Friday, May 31, 2019

Peonies -- Planning for the Little Things

Image by M.  Gustafson Gervasi, 2019
Peonies unfolding in the warm sun.  June is nearly here.  With it a memory dances in my mind.  June 1991 and my mother fussed about the peony plants that circled our back deck.  Delicate, vibrant, gone too quickly -- her wish was for those flowers to be there for my high school graduation party.  Mother nature granted mom her wish.  Peonies in full bloom were the backdrop for many photos that day.

All of these years later (has it really been 28 years!) those very plants still bloom in June, just in a new location.  My mother left her earthly life in February of 2014.  Despite her passing in the depths of a Wisconsin winter, I was able to transplant the peonies from the backyard of her ranch home to the flower bed in front of my ranch house.  All it took was a simple request from the new owners for me to return when the soil had thawed.

With the plethora of how-to books on estate planning, probate, trusts, and in general getting your "stuff in order" a huge hole exists.  Planning for the items with no monetary value, but a wealth of love and comfort:

  • the Swedish Meatball recipe from your grandmother;
  • record collections now gathering dust, but once filled a childhood home with music;
  • inexpensive jewelry that made dress up in the 1970s oh so much fun;
  • your late father's teddy bear from 1941; and
  • peonies -- as well as other perennials.
Drawing from my own life, and that of clients I have counseled, don't overlook planning for the little things that make up your one grand and special life.