I found a long, pointy knit hat in the living room.
Mom sidled over and plucked a library book from her knitting/sewing/odds-and-ends/magazines/junkpile table. She opened to a “Winter Hats for Gnomes” page.
“I knit these for the kids,” she said, showing me the book and two more hats. She’d used thick, gorgeously-saturated Malabrigo yarns from Uruguay, dyed in red, green and blue.
“Cute,” I said.
Petra had already told Mom to stop knitting for her kids (4, 4 and 2), since they had refused to wear her nice but slightly itchy creations.
Two orange tabby brothers followed us home in December. They lived with us for five weeks, snuggling, wrestling, running around like madmen and punching each other in the face, until their owners saw our “found” signs (which had been posted in front of their house for weeks).
Chupa misses them a ton. They shredded furniture, ate Kolinsky brushes and laptop screens, farted intense farts on our laps, pawed wet paintings and shoved my brush around whenever I painted, but they were cute and soft fuzzballs.
Several years ago, Mom and I visited Japan during cherry blossom season. While there, Mom found out that her mom had cancer and was awaiting surgery in the hospital.
That night, Mom lay on the bed in our room at the ryokan. “Emmie, my mom is sick . . . what if I lose her?” she asked.
I tried to think of something kind and comforting to say.“Well, she is 86,” I said.