My favorite Auntie Mimi passed away last night. She was the best most fun auntie in the whole world and I am who I am because of her. She brought culture, art, history, world travel, in to my life. She brought craft projects and craftsmanship into my life. She made sure I knew how to make the back of anything as pretty or as interesting as the front. And she did art with us and for us. She also taught us you aren’t too old to learn something. She took classes as long as she could.
Auntie Mimi taught us how to set a table with china and silver. We ate at the grownups table at her house. She made us kids feel like we were the most special, most wonderful, most beautiful children in all the world. She’d sing our names and look deep into our eyes as we talked. We got hugs. We got pats of comfort and pats of praise. Anyone who resisted any of the above, she’d chase until she caught them and with tickle and a squeeze end up in laughter and a pile…a monkey pile even if she was all dressed up!
Besides lipstick she smelled wonderful always. And she let us spritz if we wanted from the fancy bottles with the squeeze bulb ends…oh so elegant and grownup. We played beauty parlor and got to look in her purse. We got to play in her jewelry box, and we got to touch her knick knacks even when our Mom said we couldn’t.
We got kisses and always in multiples. Auntie Mimi wore lipstick and planted those kisses in plain sight…claiming us as her own.
She was the best baker of lemon cake in the world, and had some terrific recipes we all still make. Auntie Mimi had gum!
She lived the last few years in a state that was none of the above. Whatever conscience spirit she had was probably horrified daily at the form her physical body took as Alzheimer’s took over. I can’t actually remember the last time I hugged her tight. I think it may have been in 1994. I hold on to all the real things about her though and revel in the richness in my life because of her. Be with Jesus sweet Auntie and I’ll love you always.