The holiday season can be difficult if you’re grieving loved ones, and let’s be honest: Who among us hasn’t lost someone they’ve loved?

Hospice Austin is Central Texas’ largest hospice organization, and even though it is best known for helping people who are in need of end-of-life care, the nonprofit also provides support and bereavement services for anyone who has experienced loss, even if those loved ones were not in the care of Hospice Austin.

Many of Hospice Austin’s services, including its children’s summer program, Camp Brave Heart, are low-cost or free, and one of the organization’s largest fundraisers of the year is a brunch-and-shopping event called Beauty of Life, which returns for the 14th year from 9:30 to noon on Nov. 14 at the J.W. Marriott, 110 E. Second St.

This year’s featured speaker is Kate McDermott, author of "Art of the Pie" and "Home Cooking with Kate McDermott."

McDermott’s daughter, Sara, died three years ago at the age of 36, and the Washington-based cookbook author and pie-baking instruction has written extensively about grief on her website,

McDermott will speak at 10:45 a.m., but there will be 15 local boutiques selling items starting at 9:30 a.m., along with pre-brunch mimosas. Tickets to the brunch cost $175 and are available at or by calling (512) 342-4791.


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