baking, Christmas, death, grief

Candy and Gifts

I can still smell the aromas that came out of their kitchens. In fact, I think I gain five pounds just remembering all of the candies and goodies my mom and mamaw (grandmother) would bake for Christmas. They would slave for hours stirring the candy until the temperature was just right and it formed a little ball in the thick syrup. Fudge, divinity, peanut brittle, and carmel corn were just the tip of the iceberg (or should I say candyberg.)

My very favorite were chocolate covered coconut balls.

When Mike and I got married there were many things I felt compelled to do just as my mother did, but making home-made candy at Christmas was not on the list. He didn’t eat sweets, and I was too lazy to work that hard only to eat all of it myself. Maybe I was just too lazy. I was definitely intimidated by the involved recipes and that whole candy thermometer thing.

So…I never tried or wanted to try until this year.

But memories of my mom have filled my mind lately, and I’ve been missing her. Maybe there is something in me that thinks if I make her candy she won’t seem so far away.

I love Christmas and all of the decorating and buying, but I do know all too well the empty places in many of us who have lost loved ones. There is a part of me thankful for missing them, but there are days I pray for the sadness to subside. Most of the time, I’m fine; there are just moments when memories flash and the missing rises up. Somedays it lingers longer than others.

BUT I have found a way to soften the “missing.” I pick out a present I know they would’ve bought me! Yes, I buy myself a present for both Christmas and birthday from my mother and sister! This year I’ve decided they are going to buy me a new purse. I haven’t found it yet, but just thinking about the hunt makes me excited.

It is a brilliant idea straight from heaven (I think.)

So, as I miss my mom and sister, I embrace the memory of who they were and the joy we shared with gifts that remind me of them and the things we shared at Christmas that made it special. I do plan to attempt carmel corn this year, and I hope to find the recipe for the chocolate covered coconut balls, but I’m not promising I won’t chicken out. However, the photo above is incentive!

Much grace and peace,

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