Archive | May, 2017

Let’s talk aging

31 May

I get to take one month off of my reservation book. Whoo Hoo..  What a great month it was despite some weather issues. New campers, returning campers and great to see them all. We are becoming known nationwide. Many campers come in and tell us in their travels how they will mention they are coming to Circle the Wagons and then that other person will say “we’ve stayed there!!” Very exciting.

I’m winding up my trip to Arkansas. Mom is so-so. It’s really sad because she really doesn’t feel well. Her little body is becoming misshapen with being bent over. I so admire that she can still push up from her chair to her walker but it takes all of her energy. She is unhappy and is so ready for it all to be over, but she has a beating heart and nothing seriously wrong so she keeps waking up everyday. They take very good care of her at Green Acres. Today was uncomfortable for me because outside of my Mom’s room there was a lady shrieking at the top of her lungs. Very loud and high pitched and it sounded like one of those old sanitarium movies where the patients make strange noises.  I didn’t like it all. Luckily I don’t think Mom can hear her. Of course all of this gets me going on aging and how much I don’t want to end up like many of the patients who are very far into alzheimers and dementia. They wander, they carry little dolls as their babies, they think family is coming to get them, they think they are going to work, they sometimes wait at the door to hopefully escape when someone comes into the facility. It’s all heartbreaking and what is the point??? Colorado has the law about end of life. Some friends and I were discussing different ideas regarding life situations. They said they had it all written out about not wanting to be on ventilators etc. But what if you are like my Mom. During the early part of the day she is very on top of what is going on but it fades away as the day goes on. There are no choices for those like Mom. If you do have a directive regarding your end of life, do you have to take care of your plan before you are too far gone and you forget that you were not going to live in a demented way?? I watched a show that interviewed people who were taking the pills to pass away. They were still lucid but had terminal diseases, so they took care of it while they still could know what was happening. If I went to the doctor and received the diagnosis of Alzheimers, would I really be brave enough to get the paperwork done to end my life? Some days I feel braver about that decision than others. The same with a terminal cancer diagnosis, COPD, serious heart condition. I don’t like to think about it but as I enter my 65th year in January, it becomes much more of a reality of things that could happen. I then get freaked out about it being a suicide and but is that really the same because you are truly taking care of yourself and not letting yourself become a burden.

I don’t know. Hopefully I won’t have to make these kind of decisions, but it is certainly part of many conversations I’ve had this year. I love my Mom but I don’t want to see her suffer each day. We hope she may be able to be in hospice and maybe they can make her more comfortable but it is a Catch 22 situation and right now she doesn’t qualify. I would really like some prayers for her to be more comfortable and peaceful. Thank you.

I will drive back to Topeka tomorrow and hook up with my friend Becky and then have dinner with Billie and the kids. I think Billie is taking me to the 12:30am train Friday morning. I’m so glad I will have a roomette for the trip home. I need to be well rested since I’ll have to go right to work when I get back to the park. Denny and I did well keep track of reservations on both ends. He is a sweety to let me take this quick trip.

That’s it for now.  Peace

MMMMMM…..Tai Chi

13 May


Just home from my first try at Tai Chi. A visual, mental, balancing, relaxing, using earth’s energy to move exercise. It sounds deep and I will never be a Master but it’s another way of strengthening my body and mind as this aging process catches up to me. It is easy for me to visualize many of the concepts which helps, but also applying some of the movements to everyday life will be interesting. I know it looks like I am taking on a lot of activities this year, but my goal is to begin this season in a healthier way. Usually by Memorial Day I am all about caffeine, Pepsi, sugar and that continues through October. I don’t want to do that again, so trying these other options I hope will keep me energized. We shall see.

Last weekend was my month of Miracle Morning, facial routine and exercising. Due to the possibility of flooding and Denny being away, etc. I used that as an excuse to drink Pepsi, not get up early and no reading. Guess what, by Friday I felt like shit. Unmotivated, unfocused, bloated, playing my Iphone games. I missed my sense of well being and productiveness. So…this morning I was up 6:15. Rode my exercise bike, read my Circle of Prayer book and another chapter of one of Gary Bridges books. I’m looking forward to reading his other books. They are all set in our area and that makes it fun. I will continue one more month of the facial routine and we’ll see if there is significant  improvement of my flaws! There are no more Pepsi’s in the house and I know not to carry Pepsi for our little refrigerator of pop that we sell. Maybe some of Tai Chi’s chakras will take some of these crazy cravings that I have away.

