Sunday, April 11, 2010

We made it

Yesterday was my mom's funeral.

I've totally come to the conclusion that funerals are done so quickly after death so you can't even really fully comprehend what just transpired. Your mind just won't let you believe what your seeing or feeling. It's the weirdest experience ever.

The service was incredible. We showed my mom's 80th birthday slideshow showcasing her entire life in segments to certain songs. So beautiful and we laughed out loud through the service too. My dad in his short shorts, dark dress socks and black shoes on the beach. I remember those days. :) xo Dad!!

It was so cool to witness how many people admired my mom. By the numbers that attended, she was near hero status in my eyes.

And to see some of my neighbors and friends there that didn't really know my mom but were there for me?!? I think that made me cry more! :)

I even made a speech during the tea service thing. I told abit about my life with my mom. I'm so glad I did it. I wrote it the night before until 3am. She was worth it.

I was equally proud of the other family members that got up to the mike to honor my mom. It's not easy to do when you feel like that. Some speeches were quite humorous which mom would have loved. It felt good to laugh too.

I was so proud of my son. He was such a trooper as this was his first official funeral where he actually new the person that passed away.

We went to my sister's after the funeral. I'm glad I did. It felt good to mingle. I wasn't quite prepared to go home to a quiet house yet at the time. Once exhaustion took over, yup, then I knew I'd be ok.

I stayed stupid busy today. Couldn't sleep in, got up at 7, and worked on a project at home. Projects keep me creative and creative keeps me in my happy place. So for those of you that wonder how in heck I'm able to produce projects for a decorating contest at a time like this? Now you know. Day by day. I'll see how that all goes.

I need to start up my walks again. I think I'll start Monday. I need to walk some of this anxiety off. It comes through as impatience and anger at odd moments and while I know that's part of the normal mourning process, I need to keep it in check. Walking helps. Monday it is. River dyke and dog Jenna, we have a date!

Thanks to all for your incredible prayers. I know they are working. I know it. I'm surprised I'm doing as well as I am and I have you to thank for that.

These beautiful dried hydrangeas are on my mom's fireplace mantel. Aren't they the most beautiful hue? Gorgeous. Just like she was.

I miss you mom. Our regular visit is now officially overdue. But because I know you're safe and well, we will be ok.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Loving gestures from others

Although my heart and eyes hurt today, we are receiving some unexpected love that is kindly reminding us that we are being thought of. And yes, it's lessoning that hurt just a little.

Some sweet offerings of 'let us help' have been coming our way.  For now, we are being kind to ourselves, doing only what's absolutely necessary and moving at a slow and relaxed pace, spending some time on doing things we enjoy. Should the time come when some help is needed, I will call upon those that offered. 

Other wonderful things have been transpiring to brighten up our otherwise somewhat confused days.

Some are selecting special goodness fresh from their garden and leaving it on our doorstep. I couldn't bring myself to move these. They were perfect as is. I love that they were simply placed in a casual water jug. Simplistic perfection in my eyes. Thank-you mystery neighbor. :)

And some treasures are traveling from thoughts far far away from us. These gorgeous pink roses are from my friends Miss Mustard Seed and her mother, located in Pennsylvania and Florida! Aren't they exquisite? These to me represent my mom so very much. Mom loved all flowers and she was feminine, delicate and her personality kind and soft. Soft pink roses represent her perfectly. Thank-you so much, ladies! Notice I funked them up some? :)

A really large and lovely fruit basket came from two neighbors, Janette, Corinne and families. The cellophane came off before we could even comprehend this one. Cody called it a BANQUET and it was also full of chocolates, cookies, crackers, cheese and sparkling apple juice. Every bite is delicious as we continue to enjoy this daily.

Corinne also sent over a fresh loaf of paska which reminded me enormously of my mom's own Easter bread. I savored every bite.

Joanne also treated the entire family to platters upon platters of sandwiches, fruit and veggie trays. Such a generous offering which we delightfully took part in and brought a good portion home.

Speaking of food, Vic and Bonnie delivered some homemade sausage and potato soup. The aroma had you devouring the soup in moments! The warmth was so comforting. Thanks so very much! And for joining me in a coffee, and not taking a moment's notice in how untidy the house was. :)

Yesterday we were all at my mom's cleaning out the pantry and fridge so things wouldn't spoil. I have a tub of food that still needs to find a home. It's hard to put that one away so I'll work on it in due time.

I also did the photo shoot of my mom's place . It will largely be private for family viewing only, however here are a couple shots that touched me.

My mom's soft and pretty bed was still unmade and it was perfectly her in every way. We are two peas in a pod on this front. :)

There's a massive old Bible on top of her antique sewing machine in her bedroom. Both are beautiful.

We have a very busy week ahead of us so it's nice to have this day to reflect. Reality has started to set in so I'm glad we took the day to just... remember.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Mom type memory makers

I've been receiving alot of incredible support type comments on FJI, alongside awesome suggestions on how to hang on to those special memories of my mom. So while bustling around home, my mind has wandered around ALOT, wanting to think of creative ways to hold on to something special.

One of the best bits of advice ever was to not rush the 'cleaning up' process. Take your time, then select something that was all about mom or held her fragrance. I will be thinking of that when I return to her place to find things for the funeral memory table.

farm inspired vignette I created at mom's

I also had another brainstorm. I'm going to bring the camera and tripod and start clicking. Her place hasn't been touched yet and it's as if mom is in her bedroom looking for something. Bed unmade, things strewn here and there because we're pinched for time while on our way out. I love that. So I'm going to take some shots of her home the way we remember it, for a cherished family memory.

A part of me wishes we didn't have to do a ding dang thing to her place. EVER. It would be cool to leave it as a meeting place for family functions in memory of her. I can't bear the thought right now of not having her place to gravitate towards. How empty that makes me feel! To stay home all Christmas?!? That's crazy. Can't even go there yet. I really hate this part.

Ok, back on topic. Another awesome suggestion was to collect her clothes and create something out of them. Throw pillow covers? Quilt? The sky's the limit here. I like this idea VERY much. No idea where I'd find the time for such a venture but perhaps if I hung onto some boxed favorites for another time, that would be a great start.

Oh and then there was the one about the purse! Cherish her purse and all the contents just as is. What a neat way to see where she was and what she was doing at the time. Perhaps it holds lists for shopping? Her wallet would be facinating to look back on. So many things. I can't wait to check that one out.

Easter meant alot to my mom. She always hid Easter baskets for us filled to the brim with chocolates. We found the chocolate on the counter, and her new church pictures on the dining room table, all ready to give out to the family. What a lovely memento! A current picture. Couldn't have happened at a better time.

Ok, this is starting to hurt. I'll be back. :) Thanks for the ear. If you have any other ideas on how to hold onto special memories and mementos from those we have to say goodbye to, I'd love your suggestions!