Tag Archives: death

have a ball.


i love her final gesture

and it made me give pause –

if i were to go today

i would leave behind the following things for others to enjoy:

$7.oo, a sock monkey, photographs, glitter, collage projects, letters and books.

i hope there is no fighting over the monkey.

“laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is far the best ending for one.”

-oscar wilde

credits: getty images, mental floss

dock porters with heart.


my brother, scott

who never stops raising money for research and awareness

in honor of my nephew, hazen, gone way too soon

so that others may stay.

thank you to his mackinac island dock porter brothers from so many years ago.

“say not in grief: “he is no more”, but live in thankfulness that he was.”

-hebrew proverb





scottish children gave their goldfish a viking funeral

most people could only be so lucky as to receive the kind of funeral that two goldfish in the scottish isle of orkney were given by some children who were learning about vikings.

the pair of classroom mascots, bubbles and freddy, belonged to the 3rd and 4th grade classes of the papdale school in the town of kirkwall, according to the BBC. the fish had been with the students for a few months, but died about a week before the kids were due to learn about the vikings, so it was decided that they would send the pets to valhalla with a viking funeral.
the students created a small fleet of miniature coffin boats to send off the deceased, fashioned out of cereal boxes and egg crates. they also wrote and recited their favorite memories about bubbles and freddy. finally, they led a funeral procession to a nearby stream where the boats were put in the water, and the lead vessel was set on fire.

may bubbles and freddy forever swim in the halls of their warrior heaven, valhalla.

“to live in the hearts we leave behind is to live forever.”

― carl sagan

credits: bbc scotland news, e. grundhauser

the odyssey.



pretzel rod, the albino leopard gecko (pre-odyssey).

 last weekend

i stayed with the grandies

while their mom and dad were out of town


for some reason

during the last hour i was there

the two friendly house cats

decided to make a snack out of p-rod.

i had no idea this happened until i got home and got the call:

“the cats somehow got the screen off of the top of his terrarium and ate the gecko!”

imagine how badly i felt

that the murder had happened on my watch.

grandie f had just gotten this young gecko

for his birthday 6 weeks ago and was very sad.

he had replaced pretzel,

the tiny, twisty snake who was let go in the backyard.

the next day i picked him up at school and we planned

to make a memorial stone for pretzel rod to put in the garden.

we talked for a while about love and loss and pets and nature.

imagine my surprise when i got a call late that night that he had been found!

he must have crawled into the boys’ dirty laundry

which was on their bedroom floor

to escape the cats

hid out for 24 hours

 then was scooped up


 put in the washing machine

with the laundry

where he was washed, rinsed and spun.


he had survived

a feline attack

a day in smelly boy pants





he was washed, spun and rinsed

but there he was

sitting on the bottom of the washer

and after all of this, he was alive!

f yelled out over the phone:

“and he’s getting stronger by the minute!”

mom and dad said he looked rough and didn’t know if he’d make it

but he was indeed alive.

my task the next day was to get him some special treats

wax worms

(the big macs of the lizard world)

from the pet store to see if he would eat.

sure enough, he had some dinner

the first he’d eaten in a few days.

hopefully he’s on the mend

and we won’t have to go through a ‘second death’.

he looks a little lighter in color,

has some bite marks from the cats,

and doesn’t move as much

but he is alive and that is amazing.

“it is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.”
― leon c. megginson

don’t be long.



before he was an astronaut,

john glenn served as a military pilot during world war II and the korean war.

before leaving for combat missions, he always told his wife annie,

“i’m just going to the corner store to get a pack of gum.”

she always replied, “don’t be long.”

” the return makes one love the farewell. “

-alfred de musset

farewell john glenn, one of my heroes.

credits: cnn.com, mental floss, washington post

“if you listen to your fears, you will die never knowing what a great person you might have been.” – robert h. schuller



norma and  her therapy dog, ringo on the road.

Norma Bauerschmidt, who decided to take a cross-country RV trip instead of undergoing cancer treatment has died at the age of 91.

More than 400,000 people have followed Norma Jean Bauerschmidt’s journey with her son and daughter-in-law on her “Driving Miss Norma” Facebook page. Her final stop was San Juan Island, Wash. San Juan County Coroner Randall Gaylord said Bauerschmidt died Friday, Sept. 30.

When 90-year-old Michigan native Norma Jean Bauerschmidt learned she had a large, likely cancerous mass on her uterus, she wasn’t going to waste any time with what she saw as debilitating treatment. Instead, she spent her final days experiencing as much of the world as she could.

Bauerschmidt, a native of Presque Isle, died in her motor home on San Juan Island, Wash., on Sept. 30 at the age of 91, but not before she’d traveled more than 13,000 miles in an RV, sleeping in 75 different locations in 32 states.

In that time, “Miss Norma” became in internet sensation, with more than 482,000 people following her travels via a Facebook page set up by her daughter titled “Driving Miss Norma.”

Her story has since gone viral, appearing on CBS News, BBC, Huffington Post and NBC’s “Today Show.”

Bauerschmidt’s decision to refuse treatment was made just two days after her husband, Leo, passed away. While sitting in an OB/GYN office talking about treatment options, including surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, a doctor asked her how she would like to proceed.

According to Facebook, Bauerschmidt, a tiny woman at 101 pounds and under 5 feet tall, looked the young doctor dead in the eye and with the strongest voice she could muster, said, “I’m 90-years-old. I’m hitting the road.”

And that’s what she did. They did, “what they don’t teach you in medical school,” and hit the road on Aug. 24, 2015.

While on the road, Miss Norma experienced many things for the first time. Big things like riding in a hot air balloon or on a horse, to little things like getting a pedicure or having her first taste of key lime pie, oysters and fried green tomatoes.

She was hosted by the U.S. Navy, the Atlanta Hawks, the Georgia Aquarium and the towns of Winthrop, Mass., Marietta, Ga., and, according to her Facebook page, what felt like the entire state of South Carolina.

Miss Norma also visited the Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore, Walt Disney World and Yellowstone National Park.

She began hospice care after arriving in the San Juan Island town of Friday Harbor in August, according to the Associated Press.

A celebration of Miss Norma’s life and a memorial tree planting is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 7 at 4:30 p.m. at Friday Harbor’s Overlook Park.

“Our families, friends, and the many thousands of former strangers have lifted us up and kept our spirits high,” a message from Miss Norma’s family reads on Facebook. “We continue to be overwhelmed by the kindness and love that has been directed our way.”

credits: mlive.com, brandon champion, pittsburgh post gazette/ap