ImageSo, I am helping my brother-in-law slowly remove my sister’s things from the house – we started with the clothing closets and her dresser. I was worried that the emptiness would be too upsetting, so I sorted out the clothing that I know were prized possessions: the t-shirts from all their trips together, the beer t-shirts, the flannel pajamas she snuggled up in, her hawaii shirt, her wedding gown, her mother-of-the-groom dress, etc. I just couldn’t leave the closets completely empty.

And I wrote love notes and attached them to the clothes! Not that I am Sarah and I know what she would have said to her husband, but I wanted there not to be this emptiness in their home. So I replaced the emptiness with what I hope is love – love that will never die.

Her husband appreciated the effort and said it made him laugh and cry. I know there will come a day when all of those things will make it to the donation pile, but for now, I think we have left the best of Sarah’s personality hanging around.

Lastly, as we take this step by step, I am making a professional effort to throw away as little as possible. Sarah was a giver. And I want to honor that spirit. When she went through chemotherapy the first time, she cut her hair and gave 22″ to “Locks of Love.” A friend even gave the family the book “The Giving Tree” as a memory of Sarah’s generosity.

Well, Sarah, I think I have a new milestone in your giving – I am sending your old bras to be recycled! Found them at They call themselves The Bra Recyclers and can be found at They send bras out to third world and developing countries. Who knew?!