Saturday, March 18, 2017

Week three...being proactive by getting back into healthy routines.

What I kept...

Going through Mom's things took time as we did not want to rush the process...
there were a few surprises, but for the most part, it was what we might have expected from an organized woman
whose attention to detail was evident in everything she touched.


My sister and I donated most of her clothes...
I saved a grey cashmere sweater and have been wearing it most days.
It feels like a cozy warm hug...
it is as if mom has her arms firmly wrapped around me.

I also brought home some small red spatulas...the kind that one uses when scraping out the last of the mayonnaise or mustard out of a small jar. I don't know what moved me to keep them but they are a practical tool that I will use regularly and take up very little room in our small bungalow.


I kept her recipes in the vintage recipe box.
One afternoon in the coming week I will make a pot of tea and peruse her collection.
It could be like a trip back in time...
she had a large repertoire 
that ran the gamut 
from jello whips to apple pie and meat loaf.


                             Mom had oodles and oodles of knick knacks!
     She wrote a note that specified she was leaving me her antique Maling bowl...


                a blue and white porcelain plant pot finds a new home here
                                   

Mom's condo is listed on the market.

I'll miss sitting on the deck with mom sharing a chat and a cup of tea.
There will be so many things that I will miss...
our telephone calls
walks
shopping trips
laughter

these memories will help to comfort me


 The Humble Bungalow is scented with the heady fragrance of lilies.
(I remove the stamens as they stain everything)

On the horizon...
I plan to return to the practise of Yoga
 am looking at local studios and their schedules.
It really helps with relaxation and I feel energized after the sessions.

Walking is back in my daily routine but having been away from it for almost a month my muscles were reminding me of that saying...
"use it or lose it!"
Thankfully bath salts and soaking in the tub have been helping.

I've got the urge to buy something bright and colourful.
My wardrobe of greys and black feels like it could use a punch of colour.
I haven't felt like shopping in quite some time and this might just well be what they call "retail therapy!"

The days are getting lighter
there is birdsong outside the window
spring flowers are emerging
 simple joys
one delights in
that can temper the sadness
 enfold one in a firm embrace
almost as cozy 
as Mom's cashmere sweater...


There is a sense of relief after these busy few weeks.
The pace has slowed and I was able to indulge in a few quiet days
that were spent at home
getting domestics under control
teas and cafe cremes were sipped 
while gazing out the windows
and
flipping through several French magazines
Cote Sud and Campagne Decoration.


Speaking of France...
I have been wearing the samples that I ordered from the new musc collection
by 
 Sylvaine Delacoutre
The Dovana scent is lovely and may be the fragrance that I order
it has notes of iris, neroli, vanilla, and ambrette.
You might like them too.

I am not affiliated with Sylvaine and have received no remuneration for this mention.
Her website is here.

Hope that your weekend is ticking along nicely.
Thank you for stopping by...
XO

60 comments:

  1. Wow, Leslie, you are so organized. It took me almost 6 months to ponder through my Mother's things, before putting her house on the market.
    I've been also feeling the aches and pains these past few weeks...sounds like yoga is in order. Good plan. Too bad we don't live closer.

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    1. I have a very energetic sister and we both like to be busy so it felt like we were doing what Mom would want us to do and it was surprisingly therapeutic.
      Yoga will be a much needed tonic in the coming months...

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  2. Oh, Leslie. I am so glad to read that you are taking these monumental changes slowly and you are treating yourself with care and gentleness. You have selected your keepsakes carefully and I can speak from experience that you will treasure them for years to come. The cashmere sweater is perfect. I have a sweater of my mother's and I feel the exact same way about it-as if I am being embraced by her. Please continue to take care. I'm sure I can speak for others when I say that we are glad to know you are healing. Carol in VT

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    1. I read a novel about a widow who kept her husbands sweaters and now I understand why...obviously it is not that uncommon to want to be cozy in a soft sweater of a loved one.

