Estate Sales & handling grief

A hard day has been bestowed upon me. A close relative has just passed and I am now the executive of the estate.  I try to lean on my immediate family, however they look to me for guidance; I am lost. My relative has just left me an entire home filled with their most cherished items containing many memories from my childhood and my entire families childhood, what do I do? How do I allow myself to grieve and also handle an estate with what seems like a grandiose task of things to do?

Encircling the grief of losing a loved one, I’m not only feeling the loss, but now I have to handle the process of letting go.  Within the letting go, I must release all connections to the physical contents of my loved ones home.  Within releasing, I have to go through each item, noting a story of this or that, thus more grief.  How can I possibly get through this? I’m in such a quandary.  What do I do next?

I make inquiries to friends as to what or how they sold their loved ones items and in turn sell the house?

I’m told I need to stage the home to get top dollar.  But do I?

I’m told I need to sell the contents before I sell the house and yet another says I must sell the house first so buyers can see where their furniture might fit in.  Which way do I turn?

I’m so sad, why am I the chosen one to sell our loved ones items? Why me?  Why me?  If I don’t handle things the right way, others in my family will be upset.  How do I do this effectively for all concerned?

How do we go through our family’s most cherished items and not feel like we’re doing something wrong.  This was their sanctuary.  This sofa held their children, their wonderments, their sadnesses.  How do we let go?  How do I let go?

Then to sell the home, various real estate persons are summoned in.  Within these appointments, sadness dwells within our hearts.  Are we doing the right thing?  We must sell the home because we can’t afford to pay all the bills.  Our own homes are full or too small to house more items.  And yet we don’t want to let go of our loved ones home or the things that caressed their character, their inner most need for that rug, that chair or that statue.

Ok, I’ve got it!  I’ll have the family come in to take what they want and we’ll sell the remainder of the items.  The real estate agent referred names of estate sales personnel. Many are questioned and the right one chosen.

Collectively my relatives wanted to sell all the items quickly.  We signed a contract to have a sale at the house, with a caveat to view setup items on the first day and take whatever we may have missed prior to setup.  When the sale actually finished, the relatives had second thoughts.  Saddened not only because our relative died but because we sold their items and we paid someone to remove the remainder items.  It’s a two-edged sword!  It had to be sold.

The sale went well.  However, several family members thought the sale should have brought more money and began questioning/harassing the commissioned help.  We complained but after rehashing our actions we realized the sales personnel did a great job.  They honored all our requests and now we feel bad about badgering the sales person.  Why did we do such a thing?  Grief, sadness and trying to let go is the culprit!

I hope the salesperson understands how sad we are and have been.  We feel awful for causing someone else such grief and all they did was their job.

Our loved one is gone.

We took what we wanted.

We had a sale.

It did well.

We can do nothing more and need to move on.

The circle of life just happened.

Victoria name for blog posts 11-1-2015

Viewing The Aether’s or Alchemy…. Edmond of Papa Victor & Uncle Henry

Recently, for six weeks and while my crew and I diligently setup a large estate sale, I kept feeling a man near my left side.  There wasn’t a physical man on my left side, however the feeling of his presence continually resonated there.

There were many spots of time, where I’d feel this man just taking account of what is.  I knew he stood about 5’10, thin frame, grey hair.  However, I knew in his younger days, that he had light brown hair.  Why I knew this, I know not.  It’s just a knowing within the feeling of him standing beside me.  I also noted he wore a short sleeve plaid shirt.  The background, a pale cream with 1/2″ thick sage green stripes running horizontally across the shirt and a pinstripe lime green stripe running vertically down his shirt.  This man seemed calm, but took account mentally of what I moved about.  Never did I feel threatened or frightened.

After the first of two sales, Mid March, I met up with the owner of the home and her daughter.  They still had items to move out before the final sale, at which time we chatted a bit of what I saw, felt and or heard at the owners estate.

