Sunday, July 15, 2012

My Mother's House

Dear Friends,
My Mom passed away on Sunday, November 24th, 2013
after a long battle with dementia.

I am re-posting this
because I think it's a nice way to remember her
and how beautiful she truly was.
And to help explain where I've been for the past month...

So here goes.

(Originally posted in July, 2012)

I am going home soon, to New Jersey, to visit my Mom.
I hope she still remembers me.

She has dementia now
her world has been made very small by her disease.  

But once upon a time,
it was full of style and color and whimsy.

It's what I try to remember about her.

Let me show you.

Mom's house, on an early fall day. 
Kind of understated and elegant on the outside.

 Come inside, though, and see what she was really into...

Mom's house was always a riot of color and fabric and collections.

 The turquoise floral print was her inspiration for the entire first floor.

She used Cranberry glass used as an accent everywhere.

She collected Edna Hibbel prints.

 I think she really liked the breezy, free and colorful style of her work.

And she displayed things with a whimsical touch.

She collected crystal and silver and anything else she liked.
The dining room was her showcase.
She painted it red way before it was trendy.
And yes, the hallway is pink...
I loved that crystal chandelier, but she loved the one in the dining room more. 
It was a family heirloom and she treasured it.

Interesting silver pieces - chocolate pots, teapots, serving pieces galore.

She liked a little drama.

 and a lot of stuff...

 Maybe a little too much stuff...
but always interesting and beautiful.

And in the kitchen, she felt even freer to display things she thought were "Kind of Fun"...
Ice cream cones and Scotties and clowns and lobsters and more.
We spent a lot of time at this table, plotting our adventures together.
I really miss going home to visit her here.

 This is my favorite picture of her.  
She was still well and stylish and I wanted that necklace sooo much.  
She took me to the shop where she got it, but alas, they had no more.  

Never mind.  I have it now.  

I wear it often, especially when I am going someplace I know she would have enjoyed.  
It's kind of like bringing her with me. 

I wish.

Rest in Peace, Mom.
I love you.

Pin It!


  1. What a beautiful post. Your mother and her necklace are beautiful as well.

  2. Oh what a loving and thoughtful post about your mom. Such beautiful and precious memories. God Bless you both as you visit. Hugs, Marty

  3. What a beautiful and poignant post. There really is nothing quite like visiting "mom" in the house you grew up in. It will always be home. Hers was filled with the things she loved and that's what makes it so special. I truly hope she remembers you when you visit.

  4. Very nostalgic, Erin. Now I understand where your decor, talent and color come from! She's left a wonderful legacy and now many of us can enjoy it as well. Bless you! a.c.

  5. Thanks for a post that makes us all a little wistful. Your Mom's artistic spirit is so evident in her lovely, colorful home. Thank you so much for sharing it with us! I too, miss the Mom I used to know...

  6. Nicely done Sis. I don't know when you became such a good writer, but I believe this one got some extra attention. It's hard typing through the tears in my eyes. I love you and I'll see you very soon. - Thom

  7. Erin, what a lovely post. It brought tears to my eyes with the love you put into describing your mom. I hope your trip back home is better than you expect.

    *I love that your mom had painted the inside of her bookcases, which seems so on tread these days. She obviously took a lot of risks in her decorating and that's what makes her home so interesting and beautiful.

  8. That picture of your mom brings me back to high school! Love to you and Tom (Thom?!)

    1. I seem to recall you partied under the old hickory tree that was in mom's Basking Ridge back yard for the first few years she lived there. If you didn't you misssed some good parties. You also hosted some good ones in Westfield!
      Thom is just an internet pen-name. When I signed up for Facebook last year, I wasn't sure what would happen, so I figured if I spelled my name as Thom, I could at least trace back any spam or such if it came addressed to Thom. Then I kind of liked it.
      How are Kevin and the kids? Are they off to college and such?

  9. oh, erin, my heart goes out to you as you travel home to see your mom. in the photo you shared, she looks exactly as i remembered her in town, with the cunningham's, or as sue and i walked past her house to town and gave her a wave. she certainly passed her fine taste on to you!

    wishing you strength on this difficult journey,


  10. Erin,
    Such fun pictures of your mom's home.
    I spent lots of time in all of the rooms, especially her fun kitchen.
    Lucky we have The wonderful memories.
    Good visit, I hope.
    Pat C

  11. My Mom is starting this trek also. It is so very sad to lose her slowly. Nice post. I feel your pain.

  12. Erin, I'm backtracking on old posts and it's been awhile since this one. Your mom's home is beautiful. Her love of home and all the goodies inside is obvious. I hope she is well...we are dealing with dementia in our family too. It's tough.


Comments are very much appreciated!
Thank you so much!