I must admit with regret that I did not begin to truly appreciate my mom until I was in my thirties. As the oldest of three daughters, and being somewhat headstrong (ahem), ours had been a tumultuous relationship since I was in my teens. Then living through two teenage daughters of my own opened my eyes to how truly amazing my own mother was. Funny how that happens.
Have you ever had the good fortune to have a slice of a "twelve-layer chocolate cake"? Some folks might call it a torte, but here in the heart of North Carolina, it's called a twelve-layer chocolate cake. Understand: these layers are only about 1/4" thick, and there are 12 of them sandwiched with an incredible cooked chocolate frosting! At any potluck where her cake is present, from the moment it is cut into, you'd think it was a 99%-off sale at the Rolls-Royce dealership! There is a mad scramble to be one of the lucky few who actually get a slice of this decadent delicacy.
Like her mother before her, Mother has been making these cakes for years. If she hears that so-and-so wants one of her cakes for their upcoming birthday, then she makes one just for them. And she remembers their birthday next year, too. Some weeks she bakes maybe a dozen of these cakes, which is no small feat! That Beanie - she's feisty!
In addition to her amazing cakes, she's a great cook of all things yummy and lip-smacking, and regularly prepares food, even entire meals, for friends and other folks in the community when they're experiencing troubled times.
And she sends cards! Dozens and dozens of cards a month! And I don't mean those 2 for $1 ones from the cheap-o discount stores - she loves her some Hallmark! For years she has kept a calendar of birthdays of nearly everyone she's ever met, and every year they each get a birthday card. She also sends many, many cards to encourage, to offer condolences, and to just say "hi, I'm thinking about you". I regularly receive cards from her myself, and even though I live right next door, she always puts a stamp on them and sends them through the mail. That Beanie - she's feisty!
In addition to being kind and thoughtful, she's kinda wacky! They say that insanity is hereditary - you get it from your kids. I'm thinking that could be what happened. A ferocious housekeeper when I was growing up, she has mellowed quite a bit over the years. Grandchildren have been allowed to jump on the furniture, eat in her car, and all sorts of wild behavior I'm sure my sisters and I would have been skinned alive for ("skinned alive" - one of those quaint Southern expressions).
So, during her stay in the hospital and her subsequent time in the rehab center, Mother had a steady stream of visitors, phone calls and flowers. And not just old people, either. For one thing, everyone in this community knows her, and they love her. I think all those visitors, phone calls, cards, and flowers helped her have the determination to get back on her feet so quickly after surgery.
That, and the fact that she is NOT going to be housebound any longer than absolutely necessary. She is one "go"-ing woman! I'm thinking that being able to drive again may have been her chief motivator. Because you know - that Beanie, she's feisty!
In other news, I happened upon a blog called Flamingo Toes and found this fabulous starburst mirror. Be sure to visit Bev's blog for instructions to make one of your very own!
Here's wishing everyone a wonderful Wednesday!