Affectionately known as ‘Nornie’ to her close friends and family.
My Mother was an identical twin and as close as 2 peas in a pod but my Mother was also one-of-a-kind.
It was from my Mom that I got my sense of design and love of décor. My Mom had a passion for decorating and keeping a beautiful home.
In my parents very first home my Mom painted the living room’s 5th wall (ceiling) red to coordinate with her new crimson red curved sofa. Ground-breaking.
When my Mom was expecting their first child my parents moved to the suburbs – a larger home for their 4 children (born within the next 5 years) and more space for my Mom to decorate.
When we were very young my Mom enrolled in night school to take an interior decorating course. I remember my Mom’s design boards with little swatches of fabric, carpet and paint. She loved attending this course even if it meant leaving my Father at home with 4 small children – and even if it resulted in my Father doing a quick trip to the hospital emergency unit with my brother who needed stitches after falling on the fireplace hearth!
My Mom made her design choices slowly and meticulously. Whether it was the fabric choice for the new sofa or drapery, the shape of the custom built kitchen table, the pattern of the wallpaper for the new feature wall or the paint colour of the garage door, my Mom made her decisions carefully. Mom decorated on a budget but her home indicated otherwise.
My Mom was aware of trends and the latest in décor but chose the classics. I grew up with mahogany, wools, silks, cotton damask, Louis XlV and gilded furniture. Mom took me shopping to fine furniture stores like Eaton’ s Gallery of Fine Furniture, we visited art galleries and she taught me how to identify different fabrics.
I fondly remember my Father every few years saying to my Mom, “Well Nornie, it’s time for a new car, what colour shall I order?” My Mom liked to coordinate the car with the colour of our home’s exterior!
Unfortunately my Mother never met any of her 11 grandchildren or got to retire with my Father. And she never got the pleasure of helping her children decorate their homes.
Twenty-seven years ago today my Mother lost her battle with Cancer.
I miss you Mom.