Crones Counsel News, February 2022


By Maggie Fenton
George Bernard Shaw said “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” The current issue of Crone Times is all about Fun and Games! There are wonderful stories from a number of Crones about how important games and play have been and still are.

When I was old enough to count well and deal cards, my three aunts, desperate for a 4th, taught me to play Canasta. They alternated being my partner and took it easy on me until I really learned the game. Then all bets were off … competition was fierce! I think I even heard one of them swear for the first time. Then, there was my patient and cunning Uncle Harry, who taught me to play Poker, including the wise advice to quit while I was ahead. I did him proud when my older brothers smugly invited me to bring my hard-earned pennies to one of their Poker games. They were not happy when I left the table with my pockets bulging with pennies! Their friends thought it was great and never let them forget it.

Outdoor games and play were and are important. Sledding, skiing, swimming, kayaking, sailing. I am a water sign.

Games and play have helped me through these past two years. Even when feeling housebound and bored, Dog Brody has to have his daily fetch play. Jigsaw puzzles, Sudoku, Crosswords, etc. helped pass the time in isolation. Now Wordle has me hooked.

How do you play?

Check out the February 2022 Crone Times to read several articles about “games.”

Dear Elsie

Hello from Pixler Hill, juicy Crones! Slowly the light brightens each day. It wakens us earlier, makes an after dinner walk more pleasant and can bring to light things we may not have paid attention to during the dark days of winter. We may notice more people out and about in the neighborhood, see animals with rounded bellies as birthing approaches, a flurry of activity at the bird feeder or something right in our own house that is now hard to ignore. Here is a good example.

Dear Elsie,
My house is dirty, and I don’t think it happened overnight! My mind says to get busy and clean it. My body just laughs! The time has come to get help. How do I find a good, reliable and trustworthy house cleaner?

Overtaken by dust bunnies.

Dear Overtaken,

Unless you are fortunate enough to have a friend or relative with a house cleaning business, word of mouth may be the best way. Talk to your friends and neighbors. Most people are happy to share their house cleaner experiences, providing contact numbers for the good ones and letting you know who to avoid. Others guard this information like a National Treasure, why I do not know.

An internet search will give you everything from nationwide companies to small local contractors. It is a good way to get an idea of the prices in your area and read reviews. Your community ‘Next Door’ website can be extremely helpful, too. Some senior centers have a bulletin board where people can post their services. Be prepared for some trial and error but sooner or later you will find just what you need.

Over the years Elsie has employed a few house cleaners; good, not so good and downright scary. The most unique way of connecting with one was when a landscaper came to give an estimate and brought his wife along. While chatting she mentioned that she cleaned for a select few clients that she thought might need extra help. I took a chance and it turned out that she was one of the good ones.

My advice is to look around, follow your intuition and do not be afraid to fire someone no matter how clever their excuse for shoddy work.

Good luck chasing the dust bunnies.


Please don’t hesitate to send questions. We love a full mailbox here on the Hill.

The New Crone Times is out!

By Kianna Bader, Story-Gatherer and Editor
The February issue is “hot off the press” thanks to Marta. It can be found on our website along with back issues. Since we no longer print hard copies and mail them to you, this is the only way to find it.

Crone Times is published twice a year, usually in February and July. I try to ask many different women to write articles for each issue. It is a wonderful way to stay in touch and share our lives. Each issue has a different theme.

February’s theme is Games. You will enjoy the interesting articles by Pat Alton, Karuna Chapman, Betty Brown, Jeanne Gallick, Pat Shepard. Ruth Cohen, Kianna, Andrea Hartwig, Mary Jane Hitt and Gaea Yudron. It also features three special articles: one by Carol Friedrich, one by Meg Randle and another by Pat Casner who tells us about her adventures in Malawi.

Don’t miss these great articles!

There are also 40 back issues which are well worth reading. Each one gives you an insight into the Wise Women of Crones Counsel. Click here to access the back issues.

Please send any feedback to Kianna. If you would like to write an article for the July issue, our theme is Expertise. Just contact me at the address above.


When I had no home, I made the open fields, trees, and cliffs my home.
When I had no friends, I made books my friends.
When I had no mother, I sought other women to mother me and
embrace me in their communities.
When I had no father, I began to seek my father in relationships,
much to my surprise.

When I had only debts, I made determination my abundance.
When I could not walk on two legs, I proudly used my crutches
and learned to accept more help along the journey.

When I had no faith in my own self and didn’t really believe
in the God I was taught to love,
I found a renewed sense of self and a belief in universal laws
and a higher power that became my new foundation in life.

Shifting perspective is what helped me,
Learning flexibility what propelled me,
When nothing other else was working
my own growth was what compelled me.

Kaya Kotzen
Inspired by Samurai’s Song by Robert Pinsky