Mom, five years later

November 11, 2014 was the last day of my mother’s life. She would die in her sleep that night and I discovered her in the evening of November 12. I had yesterday evening free so I embarked on a job that occupies many of my evenings during the approach to Christmas. This job also fills my mind with memories of my mother: I bake her Christmas shortbreads. I love doing this and it fills my heart with happiness whenever I give someone a tin of her famous shortbreads. All of her friends and family have personal memories to share about my mother when I give them cookies and I love to listen.

While it is still too early to listen to Christmas music or to watch Christmas specials on DVD while I bake, instead last night I watched the Leafs lose to Chicago. I ended the night with 7½ tins. Last year I made cookies for thirty-nine people, so I still have a lot of work ahead of me, especially since the cookie list seems to grow longer every year. My list is over forty for 2019. I regard the giving of her cookies as spreading my mother’s love. She loved Christmas and started preparing early. She would have been helping me set up my Christmas trees this coming Saturday and would have been watching the Toronto Santa Claus Parade with me this Sunday.

I can only imagine what my mother would be thinking of me carrying on her legacy of shortbreads. She would be self-deprecating for sure, totally unaware of how much everyone anticipates her annual cookies. She would wonder how something as innocuous as shortbread cookies could be so treasured. Yet I see it all in your faces when I give you a tin of her cookies. Your smiles bring me great comfort and joy. That’s my mother’s love at work. I am happy to share this love with all of you.

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