Mum has provided me not only with unconditional love, and the groundwork for my life, but also within that a connection for this city girl with rural life, with fresh farm produce and a love of cooking. Mum and the women in my family taught me how to cook. She along with Aunty Dossie, and Aunty Mona are the inspiration for my Becca's Bakery blog www.beccasbakery.blogspot.com too.
Today is Mother's Day, and yesterday, I was excited here in Sydney to find country produce from mum's home in country town Wingham, New South Wales. Shopping at Sydney's Orange Grove farmers market, I was delighted to see a Manning Valley Beef stand. Only their second week coming from country to city (a good three and a half hour drive) I discovered that the farmer was representing himself and his neighbours in an attempt to receive better prices for their wonderful produce. And, this week in particular as my treasure for a Mother's Day present, I was delighted to discover, preserves. They were displayed on a small square table beside the refrigerated display cabinet. Next to the jars, with their colourful fabric round covers, was displayed the small blue First Prize certificate from the show at the country town of Wingham, the town where mum was born and raised.
My treasure created great delight today when amongst a basket of goodies delivered as my token of love, mum clapped hands with child-like eyes when I told her of the origin of the preserves. An even greater pleasure, was that the preserves, by chance and not design, were from her favourites: quince jam, pickles. Other bounty in the carefully selected basket included Hunter Valley (alcoholic) ginger beer, a box of chocolates, and more regional produce from mum's childhood, in a round of Comboyne washed rind cheese.
Mum has never said an unkind word that I have heard, and to me in times of trouble and trauma, has been my rock. We've travelled together as adult friends, on a number of journeys. We've explored Australia, and later Singapore, Uzbekistan, South Korea, and Egypt.
She's also kept our family together when some of us have done our best to undermine what we should most dearly love. I love you mum.