These things I know:

You are loved.

Choices matter.

You have a unique place in this life, a special work to do

—whether it’s mopping floors or flying to Mars—

and no one can take your place.

Explore, study, meditate. Find your own spot.

Remember that whatever you can or can’t do,

the most important work is what anyone can do—CARING!

These are a few of my favorite things:

Seashells and clam chowder

Camping and pancake breakfast

Burl Ives—Folk Songs

Blue Iris

Peanut butter milk shakes

All of our children’s art projects

The leathery, dusty smell of century-old books

Feeding hungry, growing teenagers—or anyone else

Cats (but not litter boxes)

But best of all:

Three daughters, two sons, and the extended family they’ve given us with spouses, in-laws,

cousins, grandchildren…

And half a century enjoying mountains, rivers, flowers, and family with a kind and gentle man, from Alaska to Texas, and from Massachusetts to Washington.

Just facts about me: 

Childhood:

Most schooling in Kansas, all summers in Massachusetts.

Two parents, one brother.

I intended to be a nurse when I grew up—or a doctor—and a mother with a dozen children.

Education and Work:

Brown University: Freshman and Sophomore Years

University of Washington: Two semesters

Central Washington State College: B.A. in Education and English, 1965

1964 to 1974: The Apple Orchard years

1974 to 1980: Upholstery and Decorating business

1978 to 1988: Foster care

1989: Medical Assistant training

1990 to 2011: Medical transcription, in clinic and online.

2011 and onward: Retired with more to do than before,

more books to read and write, more people to cherish.