Thursday, May 16, 2013

Happy Birthday, Teresa

Dear Teresa,

I can only imagine your birthday cake this year ... I'm sure it puts the cake I made last year to shame.  Remember we went to Deer & Almond for your birthday and it was really good but the food portions were teeny and everyone was still a bit hungry when we got back to our house, so we had nachos.  And cake.  If only I could bake you a cake this year, I'd even go beyond my go-to chocolate cake and search Pinterest for something crazy like this. Actually that's not true. Colleen's chocolate cake recipe can't be beat, but maybe I'd add another layer or more fruit; exotic fruit like jackfruit or kumquat.

I've been composing a continuous rambling birthday letter to you in my head over the last couple of weeks.  Sometimes its dramatic and heartbreaking, complete with screenshots of our last text conversation ever.  Other times it's tender and funny and touching.  But in the end, I'm just going with simple.  There's nothing new to say or write.  I know you always read the blog even when you sort of pretended you didn't and rarely commented.  But I often wrote things with you in mind because I knew you'd email or call after reading something you wanted to talk about.  I'm not sure what the internet connection is like up there, but I'm guessing it's pretty fast, so I'll probably keep writing things I want you to read.

Remember when I was in grade 12 and you were in grade 11 and we had a day off school and you wanted to go shopping in Winnipeg?  Unfortunately, the grade 12s were doing a hire-a-student fundraiser that day (I think they called it Slave Day before political correctness came along), so I had to participate.  You solved that problem by "buying" me for the day.  You made me gather eggs in the chicken barns which was a bit of a nightmare with my bird phobia and all.  You're lucky you can't feel guilt in heaven.  And then you got me to bake chocolate chip cookies, because you always loved those cookies.  And then we went shopping.  Today when I stopped by the cemetery to bring you a chocolate chip cookie, the memory of that long ago day came back to me.  I should have gone to gather some eggs too for old times sake, but I just stuck to the cookie.  I hope it doesn't attract wild animals.

Hope you had a birthday more spectacular than my little earth-centred mind could ever fathom.  I love you and miss you like crazy.  But don't worry about me.  Go ahead, carry on with your heavenly fun and divine perfection. (really?  no guilt?)

Love, your cousin-friend Ellen

PS:  No, YOUR hair is nicer.


Daniel said...

Ok, that makes me cry a little bit. I'm glad you can share some of the memories of the many great times you got to spend with Teresa. Except for the egg-gathering one. I never enjoyed doing that either.
I love you, my dear sister!

Stephen said...

I'm kind of tearing up a bit too. And that's not good, I'm @ work!

Anyway, keep doing what you're doing Ellen and be blessed.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

What Dan said. Jim

joan said...

What a beautiful letter to your very close cousin-friend Teresa...I'm so sorry El....xoxo

Anonymous said...

Oh Ellen. I think this might be my favourite entry ever. So beautiful and vulnerable and REAL. I am so sad for you. There is a new you coming out of this though - most likely a you that has been quiet for a long time - and that is amazing.

Lots of love. Miss you.