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  • Writer's pictureTim and Lindsey

The Final Preparations (Day 183)

The Final Preparations - so not much of a travel-log - but hey, this is life

We had the final preparations to do for tomorrow. We needed to let the crematorium know what piece of music to have for the reflection. They had suggested some, which were all nice, however just didn’t feel right for Mum. Suddenly Jac piped up ‘Edelweiss’. Perfect. Mum had been to Austria with the school and we could hear her singing this song from the Sound of Music. I found a youtube instrumental version and emailed our other sister Dawn for her approval. She responded back “Good one - how do we find it so we can pass it on to crem etc - i.e. what album it’s on?”

In the morning, I sent the version I could find to Toni at the funeral directors and Jac emailed the Pastor. Great – ticked that off the list. We got busy doing other stuff, washing, tidying, and then Dawn turns up. We inform her what we have done and she stands there open mouthed! “Did you watch to the very end of the youtube clip?” She asked. We hadn’t – then she proceeded to inform us that near the end of the clip, the powerpoint with lovely photos of young ladies and children looking serene then turns into expletives! Oh no! I quickly phone Toni and suggested she didn’t watch the video and gave my apologies. She was so nice and gave me a link to the music at the Crem and we chose a lovely piano version of the music. Phew! Jac also contacted the Pastor. (We did hoot!)

Clothes to sort out. Jac found the perfect cardigan for my charity dress plus a pair of shoes that I could actually get my fat sausage toes in, then she tried quite a few outfits on, finally deciding on a lovely blue and mustard dress.

Lunchtime then we really did need to sit down and work out who is going to give the tribute at the funeral and what are they going to say. At last – the three of us girls sat down. It is funny how there are certain things about Mum that we all remember; her singing Teddy Bear’s Picnic to her schoolmates, getting caught by the teacher and then having to sing in the staff common room. She said she was so embarrassed – she was an extremely shy person. Dawn and Jac remembered a box that Mum kept up high on top of a wardrobe with special toys in, and if we were good, we could pick something out of it. I can’t remember this at all! I wonder why?!!

Eventually, we decided that I would share her early life and then Dawn would talk about her latter life together with memories which her grandchildren have of her.

Katie, one of Jac's friends, turned up to create the flower display to put on top of the coffin. She is a primary school teacher in her day time, yet loves to make beautiful floral displays for people, and she certainly succeeded for us. Mum would have loved this, Freesias were one of her favourite flowers.

It was such a lovely sunny day, so Dawn and I went for a walk. She knows Dorking a bit better than me and we had such a lovely time walking through a large common land, with long grass, sunny buttercups stretching up to the sun and two large washing lines with clothes gently swaying in the breeze. It would have made such a great picture, sadly both of us didn’t have our phones to snap the shot. A special time walking with Dawn. As I mentioned yesterday, I really am blessed having two wonderful sisters.

Jac was busy making posies of flowers for the table and so I made dinner for us all. During dinner, our niece Abi shared that she had started her Coaching Qualification. It certainly is a family trait. Both my sisters and I have done some kind of coaching, either formally or informally. Dawn is a spiritual director and Jac has informally coached many people in her voluntary work. It is interesting reflecting on aspects of our Mum, for us girls, she was rather angry, struggling with motherhood, yet when we can get beyond our own personal bias, she was amazingly empathetic and a great listener, and as Dawn as written about her “she had a tender affectionate heart towards many people, feeling for them in their pain and celebrating with them in their joy.” Amen to that.

There was a knock on the door, our son John had turned up. So lovely to see him. He’d been working all day, doing so well with his business Body Care Therapy and driven here from Bristol, ready for tomorrow.

Time was ticking and scones needed to be made. Jac’s magimix is about half the size of mine, so they took a bit longer to make than I expected, hey ho. Made 44 small scones plus Dee’s nice plump ones – that will do. We have loads of other cakes that some of Jac’s friends have made for us, so I am sure our celebratory “Teddy Bear’s” picnic tomorrow will be just fine.

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