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Grief Poetry: The Next Chapter

I can remember your face

like it was yesterday,

Your piercing eyes and gentle smile,

Oh, how beautiful you looked,

as you sat there with your book,

reading each page,

and taking in each sentence,

while you quietly sipped the rest of your coffee,

Being your daughter gave me such joy,

A joy that I can never get back,

While its hard to accept

that chapter has ended,

I realize a new one has just begun,

One just as funny, happy, and fulfilling,

And unlike the last,

In this chapter, your spirit will be with me through it all,

not just for a day,

a week,

a month or even a decade,

but for an eternity,

and until the beautiful day when we shall be together again,

Give me the strength I need to continue forward,

filling this next chapter with more wonderful memories

to share with the ones I love.

 

Love you mom,

Allison

 

 

 

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Grief Poetry: The Real Meaning of the Holidays

The holiday season is upon us,

Through all the hype and all the fuss,

I try not to take my mind away,

From the true meaning of the holiday:

 

To love our family and  our friends,

A love measured not by how much we spend,

But by how happy we make them feel,

When we are with them this year,

 

To many, this is a season of giving,

Giving of gifts and reminiscing,

Of years passed and memories shared.

But for some it’s also a season of despair.

 

A longing for a time in the past

When everything we loved seemed to last,

Now that a special person in our life has gone,

We must somehow find the strength to move on,

 

To a world that seemed to have lost its way,

I ask that you do one thing this holiday:

 

Cherish the time you have on this earth,

And spend it with those who matter the most

Don’t forget to be happy and always follow your heart,

Because our time here is far too short.

 

Happy Holidays!

Luv,

Allison

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New Poem: The Reason

When we grieve, we often ask ourselves, Why?  Why did it this have to happen to me?  Why could God just spare their life? Why couldn’t we stop it from happening?

It is a normal part of grief to feel guilty when a person we love dies, especially when it happens so suddenly  like it did with my mom.

When we grieve we need to have hope that with time the pain will get easier, and the happiness we lost as a result of their death  will be once again be restored to us. This next poem –“The Reason” helped me a lot as I tried to come to accept that what had happened to her was the fault of no one, but the effects of an unforgiving disease, known as Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes.

The Reason

In my head I  search for an reason,

As to why you decided to stop fighting.

The disease that you could not accept,

Until its poison started to take effect,

It destroyed your body one organ at a time,

But little did we know of the crime,

That Diabetes was committing on you,

How could  it be true?

That you are gone,

And we are still here, somehow expected to move on?

How can I ever forgive myself for not saving you,

From a disease that I never knew,

Could destroy a life so precious and innocent,

Oh, how I’d give anything to go back

to that day before you died,

to tell you “I love you” and to say my goodbye,

because, Mom, you are my everything.

Now, it’s time for you to go,

Go Home, and be with your King.

Don’t worry about me,

I’ll be alright. Just believe.

 

Grief and Family: Getting Ready to Say Goodbye to My Family Home

Getting Ready to Say Goodbye to My Family Home

I want to first start this blog by saying thanks to everyone for their support in reading my poems. It’s been a very therapeutic for me as I try to come to terms with her loss.

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So those of you who are reading this blog for the first time…my mom passed away three years ago suddenly from Juvenile Diabetes. I have been grieving her loss for almost three years! Yes.. I know that it a really long time.. and while the pain is still very much real, I have realized that with time my complex grief will eventually work itself out.

While the days have been getting a lot easier, I know that I have miles to go before I have arrived at the last stage of grief known as acceptance.

Recently things have been going well in my life. I have a group of friends that I like spending time with and an awesome family that have supported me throughout those very difficult years… and that continue to do so.

But I wanted to mention something that has been on my mind for a while now. It’s been hard to talk about as I am sure some of you who have gone through the same process would have to agree.

About a year ago my dad decided to put our house on the market. His decision to sell our house did not come as a surprise to me because I knew it was something he felt compelled to do since the day she died.

He loved my mother very much and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her in the house.  Now that she had passed away, he doesn’t see any reason to continue living in the house that has become nothing but a painful reminder of someone he loved very much and was so taken from him so cruelly by such an unforgiving disease.

Strangely though I do not feel that way when I spend weekends there with him. It still feels like the same home I have loved since I was a baby, and although my life is different without my Mom — that house still remains the only thing in my life that somehow hasn’t changed.

