Sunday, April 20, 2014

A Pebble

We need ants.

Off and on in my life I have wondered why we need ants. They usually show up in my house where I do not want them.

50 years ago I lived in the mountains southwest of Denver, Colorado.
I had an old Peony bush that would not bloom. It came with the property I bought. I watered it and fertilized it and it would get big buds but no flowers.

One day and older women was looking at it and told me what a fine bush it was and how lucky I was to have it this high altitude in the mountains. I told her I thought so too, "but it gets nice big buds and they show color, but they will not open." "Really" she dug in the soil around the plant, " that's your problem, you do not have any ants !". She proceeded to tell me that peony's have a heavy sap on their buds, this keeps them shut tight. You need ants to eat the sap so they will open." I told her I had relatives in Denver who had peony's so I could probably get some ants and transplant them."Yes, but be careful, you want the ants that are around their bushes. Don't get red ants, you need the little ants" So I did. My children's Great-grandmother had peony bushes so I got ants from her. She knew all about needing ants to get them to bloom. "Every  one knows that." I think she was a little put out I hadn't ask her about my peony that would not bloom.

So there is a pebble

Saturday, April 19, 2014


I think you acquire wisdom by living. That is why our Guru's are old !

I love to learn. When my children were young my first husband went to school and I went to class with him,  once in a while. Denver Community College was great, the instructors were good and the adult students were interesting. One Comparative Religion Class taught me about people I had never met before. There were people from all over the world in that class. It was great living in a big city like Denver.

Later, when I owned my company, I took at least one seminar a year.
Sometimes the whole staff would go. It does us all good to hear that we can succeed. I felt I was growing in my sales and marketing  career and would hear something different in the seminar presentation.

One of the best things I heard was to not be afraid to fail. Failing means you are trying. That idea may not be right now, maybe at another time. Or not, it does not mater, just get on with it. At least you had a thought !

I think of my self as a smart self sufficient women. The people in my life are there by choice.

Recently I was reminded that as smart as you may think you are, there are still things to learn. And as wonderful and complete as you think your life is, there are some ragged edges out there that you have put away in a box and not dealt with.

My second husband Gary and I had a wild and crazy life for 10 years or so. Then we sobered up and had 15 years of wild and crazy life !

He taught me to 4 wheel drive and I thought I had gone to heaven !!!
I love to drive, but the power and torque of a 4 wheeler is really something. When you learn what that truck will do, whoa baby !
We went 4 wheeling. We owned O'l Ugly Truck a 4 wheeler that would take you anywhere you had guts enough to drive. We played in the sand. I spun a tire off the rim. We climbed rock faces. We started out in tents, breaking camp every morning. On our last trips some of our friends had large motorhomes and we had a camper on a truck pulling O'L Ugly.

We bought a house. At 40 it was a reason to get married. The market was good so we refinanced a few times. Bought some toys, enjoyed life, took trips. Gary got sick and died. I took care of getting the wills, the durable power of attorney for health care and living will,
got every thing signed, notarized and filed with every one. I had done this when I had my Mother living with us before she died, so I knew what to expect.
The wills were fairly straight forward but the power of attorney that the VA had was really extensive. I was glad that Gary was well and in his right mind when we went through that. It basically said I do not want anything done. We each had a lawyer so every thing was filed with both offices, all Dr.s etc. Gary died in 2010.

Well, My Lawyer died two years ago. No problem right, Gary's Lawyer and good friend is still around and I can still call on him.  No, he died this January. OK, no big deal I will get another Lawyer if I need one ... my old CPA is a tax attorney I can ask him for a referral.  Problem solved. Now I find out if I die tomorrow all my assets will end up in probate because my will is not valid. It leaves everything to Gary ! My living will thing is just that, a thing. My kids are not on every thing. Smart women, huh.

So, smart women is meeting with a smart women, who went to school and became a lawyer and works for one of the big firms in town and specializes in estate planning. Yes I have one. See, at least I can still learn !

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

First Story - Life Pebbles

I was born in 1941 to parents who were in their 40's.

After Pearl Harbor The entire nation wanted to do something
anything !

My Father joined the Navy. My Mother wanted to join the Waves.
But she was pregnant. NO ! - Yes ! Pooey.
Daddy went off and returned as a recruiter. He was too old to go to sea. He said he fought the battles of Reno, Nevada and Idaho. It was his job to get the boys off the farms and show them the world.

We lived in  housing in The Ambassador in Salt Lake City, Utah. I remember individual apartments with a common  dinning room. The kids harassed the cook, climbed thru my bedroom window and on to my dresser and jumped on my bed until the slats broke. I remember running and having fun. There were lots of men with lots of brass on their uniforms. My Father drank whisky, smoked cigarettes and used profanity in his every day life. So I thought this was normal. One day I was standing on a table. Mother was marking a hem for my dress. I was probably 3 years old. A large man came to the door looking for Daddy, he was in a Navy dress uniform. I ask if that was " old son of a *&%##" ?" I  heard my Father and the  adult males refer to each other this way. My Mother was shocked that I knew these words and how to use them !

My Mother was raised in an era when you chose your words carefully. One of the first things you noticed about my Mother was she was well dressed and used correct English. "Well put together" would describe my Mother. She wore hats and gloves and loved good clothes. My Mother worked from the time I was 5 until she retired when she was 62. She worked in up scale women's clothing stores and she and I wore the latest fashions.

When my Mother and her sisters were growing up you and your Mother made your clothes. I remember a trunk in our basement that had some of those clothes. There were pin tucks and small bows and fine cotton. All made by hand. Irons were heated on wood stoves. Horses pulled wagons and my Mother was a bit of a tom boy. But her Mother made sure she and her sisters all knew how to sew a fine seam. My Mother made her living sewing in the alteration's departments. My Grandmother could put 9 stitches on a quilting needle and think nothing of it. They taught me to do needlework and sew.

I had a good child hood. I grew up strong willed and confident that I could do anything I wanted to do.

As a women today I still believe I am in charge of my life. I would like to share some of the things life has taught me. Perhaps you can use some of my life pebbles to carry you on.