It all happened one day about a week before my father-in-law returned with Covid and a new girlfriend to give it to. I’m sitting in my office pretending to work before I need to head out to an event. As I’m reading god knows what, I hear a loud crash in the living room and immediately know what I’m about to walk into.
The loud crash was our very large clock. A large clock that hung above our mantle. The mantle that held my mother-in-law’s ashes. Or use to hold her ashes.
That’s right: use to. As in no longer was. As in, the cute glass Hobby Lobby canister that we placed her ashes in was now laying half broken, still in its decorative holder that contained the canister, on my dog’s food bowls.
Me, my lab, and my two min-pins stood there, staring at my MIL’s ashes piled up in their bowls and on their food mat.
I was supposed to be leaving my house in an hour. Typical.
After a few minutes of debating if this happened because my house is haunted or because my husband didn’t anchor the clock like he was supposed to, I grabbed a mask, some gloves, and began the process of picking glass and dog food out of my MIL’s ashes.
Oddly enough, this is something my MIL would’ve thought was hilarious.
I did not.
I stood there for an hour sifting through human remains like I was gold mining. I actually considered using our spaghetti strainer to expedite the process however, I had already racked up a good amount of items to throw out so I just kept digging. Also, I didn’t have anything to strain her into which led to my next conundrum: where would I put her until the next day when I could buy a new urn?
I’m a bad hostess so I don’t have random glass jars that can double as urns just lying around. And I couldn’t just leave her out, that would’ve been a little too B-movie for my liking. So I put her in the only place I could think of where she’d be safe and would prevent any sort of poltergeist activity:
A zip-lock bag.
The next day I squeezed in an extra errand into my schedule and purchased a new canister/urn to put her in – a plastic, shatter-proof one. I also placed her in an area that, if she were to fall again, would let me know our house is FOR SURE haunted.
But before I placed her in her new spot, there was the matter of pouring her ashes in the new canister. When I did, I noticed that some of them were clumped together, making them look like actual kitty litter. My OCD and conscience wouldn’t let me just leave them like that so I grabbed a butter knife (another casualty of this incident) and broke up the clumps.
I sealed the canister, gave it one more look-over, and that’s when I noticed it.
There was still a piece of dog food in the ashes.
I left it there.
I’d done all I could do and had thrown away all of the kitchen utensils I cared to throw away.
And so it remains because my husband won’t get it out either.
I’m pretty sure part 2 of this story will happen just in time for Halloween season.