And that is why I still love being there. The very idea of losing my home is like experiencing her death all over again, but on a much smaller scale. While I’m happy for my dad that he has finally decided to let go of his past and move on from his grief, I understand that the process isn’t going to easy for either of us.

But the tricky thing about grief is that it’s not the same for everyone. We all deal with it in our own ways. And that is okay.

While I might not agree with the way my dad is handling his own grief, I have to respect that he is his own person and that the decision to sell our house is his only.  It is not my place to make that decision for him.

As I reflect on these past three years I realize that I have come along way emotionally. I still want to get to that point  where I can look back at my  life I had with my mom and feel GRATEFUL for the memories we shared together.

Right now I still look back and feel sad and angry at God for taking away something that meant so much of the world to me. I want to have hope that she is somewhere in heaven above looking out for me and my family as we attempt to rebuild our lives and establish our own “new” normal.

Thank for reading this post. I hope you find this helpful in someway. I would like you to please share your thoughts below!  Thanks,

 

Allison

Thanksgiving Poem: Thankful.

Thankful.

I’m thankful for this very day,

To witness my nieces run and play.

I find comfort in their joy and laughter ,

And smile as I listen to their godless chatter.

I’m thankful for this meal,

and to the chef ( my dad) whose

efforts I appreciate a great deal

in making this day extra special,

even though things got kind of stressful,

And most importantly I’m thankful for this family,

with whom I sit here happily,

Taking in each moment I have with them,

And sharing in their laughter and love,

on this beautiful thanksgiving day.

 

Cooking with Mom: Bowtie Pasta and Roasted Vegetables with Balsamic Vinegar

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You will love this delicious and healthy bowtie pasta and roasted vegetable recipe that I discovered in my mom’s collection of homemade recipes. This recipe is ideal for people like myself who are new to cooking.  If you are busy and struggle to find the time to cook healthy dinners, I recommend this recipe.  It only takes 20 – 25 minutes. It is healthy and so so tasty. If you are interested in other recipes that are similar to this one I recommend some of the simple and delicious recipes from the The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. As a fan of the popular cooking show, Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network, my mom was always trying her hand at some of Ida’s recipes. This cookbook includes some really classic recipes in which she uses only the  freshest ingredients.  I highly recommend this book if you like to cook simple and healthy food that you and your whole family will enjoy!

Ingredients

For this recipe you will need:

1 bunch of scallions roughly chopped

1 Bell pepper

1 Zucchini                   IMG_1751

2 pints of grape tomatoes halved

2 garlic cloves

3 tablespoons of Balsamic Vinegar – I recommend Briannas Creamy Balsamic Vinaigrette because it is made with premium balsamic dressing and contains all natural ingredients. And of course, it tastes great! You can use it on salads, too.

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8 oz of bowties

1 tablespoon of olive oil

Directions

  1. Using a kitchen knife roughly chop scallions, zucchini and bell peppers.  Then add ingredients to a large mixing bowl and mix them together.
  2. Next, chop up 2 garlic cloves and add them to the mixture
  3. Then, cut 2 pints of grape tomatoes into halves. Add ingredients to bowl and then mix.
  4. Add three tablespoons of Balsamic Vinegar to the ingredients in bowl and then mix.IMG_1759
  5. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  6.  Boil a large pot of salted water and then add the pasta. Cook the pasta for about 6 minutes. Then drain the pasta when finished.
  7. Mix the  bowtie pasta in with the vegetables. Then, add three tablespoons of Balsamic Vinegar and 1 table spoon of olive oil. Mix again.
  8. Finally, pour vegetables and pasta on a baking sheet and drizzle  with olive oil. Roast in the oven for about 15 minutes.
  9. Serve and enjoy.

Cooking with Mom: Recipe for Cooking Fresh Lobster

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I was lucky enough to spend some time this holiday weekend with my family down the shore. My mom absolutely loved the beach, just as much as she loved to cook. In honor of her and her passion for food and the beach, my family and I decided to make a delicious lobster dinner at our house using real live lobsters that we bought from our local market.

