew my mom could have been a CEO. Maybe that’s why it’s so fitting that for the last 7 years, she has been, running our family car business.
My mom is the strongest woman I know. She taught me life’s most valuable lessons including: never ever give up, make the most of your talents, make sure to give back, honor your faith in Christ, and yes, be sure to stop and smell the roses.
She may be a little easier on my kids now as “grandma” than she ever was on me. (Soda and cheetos before noon? Really?) But she’s also teaching them the life lessons I’ve been so fortunate to have all this time.
Happy Mother’s Day Mom! We love you!
Geraldo Rivera, anchor and contributor
“Go West young man,” author Horace Greeley advised 19th Century Americans. My mom’s best advice to me was cut from the same cloth. “Don’t stay on Long Island,” she told me as I drifted aimlessly after dropping out following my sophomore year at Maritime College.
Uncertain of what to do next, I was 19-years-old and living back in my parents basement in their home in West Babylon, a working class suburb about 40 miles east of New York.
“But where will I go?” I asked plaintively. “Your friend Frankie is moving to California, why don’t you go with him? There is a whole world out there,” she said, her voice tinged with conflict and melancholy, but also strength. “We’ll miss you, but what can you do around here, wash dishes at Republic Aviation?”
Together with my dad, we scrapped together all the cash on hand, about $200, and a few days later I set out for the West Coast with my best friend Frankie DeCecco.
Driving along Route 66, I discovered the wide world beyond my parents basement.
Ultimately I found opportunity and ambition, and it was all because my now 93-year-old mom, Lillian Rivera had the strength to let me go.
Andrea Tantaros, co-host, "The Five"
My mother always taught me to have an attitude of gratitude, no matter what God brings your way. She also told me, "Andrea, adversity never leaves you where it finds you." She was right.
You learn more from your mistakes and hard times than good ones. Be thankful for those lessons.
Lauren Green, Religion Correspondent
One of the most memorable pieces of advice my mom gave me can't be repeated here. But I can assure you they were good words to keep in mind when dating, in a serious relationship, or even married!
That being said, my mom has been such a strong force in my life and I can say in all honesty that she is unlike most moms in that no one will mistake her for Betty Crocker.
She's no cook. And she will admit it. She was able through the years of living with the same man and bringing up of five children, to put decent, or I should say edible, meals on the table. A Chef she is not!
However, my mom can spackle and paint better than any handy man I know. And few years ago when I moved out of my apartment and had to fix a few holes in the wall from the mounted plasma TV, I didn't ask one of the building guys, I flew in my 85-year-old mother in from Minnesota to do the job! And it was worth the price of the plane ticket. She made the wall perfect, better than new!
She has a way about her. She has patched up many a broken walls, as well as many, if not more broken hearts.
I would not be here if it weren't for her. That's a fact of course. She gave birth to me. But her love and support has gotten me through the most challenging times of my life.
When I wanted to give in or give up, she gave me the reasons to carry on. She never said, "no," never said, "you can't do that." And so on this Mother's Day weekend I will be celebrating with my mom in the Big Apple to try to give to her a small portion of what she has given me her entire life.
John Stossel, anchor, "Stossel"
My mom told me: “work hard, or you’ll freeze in the dark!” Sometimes she changed it to:
“Study harder…or you’ll starve in the cold!”
This is not parenting advice that I’d recommend to any parent!
It messed me up.
Although I did work hard…
Jehmu Green, Fox News political analyst
As a child, academic subjects were a breeze. Unfortunately for the schoolteachers at Matthews Elementary, my behavior didn't match my scholarly output. I challenged them at every turn and was frequently chided for being, "too bossy."
My first vivid memory of actually feeling stressed was the day I learned Ms. Ibsen, my 6th grade teacher, was planning to call my parents and address my bad behavior. Terrified, I expected the punishment to be severe.
Would I get spanked? Would I be forced to stand in a corner and hold my father's graduate school books until my outstretched arms burned?
Surprisingly, after Ms. Ibsen reported my daily class disruptions, my mother sat me down and said firmly, "everyone isn't always going to like you and that is ok."
She went on to explain that if I tried to be liked by everyone, I would have to sacrifice my uniqueness. She let me know that it was okay to speak freely and be true to myself.
That day, I learned I could never stop everyone from forming negative opinions about me and it was actually okay if some folk didn't agree with me.
Following her sage advice led me to become a social justice organizer and made it easier to take big and important risks early in my career.
Today, my mother's 1983 version of "haters gonna hate," continues to serve me well. Being unafraid to be assertive helps me tackle fair and balanced debates with a smile.
Knowing I can never please everyone helps me ignore the increasingly hostile and cynical side of social media.
My mother, an immigrant from Liberia who at 69-years-old is still the hardest working person I know, could not have been more right: I can't please everyone.
Juan Williams, Fox News political analyst
You've heard of Asian "Tiger Moms." Well, my mom, Alma Williams, was a Latino tigress mom.
When I graduated from college she wanted to know why I wasn't going to law school. When I became a reporter for The Washington Post at age 22 she wanted to know why I didn't write for the New York Times.
The best advice she ever gave me was after I confessed to her that I had purchased an expensive watch. "Everyone should have the watch they want," she said. "Enjoy it." I was stunned to silence. It felt affirming; she gave me permission to let out a breath and live. But her words also filled me with appreciation for her striver ethic.
Manuel Alvarez, M.D., Senior Managing Editor for Health News
Here's a shout out to foster mothers: I love my mother, and I cherish all the love she has given me over the years. But there was a point in my life when I did not have her around.
When I came to this country at the age of 11, I had to reside with a foster family until my parents could leave Cuba, and we could re-unite.
During the time of their absence, I spent a lot of time with a very sweet lady, Maria Palazzi.
This Italian-American woman became a focal point for me, as well as a mentoring mother. She helped a little kid acclimate to a strange land and certainly eased my worried mind.
She taught me about her love for America, but she also introduced me to her wonderful culture. As a proud Sicilian mother, she was certainly well aware of family values and kept the children out of trouble.
Her wisdom has never left me. After my parents came to America three years later, I kept in touch with Maria – but not as much as I should have.
Now that I’m 56 and have my own children, I can hear myself imparting her words of wisdom upon my own children. This is why, on Mother’s Day, I want to acknowledge all the foster moms in America.
Sometimes we hear negative things about the foster-care system; but in reality, these women are there to help children – to teach them all the good values life has to offer. They become our moms for a brief moment in our life, but for them, I’m sure, they never forget us.
So, we should also never forget them.