The Owl Cookie Jar & Heaven

My Mom died in 2009. We loved each other and were very close, and I know that’s not how it always works out. I was so very sad when she died and I miss her daily. She was diagnosed with colon cancer and two weeks later was gone. Not gone exactly, but gone from this earth plane.

When I was young I was taught about heaven, hell and even an “in-between” place labeled purgatory. I was raised in a world where we went to church every Sunday and, honestly, I didn’t question religion or spirituality until I was a mother myself.

My thinking has evolved significantly since I was in my 20’s and 30’s. I do go to “church”, although my faith community doesn’t look anything like the one I belonged to for the first 40 years of my life. I believe in God and in an afterlife where I will again see the many spirits I love, who have gone before me. I have faith in “the other side”. However, I don’t call it heaven any more because “heaven”, for me, implies “up there”. I think the spirit world is a lot closer than up past the clouds, and that brings me comfort and peace.

This is the cookie jar that's been part of my life for over 50 years. It was Bea's, now I cherish it. One day it'll move on to the next generation, and the next. ©PEACE FULL HOME.COM

This is the cookie jar that’s been part of my life for over 50 years. It was Bea’s, now I cherish it. One day it’ll move on to the next generation and then the next.

One early morning, not long after Mom died, I was in the kitchen making tea (one of her ingredients in the “let’s sit down and talk it out” recipe) and I was sad. The kitchen opens to the family room and I looked outside through the french doors. Perched on a chair on the deck, not more than 5 feet from me, was an owl.

In spite of the fact that I’m a morning person, I thought maybe I was seeing things. I looked again. Nope, there was definitely an owl staring at me.  I’m not an ornithologist by any means (although I did take a Biology of the Birds class in college), but based on my visits to our local zoo, I’m pretty sure she was a Barn Owl.

None of that matters, of course, because she was there. I turned around and saw the owl cookie jar on a shelf behind me. That cookie jar is one of the few things that I have from my parents’ home. It sat on top of the refrigerator in the house they shared since I was a baby, and it now has a place of honor on a shelf in my kitchen.

I turned back to the door. The owl was still there, perfectly still. We made eye contact one more time. She flew off. I had never seen an owl on my property before then. I’ve never seen one here since then either. I know that Mom was checking in, saying “I’m okay and I’m still watching out for you.” I broke down, of course, but there weren’t tears of sadness; there were tears of peace.

When I talk about Peace in Your Home, it’s not just for when everything is going great. Those periods in our lives are gifts, for sure, but for most of us, there are plenty of bumps on the road of life.  For some, those bumps are a lot bigger than for others. Maybe you had a disagreement with your teenager or your partner. Maybe you’re not feeling like you’re on top of your game or maybe you’re not even feeling like you’re in the game. Maybe you’ve lost a job, or a friend or a great Mom.

Life throws us a lot of curve balls (or growth opportunities depending on how you look at it).  There aren’t too many things that we can just “magic away” like the fairy in one of my granddaughter’s books, but with patience and faith, maybe we can at least find peace, and that’s a really good place to start.


I’ve done a lot of thinking and praying during the past twenty months of writing Peace Full Home. I’ve laughed out loud as I’ve written, I’ve cried as I’ve written and I’ve discovered things about myself that have sometimes made me smile and sometimes made me want to rethink “who I really am” as I’ve written. I am honored by this growth (even the rough parts) and more honored to share this walk with you. Thank you, Kay




2 thoughts on “The Owl Cookie Jar & Heaven

  1. Loved this article, I believe your mom was checking in too. Such a cool experience, and to take the time to recognize it!


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