Coonskin Caps & Cowboy Hats

 “Oh, Lucy, I know you’re not going to move, but if you ever do move, don’t move.” -Ethel Mertz

We were a lot like Lucy & Ethel…we daily found ourselves in surreal situations as we lived our Middle American lives raising a bevy of children. I connected with my friend, Lisa, as we both were beginning our families in the 1980s. I stopped at three…she stopped at seven. She was always a super woman….just had to top me at everything.

I remember one day I walked into the house and there she was in the kitchen…grinding her own wheat for homemade bread…putting away food from her food co-op…checking the work of two children she was homeschooling…watching another one in the backyard…and ripe as a pumpkin with yet another one waiting to come out!! Oh, and on top of everything, I had stopped by to discuss the precinct chair position since an election was coming up. I remember thinking…WHY CAN’T I BE LIKE LISA? She always had it together.

We shared babysitting…built swing sets…hung piñatas…chased Davy Crockets…then chased John Waynes…danced…sang…played in the mud…built amazingly cool Playmobile scenes … marched in July 4th parades…went to the zoo…went to the museum… cheered at soccer games…blew out birthday candles…fostered laughter in the walls…built foundations…together.

Today, I will join friends and family in a celebration of Lisa’s life. After returning three times, a brain tumor won its ugly battle. As always, she was the brave and the strong one. She leaves behind seven incredible children…one married…others in college…others still in school. They are a testimony to the mother who poured so much love, attention, and care into them. But, she also poured a portion into my own children and I am forever grateful.

Lisa knew that it was cool for strong young boys to ride the range; climb trees; and spend their days in coonskin caps and cowboy hats. I will treasure these moments always.


  1. My dear what an swesome woman she was. How special true friendship between women is. It can make us strong. And truly come to define us. I'm sending my love and extra hugs that I hope you pass on to her children.

    We'll be here when you get back if you need to talk. 😉

  2. What a heartfelt post. I am sorry at the loss of such a good friend to you. I will treasure my mom friends even more today after what you've written here.

  3. What a loving tribute to a very special friend. She was truly an awesome woman. Sending cyber-hugs your way. PS…you are an awesome woman also!

  4. Im so very sorry Pam to hear of the loss of your Dear friend… sad. Im sure you are so thankful to hold the memories of her so close to your heart.
    My prayers are going up for her and her family today.

  5. I am so sorry to hear that you lost a good freind and that she will miss out on so much. too young, so much to do yet. I am sure she will be greatly missed.

  6. she sounded like an amazing woman, so sorry for your loss. i'm sure she's leaving you all with tons of great memories.

  7. True friendship between how women in particular. Can make us strong. And really come to define us. I send my love and extra hugs which I hope to pass on to their children.


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