It was an interesting week regarding the threat of flooding in our area. THANKFULLY our park did not flood. I do believe the original builders of this park engineered it so the river would not flood. This would have the storm that would have done it. Many other areas up and down river did flood. The river was very exciting to watch though. Huge rapids, very loud roar, and it was soooo fast. Some of you have been here and you know that it is really a creek and very shallow.

Mother’s Day weekend. I actually feel pretty good this Mother’s Day. Believe me, there have been many that I actually have gone into some depressions over. But…I’m done with the feelings of what ifs, what could have been, if I would have done this or that, etc.  My kids are now 40 and 35 and are living their lives. Since Billie was 1, she traveled the journey of divorces, alcoholism, recovering, saw things she shouldn’t have, heard things she shouldn’t have with me. Do I wish I had made intelligent choices instead of risky choices? You bet. The saddest part of all of those decisions was when I lost custody of KC for a few years. Talk about failure as a mother. (I was able to have custody again after I was sober) But…. did I know that I was suffering from depression, self-medicating with drugs and alcohol, running from mistakes, moving hoping it would fix something, changing jobs because I was upset, getting hyper and making decisions in a manic mode. There was a lot I didn’t know but I realize now. Thankfully the kids were able to see me sober from the time I was 33 on. Was I perfect because I sobered up? Far from it but there were no drugs, cigarettes or alcohol in the home. This year feels like a Happy Mother’s day. Not so much for my own mom. She is 97 and is tired of being on this earth. It’s a helpless feeling because she is fairly healthy. Her heart keeps beating, her mind is still working but she is weak when it comes to getting around. What does one say to her? The last time I saw her when my brother was sick,   I said “I know you are tired and want to go, but give me a day’s notice!”. She laughed. I can always make her laugh. I may fly and see her for a quick trip. I hope she can feel somewhat happy on Mother’s Day this year?

Busy day today finishing some bowl holder orders and a pillowcase. My friend Judy is in town and we are going to drive Taos for the day. May have to hit the quilt shop there but I have made a vague promise not to purchase any fabric. We’ll see. Business really picks up next weekend and then is non stop until October. Whoo Hoo!

That’s it for now. Peace and relax.


I’m a Hummingbird

7 May


The Happiness Quilt

It is a warm overcast morning. Rain due this afternoon. I’m glad because all of my sewing projects are in the cabin right now and if it rains I can hang out over there. My friend Alicia from Topeka, spent 3 days with me and we sewed for 2 days in the cabin. It was so fun and I was able to get through the hard part of my paper piecing quilt. She and I met last year in Holton, KS at a retreat. We hit it off immediately and now will be good friends. She is a lot like me, not afraid to take on new fabric and art lessons. She says we are like hummingbirds. We do a little bit here and little bit there. I like that analogy. We were able to show her the finer things of La Veta-The Dog Bar, downtown, the beautiful snow covered mountains. She met Ricky Tims and Justin, Beth and Jonathon. What’s really funny is she is trying her hand at artistic quilts and she shows me a photo of a book she uses and it was Judith Baker Montano. I go “Hello, she lives right here in La Veta and I know her”!!!  She about had a stroke. I love little serendipity things like that. Here is another one. We were purchasing some items from Ricky and were with Heather and Justin at the shop. Heather says she’s out of printer ink. I ask what kind and I tell her I have several inkjets that will work. I was able to sell all of the inkjets that I could no longer use and that is a chunk of change.

Mitzi and I traveled to Pueblo for our first scary movie of the summer and it turned out to be that Phoenix something movie. It was about possible UFO sightings 20 years ago and 3 teenagers that went missing trying to find out if it was true. Now, I guess the story is true about the sightings but not sure if it was true about the kids. It was not scary but interesting but there is a WHOLE BUNCH of scary movies coming this summer.

Hooked up with my Ginny buddy and it is always great to get reconnected with everyone in the summer again. Now that we have met so many new friends in Texas and back here, I truly do feel we have 2 homes. Now if we could just remember to stop sending our Amazon orders to Brownsville we’ll be back on track.

I’ll be a bachelorette again this week for a couple of days. Denny and John are going to Topeka to check out the Evil Knieval museum at the Historic Harley Davidson. John is from Evil’s hometown so this will be really fun for them.

I watched the “Lion” dvd this week. What an incredible India story. Loved it. It wound me up again about my mission ideas which are about to start up. Let me know if you would like to help with any of them.

