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A Secret, an Epiphany & Forgiveness PLUS Beef Stroganoff


Being a mother is learning about strengths you didn't know you had, and dealing with fears you didn't know existed.

Linda Wooten


Last week was International Woman’s Day. Raising 2 young ladies really got me thinking about the amazingly strong woman that raised me, my Mom.

There have been a few things about my Mom’s death that have really… Angered me. I have talked about a few of them right here on my blog. I do that because this has been my counseling. Getting out my grief, anger, and frustrations through this outlet has been very healthy for me. However, there are things that I don’t discuss on here. Selfish secrets that I am ashamed of. Secrets that only some people know.

On Friday, International Woman’s Day I had an epiphany!

One of my biggest secrets has to do with my Mom’s passing. It sounds so ridiculously selfish and silly that I have basically only spoke about it with my Sis. She is the only one that did not think I was being selfish but understood exactly where I was coming from.

When my Mom entered the hospital, for the last time, she asked me to go to Hallmark and pick out 7 cards. She was very specific in what she wanted for each card. When I brought them back to her she spent her last few lucid days writing in each one of them. When she was finished she asked me to make sure, after she passed, to mail each card to a specific woman that had meant something special to her.

I didn’t get a card. Neither did my Sis.

In fact, my Mom didn’t say anything of importance or significant in those final few weeks to either of us. Of course, I know this is absolutely irrational because what it all boils down to in the end… Who really knows what to say? What do you say to your 2 daughters? I have thought about this for days! Weeks maybe even months, constantly. What exactly does someone say to their daughters to say goodbye? What stories will help them in their future? What advice can you impart in such a short period of time?

I don’t care. Those thoughts are for rational people who didn't lose their Mothers in a 3 week span of time. I felt like an afterthought. There I said it. I told you.

On Friday to celebrate International Woman's Day, my Mom’s best friend from childhood posted a YouTube clip of a song from 1971, I am Woman by Helen Reddy. All of a sudden, clarity!




That was the same song my Mom had requested for her slideshow at her celebration of life. Her slideshow was long 😂 she wanted to make sure everybody remembered her glorious life. We handed out popcorn and everybody settled in for a good half an hour of pictures that represented Mom's incredible life. There were at least 8 to 10 songs in the slideshow. This was the only song she requested. It hurt me that she didn’t ask for her and Dad's song or a song that reminded her of our family or any song I had ever heard her listen to! It was so weird. She kept on singing “bring home the bacon“. I spent quite a while on Google with just those lyrics to guide me in finding this elusive song that obviously meant a lot to her but that none of us had ever heard before.

When I saw that Facebook post it all made sense. When Mom went to the hospital that last time, she knew she wasn’t coming out. She began to take stock. She began to think about the people that made her the woman she was. She was in the hospital for one week and in hospice for just under 2 weeks. Once she was in hospice she was quite loopy and on a lot of different pain killer medication.

It occurred to me that she didn’t get to us. I think when she began looking back over her life she thought she had more time. She didn’t. Can you imagine looking over your life and remembering all the people, songs, and experiences that influenced you over an entire lifetime? That sounds daunting and intimidating to me even now! If I started now by the end of my days I may have covered all the people in my life that made a difference and that I wanted to say something to. How far did she get in less than a week? Not very far.

This realization has taken a load off of my shoulders. Every night I questioned whether or not she had anything left to say to me and even though I know it was stupid, I couldn’t help but think that she didn’t want to say anything to me in her final days.

Now, I’m trying to put myself into her shoes. Of course my Mom wanted to say things to my Sister and I! She thought she would have 40 more years to impart all of her knowledge and advice on to us. She barely even communicated all the things I would need to know to raise 2 daughters! If she had more time I think she would have written a book to help us through our journeys. But she didn’t. She had one lucid week and she made the most of it. You would not believe how much better I sleep at night because of this realization!

Thank you Mom for raising me to be the woman I am today. Even though you didn’t write me some profound words in your final days, you left a lasting legacy and because you raised me the way you did, I don’t need words, your actions spoke the loudest.

Although you never needed it, you are forgiven 💛


This week on How Was Your Week, Honey? Ep 109: The Butt is Next to the Rack. We chat about the loss of LukePerry, Alex Trebek’s cancer diagnosis, our social Week and are we Erasing History by banning Michael Jackson from radio play and Dr. Seuss from library’s? Check it out HERE!


