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Saying Goodbye to My Mom

  On a clear summer's night, in the warmth of a hospital room, my mom reached beyond her fears and waltzed into heaven. She showed me once again how to persevere and endure. Her humble upbringing taught her how to be self-sufficient, canning summer vegetables and fish, chopping wood, and knitting mittens to survive the long, harsh winters. Her parents reused every item: flour sacks turned into dresses, leftovers into lunches, and wood scraps into furniture. She loved music and taught herself how to play the piano.  She was pretty and poised like a fine piece of china, but her life demanded courage and tenacity, working long hours shredding potatoes for restaurant customers, sewing curtains for motel rooms, balancing ledgers, and taking care of six children.         I will always be grateful for what my mom taught me, like how to throw together a meal for any size crowd, houses are for living in, homemade gifts are the best, and laugh yourself silly if the moment strikes. She also t

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