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  3. It is so interesting what belonging those we love leave behind that we decide to keep. It never seems to be related to value but to special occasions and remembrance of times spent together. As you probably know one of my Mother's possession I choose to keep even though I had no where to put it at the time, was my Mother's canape. All based on my memory of the day it was delivered to her so many years ago and how much she always loved ...I simply couldn't let it go. Now it has a place in my home and a new look that I think she would have approved of. To me it isn't just a piece of furniture but a connection with her. Love continues and is always with us.

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    1. Your sofa is a keepsake wether it is in the original fabric or one of your choosing...the Maling bowl has a long history for me...and there was a table that Mom had all her married life and after Dad passed away she kept it beside her chair...my sister took it and we both feel that we have chosen significant pieces that we grew up with...I agree with you...I believe the love will be eternal.

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  4. It sounds like Spring. This rising up and desire for color. Your respect and appreciation of what has gone away that nurtures rather than smothers is refreshing. You make your Mother proud.

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    1. Oh what a gorgeous weekend of sunshine we have enjoyed...Spring is very much in the air.
      I like your comment about "nurtures and not smothers!"

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  5. My mother wore my stepfather's sweater for 25 years. The sleeves were pretty tattered at the end, but it was just for home wear. Even though it was acrylic, she got comfort from it. May your mother's sweater will keep you cozy and provide good memories too.

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    1. Oh I would love to think the sweater would be with me for 25 years...
      just as your Fathers' kept your Mother in comfort.

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  6. I'm glad to hear you sounding more like yourself. It is such a sad time and does require lots of self care. You're doing all the right things. Sending hugs. XOX

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I feel much better after a few days of rest and in the quiet of our bungalow dabbling in domestics just feels so "normal."

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  7. Dear Hostess...
    "..it was what we might have expected from an organized woman
    whose attention to detail was evident in everything she touched." Thank you again for the life skills you provide. I am your age, with grown kids, and grandkids, and I would love my kids to think that sentence when I have left this life. It is a beautiful eulogy! One of your mothers many gifts to you, and an inspiration to us all.
    Helena in Sweden

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    1. Helena,
      You are most kind. My Mother was a wonderful role model, she raised both my sister and I with basic values and she set a fine example for us to follow.
      I feel so fortunate to have had her in my life as long as I did.

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  8. You are amazing, what you have achieved already Hostess. I have found it a comfort to use some of my mother's things, and I love that you have the red spatulas which match your kitchen. The antique bowl is fabulous, and you will treasure it always. So sweet to cuddle up in mother's soft grey cashmere. Take care.

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    1. The spatulas are very practical...just like Mom.
      Many of her things were duplicates of what we already have so they did not hold any power over me...I forgot to mention a set of dishes that she enjoyed...a brown set of Arabia, a set for 6 with completer pieces...I also kept that as it was her everyday set and we ate from those plates for lunches and sometimes dinner. Her fine china we sold...I already have a set of 12 by Royal Albert and little room for more. My sister did not want it either so it seemed like the sensible thing to do.

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  9. Your mother's apartment has a beautiful view
    I could imagine how much comfort could be in your mother's grey sweater
    Take care
    Dottoressa

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    1. Mothers' condo is on my walking route so I pass by it every time I walk...that is why I saw her so often as I would pop in for a cup of tea and a chat on my way home.
      Thank you D.

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  10. Lovely post Leslie ...I can imagine the feeling of wearing your mum's jumper ..It looks lovely with your scarf ...I wear my mum's wedding ring on my right hand ..keeps her with me.
    Take care ...
    Rosie

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    1. My sister has moms wedding set...and I have her pearl and diamond ring which I will need to get sized to fit my finger...mom had tiny hands!
      It may be awhile before I can wear her jewelry...I'll need to be in the mood and a wee bit stronger first.

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  11. I've been missing for some time, not posting or reading my favourite blogs just catching up this morning only to read about the sad news that you have lost your mother, I send my condolences to you & your family. You are strong & can deal with this, I know how sad & lonely I was when I lost my mother, time is the greatest healer. take each day as it comes and most of all take care of yourself.

