Archive for the ‘Dearest’ Tag

Two Years Already :(   Leave a comment






The above was written by Henry Scott Holland who lived from 27 January 1847 to 17 March 1918.  He was Regius Professor of Divinity at the University of Oxford

I’ve read that quote often and it brings me hope – as well as the one below, also from Holland:

I am standing upon the seashore. A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength. I stand and watch her until at length she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.
Then someone at my side says ” there, she is gone!”
“Gone where?”
Gone from my sight. That is all.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her. And just at the moment when someone at my side says “There, she is gone.” There are other eyes watching her coming and other voices ready to take up the glad shout “Here she comes!”
And that is dying.





It was two years ago today that I learned that Dearest (Alice) had died.

These two years have been a challenge with me missing my best friend, and the challenges of the site she left behind.  I’m trying my best to keep the boards going but just a couple days ago, I got an incredibly mean and hurtful email from someone.

Part of that said “People were benefiting from the site for 20 years, and you let everything get ruined. What was great is now completely worthless. Great way of honoring Alice, I hope you feel proud of yourself.

Everywhere in my home, there are gifts and letters/cards she sent, emails I printed out, reminders all over.  I’ll see something on TV and think that Alice and I will have a laugh over that – then I remember all over again.

I miss you so much, Alice! 😦

Posted September 1, 2015 by MaryO in In Memory, Message Boards, Quotes

Tagged with , , , ,

Newsletter 11   Leave a comment

The first newsletters that Alice wrote were sent in email to AOL message board members before she started putting them on the website so they weren’t saved for future use 😦

Number 11 for the first “mass market” newsletter, so that’s where we’ll start.  These were originally posted in 1994 or so, so some of the information “may” be outdated – but lots is still good!


A Free E-Mail Newsletter
of the Power Surge Women’s
Midlife and Menopause Community
The Power Surge Web Site
Dearest (Alice Stamm)
Founder and Facilitator

*** *** *** *** *** *** *** *** *** ***
*** *** *** *** *** *** *** *** *** ***

Surgettes,“Perfect awakening is possible here and now for every human being, regardless of background, practice or personal circumstances. You are already free! Anything gained afresh will be lost. What is eternal is always within you, as your own Self. This is the unchanging substratum on which your hopes and desires are reflected. It is hopes and desires which conceal the ever-pure consciousness. The Self will reveal itself to itself in the twinkling of any eye once you abandon all hope and desire, the age-old disease of the mind. Keep quiet. Don’t allow a single thought to stir. Be effortless and in an instant you will discover that you have always been free. Om Tat Sat! [You are THAT!]” — H.W.L.Poonja

You might be wondering why I’ve chosen to begin this latest newsletter with that quote, and I’ll tell you (did you think I wouldn’t? ). This time in our lives is probably the singularly most difficult time we’ll ever have to face – barring everything that has come before. Oh, I don’t know you all, personally, but I do know that many of you have suffered through great hardships, emotionally…. physically.. spiritually… ALL of the above ….but menopause is another issue entirely. Menopause almost suddenly brings into focus the whipper-snappers we were — who could charm the snakes out of the trees with our youthful smiles, taut skin, tight buttocks, perky little breasts, adorable smiles with no bridgework, to say nothing of our wonderful smarts …. who are now suddenly wondering to ourselves if we’ll ever have that energy again … that natural vaginal lubrication … a good night’s sleep . Needless to say, it’s a very stressful time for most women. Please, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise 😦

We think to ourselves, “Hey, I’m very aroused . . . I’m at the peak of my sexuality . . . I am *woman* . . . errrr . . . so why am I so dry? ” We might find the face staring back at us in the mirror still our childhood face, albeit with more experience from having taken the road less travelled a bit more than we ought to have at 25 or 35, but the adorable child within is still there, still seeking answers, still feeling hurt when those we love have disappointed us, still needing validation, stroking, affirmation and confirmation, still needing hugs and compliments and reminders that we’re still desirable, despite the fact that our once perky breasts are beginning to sag .

We aren’t simply getting older, gals, we are becoming. We aren’t dreaming of reaching unattainable goals, we have arrived. We, each and every one of us, have paid our dues. As soon as we all accept who and what we are, and that we’ve done the best we can for ourselves AND those with whom we’ve connected in this lifetime, we will achieve peace.

A remark or two heard in recent Power Surge meetings gave me pause for thought. There were references to old crones [that may be an au courant expression, but I don’t think of myself as an ‘old crone’] face lifts, tummy tucks, feeling undesirable, frumpy, unattractive – – – OLD. Grrrr! This mode of thinking is so counter-productive at this juncture of life. If ever there were a time to feel good about ourselves, this is it! A newcomer to the group remarked, “I’m about to enter perimenopause, so when do I begin HRT?” Uhhh… Say What? I was taken aback by this remark. Where does this mindset come from? Have some women been so indoctrinated by their healthcare practitioners that it becomes an almost foregone conclusion that once perimenopause sets in, we start taking hormones?

