No Time to say Goodbye

We’ve had a very sad end to the month, my lovely mum died unexpectedly on Wednesday evening. She was 86, she’d been living in a wonderful care home for the last couple of years since she was no longer able to cope at home. She’d had a lovely day, her and her mates had wrangled three sherries each from the staff at lunch time, her best friend rand for a chat in the afternoon. The carers helped her get ready for bed that evening, went back 10 minutes later with her horlicks and she’d gone. It’s what many of us say we want, but it’s a shock to those left behind. It is a blessing though that she died before dementia took away the mum I knew and loved, she could still knit, and often spent her time drawing sketches of the residents and life in the home.

Christmas 2018

One of my earliest memories is of being sat down by my mum with a square of binca and some embroidery threads, I’ll have been about three. She started training as an art based primary school teacher when I was 5 and I’m sure she used to practise on us, we did potato printing, we made pots from the clay in the garden, we did tie dye in the kitchen, weaving, spinning…when we went on walking holidays our rucksacks included sketchpad and paints, so we could all sit and paint as we rested.

She bought us both a treadle sewing machine to learn to sew clothes on and when we were early teens we got an electric one! She’d made all our clothes as kids and taught us to follow and change patterns. She was obviously a good teacher as we both went on to make our own wedding dresses.

The best thing she imparted was her attitude, we were forever being told ‘there’s no such thing as I can’t‘ which can be very frustrating as a kid however if we saw something we liked in her needlewoman magasine she would always encourage us to make it, teach us the skills we needed and let us get on with it, hence I embroidered my cockerel and lyrebird at the age of 7 and 8. I’m sure this attitude is why I’m always happy to try something new.

My mum would get totally involved with a new craft, she would buy the books, go to evening classes, get the equipment and join the local guild or club, if there wasn’t one she would start one! She would be totally enthused for say 5 to 7 years, before she moved on to another craft, so she did lace making, quilting, spinning, flower arranging, painting and her final love which proved to be her finest skill, botanical drawings with coloured pencils.

During the last few years when I went to visit I always took some sewing with me, she loved seeing what I was stitching and delighted in the finished pieces. I’m going to miss our stitching mornings at Abbeydale.

The last couple of days have given me the impetus to finish a project I started last year – making a textile book out of all my mum’s little hand made things, finished or unfinished. A fabric tribute to a very crafty lady.

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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37 Responses to No Time to say Goodbye

  1. Ann Gibson says:

    So sorry to hear about your Mum but also pleased that she went so peacefully. I absorbed the culture of sewing watching my mother sewing dresses on a singer treadle. Many of my generation have memories of standing on a stool or chair mother’s mouth filled with pins and the only words you uttered were ouch. I am now sixty seven and can recall some of those dresses with clarity. She had a stroke on a Shrove Tuesday and died three weeks later.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. claire93 says:

    a lovely tribute to a very loved & loving lady, Margaret!
    I am sending virtual hugs for the days, weeks, months ahead. You have so many positive memories and I recognised the “there’s no such thing as can’t” . . . I wonder if that’s something all Mums say to their children, because I certainly heard it plenty of times growing up too ^^

    Liked by 1 person

  3. endrickwater says:

    Please accept my sincere condolences on the loss of your mother. Mothers are absolutely special people, and your description of her is full of love and thanks for a life well lived.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. tialys says:

    So sorry Margaret – it sounds as if she had a lovely final day and a peaceful departure without stress or pain.
    Your little book will be a lasting tribute and something to be valued by you and your family for years to come. I’m sure she would have loved it too.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    Oh Margaret, I am so sorry for you. You were so blessed to have a Mum that gave you so much…confidence, skills and best of all love. She will always be with you with every stitch you make.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Amanda says:

    What an amazing lady! She sounds like the mother I always dreamed of. And yes a shock but truly lucky to go peacefully and loved.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Laura says:

    I am so sorry for your great loss, Margaret! You have shared a fabulous tribute and the little book of her works will be a priceless keepsake for sure! I love the family photo!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. nanacathy2 says:

    I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your Mum. My Mum also had dementia, but it was her arthritis which stopped her from crafting. Mum was also a infant teacher, she was literature and pottery, not that she did any pottery after college.
    The book of your Mum’s work will be such a wonderful tributte to her skills.
    I am full of admiration for what you stitched at such a tender age- I started on the old tray cloths!
    Look after yourself in the weeks to come as your grief is worked through.


  9. Please accept my Condolences. And my congratulations on having such a good Mom whose inspiration and skillful teaching will always be with you. How blessed you have been and I am sure she was equally blessed by your enthusiasm and care.


  10. kathyreeves says:

    I am so sorry to hear of your mother’s passing, Margaret. It is hard to be the one left behind, but what a wonderful life she had, and what a legacy she has given you! Your book will be a comfort as you work on it. When my mom passed I spent a week in the basement sewing quilt blocks from the stash she had given me and it did help me get through those first weeks. You had a lovely relationship with your mum, and once the initial pain passes, you will have many wonderful moments and memories to savor. But for now, sending you many hugs to get you through and prays for peace and assurance. XXOO


  11. Virtual hugs to you, it is hard to lose one’s mum. You were so lucky that she had so much to share with you, those are treasured memories.


