There has been a sign posted on Camp Tuffit in Montana for most of the last century. It says "Free Cabins to persons over 80 years old- (If Accompanied by parents)"
No one had ever taken advantage of the offer until 80-year-old Shirley Gunter of Missoula decided to check out if it was a legitatmate offer. It was.
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So Shirley and her family, including her mom, Helen Self who is 102 years old went camping at Lake Mary Ronan, Montana.
Vince Devlin, a respected reporter for the Missoulian newspaper says "Helen arrived at Camp Tuffit this time with Shirley, son-in-law Bill and granddaughter Diane for a two night stay. The Thomases put them up in one of Camp Tuffit's few modern-i.e., equipped with running water-cabins.
"They said you had to go up four steps to get into it, though, and asked if that would be a problem."Shirley says, "I said 'It might be for me and Bill, but not for Mother."
At 102, helen not only still dances the night away at senior dances and plays cards regularly. She rode on the back of Harley-Davidson mortocycles to celebrate her 95th and 100th birthday, and took a helicopter tour of Glacier Nationa Park with her grandchildren for her 102nd birthday last year.
"I am afraid somebody's going to ask if she wants to bungee-jump," Shirley say, "Because I think she might say yes."
You can read more of this story on-line complete with photos of the parent-child-grandchild combination of campers by going to http://www.missoulian.com
Grandparent, Adult Child, GrandChild and Great Grandchild Connection
Waking up to the Sunday edition of my local paper and finding this article on the front page warms the heart of this parent educator. What a great lesson for inter-generational bonding. How I wish that other families can see how great it is to relax and have fun while learning about life from the elders.
This is also a great example I will share in my next addition of 77 Ways to Have Free Fun With Your Family You may have to be 80 and have a living parent to take advantage of this offer but what a fun, free experience it is to camp at Lake Mary Ronan in Montana.
The Power of Family Stories
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This incident is going to touch the hearts of thousands, who hear, read or share it with their own families. There is an old Africian legend that when a person dies it is as if a library has burned down. So, I hope you will take this opportunity to gather some family stories today. If you need help, check out Leave a Living Legacy a small book on how to gather and preserve oral and written life stories.
Self Awareness Quiz
- Do you have an elderly person in your life? Have you asked them to share their stories with you?
- Do your children know some of the stories of family members who are no longer living?
- Wouldn't you just love to be camping at Camp Tuffit, Lake Mary Ronan, Montana?