Sunday marks one year since Mother Lovett passed away.

Some days it feels like it has been years, other days it feels like minutes.

A year ago at this time, we were holding vigil in her hospital room. There were consistently about 7-8 of us there at all times. And while she only regained consciousness every few hours, she knew we were there.

She died just like she did everything else in life – stubbornly.

It began on a Tuesday. We all knew it was the end, and so did she – she had the mind of a 30 year old. We figured it would be over by Wednesday. So did the nurses. As the friends poured in to the hospital room, we all waited patiently – just like we always did for her. If anyone taught me patience, it was her. (Ok, her and Mr. How Sweet – he drives me batty).

Just a few hours later, we knew that she wouldn’t let go easily. Or quickly.

So, that’s when the party started.

We were lucky enough to have a large hospice room with an adjoining private lounge, refrigerator, and table. The next logical step was to bring in the booze.

After all, Mother Lovett would have wanted it that way.

For the next few days, six-packs were carried in plastic bags, and handles of whiskey were smuggled inside dufflebags. But, really, do you think we could be quiet?

Most mourn in sorrow and grieve over a loved one’s last few days. We didn’t.

We were celebrating one of heck of a life.

Soon, nurses started bringing us buckets of ice in bedpans and our secret was out. We spent 5 full days reliving her life: laughing about the tissues stuck up her shirt sleeves, giggling about the parmesan cheese in her fridge that expired in 1996, howling over her rolling down the grassy bank while she was picking weeds, and wondering why she was so obsessed with spying on her neighbors.

We reminisced about the time she wrote ‘Merry Christopher’ instead of ‘Merry Christmas’ on one of our Christmas cards, and how her 4-foot frame would teeter-totter in 2-inch heels every Sunday to church.

We didn’t realize the tiny things we’d miss – like the times she’d claim she wasn’t hungry, then eat 2 pieces of our pizza or swipe a cheeseburger from our Happy Meal. Or how she’d talk about the Young and the Restless like she truly knew each character. Or how she’d send us to the store for the 2 most uncomfortable items any grandchild could ever buy – maxi pads ‘without wings!’ and stool softener.

Never did we think that we would miss grocery shopping with her – slowly walking behind her as she pushed the the cart, which she was only as tall as. Blushing wildly and pretending like we didn’t know her as she passed gas with each step down the cereal aisle. Becoming more furious as she argued with us over and over that oatmeal cream pies couldn’t possibly cost that much these days.

And we certainly couldn’t forget the time she passed out from drinking one too many mudslides, only to later mention that she ‘really loved that mudslinger drink.’

We are pretty darn sure that her death took so long because my grandpa was pushing back from the other side. He just wasn’t ready to be nagged again. He was enjoying his peace.

We spent a solid 5 days with her – eating, drinking, and laughing around her as she slowly left this world. It may sound odd, or even disrespectful to some, but that is just how we are. She wasn’t conscious, but I know she felt us around her. There is no better way I can describe my incredible family than to explain those last few days of Mother Lovett’s life. Living, loving, laughing, and crying together to celebrate this sassy, stubborn, sweet and vibrant woman. No wonder she took she long to die – would you want to leave a party like that?

I have to admit – there weren’t many tears shed at Mother Lovett’s funeral. As I said before, she lived an incredible, fulfilled life equally full of joy and struggle. We all knew it was her time to go. There was no better way to honor her than to celebrate a life that was truly lived.

Growing up, Mother Lovett made some fabulous chocolate chip cookies. As we all grew, her chocolate chip cookies reflected her age and physical struggle. Each year, they’d become more brown and burnt because she couldn’t hear the oven timer buzz, and she was too blind to see if they were golden brown.

I specifically remember one beach trip when the cookies were so badly burnt that we stuffed a loaf of bread inside the container. Have you ever tried that?! They cookies pull all the moisture out of the bread and get super soft!

I wish I could share Mother Lovett’s cookie recipe with you. I really do. The truth is, I have no idea what it is. In fact, I don’t even think she knew what it was.

It was just one of those recipes that magically came together with a grandmother’s hand. Mostly because, you know, she couldn’t see the ingredients she was adding to the mixing bowl. And truthfully, I am afraid of some of the ingredients that made their way in there.

I have no recipe to share, yet I don’t really think it matters. Cookies like hers can’t be duplicated.

Some of Mother Lovett’s last words were ‘every time you have a party and are together, think of me.’

If you couldn’t already guess, we do party.

And we always raise our glass to her.

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212 Responses to “Mother Lovett’s Chocolate Chip Cookies.”

  1. #
    Rachel Allen — April 24, 2011 @ 1:27 pm

    What a sweet post. Thank you so much for sharing this intimate family time. She certainly was a wonderful example of how we all wish to be remembered.


  2. #
    Ariel — May 11, 2011 @ 7:36 pm

    I am drinking a beer tonight for Mother Lovett. Your post makes me miss my Granny, tissues up the sleeve and all. My Grandpa passed away 10 years before Granny went….and though Granny had many a close call in those 10 years, we always joked that Grandpa was not ready for her, and he was pulling strings from the other side so we didn’t have much to worry about!

