Crones Counsel News, July 2022

Life Everywhere
Maggie Fenton

“Murky pond with dull reflection
Faded leaves and scum,
Slowly swirled by wind,
Feeding dragonflies
Dancing on the surface.”

I wrote this little poem in 2003, the year after my husband, Rich, died. I needed hope and to find assurance of Life with a big “L.” All I had to do was stop and look.

This summer, Life with the big L is putting on a show in central Ohio. You want berries? Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and elderberries are abundant. I wish all of you could come pick. The pear, apple and plum trees are loaded. Flowers are blooming (and weeds are growing) and the garden is producing. Fledgling birds are on the wing including young redtail hawks who make a raucous noise as they test their flight and hunting skills. House and Carolina Wrens are my morning music followed by the Phoebe who sings her name.

The abundance challenges my old body to keep up with it all and I have to remind myself to take breaks before I break and that not every task has to be finished in one go. Maybe that’s part of the wisdom we’re supposed to have as we age.

Where are you finding Life with the big “L?”

Dear Elsie

Hello from Pixler Hill, my dear Cronies! So here we are heading toward August with summer nearly over. Oh, but she is still with us in all her fiery glory. Dog Days, as this time of year was once called. A time when it was so hot that the dogs-and some folks- neglected their duties to laze in the shade. Now-a-days they lounge in air-conditioned comfort until the sun goes down. This is when we begin to harvest our bounty and think about the seasons to come. It is also a time of new beginnings as children prepare to enter kindergarten, go off to college, take a year to travel or go into exciting new jobs. They aren’t the only ones. Change comes for many of us and so do questions such as this from a brave Crone.

“Dear Elsie. My sister and I are moving in together. What should be some ground rules?
Eager to get this right”

Dear Eager sister,

How exciting! You undoubtedly have a lot in common or you wouldn’t be considering joining households. No matter how well you know each other, some differences are bound to show up. Navigating the new territory with grace may require some planning. Are you sharing a place that one of you already has, or will you be pooling resources and starting anew? Every situation requires a different approach, but some basics will help build a good foundation.
Before you move talk over everything you can think of and make a pact to discuss issues until you are both clear. A little wine might help…or not! Here are some ideas for ground rules:

  • Finances. Develop a plan, have a budget, write it down, refine as needed.
  • Ownership. Will each of you be in charge of specific areas or are you going to wing it?
  • Visitors. Children, friends, animals, romantic interests.
  • Housekeeping. Especially if one of you is a neat freak and the other a slob.
  • Food. Important if your eating habits aren’t the same and you have only one refrigerator.

The list goes on and on, just keep in mind that you love each other and want to be safe and happy. Talk, talk and talk some more. Allow yourselves plenty of private space and time. Be kind and patient. It will be quite an adventure. You can do this!

If, at times, all else fails, you could try what kids sometimes do…get out the blue painter’s tape and visually divide your space down the middle. Might bring back some memories and give you a good laugh.

Enjoy the next phase of your journey.

What Aging Does
By Kaya Kotzen

The older I get, the more I notice the slower my pace is.
I multitask less, even though piles of things accumulate and wait for me.
I appreciate more, I enjoy the moments more.
The older I get, the smarter I get too, I think.
Paying more attention to my body’s needs instead of inclinations
to just push through.
The older I get, the less I care what others think and the more I try
and please myself.
The older I get, the more precious my memories seem, the places I went,
the things I’ve done, the relationships I’ve had, especially in these
never ending covid times when opportunities to do more are closed to me.
My beliefs lead my life, have set me on a new path, that at this age, I choose to follow even though at times, it is limiting, and I just get annoyed with it all,
with the lies told, the greed, manipulation and the stupidity.
The older I get, the more I learn it does not pay to hold onto any of that, that surrendering to love and hope is key,
The older I get, the more grateful I become, that I still get to have another day
to do what I choose, to write what I want, and to just notice all the simple
uncomplicated and inspirational things in an everyday life.

Wild writing inspired by a line form Knee Sounds by Patricia Costca

How to have a Zero Waste BBQ
By Laurie Dameron

  • Ask folks to bring their reusable water bottles.
  • Use real plates and silver ware or compostables (if you have industrial composting) or plain paper plates (paper plates with designs and shiny surface have plastic coating and can not be recycled).
  • Purchase additional beverages in aluminum or glass and limit other single-use plastics. Use real cloth napkins (Buy at yard sales or make your own – wash in hot water.)
  • Have your recycling or compost bins set up for use by the guests. Get more information on zero waste solutions and women leading the way in sustainability.

Get more information on zero waste recycling and women leading the way.