Crones Counsel Newsletter March 2023

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Maggie Fenton

We will close registration for the October gathering on April 1. It is IMPORTANT that you make your hotel reservations before April 1 too. This is the deadline for us to cancel the gathering if we haven’t met the required minimum room reservations. We will have to pay a penalty for cancellation but not as much as if we wait. We’re trying to be good stewards of Crone Counsel resources. If we have to cancel the gathering, your registration fee will be refunded and you can cancel your room reservation with no penalty. If you want to come Celebrate 31 years of Crones Counsel, sign up today.

Since we announced our intention to close Crones Counsel at the end of this year, a group has formed to look at re-visioning CC. Believe it or not, things have changed in the last thirty years! As Ann K wrote in the January newsletter, we need a reformation to begin the 2nd cycle. Following are two articles from members of that group.

There is a small fund for grants which will pay up to half of your registration fee. Please, if you can afford it, leave this fund for those who really need it. When you register, you will need to indicate you are paying your half by check and contact Kay Bouma to request the scholarship. We will grant scholarships until the fund is depleted. You will still be responsible for your transportation, hotel rooms and other costs.

In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb!
By Betty Brown

Are you kidding me? Are you a Crone? How about – In Like a Lamb, Out Like a Lion!!!
Gee, I sure like the sound of that better as well as the energy it makes me feel….as
well as the celebration it Deserves.

By the time this newsletter comes out I will be 80 years old. Hard to believe since I
started coming to CC when I was 5. (Whoops, I meant 58). But here it was…. kinda
creeping up on me and quite frankly, I wasn’t feeling all that good about it. I have my first knee surgery on May 1st followed by a second this fall. Here’s the adventurer that
couldn’t complete the Camino de Santiago hike in Spain last fall because my body said
no. What about tennis and skiing and even climbing stairs? Not being married or having
children living in the same area, I decided I didn’t want to call on my blood friends one
more time do something for my momentous passage. That old Lamb was slowly, sadly
becoming my friend.

Then I remembered what I’ve often told others –
#1 – no one can make you feel invisible unless you let them and
#2 – you’re in charge of your life/party and how you show up.

SO……. party it was – a three-day event with party bags for all, personalized purple
napkins with each 40 attendee’s name on it and the word CELEBRATE (to remind
everyone to celebrate themselves and events in their lives). My daughter-in-law made
1943 year – bars of soap to give to guests. There was even a two-tier cake with my picture on it leaning against a tree dedicated to – “she who will not be denied.” The cake read “Betty’s Birthday Bash – Celebrating Family and Friends.” The lion roared with joy.

Oh, and have I mentioned the Mother Board has asked that I be emcee of our Crone party starting on October 12th? What a lot we have to CELEBRATE. Thirty wonderful years supporting each other in laughing and crying and learning and growing. What lions we all have become and we owe it to the Raven for shouting to Ann Kreilkamp – WAKE UP, IT’S TIME! We owe it to our wonderful elders like Shauna and so many others who have led the way, but mostly – we owe it to ourselves. Let’s fill those rooms in Party City and claim our Tremendous Story. Register Now.

Transition Group Explores New Directions for Crones Counsel of The Future
By Naomi Silverstone and Kay Chatterton

We are a small group of dedicated Crones who would like to see Crones Counsel Re-Birthed, Re-Visioned, and Re-Imagined rather than dissolved at the end of this year. We have come together to explore what such an organization might look like so that we all can build from the energy of the past 30 years into the future.

This involves research on organizational models and structures that may provide additional insights that can work for the tasks necessary to re-vision Crones Counsel. We have been discussing the big picture, as well as the nuts and bolts, necessary for kindred spirits to continue to support and share our wisdom and experiences in this new world in which we will play a critical role.

We will be doing a survey this summer to understand the scope of interest you may have in this re-birth, get input from you, and recruit interested members to the planning group.
ALSO: We invite you to continue sharing your thoughts and ideas in person at the October 12-15 gathering in Las Vegas. The plan will be finalized after conducting forums with you at the Gathering. So please sign up NOW and come to the Crones Gathering in Las Vegas to celebrate the past and also help create a nourishing, future organization for all of us.
We welcome your ideas and participation!

Transition Group: Betty Brown, JoAnne Casey, Kaye Chatterton, Ann Kreilkamp, Anne Richardson, Naomi Silverstone, Susan Ann Stauffer. If you have anything to say or would like more information, please contact Betty Brown at

Dear Elsie

Greetings from Pixler Hill lovely Crone Spirits of Spring, even those of you still up to your necks in snow! Signs of Spring are everywhere. Crocus peeking through the snow, trees budding overnight, all manner of creatures either mating or nesting. Wacky weather is playing out all over as we see folks in shorts one day and parkas the next.

It is the season of rebirth, new life emerging from the death and decay of Winter. Signaling hope and new beginnings. As we watch the Earth bloom around us, we are shown that without the old, there can be no young. So let us celebrate age with respect and acknowledge youth with a touch of humor if we can.

This month’s question seeks a way to get the courtesy age deserves without smacking someone over the head with a handbag.

Dear Elsie,

I hate it when some smarmy young male (always) sales or service person calls me “Young Lady”! I find it demeaning. After all, we both know I’m not young…even though I may or may not be a lady. Got a good, snappy response?

Proud to be a Crone

Dear Proud Crone,

Your question pushed Elsie’s buttons! If you want to appear somewhat dignified you could reply, “Sir, I’m obviously not a young lady so the proper way to address me is Ma’am. Or – you might rather say “Look here, Sonny Boy, I’m neither young nor a lady so you’d better just call me Ma’am”! Probably not the best answer but it sure is tempting.

Some of them have a lot to learn about old women. Good luck.


What Life Does
By Kaya Kotzen

This is what life does
throws you a curve ball when you expect a straight one
zaps your energy just when you need it the most
and you’ve been riding high.
Sends you back to doing nothing because you’re drained
and feverish and you just have to ride it out.
but then you recover.

This is what life does, like a roller coaster,
going up and down, speeding up and slowing down,
you wonder who is in charge sometimes
You? the universe? Destiny?

This is what life does – it takes you for a wild ride.
Often you’re re the one who gets to choose the vehicle
and the pace but sometimes you tag onto someone else’s
journey and off course you go.

But grounding into your own life again, you get set straight.
This is what life does if you let it, surrender to it,
open yourself back up to the mystery of it, to the unexpected,
to two legged and four legged and winged ones,
to the trees and flowers, to the pollution in the city and
the clear mountain views and the skies.

This is what life does.
It sets you up to choose which way to go,
You’re on the path now. Enjoy the ride


Crone Climate Action
By Laurie Dameron

When shopping for items that are plastic – buy the largest jug and refill and reuse the small container like dish wash soap.

February 2023 Crone Times

Download the February 2023 Crone Times, the official Journal of Crones Counsel, Inc. There are many wonderful articles about mentoring as well as memories of Crones Counsel.

Here is a sampling of what you will find in this issue:

  • How Crones Counsel Evolved
  • A Love Letter to my Crone Mentors
  • Mentors Over the Years
  • Memories of Esta
  • Mentors, Teachers & Crone Memories
  • Fond Memories of Crones Counsel
  • Instructions for Living a Life
  • So Many Mentors in my Life
  • My Mom and I

And much more. Download now.