    Granny left me her KitchenAid mixer and bread pans… every time I bake, it is like she is there with me.


  3. #
    Kelly — May 27, 2011 @ 8:54 pm

    Omg I absolutely loved this! I laughed so hard I was practically crying because you literally just described my own grandma. She is 84. “Merry Christopher” is totally something she would do, too. Great post. :)


  4. #
    Kelly — May 27, 2011 @ 9:01 pm

    Omg I absolutely loved this. I laughed so hard I was crying because you literally just described my 84 year old grandma. Merry Christopher is totally something she would do, too. Great post, you are a wonderful writer. :)


  5. #
    Gramma Tracy — June 12, 2011 @ 2:07 pm

    You are just a jewel. I have been writing all morning to get some of the recipes…..I cannot get the #*#*}! printer to work. I love you, will adopt you, anything. Thank you, Mahalo, Merci, etc.


  6. #
    Lisa — August 8, 2011 @ 12:41 pm

    BEAUTIFUL…I’m crying…
    thank you so much for sharing


  7. #
    Dena — August 16, 2011 @ 8:12 am

    Your family reminds me of ours. Thank you for sharing, it reminds me of the wonderful times I shared with my family growing up. Just about all of us have moved around the country, California just got too expensive. Holidays are not what they use to be for any of us and we miss being together. The great memories we have is what holds us like glue. Always keep the memories alive by sharing them.


  8. #
    amy — August 16, 2011 @ 5:32 pm

    What an awesome post. It made me giggle because she sounds so much like my grandmother. Stubborn, fun loving, adventurous, an amazing cook, etc, etc. She always calls things the wrong names too, especially our pets because she acts like she hates them although you know she secretly loves them. Mother Lovett sounds like she was quite an incredible woman =)


  9. #
    Krysten — September 7, 2011 @ 3:18 pm

    I finally was able to go through some of your old posts and this one tops the cake. So sweet, raw and sincere. I had one wild grandmother myself and I can see Mother Lovett and her causing a whole lotta trouble upstairs together.


  10. #
    amanda@dixiedelights — October 26, 2011 @ 4:07 pm

    So touching. She sounds like a lady I’d have loved to know.


  11. #
    Karen S. — December 7, 2011 @ 10:34 am

    This was so sweet and touching it made me cry. It reminded me so much of my grandma who died in 2007 and how much I miss her.


  12. #
    Eve — December 7, 2011 @ 10:23 pm

    Hello Jessica! I’ve stumbled upon your blog many a time while browsing through foodgawker and tastespotting but I’ve never commented – until now. I was looking at your new fudge post and noticed the link to this page. What an amazing post! :)
    I can really relate to your celebration of your Grandma’s life while she was in the hospital. I lost my mother in August quite suddenly and at a young age (50s) but even though it was incredibly difficult and painful to go through, I held back the tears and knew that all she would have wanted was for us to celebrate her life and carry her own life through ours. Thanks for reminding me of that once more!


  13. #
    QC Kelsey — December 13, 2011 @ 12:40 pm

    What a beautiful post!
    I got to it from your thumbprint post … had to read it – Mother Lovett sounds like she was a darn amazing woman.


  14. #
    Lori — December 20, 2011 @ 7:38 pm

    My grandmother had tissues down her bra! I have her dishes and when I make red beans and rice (I’m from New Orleans, dahlin!) I am carrying on her legacy! Thanks for making me laugh and think about my “Gigi”, I miss her still.


  15. #
    raeann — January 17, 2012 @ 6:09 pm

    i love reading about mother lovett! she reminds me of my grandma, but she left us at the too too young age of 65. she called fajitas – flajitas; and took her delicious biscuit recipe with her to the grave :(


  16. #
    honeywhatscooking — January 31, 2012 @ 12:11 pm

    what a beautiful post. this brought tears to my eyes and also made me smile. I think you mourn for some people, and you have to celebrate for those who lived their life to its fullest and who want to be remembered in times of celebration. your family sounds a lot like mine, all we do is drink and eat and laugh. :-) Great story!!!


  17. #
    Annashortcakes — February 5, 2012 @ 9:14 pm

    I read this and cried. I truly believe that the measure of your life is the way that people celebrate your death. She sounds amazing!


  18. #
    rachel — February 8, 2012 @ 2:52 pm

    Beautiful Post. I love your blog!


  19. #
    Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy — February 17, 2012 @ 12:14 pm

    This is such a beautiful post. I lost my grandpa a few weeks ago, so I know how important it is to celebrate a great life :).


  20. #
    Terri — March 15, 2012 @ 11:52 am

    OMG! That was such a wonderful story! My Grandma Della was a Hell raiser too! We had hospice in our home and took care of her as long as we could at home! The bedside visits during her last days were ones I’ll never forget! She reminissed and rambled too! She would giggle and gasp for air as she laughed so hard sharing memories of our crazy family antics!
    She suffered through those last days but she tried not to show it! We all gathered at our house after she passed and drank too much and cried and laughed. But I in my heart know she too lived a good life and near the end met my pastor and asked Jesus into her heart! She died too young at age 67, but her cancer riddled body was tired! she went home to God and is free! Her body left us in1980 but her spirit lives on in all of us! Thank you for sharing this beautiful story!


