“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: It Goes On.”
Robert Frost

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Remembering My Mom

My Mom has been gone for almost twenty years. Every now and then I dream about her. It almost always takes place in my childhood home and is always a little fuzzy and not spectacular at all. Kind of like the real thing. Time spent at home with my Mom. Just doing the simple everyday things in life. It usually feels like I am around ten or twelve and my Mom would have been about 40ish. She is almost always in the kitchen and I am usually in the adjoining room at the piano; where I spent most of my childhood (it just seems that way). The dreams are comforting to me, like a gentle hug.

My Mom's illness took her away just at the time in our lives when we both were appreciating each other the most. The miles had separated us for a few years and we were finally starting to  get to know each other as adult women and not as mother and daughter.  Sadly she slipped away far too soon. I often wonder what she would have been like at 70, 80 or even at 90 -- which was as long as her own mother had lived. Would her beautiful dark hair have turned white? She hardly had a gray hair when she left me. Unanswered questions that I shouldn't dare ask, but I do.

I think I was quite lucky to have had such wonderful, strong women in my life. My grandmothers were both true 'Pioneer Women' or maybe 'Prairie Women' is more accurate. They were the typical farmers wife in the 1930's in the prairie states of the Midwest.  They did all the things in the poems below -- baked, cooked, cleaned, quilted, gardened and mostly without the modern conveniences of today. I want to share a few family photos and some poetry I came across that reminds me of my own Mother and Grandmothers.

art by Edith Holden

Grandmother's Recipes

Her cookies are the best ones made;
No one can match her lemonade;
She cures the best of country ham
And makes delicious berry jam.

A better pie no one can make,
Or even touch her chocolate cake.
Her pickles are so crisp and nice;
Her peaches are just right with spice.

And when I ask her recipe,
She shakes her head and smiles at me,
"Oh, I just guess at it, my dear."
And now it seems to me quite clear,

One things that's used, all else above --
Her main ingredient is love.

Esther L. Dauber

         Mom at Graduation                   Me & Mom                Before marriage she worked as a secretary

Old Quilt

Like swift-winged swallows, her small hands flew,
Dipping and darting the bright thread through,
Over and under the steel flashed true--
Silent staccato and constant rhyme.

And, oh, I wonder -- did she divine
That the threads would hold, and the quaint design
Should someday rest on a bed of mine,
Bridging the mystical gulf of time?

Betty Cornwell

Art by Edith Holden

Memory Garden

Lengthening shadows bring memories
Of days that have passed us by;
And I think of time and I think of life,
And I sometimes wonder why

That time can't be stayed and enjoyed without loss
As the sun and earth and sky.
and the more I think, the more I am sure
That nothing can ever be lost,

That time is the garden of memory
And life is but part of the cost.
So we trade our lives for those memories
And we live each golden day,

And the flowers we grow in our garden
May have petals bright and gay,
Or they may be dark and depressing things
If we live our lives that way.

So each one may choose and invest his time,
For time is a part of the cost;
And each one must live with his memories
For nothing can ever be lost. 

Robert M. Clarke

Here is something dear to my heart. I found this poem in my Mom's things a year or so after her death when I was sorting through a box. Here it is pasted in my journal. 
It's a poem by Longfellow, written in her own hand.

 Thank you Mom for this wonderful gift!


  1. Beautiful post. I love the poems and old photos. I often have dreams like the one you described. I look upon them as "visits" so we can remember happier times. Probably they were very happy years in your mom's life. xo

    1. Thanks Barbara, I love the way you describe them as "visits", that is truly the way it seems.

  2. I'm glad your Mom visits you in your dreams. That bond endures always.

  3. I love the poems and old photos as well as your memories of your mom. Thank you for sharing them with us. I loved mine, and she was always my biggest fan. My grandmother outlived my mom, too. We will be with them again one day, and this time it will last for eternity. I look forward to that day. Happy mother's day. ~♥

  4. My mother also died at a relatively young age. I loved seeing your photos of yours,and the hand written keepsake is something to treasure.

    1. Thank you everyone! Sulky no matter how old you are it is hard to lose your mom. :( Looking at the photo again of me and my mom, I notice she doesn't look particularly happy. I think she was just tired, being a farm wife is not an easy job. I love the note I found, her hand writing was so pretty. Not like my cat scratch!

  5. This was a beautiful post. Thank you.
    Happy Mother's Day.

  6. This is a very touching post. Those photos are so beautiful. I'm sorry that you lost your mom much too early, but at least she left behind wonderful memories for you to cherish.

  7. This was such a special story, and it brought tears to my eyes, as I lost my mom too. I could totally relate to what you said about our grandmothers who baked, cooked, and quilted. I just saw my mother-in-law today and she was showing me old photos of the family that went back so long ago. Your first poem was so special, and the pictures are a treasure. Thank you for this wonderful post today.
    ~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

  8. This post had me tearing up...what a special way to remember your Mom. Our Moms are really extraordinary aren't they? They definitely hold a special place in our hearts...and always will. Thank you for sharing your story and images.

  9. Wow..what a super beautiful tribute..and so deeply heart-touching..thankyou for taking me on a meditative journey of poems and memories ..love and beauty!

  10. What a beautiful remembrance of your Mom Diane - I loved the whole post - I'm so glad you included the personal photos, the poems are all so special (I think I need to copy them off and keep them somewhere) and the note in your mom's handwriting at the end is such a lovely keepsake. I also dream of my mom sometimes - in the dream I know I shouldn't be able to talk to her but I don't know why and it is only when I wake up that I remember.

  11. Thank you again to everyone that visited and left comments and shared about your own Mothers and Grandmothers. It is always wonderful to read your thoughts about my posts. I am glad we could all take some time to remember those wonderful Mothers who have passed on to that enchanted land, and to recognize all of the incredible Mothers who are with us still! Happy Mother's Day to all of you dear Moms out there!

  12. Beautiful tribute to your mother....must admit I got a little teary-eyed! Hope you had a good Mother's Day today, I am lucky I spent the afternoon with my Mom...at the Casino, she just loves the place. She won a couple of bucks, I didn't win a cent! Hugs, Diane

  13. Such a beautiful post. I also dream about my mum and dad and always wake up feeling that I have just been talking to them. Sometimes I'm a small child in the dreams but other time's, I'm me - as I am now, but they are the age they were when they died. I always feel comforted after one of those dreams – or maybe I should call it a visit.

  14. A touching post and beautiul tribute to your mum. I love the handwritten note, something to cherish forever :)


Thank you for leaving a comment! I do read them all and will try to respond if I'm able. Please know that all comments are appreciated, I love to hear your thoughts on my posts! ~ Diane