  12. Gail says:

    So sorry to hear about the sudden death of your Mom. She went the way most of us would choose…quickly, no pain, no long drawn out suffering. Hard for those left behind, but sounds like you have years of wonderful memories to ponder as you remember a life well lived. Take care. Thinking of you and sending a hug.


  13. Nancy Sickler says:

    So sorry to hear about your sweet mom. From reading your blog, you were a very good daughter and I’m sure she appreciated your visits. Hugs to you and you will be in my prayers.


  14. She sounds like a wonderful lady. I am so sorry for your loss.


  15. I’m so sorry to hear about your Mum. That’s a wonderful photo. I send you virtual hugs from across the pond.


  16. magpiesue says:

    No wonder you turned out as you did! What a special woman your mother was, obviously gifted. No doubt you will miss her dearly but none of us could wish for a more peaceful end to our lives on earth. May God bless you with the sure knowledge that her spirit lives on and that eventually you will be reunited with her.


  17. Sharon says:

    I was so sorry to read of your Mothers passing. What a beautiful tribute to an amazing woman. I so enjoyed reading what you wrote and it made me appreciate not only her but you even more for the impact she had on your life. To you and your family I am sending hugs and peace. May her memory be a blessing


  18. Such a sad post but so full of love and loveliness. xxxx


  19. teamwilsun says:

    I am so sorry for your loss.


  20. Lynda says:

    So sorry to hear your sad news, but what a lovely and loving tribute. She clearly was a remarkable lady and will leave a gap in your family but one which will be full of some wonderful memories xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  21. CurlsnSkirls says:

    Dear Margaret, I am so sorry to hear of your mother’s passing. Your brief post is a wonderful tribute to her, to the beauty and inspiration she passed on to you and your sister. Although she has gone on, all her wonderful qualities are still alive in the memories of everyone who knew her. I hope those memories will help to lighten your sorrow. How blessed you were to have had her! Lots of love and hugs to you. ❤️❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Mary H says:

    I’m so sorry for the loss of your Mum, she was clearly a very special, talented, lovely lady. I’m so glad for you to be blessed with so many years with her and a peaceful end. And she has left a legacy in you yourself. May she rest in eternal peace, and may your own inherited and fostered creativity from her be a comfort to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. katechiconi says:

    I’m so very sorry to hear of your loss, Margaret. It must have been a dreadful shock, being unexpected. She’s obviously been a very special influence in your creative life as well as being a beloved mum, and I know you will miss her dreadfully. But what a splendid way to go, happy, surrounded by friends, knowing she was loved and valued, and without undue sickness, pain or loss of her faculties. A remarkable woman.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Deb says:

    Sending hugs your way ,prayers for comfort . There is comfort in knowing that a one love passed peacefully. You had a lovely mum,and a fabric keep sake will be a treasure. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  25. anne54 says:

    It is never easy to loose someone, is it? How blessed you were to have someone so special in your life, for all of your life. I wonder what special plant you will put into your garden, to know that she is always with you. I too am sending you virtual hugs across the world.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Christine McRobie says:

    so sorry to read this post Margaret. My thoughts go out to you and your family. Your Mum will leave a large hole in your hearts. Love from down under.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Kate says:

    I’m so sorry for the loss of your mum. It sounds like she left you with some wonderful memories to cherish. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Steph says:

    I’m sorry for your loss. You write beautifully about your mum, and it’s a lovely story of a life well-lived.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. prue batten says:

    The kindest thoughts to you and your family, Margaret, at this time. Your mother sounds so inspiring, so tenacious, and I bet she had a wicked sense of humour. You look very like her in the pic you shared and it’s obvious you share her skills and abilities, which of course we know was what she wanted. ‘No such thing as can’t’ is a by-word from her generation, I think. The generation that really knew toughness and struggles from the war and still gave us all childhoods that go down in family history. Take care of yourself at this time – be kind to your body and mind. Cheers from way way south in Tasmania.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. KerryCan says:

    I’m really so sorry to hear this, Margaret–what a treasure your mom was! She will live on, as you continue to work in ways she taught you . . .

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Faby Reilly says:

    Oh Margaret, I’m so sorry to hear you lost your mum so suddenly… she sounds like such an inspiring lady! She might have had the peaceful departure we all wish for, but there is never a good way to lose a loved one. Sending big hugs to you at this very difficult time xx

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Sorry to hear about your great loss… what a wonderful and creative human she was!
    As you said, we all hope for a peaceful death like this, but it’s such a shock to the loved ones.
    Sending you big hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. The saddest thing in our lives is to lose our Mothers! I am sorry for your loss and it was a blessing that she did not have dementia. Mine had Alzheimers for 10 years and one morning her heart gave away. I lived in Virginia when she passed – did not get to say goodbye either so I understand how you feel. Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Ruth K says:

    So very sorry for your loss. Losing your Mother is one of the hardest things in life.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. sharssmith says:

    So sorry to hear about your loss. My heart goes out to you and your family. She sounds like a very beautiful soul.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. AnneAnne says:

    I’m so glad your Mum had a lovely happy day for her final one. She sounds quite a character! I found that my mother’s death in September was very stressful despite death being what my mother wanted. So take care. My mother didn’t have dementia either and spending much more time with her over the last few weeks of her life was so worthwhile.


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