I conveyed to the ladies, the information of the man I saw, what he looked like and the plaid shirt.  They looked shocked, turned to each other and said that’s papa Henry!  He stood about 5’10, wore plaid shirts too!

I added that he seemed to take account of things.

The lady owner told me that he did bookkeeping for a company for most of his life.  Ah, that’s why the word account kept coming forward as he lingered around me.

They were thrilled that I had him to a tee!  I too, am thrilled with the accuracy that came to me!

The following week, both my daughters, Rachel and Ashley worked the sale with an added employee bonus….Ashley’s son and my only grandchild, Edmond pitched in.  Little Edmond, so calm, so sweet, charmed the masses.  I carried him about the 10,000 sq ft home, helping this and that one along the way.

The girls and I noted that Edmond would look around us and wave to no one that we could see.  Since we’re all metaphysical and note that babies came from the other side into particular parents….and that….we should pay attention to what transpires with each new little one, we then conversed about his waving beyond us.  Especially impactful, is the fact that no one was present on the other end of his wave.

Then on the main level at my checkout table and just below an open balcony, Edmond smiled upwards and began to wave.  Was it the owners papa Henry or Edmond’s papa Victor?

That evening before turning out the light and just as I lay down to drift off to dreamland, I asked if my father – papa Victor might have been at the sale, waving/chatting to Edmond.  Just at that moment, a gnat (the sign that my father is with me) appeared on my left hand.  A natural inclination caused me to swat it away, just as I realized my question was answered.  Yes, Edmond was waving to papa Victor up on the balcony.

There’s a great deal of information of how many see and connect with loved ones on the other side.  Some smell particular scents reflecting a loved ones favorite perfume or cologne.  Other’s note the presence of a butterfly at the precise moment they think of their loved one.  It’s all relative to what each one picks up on when in the presence of one that’s passed.  Paying attention is the key.

I know the masses might think me daft, however upon research over the years of happenings I’ve learned not to question, but to listen and give heed to what is.  Once I learned this process, I’ve felt, seen and or heard those on the other side.

Energy exists in all things.

Hmm, as I type this story down, the cursor keeps jumping to various sentences.  What is going on?  Is someone, from beyond, confirming what I’m typing?  Or is WordPress having issues?  I know from years of using a computer, that when I begin to tell a story of this nature, various `things’ happen that causes me to pay attention.

Soon I noted the cursor kept going back to my father Victor, Edmond’s papa, which of course, confirmed my knowing it was he that waved to sweet Edmond.

I love when this happens!

++++ESTATE SALES MADE EASY NEW COVER-MAIN   PS….Estate Sales Made Easy is at Barnes & Noble , Target, Amazon etc. for pre-sale.  Hard copy Aug, 2017.

Victoria name for blog posts 11-1-2015

A Pearl of Patience

Like many days, I wake with various thoughts and today the title appeared just as I woke, which caused me to jot it down.

Have you ever thought of how a pearl is formed?  It’s grand entrance comes from extreme irritation!

‘Natural Pearls form when an irritant – usually a parasite and not the proverbial grain of sand – works its way into an oyster, mussel, or clam. As a defense mechanism, a fluid is used to coat the irritant. Layer upon layer of this coating, called ‘nacre’, is deposited until a lustrous pearl is formed’. Pearl formation

More information of a pearl is found on the above site, but what I found interesting is that the mussel has to be mature, three years old before the irritant implants.

Now, the human comparison….

When we’re little ones, we might get upset when our toy is taken or we’re hungry etc.  However, when mature these subtle and not-so-subtle irritants creep in before we realize it!  Like the layered coating that creates the pearl.  Educated or not, we receive all kinds of large and small irritants throughout our earthly stint.  Right?

Thus, this thought.  We allow all kinds of irritants, meaning friends, family, business associates, customers, clients, bosses, co-workers into our head space, if you will.  Now think about how often does someone step on our toes?  Frequently!  Too many times to enumerate, at least for me.

