A Tribute To My Mom – Ditto

fourteen months ago, I posted the following tribute to my mother on this blog.  I felt it fitting to repost it again.  My mother passed away a week before Thanksgiving (2 weeks ago) so her memory, her funeral, and her special attributes are all so fresh in my mind.
Let me share again with you the post:
The matron of the farm is my mother – kindly referred to as Mimi – by her grandchildren and now almost everybody.  It was my mother (and father) who purchased the farm many years ago. Her love of the farm is renowned by any of those who know her. Her bedroom faces High Point on the mountain and she draws such peace and comfort from this view.  She has the beauty of the clouds rolling in from the southwest and the awesome foliage of the ridges to the east. She is the mother hen who watches over the comings and goings of the barn activities. She has also lead by her example with opening up the farm over her many years to friends and family and to her church. She is quick to share a meal at her table with others or to share a pack of seeds from her flower garden to any new acquaintance.
My mother has been very supportive of our wedding business. We feel as though it has in some ways been an extension of the pattern set before us all these years as we have opened up our homes and the farm to many different groups over the years. We have had family reunions, class reunions, Easter Sun Rise Services, Annual Prairie Day outings for the whole fourth grade class, local widows come to harvest turnip greens, Annual Down on the Farm for a local church, Fall  Hoe-Down, Homecoming Week Preparations, Annual Rowing Club End of the Season Barn parties, Halloween Parties, Movie Night in the Barn, 4-H Horse Club Meetings, and the list goes on. My mother rarely meets a stranger and if she does – she doesn’t allow them to be a stranger for long. Her hospitality is legendary and I aim to continue her legacy.
My mother has always had a green thumb – she came by it naturally as her mother was a gardener 24-7. It is a passion that has been passed down both to me and to Jill as well but my mother, still today, works her garden daily.  I joke to others that my mother will be on her death-bed asking somebody to weed her flower bed until she returns. It is her joy and her creative passion that takes her back to her flower garden every day. There are stories to be told of half of the flowers and bushes growing around her yard.  Most of the flowers at the venue and at Jill’s farmhouse came from seeds, cuttings, or transplants from “Mimi’s” yard. She has helped to beautify the farm with year-around color from her Beauty-Berry bush, her rare spring Poppy flowers, an array of dazzling lilies,  a row of knock-Out roses, and a list that would be a hundred long if I could remember them all.

 

   Even now – I find it amazing how well she handles the realities of our farm weddings.  The flood of people that come each weekend, the late night beat of Gangnam Style echoing through the farm, brides posing for the camera in her front yard, touring brides coming by at inconvenient times, driveways being clogged with vehicles, and weekends that run  till midnight. Yet, she takes it all in strides and enjoys watching from her window.  She asks about each wedding and each bride. She watches the cars pull in. She waits for the bride to head towards the barn to get a glimpse of her in her wedding dress.  Even when I make a mad dash to her house in search of some odd necessity that is needed at the barn; a coffee filter, a punch bowl, some plastic forks, a cutting knife, etc…she graciously  rummages through her cabinets to help find it so I can dash out to the barn to rescue the day.  I have so often pilfered her china plates, her vintage napkins stash, and her bread baskets to fulfill my decorating duties…and she does so with pride knowing that she has contributing someway – somehow to the cause. She follows my blog, shares any new wedding FB photos with her friends, and looks forward to the next wedding.  I am blessed and fortunate to have her here on the farm and for her to be a part of this wild and crazy journey of the Barn at High Point Farms.  I offer this blog as a tribute to her – my mom.
(This was an early picture taken right after my parents bought the farm. They staged this American Gothic style photo – it is one of my favorites.)I share this sadness with you because so many of you – past brides and their families and guests and so many of our vendors have become sort of an extended family.  I knew that many of you would want to know.
Moma has left me a tremendous legacy as she demonstrated in so many ways how to love and care for people.  She was always sending somebody off with a bag of turnip greens or poppy seeds. She welcomed any and all visitors to the farm. Any visitor, any occasion was the time to cook a home-cooked meal. There was never too few minutes that wouldn’t work to see grandchildren or weed a garden.
Her health had waned for years and with our business here at the farm, it helped to facilitate her staying here in her own house and here at the farm she so loved. It was only weeks ago that she watched one of the weddings out in the front hayfield and it brought her such joy to watch.  The awesome thing was – this bride’s family had made her a large wooden cross as a backdrop for her wedding ceremony.  It indeed made a beautiful picture with the mountain in the backdrop and the cross before her.  After the wedding – the family didn’t have a need for the cross so they volunteered to leave it.  Moma so loved having the cross out in the field so she could see it….as she looked towards the mountain – as she looked towards High Point.  It became her “old rugged cross” as she referred to it.
      So don’t cry tears for me – well….just not too many of them.  I am blessed (something that Moma would always say – and I am now learning to say a bit more often…..) for I am one of the lucky ones…..to have had a wonderful loving mother who not only cared and loved me but I have her memory in so many things – little and big – everywhere I look here on the farm. Her house will become a guest house – her poppies will be blooming in a few months – there are propagated muscadine vines and trees potted in the garage awaiting spring –  the turnips are still green in the garden to share  –  there are watercolor paintings of hers to hang – and her china painted plates will be set  around the family table for all on Christmas morning to enjoy.  She was ready to see her Jesus and her pain is no more. What more could I want for her?  It is for me I weep and not for her. The sting will lessen and instead of tears each time I see these “remembrances of Moma” ….they will soon  be replaced with smiles.                                                                                                                            ~ Margie