This is irksome to me because, like many other women in Power Surge, I’ve opted to go the natural route. I’m quite determined to proceed in this manner, barring any unforeseen circumstances and also because my history of phlebitis in the early 70’s (after having used birth control pills) contraindicates the use of hormones. My decision doesn’t for one moment diminish the importance of another woman’s decision to take hormones. However, if anything, my thoughts when peri-mennopause started were,“what natural methods shall I embark upon now that peri-meno has begun?” This is not to say that HRT isn’t a viable option for many women, and I respect any woman’s choice regarding owning her own body…for doing research, determing what’s best for HER, not her doctor, not her partner, not her children, nor her family and friends… but a conscious decision for herself… but which option we select for ourselves isn’t one which “goes without saying.” It’s a very intimate decision. I hope and pray that the one you’ve each made for yourselves is effecting positive results.

There are stunning revelations effected by menopause. All this shake, rattle and rolling going on inside our bodies isn’t for naught, but, rather, the storm before the calm. The upheaval before the realization. The passage from the years of angst worrying about what everyone else thinks of us — are we okay? do we look okay? do we sound okay? do we communicate okay? and after this uproar subsides, we will ultimately find that, well, as the above quote says…. “Be effortless and in an instant you will discover that you have always been free.”

That’s where we’re going, gals ===== ]]> to freedom!

If you take that singular thought with you after having read this newsletter as you go about your daily routines, I will have accomplished what I set out to do in creating Power Surge … to give you a better sense of yourself, and what wonders you’ve accomplished in this lifetime, especially… at a time when many of us, albeit strong, savvy and outspoken women, are still just a tad insecure about some of the changes we’re undergoing. Please bear in mind that you’re not alone

I urge you to hold fast to the beautiful and bright women you’ve always been. Be your own best friend. Love yourself. The only thing you’re losing in this sometimes seemingly ludicrous process is your period… and a few elasticity genes .

No, we are NOT merely getting older, we ARE getting better!

No, we are NOT losing our libidos, we ARE only occasionally on hold as we cope with these changes

No, we are NOT victims but, rather, experiencing a very natural, albeituncomfortable transition, and we will come through this stronger and wiser and better

No, we are NOT going to fear being cast aside by our partners/S.O.’s for some younger chippy. We ARE . . .

…sexual, spiritually enlightened, intellectually wizened,
emotionally smoothened, savvy, desirable, bright, cute,
fun mature women who happen not to be having
regular monthly periods anymore. So what? I don’t
know about you, but I never relied upon that ludicrous
monthly bleeding to define my womanhood.
It’s quite messy anyway 😦

Take this forward with you into your day. Next time you have a power surge .

F~L~O~A~T with it . . . . . .

Don’t let it consume you. OWN it! It’s yours! You’ve damned well earned it, and it’s not going to kill you.

Face it, if life hasn’t killed you yet, a power surge surge won’t! 🙂

Next time you have feelings of panic and fright, OWN them. By owning your feelings, you control them. Once you allow panic and fear, terror and depression, sorrow and melancholy to own YOU, you’ve opened yourself up to a whole host of negative experiences. Fine, you can’t overcome that moment of panic? F-L-O-A-T with it. Feel yourself as though surfing a big wave in Hawaii.

Ride the feelings
Don’t challenge them
Don’t fight them
OWN your feelings

Own your life, and your life will be yours.


“Keep quiet. Don’t allow a single thought

to stir. Be effortless and in an instant you

will discover that you have always been


Love and strength of mind to you all.



The Power Surge Newsletter disclaims any representation for the accuracy or completeness of information contained herein. The sharing of information herein is not indicative of Power Surge’s personal endorsement of same. It is purely for informational purposes. Health matters should be taken up with one’s personal physician. Nothing in the Power Surge Newsletters, chats, message base, bulletin boards is intended as a substitute for professional medical advice. Opinions expressed are Dearest’s and the authors who contribute to Power Surge and don’t reflect the opinions of America Online.

Sharing is what Power Surge is all aboutdearsmalDearest 

Good Health!


All Rights Reserved
Reproduction in whole or part without permission is prohibited

Posted February 11, 2015 by MaryO in Newsletters

Tagged with , , , , , , ,

2014 in review   Leave a comment

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 57,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 21 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report – complete with fireworks!

Posted December 30, 2014 by MaryO in Quotes, Website

Tagged with , ,

New Pinterest Account for PS!   Leave a comment

In the spirit of keeping Power Surge going with support for women in midlife, I’m adding a set of Pinterest boards.  I’m trying to add things that I think would have been of interest to Alice, as well.

Please follow if you’re on Pinterest and I’ll follow you back!

