The number one trick to hosting a funeral is to have the deceased not want a funeral. Thanks, Mom! Then it's also handy to have a father who is uber-organized so that there's not much to do when you arrive on scene. Thanks, Dad! Then there are the two uber-organized sisters who already had the picnic basket packed by the time I got there. Thanks, Number One Daughter and Eowyn. (And yes, in case you were wondering, the mad organizational skills of my family have always left me wondering if I was adopted or something.)
So, ix-nay on the funeral... let's have a party at the beach instead! My mom missed her 60th wedding anniversary by eight days, so we decided to have an anniversary celebration instead of a funeral.
Complete with Mom's Haviland china and silver.
Sadly, Mom's ashes weren't ready yet, so we weren't able to bring her in the silver chafing dish that Eowyn set aside for the occasion. Oh, well... nothing ever goes according to plan. But Dad did bring their wedding photos, so we still got to see her.
Vlad and Waldo couldn't make it, but Eowyn, Ilsa (my niece) and I came decked out in Mom's finest jewelry, which we had raided the day before.
One must always look one's best! Number One Daughter forgot to wear her jewels, so we were going to make her sit at her own table but then relented. (When one is in mourning, one must be forgiven these serious lapses in fashion judgment.)
Looking the most dapper, was Dad... all decked out in his beach gear. Now, there's a guy who knows how to have a good time!
My brother in law, Sven, provided the music... songs of the forties and fifties. We toasted Mom with gin and tonics and Dr Pepper while enjoying the breezes off the Gulf of Mexico. All in all, it was a happy way to provide closure on a life well-lived.
After all, Mom would have wanted it that way!