It's been over nine years since my siblings and I lost our mother.
Time is a funny thing. Time can move like molasses. And yet, it can race by so quickly, it boggles the mind. In some ways it feels like she's been gone for decades, but a moment later you almost expect to get a call from her to talk about the kids and the day she had.
After she passed, we had to clean out her house to prepare for the sale. She had already chosen the family she wanted in the home her husband almost finished building for her and us. There was so much stuff--she survived the Great Depression after all. It took several days to just remove everything and the memories that flooded back to me as we threw most of it away were almost at times too much to bear.
But not everything was tossed. The other day my mother-in-law brought over boxes of recipes and cookbooks once owned by my mom. I guess we wanted to go through them, but didn't have the time back then. We had the time now.
Over the weekend my wife and I went through the collection, keeping a few of the cookbooks and little else. On thing that I enjoyed was checking out the newspaper clippings. On one side were the recipes, but occasionally, there would be interesting things like society articles, marriage and engagement announcements, and things on the other side. Some of the clippings dated back to the 1960s. It's fascinating to see what was important back in the day.
Looking through the recipes--most of them hand-written, I would say something like, "Fudge recipe," and my wife would respond, "We've already got a couple." My mom had multiple copies of the same recipes time after time. Fudge, homemade caramel, brownies, and various other treats seemed to be her favorite. She even kept several chocolate chip wrappers. It reminded me of when we cleaned out her house, we found so many empty chocolate chip wrappers. We even found an unopened bag of chocolate chips. It had to be at least twenty years old. Classic mom move!
In the end, we threw most of it away, just like we did almost a decade earlier. Like I said, time is strange. At times, it feels like just yesterday she was with us--at others, it's been a lifetime.