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Whew, what a relief, the presentation is over AND it went well. Julia and I were workshop presenters for the 2018 CAGP National Conference in Winnipeg. We presented “Wisdom of the Ages, Building Successful Intergenerational Relationships” to 50 conference attendees. Creating refining and presenting with Julia was a highlight for me. She was brilliant and we had fun. Read more

Martha (not her real name, of course) had a dream to leave a legacy. She intended that each of her four grandchildren and her favorite charity would receive a substantial benefit when her house was sold. In fact, that was the only reason she was still rattling around in the old barn. Read more

I was 9 when my mother and I last worked for the same boss. I was a paperboy for the Winona Daily News and my mother wrote a weekly column called “Whimsey.” She shared observations on life in a small town, being the wife of a pastor and mother of 6 children. Her quips then included thoughts on the topics of marriage, work and school. Read more

It really is all about our stuff. I admit that I have a plethora of stuff.

We make noises about leaving a legacy. Filling out a university scholarship started long ago. Leaving money for a program or to enable a building to be furnished and useful. Read more

A regular mid-summer chore of mine is to defrost the deep freezer downstairs.

The 32 bags of frozen blackberries, 10lbs of blueberries, most of an apple tree turned into sauce, a small school of fish and the Christmas turkey dwindled down over the winter to 2 bags of frozen blackberries, one bag of blueberries, and a bunch of crab bait. In the fall it was full to overflowing, but in the summer, I empty it out completely and give it a clean. Read more

One couple had lived forever. (Or so it seemed.)

Let’s call them Oma and Opa – German for grandma and grandpa.

Oma and Opa had lived through world wars, through poverty and debt. Life now was full of riches beyond their imaginations. Read more

Fingers curl with arthritis. Muscle mass disappears faster than a burger from a gobbling teenager’s hand. Minds become so full of what has happened there is no room left to remember what we were doing or why we even entered into the room in the first place.

My mother said, “Getting old is not for the faint of heart.”

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I have experienced several shuddering cases of couldas, wouldas, shouldas in my career as a fundraiser. I too, have endured a frightful time of head shaking and mournfully wondering why, oh why did I do that? Or more depressing, why, oh why didn’t we do that?

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Never in my life have I been able to mystify my children. They saw through all my object lessons, magic tricks and efforts to get them to make healthy choices. We have no grandchildren. There are three grand dogs but no heirs. Our youngest is getting married this month and — while marriage is no longer a prerequisite — no grandchildren are in sight. Read more

Language is wonderful. We communicate all manner of things with the written word.

My mother once wrote a note to the school I attended to excuse my absence with the words: “Please excuse David as he had mild gastrointestinal inflammation of the lower intestinal track.” It was a stomach ache all dressed up in hospital jargon. The staff at reception passed the note around for all to read and admire.

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