  #1. I need 50 dolls, little ones and 50 little rubber balls. These will be for the Kolli Hills clinic which services a village of women and children affected by the HIV/AIDS crisis. Dr Samuels thought it would be nice to have these items for the children when they come to clinic once a month for nutrition and medication.

 #2.  We would like lipstick, eyeliner pencils to give to the mothers as a feel good gift. These will be for Kolli Hills also. You can call me at 719-989-0614 or text that too or

I hope to have a talk here at Circle the Wagons this summer about India and my missions there.  Someone asked me why India and not here in the U.S.  I do mission projects here in the U.S. but we must remember we are all part of this one world. Namakkal is a village in Southern India. Kollie HIlls is up the mountains from there, very remote. These places no one knows about. Dr. Samuels  Don Messer works hours and have for years to help these villages during the first outbreak of HIV/AIDS when it was epidemic. They and those who support these missions are now trying to help them sustain the funds for nutrition and medication which will go on forever. It is a wonderful and loving part of India. I hope you will join me in helping these villages. Maybe you can go with me with I return there.

That’s it for now. Peace and lovekollij

Kolli Hills families


Beautiful Wednesday

3 May

It’s a beautiful day. Feels like spring, which doesn’t happen often around here. The 20″ snow has melted, the Peaks and Sangre de Cristos are full of snow, Bendi and Jumper are back from their morning walk with Denny. We have 11 rigs in the park including a small group from Pueblo. First pancake breakfast tomorrow morning. The season has officially started. We are lucky to be in a business where we meet travelers from all over the world. An Australian couple are traveling in the country for 2 months. They also own a “caravan park” in Australia. We also have campers from Oregon, Georgia and Texas.

I’m 3 days a way from 1 month of my Miracle Morning, facial routine (where I wash my face and twice a day and apply product and maybe get rid of a couple of icky areas) and no Pepsi. It’s been an interesting experiment but I really adjusted getting up earlier than I thought I would and finally getting sleepy earlier. It does help having Zumba at 6 am twice a week. Now the challenge is for me to stay on course the next few days. My girlfriend from Topeka is coming to sew for a few days. We’ll set up in the cabin and have a little quilting retreat. Can’t wait to see her. We met at a retreat in Holton last year. She wants a little camper so she is going to stay in Yuki and see how it all feels. Our little campers are so cozy.

I want to back up to my last blog where we had a great discussion regarding sexual harassment. Wow, can you believe that all of us who commented had creepy stories. Really sad. The way my blog works is that you can actually comment on the blog and we can keep the conversation within the blog for sensitive subjects. It’s fine to comment on FB but the comment area on this blog is on the bottom of the article. The comment comes to me in an email and then once you are approved, your comment shows up on the blog.

Our friend Mona left Monday. (Remember she is wife #1). What a tremendous and giving person she is. I can’t even name all the projects she did for both of us in the 2 weeks she was here. Hopefully we will be able to repay her someday.

Friendships. They can be tricky can’t they? I have had a couple of issues crop up in the last year and still wondering the next step. Do I let it go and know one friendship is over forever or write a letter and see if it can be repaired. So much hate and anger came out of the conversation that it is a difficult decision. Still mulling it over. I’ve started a new reading called the Prayer Circle so maybe the answer will come to me from a prayer.

I’m not a deeply religious person but I do believe in prayer. I may have told this before. Four years ago my niece Juli was diagnosed with a terminal cancer. Denny and I drove to Florida and spent 3 weeks with her family to fix up their home so she would have a room to rest and recover from treatments. At that time I was on my 10th year of chronic neck pain. A week later after painting, etc. I woke up and realized that I my neck pain was gone!  I talked to Juli about it later that day.  She said she had been praying for me to relieve the pain. Guess what, that pain has never returned. That’s powerful. I do believe in heaven/ or a place where our loved ones spirits are. While holding my brother’s hand as he took his last breaths, I knew there were family members waiting for him. I have been with 5 people on their last moment and the peace in the room, the intimate last moments of knowing they can hear you, the subtle response where you know they are okay passing on. It has taken the fear of dying away from me.

That’s it for today. I’m going through my box of unfinished quilting projects to see what will be worked. Number 1 will be to prepare a quilt that will be raffled off for a donation to our local library. It is very fun and will hang in our office and sometimes at the library. Our library is so great for a small town and has so much to offer.