The Lives of Frontier Women (and me)

I’ve been thinking about a number of things lately. Confrontations with your own mortality can do that to a person. Questions arise like how proud am I of myself and my life thus far, regardless of what anyone else thinks? Yes, I know, I can be a bit cerebral at times.

Then I heard a truly thought-provoking quote that made me laugh out loud the other night. The story was about how so many Americans came out to the western frontier in the late 1800s either because they were “trying to lose themselves,” as in avoiding Civil War conscription, “or to find themselves.” This cracked me up! It hit the nail on the head in terms of why I moved out of the city and chose to retire in rural southern Colorado.

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I should probably preface this with my eternal fascination with frontier life. For as far back as I can remember I played “pioneer woman” on the playgrounds of my elementary schools in Kansas. I loved watching TV shows like Rawhide, and any movie about frontier life. I grew up on the books of Laura Ingalls Wilder, and when I got older I loved reading the journals of women who came out west in covered wagons.

When I started my writing career, I published a few magazine articles about how many came out West simply to escape tuberculosis in the cities back East. Most don’t know that TB was the leading cause of death in the world in the late 1800s and early 1900s, before penicillin was discovered in the late 1920s. Many came in hopes of a change in fortunes too, like discovering silver or gold and getting rich quick.

I realized just this morning I came to rural Colorado to both lose my old Self or identity, and find out all the other people I might be. I know now how influenced we are by others as children and young adults. It’s almost impossible not to be. But the re-birth which often happens later in life is the shedding of old personas, the letting go of all those voices inside that want to tell you who you really are.

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I’m the youngest one here!

This is the process of getting back to that vulnerable child you were when you were young and impressionable. It feels sometimes like getting back to your original soul and appreciating it for the first time, a spiritual downsizing from the burdens of our past…

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What a glorious discovery this can be!

I’m a newcomer to this part of Colorado, so after two years I wrote a book about the ups and downs of moving here to build a passive solar home in the foothills. Please share this info. with your friends if they are considering similar challenges! 

A Memoir of Retirement: From Suburbia to Solar in Southern Colorado

Please feel free to contact me directly for your own signed copy: MidlifeCrisisQueen@gmail.com

Are blogs a new form of vanity press?

What a resounding response to my last question about who reads your blog, and all agreed too!

Come to find out I am not alone in observing that my pre-blog friends and family don’t read my blog posts much, but others whom I’m not even familiar with, find it interesting. Even people in over 75 other countries come here, I assume to check out rural living in the USA.

I suppose most people see blogs as a new kind of vanity press. I can see their point. Who cares about me and my life? But there are also over 18,000 visitors who have made over 40,000 views here. Who are they?

I’m sure some are simply nosy about the lives of others. Some may hope to someday move to a rural area and build a solar home. I’d sure LOVE to hear from any of you!

memoir-of-retirement-2016-largeThe reason I started this blog three years ago, and the reason I put together my new book was to document our experience in leaving suburbia for a quieter, more economical, rural experience in sunny southern Colorado. I have always had very good reasons for writing my books. Of course I also just enjoy writing. I find it helps me with my recent brain injury.

 

My thought process and intent:

We are doing something very different for us. After living in or near cities all of our lives, we are going rural. I wonder if others are thinking about doing something similar? Perhaps they might enjoy reading about one couples’ authentic experience. Perhaps they would like to know more about designing a home around passive solar heating. Maybe they would like to know how well passive solar heating can work. Reading about the experience of another might encourage others or convince them not to take such risks so late in life. Either way they could benefit from our experience.

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We are so glad we took on all the risk and uncertainty, however if you asked me three years ago I might not have agreed. But now I can highly recommend leaving city life behind for the quiet, wildlife watching and pure beauty of living close to nature.

If you never take a risk, you will never know for certain how well it can work out! That’s our best lesson from our own retirement experience…

P.S. For whatever reasons you find to come here and read, THANKS!

To purchase your own signed copies of any of my books, or if you have other questions, please e-mail me at: MidlifeCrisisQueen@gmail.com.

Please follow me on Twitter too!

Best of Boomer Blogs #480

It’s time to hear from a few of my favorite bloggers of a certain age… What have they been doing or thinking about this week?

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Carol Cassara has a very funny one for you today. Here she shares the many misheard song lyrics that Boomers (and others) have been massacring for years, if not decades. And also some pretty things to make your day cheerier. Enjoy the beauty.

Anyone who has even a passing acquaintance with the Sightings Over 60 blog knows that Tom Sightings is thinking a lot about downsizing, primarily because he’s in the middle of the process himself. But rather than offer his own advice about this complex and emotionally trying operation, he turns to a professional in his latest post The Costs and Benefits of Downsizing.

imgp5711It’s been quite a week for Rita R. Robison, consumer journalist, blogging at The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide. Two giant corporations pled guilty to criminal charges related to fraudulent schemes, with some of their executives being charged, too. In addition, they’ll pay huge fines, Volkswagen $2.8 billion for cheating on emission tests and Takata $1 billion for falsified test data related to the safety of its air bags.

2017-color-of-the-yearA new year offers many new opportunities. Did you know each year one company designates a color corporate soothsayers believe not only expresses the nation’s mood, but also becomes a major color for retail merchandise like clothing, accessories, home appliances, decor, and even furniture?

Find out what the latest ‘in’ color is over at Meryl Baer‘s post about the 2017 Color of the Year.

very-cute-puppyAnd now for my favorite photo from all of these marvelous boomer blogs! He’s awfully cute! Who doesn’t love a puppy? But perhaps he isn’t quite as cute as my Rasta the day we got him. He was only 3 pounds and unbelievably CUTE!

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Unfortunately, I have been hit with a number of bits of bad news about my health lately. This is especially hard to take since I have generally been healthy most of my life. I am having quite a reality check at 61!

cbd-oil-what-is-itWhen you hear there might be something wrong with your brain and your lungs on the same day, it does make you wonder what’s up. Perhaps that explains my post this week about Cannabinoid (CBD) Oil. It’s a none-THC oil derived from hemp plants. Go learn more here.