Sweet Lemonade: Living in Abundant Gratitude


When life hands you lemonade you might wonder: where are the lemons from whence  that sweet lemonade originated?

Col.Pat and I have been graced with the most fortuitous bounty of life.  We live in a constant state of gratitude and recognition of our good fortune.  Lemonade.  Sweet, sweet lemonade!

Our magic to squeezing every last drop out of life’s lemons is to live life with intention and abundant gratitude.  Our intention is to make the most of every opportunity to share our lemon times.  Those times were the sourest during the days of separation when Col.Pat was assigned to the Pentagon and in the jungles of Panama.  Needing to live in stealth  and invisible to the U.S. government and military takes a toll.  Cindy L. Abel is doing a magnificent job of portraying much of this in www.SurvivingTheSilence.com currently in production.

Sour times seeped in when we lived in the closet during 29 of our almost 31 years together. Col.Pat says only after she came out to her family is when she felt to be totally and completely OUT!  She accomplished that last year at the age of 80!!  When the time is right it happens!

We have been graced with the love and support of family and friends which has grown even fuller over the years.

Being inordinately favored with remarkable good health gives us the energy to work toward our goals.

Our house is much greater than the sum of its numerous parts. We’ve created a safe haven and countless gatherings of our diverse ensemble of cherished friends and family.

The photos above were taken today as we spend a week at one of our favorite places–Bodega Bay on the wild Sonoma Coast of California.  We enjoy “camping” in our vintage 1973 Silver Streak travel trailer as often as we can.  It’s a terrific activity to share with other Rainbow Campers.

Pour yourself  a glass of sweet lemonade and join us!




15 More Minutes


I don’t mean to drag out that old trope, “Everyone will have their 15 minutes of fame”,  but it seems that we are accruing little 15 minute nuggets here and there on the “E ticket” ride that has become our lives.RCB_20150730 LesbianColonel0807_ 028

The photograph above was taken during our interview with Sacramento Bee writer, Cynthia Hubert.  Bee photographer Renée Beyer, snapped some wonderful shots of us during the two hours we had the pleasure of their company.  The article can be read here:  http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article29991720.html

Being in the “limelight” is an avenue for us to share our message.  The personal account we share is part of the process to educate, inform, and enlighten the public  about the inequities LGBT people have dealt with for decades.  Our story delves into how LGBT soldiers had to live before the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell on September 20, 2011.

Col.Pat and I take the privilege of having this public platform very seriously.   We want, diligently, to reiterate our desire to shed light on the hidden history of LGBT lives.  The passage of time and the wonderful far-reaching positive changes in our fight for social justice might sweep this history under the rug.  When that happens, the collective consciousness can forget how odious life had been.  Then the efforts to strip away the hard-won rights can raise their ugly heads, as they are now, with the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and similar laws, ordinances and propositions being brought to the voters.

We are on guard and keeping a vigilant eye on all that we hold dear in the battle for justice and equality.  Our fifteen minute nuggets may continue for a while and we will  honor that advantage to keep the dialogue active.


Renée Beyer, Col.Pat Thompson, Cynthia Hubert