Memories of Moz this Mother’s Day

“Love, the divine Principle, is the Father and Mother of the universe, including man.” 
– Mary Baker Eddy

I’m missing Moz this Mother’s Day. I wish she was here with me so we could watch The Music Man together and laugh at the Shipoopi song. I wish I could hear her talk about her father one more time, and sing the Christopher Robin song with her. I imagine taking her out to my hobbit hole of a secret garden and listening to the birds singing with her. I imagine sitting out on the back deck in the sun with her and talking about family and friends and politics.

When I’d driven her home from the hospital a month before she’d passed she’d smacked her lips together and said, “I want some cream cheese dip and potato chips.” I wish I could give that to her one more time.

I can’t do any of those things with Moz right now – but here’s what I’ve got: I’ve got memories of laughing together, singing together, talking together; I’ve got the lessons she taught me – be kind to everyone; “love the hell” out of the crabby people; treat all of God’s creation with care and respect; be generous; play fair; speak up for the little guy; keep learning; be able to laugh at yourself; be brave; be honorable; have some awesome adventures. I carry Moz’s love with me.

Here’s wishing mothers everywhere a most magnificent Mother’s Day.

***

So last year in honor of Moz I sent a bouquet of Mother’s Day flowers to a friend who had been very dear to Moz. This year it came to me that I needed to honor Moz by bringing a Starbucks gift card to one of my heroes: The bank manager at Moz and Dad’s bank who had been so kind and helpful and amazing to my parents and I as we’ve negotiated moves and death and inheritance and safety deposit boxes in the last couples years. I seriously do not know what we would have done without Laura in our corner.

When I got to the bank Laura recognized me right away and gave me a big hug and I handed her the card. She told me to come back into her office when I was done with the banking stuff I had to do. When I joined her at her desk she told me that on Wednesdays in Anacortes the schools always start late and so she and other moms have taken to meeting at Starbucks with their youngsters for breakfast. And last Wednesday, Laura told me, she brought chalk to Starbucks for the kids to color the sidewalks. Then she got out her phone and showed me how the youngsters had “bedazzled ” the sidewalks in front of Starbucks. People heard about it and came to look at their sidewalk gallery. If the weather is nice next Wednesday, she’s going to bring sidewalk chalk to Starbucks again. And she’ll have my Starbucks card to get herself something to drink. 🙂

I think Moz would be happy about the Starbucks card – I can imagine her smiling.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Moz

 

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I felt her loving me back.

A year ago tonight we were gathered outside, looking up at the stars, and saying good bye to Moz. It’s been cloudy all day – snowing as I came home – but just now I went outside and the skies were clear and the stars were sparkling. My eyes were drawn to one star in particular – it seemed to be shining just for me – and I told Moz I loved her. I felt her loving me back.

“In Science, individual good derived from God, the infinite All-in-all, may flow from the departed to mortals…”
– Mary Baker Eddy

photo by Karen Molenaar Terrell

photo by Karen Molenaar Terrell

Who knew?!

My mom passed away a couple weeks ago and yesterday morning I rummaged through some of the boxes that we moved out of her and Dad’s apartment, looking for old photos and mementos that might be meaningful for my sons, brothers, niece and nephew – who were all going to join us in the afternoon for a visit with my dad. And in my rummaging I came upon a treasure! A folder full of poems that Moz had written – including a poem for each of her grandchildren! We had no idea that Moz wrote poetry in her free time! Who knew?!

The poems she wrote for her grandchildren belong to them – and it’s not my place to share them with the world – but I thought I might share a couple of Moz’s other offerings. Behold, Moz’s poetry:

Poem for a Tiny Bird

A tiny little birdie,
I think a chickadee,
was hanging on a swaying branch
and looking right at me.
His eyes were bright, his movements
quick – he didn’t miss a seed
as he pecked
away at the birch tree tassle
to satisfy his need.

We watched each other for
quite awhile
and then as if by command
he twittered “good bye” and flew away
I knew I’d seen something grand.

– Colleen Molenaar

Bootsie

Bootsie, oh, Bootsie
the masked-face cat,
So sleek and pretty, with
a nose sort of flat
She lives in an apartment
though she’d rather roam
Her world is much smaller, yet
there’s no place like home

She loves to eat jelly
right off the bread
And dried powdered cream
really goes to her head
She sits on her deck
over-looking the court,
watching kiddies and kittens
and creatures of sort
Bootsie, oh, Bootsie
I’ll come back one day
You’ll greet me with love,
because that’s your way.
-Colleen Molenaar

 

 

Moz Molenaar

December 26, 1927-
February 21, 2017

Colleen was born the youngest of ten children to Christian and Ida (Miller) Haag on December 26, 1927 in Pasco, Washington.

She graduated from Pasco High School in 1945 and went on to attend the University of Idaho (where she ran on the track team), the College of Puget Sound (UPS), and the University of Montana, where she earned her degree in musical performance in 1951.

During the summers between college she worked in the souvenir shop at Mount Rainier National Park, where she met her husband, Dee, who was a park ranger there.

Colleen “Mozzy” Molenaar was a treasure. She was fun and feisty and had a wonderful self-deprecating sense of humor. She taught her children that God is Love, and taught them to look for the good in people.

She was a gifted singer and had once been accepted into the Portland Opera Company, but decided, instead, to marry Dee and move to Colorado to begin a life with him.

In her younger years she spent much of her time in the mountains with Dee, hiking and climbing (she climbed to the summit of Mount Rainier twice!).

In her later years she enjoyed crossword puzzles, reading (her tastes were eclectic), caring for her animals (goats, llamas, and cats) at the family home in Port Orchard, keeping her bird feeders filled, watching Carl Sagan talk about the cosmos, and spending time with her children and grand-children.

In 2016 she and Dee moved to LaConner to be closer to her daughter.

She passed away peacefully in her sleep at her daughter’s home in Bow, Washington, on February 21, 2017.

Mozzy is survived by her husband of 62 years, Dee; her daughter, Karen, and son-in-law, Scott Terrell; her son, Peter, and his partner Sheila (Lindula) of Hoodsport; son David Molenaar of Olympia; and grandchildren, Andrew and Alexander Terrell (both of Bellingham), Claire Molenaar (Denver, Colorado) and Casey Molenaar (Olympia), and numerous nephews, nieces, and friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents and nine siblings.

Colleen’s family is grateful for the wonderful people at hospice who helped her through this transition. Special thanks to hospice nurse, Renee.

Thoughts from Moz’s grandson, Casey: I have never seen such an amazing soul, one that the world has had the great misfortune to lose today. No matter the situation, she ONLY gave out love and nothing but and she has been a huge part of my understanding of love and has instilled its importance in me. I believe that the thing I heard from her the most was “God is love” — and that statement, in the entirety of its meaning, looms inside me and will continue to for the rest of my life.

I am thankful to have had such a giving and goofy woman in my life…There aren’t enough words to describe this wonderful lady. I will miss her very much, as will I’m sure every single person who has had the pleasure of meeting her. And truth be told, as I reflect, I am happy; I was fortunate enough to know her and call her a big part of my family.

Thank you for teaching me that love is EVERYTHING.