It felt really strange as I stopped to speak with a friend who was choosing her card for Mother’s Day this year. My Mom passed away almost a month ago, so it was natural to think of picking her card out, and yet I paused and then went on my way. I knew that when the day arrived that it would be awkward. However, I awoke with the feeling that I would honor her memory in all things today and its funny how wonderful the memory is for these occasions. I began with thinking that I would make her favorite cake. An Apple Cake that she would make somewhere in between the day of her family and her friends. Nothing else mattered much as she had many interests but no real hobbies. She loved violets, so I repotted some. Her pleasure was of people. Sometimes, I would get so annoyed when I would go out with her to get something done such as food shopping or to a doctor visit and Mom would begin to chat up someone waiting in line about to go for their visit as well. She enjoyed getting to know people. Telling them about her life, not so much. A southerner never reveals the details of their life to just anyone as these details are considered private matters. And yet, she would ask about if they had children and their names and where they were from getting especially excited if they were from W. Va. Which was her birth place. Yes, I would get annoyed because I suppose that I felt that her friendly way with others took her further from me. That was not true at all as she was just as interested in me as well. Mom would ask about many parts of my life trying to develop a sense of what I liked to do and what pleased me. I would tell her stories of my travels. Our latest years where the best as we had laid down our weapons about what was right or wrong about our family. We would do things that pleased us both. Food of course was a mutual ground which we never tired. I would plan my visit around lunch and ask her what she wanted that day. Given that her hours were later than mine, most of the time she was just getting up when I would arrive just before noon. Her diet was not what it used to be so eating could be a strain because perhaps she was not hungry at all or the taste buds did not agree with her. So I would try to keep it simple by making her a grilled cheese which she loved or an omelet and mostly I would always bring her soup. It did not matter what kind as she loved my soup. She was a baker in her earlier years, always making some cookies , a cake or cobbler and I too enjoy to cook and bake. We would talk on the phone about recipes and even at 86 years of age she had a good sense of how to craft a meal. She did not have the strength in her knees to stand and her arthritis kept her back a lot. But she was still capable of creating something good. If someone brought her a gift of cookies, she appreciated it and so did her sweet tooth. I got that from her as well. I did not get her addiction to chocolate although I enjoy it, my Mom would hide hers and savor, as she was a true chocolover. She loved that we would have tea together and so I introduced her to several kinds so she could choose which one she liked best. Its been a good day thinking of Mom and how life can still render love through memory. Please remember yours too.
Mom’s Apple Cake
350 degrees / well – greased & floured tube pan ( I use a cooking spray for baking)
Place 2 cups sugar, ½ cup orange juice, 4 eggs, 3 t vanilla blend in mixer on medium
Mix 3 cups of flour , 2 t baking powder and add to mixer above alternating 3/4 cup oil / I use canola
Add 4 cups peeled and diced apples/I use gala or granny ( something crisp ).
Pour into the pan, a third at a time pausing to sprinkle sugar and cinnamon on each segment and then on top. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes. Cool before removing from pan.