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aroma

Heaven Scent

The ancients burned offerings so a pleasing scent would reach their gods. What better way to share their earthly wealth with deities in the heavens? In the same way, scent creates a connection with people who have passed on. We’ve all heard that smell is the sense closest linked to …

single bulb

Post-Parent Holidays

The loss of one parent may upset the balance of holiday celebrations if that person was the family gathering’s lynchpin. More often than not, the celebrations simply go on, minus one. When both parents are gone, holiday plans can get shaken up like a snow globe. If your already-small party …

older mom and daughter

Scale of Loss

About a year after my mother died, when I was in my late 20s, I stepped on an elevator at work and into the middle of a conversation between two women I took to be in their early 60s. “What’re you doing this weekend?” one asked. “Well,” the other said, …

boy dressed as old man

Role Revision

People say our roles reverse with aging parents—that they become the children and we become the parents. I respectfully disagree. Children are advancing towards the rest of their long lives. They need guidance, lessons and rules. The parent who doesn’t shape good practices in her child is placing the future …