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    1. Hi Barbara...
      Losing a mother is a huge loss...at least it seems to be for me and by all accounts from friends and family most women I speak with agree.
      Time will help...I know that is true.

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  12. You will feel better with your resumption of your healthy living routines although I'm sure that you will always think about the lovely times that you had with your mother. My mother would like to visit Oaxaca but I think that mobility(cracked sidewalks with rebar projecting)
    would be too difficult here. What a beautiful view the condo has! Are those the Olympic Mountains?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yes Madame they are the Olympic mountains!
      Mom's condo was located just off of Dallas Road...a lovely view on a sunny day but when the stormy gale forced winds or fog rolled in the atmosphere was chilly...she would draw her drapes and cocoon inside!

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  13. I love the Maling plate
    Hilary
    ex Newcastle upon Tyne

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    1. I do too Hilary...I am not sure where Mom bought this or if it was a gift...she never mentioned it to me other than to say when I was young that I needed to be "very careful not to break it!"

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  14. When our mom died, I also went through her recipes. I had the recipes that everyone loved typed and bound into a little book. I gave them to nieces and nephews and others at Christmas. At the time I went through a copying service- Kinkos. Now I could do this through various online providers and you can even add photos. Lis

    ReplyDelete
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    1. That sounds like a great idea!
      I will consider that when I peruse her recipes.
      Thank you!

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    2. I had about 9 books made as gifts and Shuttterfly. Com can create cookbooks with photos. Much nicer than what I had made from Kinkos, but it was the thought that counted. I still
      use my book 10 years later. Lis

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  15. Yes to healthy routines.
    Yes to splashes of color.
    Yes to cherishing memories.
    Yes to the present.

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  16. I am amazed and inspired by how quickly you have been able to do all you've done after losing your mom. You certainly are organized and a hard worker. Hoping your spirits are lifted, if only a little, by the arrival of spring. Hugs to you.



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    1. I suppose we are an organized family Jeannine...
      my spirits are feeling much lighter with the sunshine and spring flowers. Rest and routines help too.

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  17. Getting back into a regular routine helps to process grief, I find. The pretty things you brought from your mother's condo will remind you of her often. I like the idea of you wearing a cozy sweater of your mom's. The lighter days and slowly warming temperatures are spirit-lifting for all of us. Continue to take the time you need.

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    1. Hope that you got out and enjoyed this sunny weekend....we were in the garden today and I planted up a pot of primulas which I placed at the foot of our stairs out front of The Humble Bungalow. It really feel like Spring has Sprung!

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  18. It all takes time, the love never ends and we do whatever it takes, in our own way, to pull us through.
    A few weeks after my mum passed away, on a whim I cut my long hair, badly. That is one avoid.
    My mum had accumulated five potato mashers, I kept one.
    Take your time to do what you need to do, dear Leslie.

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    1. My hair id short and probably could not be much shorter so I don't think thats a risk...perhaps getting my nose pierced would be a risky thing to do or a tattoo!
      Neither of which are on my radar!
      Mother had 4 whisks that she loved to use when making gravy!

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  19. How touching and comforting that you have your mother's sweater to wear, special bowl to look at and trace fondly with your fingers, and little kitchen items to use on a regular basis. I hope these remembrances give you happy memories of a mother's love, and that they will help you gradually heal. In our family, we also plant a shrub or rose or tree to mark births and deaths, and other life passages.

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    1. I bought a climbing rose today...we will plant it and it will be in memory of Mother.
      Father's hydrangea is out front and so it seems fitting that Mm have a spot out there too.

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  20. I cleaned my Mother's place out last JUNE.......I went through every piece.IT took me about a month.............I KNOW EXACTLY what you are referring to here.Although, I just moved my MOM.XX

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    1. Its hard work and very emotional going through all their things...
      I know you will cherish all the time that you share with your Mother.
      XO

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  21. I wear my mother's silver bracelet every day. It's one of my favorite possessions. She was an elegant women and that is how I feel when I wear it.
    Rememberences and memories....