I hate beef stroganoff. Growing up, I remember beef stroganoff as tough leathery meat covered in a gray creamy sauce that plunked out of a tin can 🤢. However, people love it! It’s comfort food that my Dad and Ninja crave. So I decided to give it a go! Boy, am I sure glad I did! It completely erased the bad taste previous beef stroganoffs left in my mouth 😂. This dish had depth. Every mouthful made me moan in pleasure. This dish is comforting yet elegant, tasty yet nutritious, and delicious for family or guests!

Fast and Tasty Beef Stroganoff
Adapted from Canadian Living

2 top sirloin grilling steaks, cut in 1/4-inch thick slices
1 tablespoon oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1/2 bell pepper, sliced
2 cups mushrooms, sliced
3 cloves garlic, pressed
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 cups beef broth
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoonWorcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup sour cream
1 pkg broad egg noodles
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley

Sprinkle beef with 1/2 tsp each of the salt and pepper. In large nonstick skillet, heat oil over high heat; working in 2 batches, cook beef, stirring frequently, until browned, 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer to bowl; set aside.





In same pan, melt butter over medium heat; cook mushrooms, peppers, garlic powder and remaining salt and pepper, stirring frequently, until mushrooms are browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Add red onion and thyme; cook, stirring, for 1 minute.







In bowl, whisk together broth, mustard and Worcestershire sauce; pour into pan. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. In small bowl, whisk cornstarch with water; stir into pan. Cook, stirring often, until slightly thickened, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in sour cream.





Meanwhile, in large saucepan of boiling water, cook noodles according to package directions; drain.



Fold beef and parsley into sour cream mixture; serve over noodles.









 

I have been kicking butt at my 2019 goals! One of the things I haven’t worked on as much is trying new flavors/foods. This week when my Gr2Besty asked me out for lunch, we decided to try a new restaurant, Balance Vegetarian Tea Room! I am so happy that we did! It was incredible! I got there a little bit early and enjoyed a couple chapters of my book while sipping on a Cream Earl Grey tea! For lunch I had a Vegan Cream of Potato Soup with a Spinach and Veta pie. Delicious!



On Wednesday I got together with my 2 PreschoolBesties! We went out for a amazing dinner at Craft Corner Kitchen followed by a fundraiser for the preschool the 3 of us were on the board for a few years ago. I just love Playshare Preschool! I also love that it led me to these 2 strong and amazing women that I now have in my life! I am truly lucky. I’m happy that we had fun painting because the canvas I brought home definitely wasn’t worth what I paid to make it 😂.




 



Guess what? It snowed again.





 


On Friday evening, Ninja and I had a dinner date at Bad Tattoo! We started with Sweet Heat Cauliflower Lettuce Wraps and then we each chose a half a pizza. Ninja chose a Chicago pizza and I chose a Dillpickle pizza! It was covered with delicious pickles and cheese! I was in heaven!








After dinner we met up with some friends at Salty’s Beach House. Our KBestyies moved away this past summer and although I saw them briefly while in Cochrane a few weeks ago, it was still great to get out there and have some drinks with them and hang out for the evening! After drinks we walked to The Barking Parrot to continue the festivities. It was a fabulous night!







The girls had a busy weekend! Saturday morning started with SBean's last skating class. I’m so impressed with how far she has come this year!



HBear's Gr2Besty threw a surprise party for KBesty on Saturday night! HBear worked very hard on her welcome home sign and card. The party looked like a blast!
 




Saturday evening I attended MBesty’s Birthday at Desmios Escape Room. There were 8 of us and although we didn’t know each other, we worked super well together! We made it out of The Sherlock Holmes room so quickly that we were less than a minute away from making the leaderboard!


On Sunday morning HBear and her DuetBesty went to the dance studio for an early dress rehearsal. I can’t believe it was just last year that Rowyn was taking the bare minimum of classes! She is so invested in her dancing that it is really something special to watch. They have a few more weeks until first competition and I cannot wait to see it when it’s all cleaned up!




Directly after dance I took her to the Fast and Female Champ Camp. A few weeks ago they were taking registration for female athletes. If you got picked, you got a free entry into their champ camp! I wrote about Rowyn being an athlete and her sport of choice being dancing. She got accepted and on Sunday she got to go to the Okanagan College to do different fitness activities and then listen to Olympic athletes, professional athletes, and athletic teachers talk to them about being confident female athletes! What an amazing opportunity!


 


 



It was an incredibly busy week I am feeling quite tired but very happy 😊. To top off the week, yesterday I received the photos from the Snowflake Ball Photographer 💛




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