The message boards are still going strong – find them at

Posted November 15, 2014 by MaryO in Message Boards, Website

Tagged with , , , ,

Alice’s Yahrzeit Starts at Sundown Tonight   Leave a comment


In Judaism, there are several occasions each year when the dead are memorialized. The most significant of these is yahrzeit, the anniversary of the death, which is observed according to the Hebrew calendar. Most synagogues keep registries of the Hebrew dates of members’ deaths and send out notices reminding family members of the yahrzeit date.

As is the case in all Jewish holidays, yahrzeit observance begins at night. A 24-hour candle is lit and, as one woman I know says: “The spirit of the dead person fills the room again for 24 hours.” One attends synagogue for the evening, morning, and afternoon services and again recites the Kaddish [the memorial prayer].

One should not go to a celebration or party on the day of yahrzeit, and some people fast on that day.

Adapted from

English: A lit Yahrtzeit candle, a candle that...

English: A lit Yahrtzeit candle, a candle that is lit on the Hebrew anniversary of a loved one’s death. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The yahrzeit candle is lit during the week of Shiva (mourning). It is also lit at sundown on the eve of the yahrzeit (anniversary of the death) and at sundown preceding the start of Yom Kippur and at sundown preceding the last day of Succot, Passover and Shavuot.

These holidays all have yizkor (memorial) in synagogue as well.

Rest in peace, Dearest Alice.

Today is the First Anniversary :(   5 comments



It was a year ago today that I learned that Dearest (Alice) had died.

It was especially bittersweet because we came home from vacation through JFK airport a couple days ago.  JFK was the last place I ever saw Alice alive.

This year has been a challenge with me missing my best friend, and the challenges of the site she left behind.

Everywhere in my home, there are gifts and letters/cards she sent, emails I printed out, reminders all over.  I’ll see something on TV and think that Alice and I will have a laugh over that – then I remember all over again.

I miss you so much, Alice! 😦

Posted September 1, 2014 by MaryO in In Memory, Message Boards, Website

Tagged with , , , , , ,

Alice’s Garden, Part 2: October 26, 2013   1 comment

I had posted earlier about the first part of the garden, which was suggested my my pastor.  He saw the post on Facebook and thought it was great that I followed through.

We talked a bit about Alice’s Garden at the last church staff meeting and someone mentioned a “Butterfly Bush”.  I’d never heard of that but it sounded interesting.

A week ago today we were at a CD release party for that same pastor’s band (JC Reigns) and one of the staff members had bought me a butterfly bush that very day.  It was still in Joyce’s car so we brought it home.

Tom spent part of the afternoon making a new place for this plant.  Right now, there is one flower on it.



Here’s Tom planting it, and in its new home next to a gold dust croton.

IMG_1674 IMG_1675

And, so I don’t forget…

Want a guaranteed butterfly and hummingbird magnet? Or, one of the most fragrant of shrubs? Plant a buddleia (butterfly bush).

This fast-growing, deciduous shrub with long, arching shoots will reach heights of 6 to 8 feet. Although the green leaves add a welcome bit of color to any landscape, it is the masses of blossoms—long, seductively spiked trusses—that are special.  From summer to autumn, the butterfly bush bears dense panicles, 12 inches or more long, that fill the air with a fruity scent.

At its northern limits, the shrubs can die back, sometimes all the way to the ground. No matter. Butterfly bush is vigorous and undemanding and will send up new shoots, given a sunny location and average garden soil.

Note: Butterfly bush can be an invasive species in some areas; check with your local cooperative extension before planting.



  • Buddleias need full sun and fertile, well-drained soil.
  • Plant in spring or fall.
  • Loosen the soil, mix in compost, and dig a hole twice the diameter of the plant container.
  • When placing the plant in the hole, the top of the rootball should be level with the soil surface
  • Space plants 5 to 10 feet apart, depending on the variety.
  • Water thoroughly.




  • Water freely when in growth and sparingly otherwise. In the summer, water if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week.
  • Avoid fertilizing butterfly bush; too much fertility supports leaf growth over flower production.
  • Remove spent flower spikes to encourage new shoots and flower buds.
  • Each spring, apply a thin layer of compost and mulch to retain moisture and control weeds.
  • In cold Northern climates, spread mulch up to 6 inches deep around the trunk to nurture it through the winter.
  • Buddleias are very late to break dormancy, so don’t be in a hurry to assess winter damage.
  • The bush should bloom abundantly even in its first year. In warmer climates, the bushes will grow into trees and develop rugged trunks that peel; peeling is normal.
  • In the northern limit of their range, they behave as herbaceous perennials, dying back to the root in cold winters.
  • Since they bloom on new wood, even if there is no die-back, cut them back to the ground every spring. Even where winters are mild enough for the stems to survive, prune severely to stimulate abundant growth on which flowers are borne.



Love you, Alice!