Mother is somewhat more down to earth than her husband, and far less carried away by romanticized flights of fancy—he would prefer to live on the island and work with his hands to survive, and she would much rather have a proper house in a civilized country, like she’s become used to, but the more time she spends on the island, and the happier she sees it makes the men in her life, the more willing she is to sacrifice her wants for theirs and to agree to stay. Especially once Roberta’s grandfather tells her they may colonize the island and bring civilization to them. In the meantime, she does what she can to live a normal life—she takes care of her family and watches out for their welfare, she provides for them, tries to school them in the appropriate behaviors, and thinks practically about their future. She points out to her husband that their sons will need wives, and when Roberta turns up, that she is just “one” girl, when “we have three sons.” She understands the cycle of life is how reality works, and urges her family to conform to it. She is quick to show her feelings, refusing to visit the tree house until it is “made safe,” and forbidding Francis from being in there, either. Mother is somewhat fearful of the future and the unknown, and doesn’t like the idea of being stuck on the island indefinitely.

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Mother is quite proper and appropriate and wants her children to be the same. She is firm in putting her foot down on matters that she does not like, but also willing to forgive her husband and sons’ eccentricities, provided they remain safe. She is fussy about her home, her appearance, and wears long dresses and high collars even in the sweltering heat, because it’s what is seen as appropriate. After her sons become quarrelsome over Roberta, she admits that maybe she shouldn’t have given her so pretty a dress (since it has now caused a fight). She tries mostly in vain to control Francis’ behavior, and urges her husband to be more responsible in some of his wild ideas. But she also devotes a lot of her time to caring for her family, encouraging them, and putting their needs often ahead of her own wishes.