their Mothers' Day notes to their birth mothers, and then burn the notes to carry their thoughts and good wishes to wherever their birth mothers might be.
There was an addition this year; remembering our conversation on Tomb-Sweeping Day about the custom of burning paper replicas of things your ancestors might need in heaven, the girls drew pictures of things they wanted their birth mothers to have as Mothers' Day presents! Zoe gifted her birth mother with an iPod playing happy tunes, and a cell phone so they could talk. Maya sent a Nintendo DS and a laptop computer, and my little fashion-conscious girl also sent a beautiful dress and matching purse (yes, I mean fashion-conscious! This morning Maya told me the dress I was wearing "suited me" and that the blue-gray matched my eyes! What 7-year-old talks that way?!).
Here's wishing that the smoke wafts to China, and carries the girls' thoughts and hopes and gifts to two deserving mothers.
And here's wishing a Happy Mothers' Day to ALL mothers, known and unknown, acknowledged and unacknowledged, near and far.
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