  21. #
    Heather — April 22, 2012 @ 8:15 am

    Lost my grandma a number of years ago and stil miss her but not her cooking. Coming from Scotland she cooked the life out of all meat and vegetables, with salt and pepper being her only spices. But she loved a good laugh, her gin and tonic and was ALWAYS the last to leave a party. Being knee high to a grasshopper, she would get your attention of someone taller (especially my dad) with a quick jab of her pointy elbows. She and my grandpa were married over 50 years and I can tell you their 50th anniversary party was quite the party!!!! Miss them both and would love to talk to them now as an adult with children of my own.


  22. #
    Mia Dumont — April 22, 2012 @ 7:55 pm

    Hello you,
    Once again, till’ I’m blue in the face, I want to tell you how wonderful your blog is, how funny your stories are and what a wonderful WRITER you are. You should seriously consider writing books. Your style reminds me of Elizabeth Gilbert of “Eat, Pray, Love” that I am sure you read. Even better, you have more rythm and punch, choice of words is brilliant. In fine, I’m a fan.
    And, believe me, I know what I’m talking about…
    Thank you for this moment of joy that your newsletter brings in my (very busy) day.


  23. #
    Sarah D — May 29, 2012 @ 6:23 pm

    Oh dear, my grandparents are moving next month from the house they lived at for 35 years to assisted living because of declining health. I’m afraid I read this and started tearing up! Very beautiful.


  24. #
    Lulu — June 12, 2012 @ 1:03 pm

    Awh. That reminds me of my grandpa. One time my mom and I brought him over some cookies I baked. They were burnt and but my mom said he liked burnt things because “charcoal is good for the stomach”. I just remember him dunking those cookies, smiling and saying “mmm.. good cookies”.


  25. #
    Kristen Paige — June 13, 2012 @ 10:59 am

    Thank you for sharing your lovely story. I bet your baking will help your future granddaughters share the same kinds of happy memories someday!

    PS – Whatever those chocolate chip cookies are you posted pics of look amazing!! Are those the famous Mother Lovett cookies or your own creation?


  26. #
    Cindy — July 3, 2012 @ 1:05 pm

    What a wonderful tribute to your beloved grandmother! And wonderful of you to share it with all of us, thank you. The memories of those we’ve lost are such treasures.


  27. #
    woodsprite — November 5, 2012 @ 1:24 pm

    I’m just seeing this, since it was linked to in one of your recent recipes. I read it through to the end and cried! How SWEET a tribute, to remember your grandmother in joy and let her know how beloved she was/is! Thank you.


  28. #
    Maggie — January 25, 2013 @ 6:38 pm

    I cried while I read this. You write with such feeling, it brought back me back to the time when my grandma died. She was my best friend, and I miss her everyday. I remember the day I realized that I would never taste her spaghetti sauce again. I was in the middle of the grocery store and got hysterical. But I figured the best way to honor her memory would be to figure out how to duplicate some of her recipes. One of the best feelings ever is when a family member tastes my spaghetti sauce and says “It tastes just like Grandma’s!”


  29. #
    Tacy — July 26, 2013 @ 12:54 pm

    Please write us a book about Mother Lovett! Or write us a book about anything. You would be one of my favorite authors!


  30. #
    fantast — August 9, 2013 @ 8:22 am

    Hello. Stumbled across your website through a link on Pinterest. Loved your Mother Lovett story, what a wonderful thing to do, to have a party and celebrate someone like that! I’d love it if that happened when it’s my time. Much better that than having everyone sitting round with long faces. Thank you for sharing a really beautiful story.


  31. #
    Trisha — May 9, 2014 @ 11:02 pm

    So much of this reminds me so much of my own grandma and family. We didn’t drink in the room as she also very stubbornly passed at the age of 87, but looking back, I have no idea why not! I’ll always treasure the memories of my feisty grandma and certainly hope to have even half of the spunk she did when I’m in my 80s!


  32. #
    terri — June 25, 2014 @ 1:09 pm

    what a sweet memory to your gram! it made me laugh and cry. you are so blessed to have so many loving memories of her! xoxo


  33. #
    Shannon M — July 3, 2014 @ 10:20 am

    Wow, wow, wow!
    I luved this so much! Thank you for sharing such an amazing special time with us!
    Made me think…don’tcha wish that everyone had a Mother Lovett in their life!
    Makes me try to remember….live as though you will be missed!
    So super special.
    Cheers. XO


  34. #
    sherri s. — July 6, 2014 @ 7:46 am

    Omg. I am so glad I found this blog. You write just like I do…. out of mouth onto paper. So sorry for your loss, but you all certainly had an awesome going away party for her and she got to be there for it to some degree! I cried and smiled when I read this. You passed the 5 year mark now. May she still be resting in peace or, more likely, carrying on in the afterlife! I want to join that party!



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