One of my sisters reminded me of a common childhood occurrence in our family. You see, with seven kids, we had birthday cakes 9 times a year, if you count Mom & Dad.
That is a distinct advantage of being from a big family. Nine cakes. Heck, with Mom and Dad’s anniversary, and other various holidays, we were likely to get a cake a month. Those are some good numbers.
Our Mom was a really good cook. At least, we all thought so the whole time growing up. Everything always tasted just like Mom used to make. But the deal with cake-baking: She ALWAYS let us like the beaters. And the bowl. That is one of my favorite memories… hanging around the kitchen… waiting like little vultures to swoop down on the leftover cake batter.
And! Mom was such a great lady, she would even turn off the mixer first.
Mom still is a great lady. It is just that her brain has mostly gone to a different dimension. And no one can seem to understand quite how her’s is working… most days.
My Mom was a world class knitter too. She and Dad each had a Lay-Z-Boy Recliner / Rocker Chair. Dad would sit in his and work crossword puzzles. Mom would knit. But she was like a Robo-Knitter. It was fun to watch, because she would just sit there and deftly clickity-click her needles. Super fast. And before you knew it there were rows and rows of afghan falling down upon her lap. Like Wooly-Magic.
I know how we are supposed to stay in the moment, in the present. To be here, in this life where it is happening.
Yet. I so LOVE to remember. I miss that time passed. The knitting, the cake batter… the all of it. From Tater-Tot Casseroles, to riding with 15 other kids in our greenish-gold station wagon.
But aside from all of that. I believe that our lives are just a series of lessons. We either learn from them or we don’t. And without memories, without past experiences, we would have nothing to go on.
I know one thing…. one very important lesson I learned in my childhood. Kindness matters.
My parents were kind to me. In all sorts of ways. Some kids don’t have it that good. And in that upbringing, I learned that even small expressions of kindness have a pretty dang-big impact on other people. In a fine way. Most of the time… it really doesn’t seem to take much effort to be kind. And, simply enough….. it just seems like the right thing to do.
Share the cake-batter bowl with somebody today. Get chocolate on your face. It just seems like the right thing to do. And if all else fails, run up and down the driveway with your baby geese. Those are the kinds of places where happy lives.