    Ali

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  22. It sounds as though you have found the balance needed at this difficult time - working your way through what must be done - but at the same time remembering to take the time you need to grieve and remember.
    I think that's something that has been lost in our busy world - we rush through things - and we don't want to deal with sadness, ours or that of others - we want to fix things! People often go to the doctor after the death of a loved one and end up on pills for "depression" when what they are really feeling is sadness - something entirely normal and to be expected after a loss. People need to grieve and to remember and to ease back into the world at large. You are an example of how to work through this difficult time with much grace.
    Today is the first day of Spring so perhaps a perfect day to buy yourself a little something bright and cheerful.

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    1. Feeling Sad is not my usual thing...but I cannot help but let it flow through me as I believe that the grieving process is very much a part of the healing too.

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  23. I am glad you are feeling you want to get back to routines. It takes time, and it seems that you are giving yourself permission to both grieve and heal.
    Those momentos will bring good memories to you, and they are beautiful. I have several things that were my father's, and even after over ten years, they still bring me memories of him, and I feel happy when I see them.
    Yes...buy yourself something colorful!

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    1. I went shopping today and just published a post on it...you might get a chuckle when you see what I brought home!

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    2. Just saw it! I'm behind in my blog reading. My knitting attack has been consuming a lot of my spare time.😉

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  24. It's funny what we hold on to when a parent passes away - whatever makes you feel like you have a part of them and works for you, keep it!
    On another note, just be careful with the lilies, both leaves and petals are extremely poisonous to cats. My cats will nibble on any floral arrangement, so I can't ever have lilies in the house.

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    1. Oh I never leave the flowers out when I leave the cats alone...they devour the bouquets so no need to worry.

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  25. Rest and routines are indeed healing. I have a number of kitchen things that I took from my mom's house after she died, including a pottery mug with a blueberry motif. She used this mug every day for her morning coffee. Now I use it almost daily and always think of her--her fortitude and laughter--when I do. Wishing you continued moments of spring cheer amidst the sadness.

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    1. My grandmother drank her morning tea out of the huge mug that my grandfather used to have his tea in every morning after he died and she also wore his gold watch...

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  26. so glad you saved your mom's sweater for yourself. it is beautiful and so you! i'm so sorry for your loss and glad you are getting thru as best as one can. much love leslie. xoxo

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    1. Thank you Janet...
      I also kept her satin robe which I forgot to mention...it is beautiful and I have hung it on the guest room door...it has her Chanel No.5 scent.

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  27. So sorry for your loss. My mother passed away 2 years ago and I still miss her everyday. Mostly to tell her stuff that only she would enjoy. Keep looking after yourself.

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    1. It is so strange to think that I will not be picking up the phone to tell Mom something or stopping in for tea after my walk on the way home, or chatting with her about the hockey games that she loved so much and our Mother Daughters Tuesday walks and other outings...they will only be memories now...

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  28. Your intelligent and contemplative approach to this difficult time in your life is very inspirational, I've been thinking of you and the hard time you've been going through. Your cashmere sweater is the perfect thing to wear right now as it truly is a hug from your mother, but I also think your instinct to buy something bright and cheerful for your wardrobe is a good one! Maybe a new scarf? Sending love and hugs to you XO

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    1. Thank you Dani...Mom trained both my sister and I well and we have learned so many valuable lessons from her, and just by watching how she handled life. She was and will be, my forever inspiration.
      I thought about a new scarf...I haven't really felt motivated to shop until today when I bought a new dress...and a steam cleaner for my floors! Its Spring and the hardwood floors need a deep cleaning...I hope it works as well as the box says it will!

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  29. I'm so sorry for your loss. Sitting still in the spring sunshine helps. Yes, buy something bright.

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    1. Oh yes to the warm sunshine and yellow daffodils!
      They are a tonic and a pick me up for flagging spirits...
      XO

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