I was so bummed this last week because I couldn't go home for Christmas. I had to work late on Christmas Eve and by the time I got off, the weather had caused the governor to close down the turnpikes. My connection to OK for Christmas was severed. So, the family waited until Sunday to celebrate Christmas with me. The family getting together on Christmas Eve was everything I'd hoped it would be. Save for the screaming kids that simply are warned TOO much...one child, my little cousin Abby Mia Grace, has an odd connection for me. She does not make much noise and I have not seen her cry. She was conceived around the time my mom died. You won't believe me, but this child look exactly like my mom did when she was young. The resemblance is so odd and when she looks at you, she's got the exact same look on her face that my mom has in SEVERAL pictures. My mom married into the family, so blood ties/ genetics play little or no part in her looks. It's just odd and somewhat "freaky." Moving onward. The "stuff" I got was awesome. Some stuff to decorate the apartment with, new vacuum (*yay!*), pillows, etc. My mom was a gospel singer for a local church. A church I grew up in. We had some tapes (OLD tapes) of her singing in the choir, duets, solos, etc. She had a beautiful voice. We played some of her recordings at her funeral, but after the funeral, the tapes that we supplied disappeared. We couldn't find them anywhere. Today, we found out where they went. My grandma, after the funeral, took the tapes and found tapes from family friends and had them professionally recorded onto CDs so that we could listen to her sing. I couldn't wait to listen to the CD. I got into the car, heard her voice and bawled. How amazing is it, that even though she's gone, this part of her is left behind to comfort us? How did my grandma know how heartbroken I was that we no longer had the tapes? Out of all the stuff I received, this small CD means the absolute most to me. Today, I got a small piece of my mom back to comfort me and tide me over until I see her again. Just blows my mind. Hopefully my blubbering doesn't upset anyone.