The Laundry, National Donut Day and a Mere 45 Minutes

We missed her by forty-five minutes.

I don’t check Facebook all that often, but since it’s the primary way my sisters and I communicate with one another, I try to remember to check it once or twice a week.  Yesterday a group message from one of my sisters informed us all that our beloved Aunt Stella was dying.

So this morning one of my sisters and I drove an hour out to see her to say goodbye.  We missed her by forty-five minutes.  Our Aunt’s happy, social, fun, full life was over.

The hospice nurse was still there when we arrived.  She told us that our Aunt went very peacefully.  And that she really enjoyed caring for her because she was so much fun.  Just two weeks ago she said Stella was all dressed up and heading out with some friends to a reunion.  Today she is reunited with her husband in heaven.

We missed our cousins by just a minute, the nurse said.  Two of them had been there with her when she passed.   They must have been pulling out as we pulled in.  One was heading to the airport to catch a flight back to Santa Fe.

We learned that there will be no funeral or memorial service.  Stella’s five kids are scattered – one in New Mexico, one in Arizona, one in Colorado, one in Michigan and one in New York.

So that was it – our one last look at her and our one chance to say good-bye.

My sister and I kissed her forehead and told her how much we love her.  I hope she could feel our love all the way in heaven.  The hospice nurse invited us to stay for awhile but there was no point, Aunt Stella wasn’t there.  We were very grateful for the kindness the nurse showed us and especially for the kindness she showed our Aunt.

From the nursing home we drove to nearby Fenton and had lunch at The Laundry.  Afterward we walked a few blocks to The Crust.  Stella was a wonderful baker so we bought baked goods to take home, as a tribute to her.  (Since tomorrow is National Doughnut Day, I bought a couple of doughnuts for the hub and I to have with our morning coffee, and a pain au chocolate for my daughter because that’s her favorite.)

As my sister and I walked along the river, we reminisced about all the childhood fun we had at Aunt Stella’s house.  We remembered last autumn when we took her to lunch and how she laughed and took it in stride when she wet her pants as she got up from the table to leave.

It isn’t tragic to lose an Aunt who was in her eighties and who had lived a fun, full life.  But it is the end of an era.  And we will miss her.

And as we reached my car, we both resolved to live our lives to the fullest, too.


14 thoughts on “The Laundry, National Donut Day and a Mere 45 Minutes

  1. I’m so sorry for your loss. Comfort comes from knowing where she is now. ❤
    My Great Aunt Sarah is one-hundred-three and mad that she is still here. She's quite sassy on the subject. I told her perhaps God doesn't take sassy women, so maybe she'd better tone it down a bit. When she was ninety-five I told her I thought she might live to be one-hundred. She hauled off and slapped me. It stung like the dickens.

    Enjoy your morning donut.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Lew-Ellyn, you’re a scream. I’m sure I will enjoy the donut – never met one I didn’t like. This one is sour cream, which is one of my favorite kinds. I’m waiting for my daughter to wake up before I eat it – holidays aren’t meant to be celebrated alone. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sorry for your loss but grateful you gave such wonderful memories! And won’t heaven be great when we get there! Your aunt will know the ropes by the time you and your sister get there! What a joyful reunion it be!


  3. I’m sorry for your loss, and so glad you and your sister share such special memories. What a lady – a delight to the end. And now dancing with your uncle, and Jesus, and reunited with so many friends!


  4. issuudotcomslashdewane says:

    Sorry for your loss Julie, but ya’ probably gonna’ be angry about this…
    The dead are “unclean” don’t touch, don’t kiss…it’s a dangerous thing to do spiritually.
    I’ve done it myself…learned better.

    “Clean” and “unclean” were concepts very familiar to those under the Old Testament Law. God called His people to separate themselves from the impurities of the world. The principle of being clean crosses into the New Testament as well, with the idea of living spiritually pure (2 Corinthians 6:17) and seeking to be holy, living a life worthy of our calling (Colossians 1:10).

    Read more:


    • Thank you for your concern. I think I’ll be okay.
      Elijah stretched himself out upon a widow’s dead son and he was okay.
      Elisha stretched himself out upon the Shunammite woman’s dead son and he was okay.
      Paul threw himself onto Eutychus’ dead body and wrapped his arms around it and he was okay.
      Peter turned his face toward Tabitha’s dead body and he was okay.
      Even Jesus, consecrated as He was for His huge ministry, took a dead girl by the hand. He was definitely okay. He never let religious laws stop Him from doing good, from helping someone.

      Jesus pretty much put an end to the long list of clean and unclean distinctions when He told Peter not to call anything unclean that He made clean. His sacrifice made the unclean, clean.

      He said we ought to be more concerned about what comes out of our mouths, our hearts, because THOSE are the things that defile us.

      Jesus replied, “And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry…” Luke 11:46

      “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
      Matthew 11:28-29

      Do I make a habit of kissing the dead? No. Never done it before. But it seemed like the right, loving gesture at the time. A woman who was very dear to me was gone and I kissed her goodbye. I might even do it again if my husband passes before me.

      Because one of the things Jesus has clearly taught me is that sincere expressions of love trump strict adherence to the law.


Comment here and have no fear. If you regret it or change your mind, just let me know. I will be happy to delete it. (Unless it's about how brilliant I am, then it stays.)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s