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Here is what you will need in order to get started:

 Tools

1 Large 8 quart or 16 quart pot

1 Tong

2 New Star Foodservice 27976 Heavy Zinc Alloy Lobster Cracker Nutcracker Seafood Cracker (Set of 6), Silver

3 or 4 small forks or more depending on number of people

1 large bowl

1 timer

1 pair of scissors

(Optional) 1 set of How to Eat a Lobster Oval Platters, Lobster Butter Dishes, and Lobster Bibs – Serves 4

Ingredients

4-8 tbs of salt or sea water

1 and 1/2 pound lobsters per person

1 small dish of melted butter

1 loaf of french bread for dipping

Directions for Boiling Lobster

1. When cooking lobsters always buy them from the store when they are still alive.  A good size lobster will weigh anywhere from 1 to 1 and 1/2 pounds.  Never buy lobsters with cracked shells or missing parts. Make sure to store the lobsters in a paper bag in the refrigerator and plan to cook them that same day.

2. Next, fill 3/4 of a large 8 quart or 16 quart pot with water, and then add salt. If you are using an 8 quart pot you would need to add about 3-4 table spoons of salt. For a 16 quart pot, you would need about 7 or 8 tablespoons. If you are feeling adventurous, you can also try using real sea water. Whatever you choose just make sure the water is really salty. In addition, prepare to cook lobsters one or two at a time depending on the size of your pot. If you are using a 16 quart pot you can probably fit up to 3 lobsters.

3.   Then, bring  the pot of water to a boil. Remember to keep the rubber bands on the its claws as you place the lobsters headfirst into the pot, or else you can risk being pinched. I find that the lobster still tastes great despite leaving the rubber bands on. If you are using a lobster that weights 1 pound, set the timer and let it boil for 12-15 minutes. For a 1 and 1/2 pound lobster, boil it for 15-20 minutes. You’ll notice the lobsters will get bright red when they are done, but always set the timer too. Never just rely on the color to determine when they are ready.

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4. Use a tong to remove lobsters from pot, and let them cool for a couple of minutes before serving.

Tips for Eating the Lobster

  1. Eating lobsters can be kind of tricky so make sure you have the right tools before you begin. First, you will need several nutcrackers and a pair of scissors for breaking open the shells. Next, you will also need a large bowl to put the shells in when you are done eating, a small dish of melted butter for dipping the lobster meat in, and several small forks.
  2. Start with the tail by ripping and twisting it away from the rest of the lobster’s body.
  3. Use scissors to cut the tail down the middle and then peel the shell open to remove the meat in one big piece.
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  5. Break off the claws from the body by twisting and pulling them. Using a nutcracker, crack the shell open. Then use the small fork to remove the meat from inside the claw.
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  7. You will see some green stuff at the end of the tail which is called the Tomalley, or liver. Some people don’t like to eat green stuff, while some don’t mind it at all. It’s really up to you whether you want to eat it or not. You could also try mixing the tomalley with other ingredients for a different dish.   Try this Tomalley Croutons Recipe.
  8. Use scissors to split open the body cavity. Inside the body cavity you will find some meat  in  the front. Use the small fork to pull the meat out, and dispose the rest of the body cavity in the large bowl.  Enjoy!

Here are some side dishes that you can make with lobster.

Side Dishes to Make with Lobsters

  1. Salad. Mix multicolored peppers, onions, lettuce, and cherry tomatoes in a large bowl. Add creamy balsamic vinaigrette dressing. I recommend Briannas Home Style New American Dressing Creamy Balsamic — 12 fl oz (Pack of 2)because it is light, not too creamy or acidic, and contains less additives than other dressings I’ve tried.

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  1. Corn on the cob.
  2. Bread. Dip the bread in the left over melted butter used to dip the lobster in.
  3. Potato Salad. I usually go to the deli and get the store bought potato salad, but you can also make your own by following this Potato Salad Recipe.

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Enjoy! Feel free to leave any comments or questions below. I will get back to you shortly.

 

Grief Poetry: Coming Home

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Here I stand motionless, afraid and alone

Asking you to please come home.

I never had the chance to tell you good bye.

And to God  I often ask “why?”

Despite my desperate pleas I get no answers,

Only feelings of overwhelming stress and anger.

Without you, how will my life go on?

Because back to your memory I am always drawn.

As the years pass my heart still yearns,

For the day when you will return.

Home to me is where you belong,

Where you can rest safely in my arms,

My time with you was short-lived,

and as I look back life with you was a gift,

A gift that I will always cherish,

And until the day when I too shall perish,

I will love you with all my being,

you are and will forever be my everything.

 

american back view burial cemetery