around the frame aug 2011 – our experiences


I am writing to let you know how lovely this “glimpse” on meditation is to me. This is the best of many years of wonderful introductions to Ninepatch that you have written so far. I am WITH you in that sunshine enjoying the quiet, the leaves, and the birds …. Yes, I agree, I’m sure in the next treasured moment, you will hear God’s whisper….

Thank you for all your time and sharing.


JW/Joy(Apr.’11) adds, “I’ll get to the prayer shawl group story for Ninepatch soon.”



How could you be so upset by a precious animal chewing? I actually like that sound! I lie in the hammock and the squirrels talk to me!

I like all animals and critters. It may have just been one particular squirrel doing that. But, they can wreck screens, too. There is no way to control this…. My husband and I have had to just live with this and keep making repairs to our porch.

We get possums, too, but they seem to work alone most of the time … one at a time! Hahahahahaha!

Critter Manic


Barbarajean (July ’11) adds, “About a week ago there was a young raccoon dead on our patio, so it must have been natural causes. The mother came for food and the little guy just didn’t make it for some reason. Sadly, he got double bagged and put in the garbage. My husband said some dog or other creature would just dig it up if we buried it.”


Hi Frances,

I just finished reading the July ’11 Ninepatch and I enjoyed it. Your squirrel story was fun reading! Squirrels are such amazing problem-solvers. I was reminded of my own trials with a pesky one who kept eating out of my bird feeder. No matter what I did to foil that animal, he managed to get the seed that wasn’t meant for him!

I loved the resolution to your tale — how JK found your lost earring — it shows that everything shifts when we see things from a different perspective. It’s almost as if the squirrel was beckoning you out to the yard the entire time. Beautiful. I never saw that kind of resolution to my own squirrel problem, but perhaps I was closed to seeing it.

Now, however, I am really valuing the ability to stay open to alternative viewpoints. Recently, several experiences have led me to a spiritual awakening. I find myself suddenly willing to let go of the old stuff I was writing about.

Instead of blaming my wounded parents, I’m feeling more compassion for them.

Probably this is because I’m showing myself some love. I recently read a quote that went, “Religion is for people who are afraid to go to Hell. Spirituality is for people who have already been there.” I completely relate and for the first time in my life am really opening up to spirituality in a way I never have before, even when I went to church every Sunday. So I firmly believe that life changes when our perspective changes and we can stop judging things — especially ourselves — so harshly.

Just like with you and your squirrel. (:

Your friend,


Theresa (July ’11) says, “I love the way Ninepatch allows people to connect across different paths in life.”


Dear Frances:

Just too much going on, waaaay too much. When my husband Bill and I are not surveying, we seem to be working on something around the house. Today is the first day that I feel okay with just doing mostly nothing.

My younger horse, Shaman was sold last week. My older horse, Katie, left the farm last week to be sold from our trainer’s home. Sad goodbyes.

I dearly need a break, which is coming a week from today. Bill starts Boy Scout camp a week from today and I will get some much needed time alone.

Feeling kind of scattered this morning.

Take care,


Linda Rosenthal (July ’11) adds,I’m investigating getting back into bicycling. I took the bike that I bought, when I was staying with you years ago, down to the local bike shop for a checkup. I looked at new bikes for possible purchase, perhaps later this autumn — maybe get some fitness again. Focus on myself, you know?”


Dearest Fritza,

Thanks for the July 11e Ninepatch. It’s interesting to read the latest installments in the


lives of the regular contributors. I feel for Linda Rosenthal who’s having to let her horses go.


I can relate, having broken my arm coming off a horse a couple of years ago. My back hasn’t been the same since. The muscles atrophied from the arm being in a sling. I realized that it’s quite different to fall off a horse as an older person. As a preteen, I fell off a horse, crack-ed a rib (Didn’t realize it at the time.) and rode seven miles home on my bike!


Enjoy your days!






Liz/Moascar (July ’11) See also FABRICS) adds, “Iloved seeing your squirrel story in print. What a cheeky animal and what a great happy ending. I just realized all the hoops I have to jump through to get my younger son registered for college classes in the fall! Lots to do.”




 Hi Fritzie,


The weather here is really nice today — in the 70s and sunny.


Are you still dealing with depression? I am. My misery comes from my son Bryan’s mental state. I do wish he would get some help. He is a sad case — back living at the YMCA.


On a bright note, you should see Bob’s backyard garden. It is the prettiest one he has had so far. He is getting to be an expert at this farming bit. Sometimes, I think I would like a house with a little more land so we could plant some corn and a few more veggies.


I think about you a lot my friend. Pray for you and JK every day. Hope all is well with him, too. Going to close now. Will talk to you later.




Patricia (June’11) adds, “Recently, I got a hearing aid and am enjoying hearing again.”



 Dear Frances,


Uncle Jerry is not doing so great. He is hospitalized and sleeps a lot. He does eat better than before. I feed him yogurt with high protein and mashed potatoes with margarine (no olive oil is available).


The doctor would like for him to go to a hospice. It is very hard to get in. Told the social worker I want to be nearby in case he needs me. I sleep next to him on a recliner chair, otherwise he will not eat, or drink and will teeter aw 

ay to nothing. He will not take his meds and will just die.


Now that Uncle Jerry won’t return home, I have to start cleaning out the apartment. The management will not let me stay — I don’t qualify.


I have approached a nursing rehabilitation with hospice care in Chapel Hill, NC. It’s nice and I am hopeful. Am doing re-search on getting him there via Angels Flight.


If it is God’s will that we have to tread on this path, then so be it. Have to keep the faith that God will find a place where he’ll be well cared for.


Uncle Jerry is sleeping.


All the best,




Lotte (July’11) adds, “The doctor and I think that Uncle Jerry will not be with us much longer.”




Dear Frances,


Thank you for your letter and Ninepatch. In answer to your question, yes, I am still seeing my counselor. She gives me hope. She gives me ideas. She makes me feel stronger.


Since I am unable to drive, I am trying to find transportation to see her — someone other than my husband. I am also calling on that apartment. This month the landlord told me to call back at the end of next month. He thought he’d have an opening. (Hope.)


Now my kids (who live in our basement with their family) got a puppy! It howls and barks. One day the noise was particularly bad and my older daughter — Anita — also called and bugged her dad a few times about something she wanted. He lost it. He told Anita, “I can’t stand it. I’m going to kill myself!”


Anita called her caseworker and that woman called the police. I was only home a little while and the police just walked in. (I guess that’s what they do in possible suicide cases.)


I didn’t suspect any trouble. My husband was fine when he picked me up from work. I found out about the whole thing when the men-in-blue opened our front door.


Talk about a split personality — that’s my husband. He goes back and forth, yelling and screaming then calm enough to fall asleep. It was a bad week.


I am so glad to have a counselor! She is a point of sanity in all this! My faith helps me, too. I pray a lot. I still take one day at a time. Baby steps — two forward, one back.


Thanks for listening. Take care and have some fun!


God bless you.


Linda Sue


 LindaSue (July ’11) adds, “Whenever I try to do something for myself, my husband asks, ‘What about me?’”



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