I’ve been taught to turn the other cheek, to help someone.  Give the benefit of the doubt.  Help others as often as you can.

Conversely, like the mussel, we have to coddle our thoughts of perhaps distaste with this one or that, because you see….we’re all imperfect.  Within that imperfection, we’re to be as perfect as possible.  Now how can that be?  It can’t be so.

The pearl receives irritation as an ongoing process till it becomes lustrous.

What or how should we treat our daily irritants?  Should we ‘think’ we are perfect in an imperfect world, because we aren’t or should we realize we’re allowing a grooming of a sort, like the pearl into a pearl of patience.

From time to time, at my estate sales, I encounter irritants.  I’ve learned to stand when I become irritated with a person that says my sales are priced too high just because they don’t want to pay the amount noted.  I stay very calm knowing my pricing is at the status quo and that the next person always states without exception that my prices are great!

Patience, is a virtue, to be sure.

Am I one day to become a pearl of patience?  I know not.  I will say this as I become younger, less irritants get under my skin/mussel.

We all need to become a pearl of patience.  Crime would cease!  Maybe heart attacks and strokes.

I think I will try harder to be a pearl of patience!

It certainly can’t hurt…..

Victoria Signature 9-17-15















Yesterday, dear kind Bob along with his wife Joyce, of whom I never met before, attended my sale.  His smile, so endearing, so sweet as was his wife’s.

Of course, I jumped out of my cashiers chair to hug this wonderful man.   We began chatting as usual, thus he opened with this brief tale.  You know I would have been a war hero, did you know that? 

Well, no I hadn’t heard. 

Yes, I would have received many medals of valor had it not been for the yellow streak down my back.

Of course, we all laughed and then he added.  You know I’ve told that to younger ones and they don’t get it.  Again we laughed with our wisdom filled acknowledgement of a yellow bellied skunk or a person who is a coward.

I mentioned to him, that I write down his stories while he chats, of which he was pleased.  He then added a bit more precise information to the previous blog I wrote titled WWII – Memories & Orbs.  Again, I wrote as quickly as I could so not to forget his fabulous stories!

I was in the service during the cold war years in Kawajlein, in the Marshall Islands. The U.S. sent in intelligence officers, from time to time, to check on us to see how we handled ourselves.  One time from the Kawajlein airport came several college professors, nuclear scientists to work in our section.  We were told to never tell anyone who anyone was.  You see, if enemy spies came onto the island or any place else during the cold war, any enemy would then know who to kill and would know what we might be working on.  No, we were given strict orders not to tell anything we knew no matter who asked.  We’d say….my orders are confidential.

But this guy in my section, when an unknown intelligence officer came by asking this and that question, acting like a friend, this private answered all his questions.  Thus telling all he knew about this scientist, that scientist, their titles etc.

We worked on atomic nuclear prototypes and weapons.  See, it was just a few years after WWII, during peace time, but still the war was fresh in our minds.  When the intelligence man asked me questions, I knew better than to say anything but my orders are confidential.  No explanation, no information given out.

The next day counter intelligence officers came to our quarters and swooped that guy up and out of the Navy!  Back to the states.  There’s no tolerance for that kind of behavior because lives are at stake.

He also mentioned that ships all around the Marshall Islands used for operation Crossroads, (check it out here) looked like ghost ships.  I grabbed one of the photos from the above website to note what Bob saw and spoke of.  Erie….he said, very erie.  All personnel had to be tested every week for radiation exuding from these ships.  Read the information, it’s really amazing what our brave men went through!

July 1, 1946 – Photos and information – noted released for viewing.

Thanks to Bob, I have another wonderful story to share!

Enjoy and learn from our elders.

Victoria name for blog posts 11-1-2015


Synchronicity is a concept, first explained by psychiatrist Carl Jung, which holds that events are “meaningful coincidences” if they occur with no causal relationship, yet seem to be meaningfully related.  Wikipedia

Yesterday, turning the corner to my home, my son Blake with me.  We’d just driven 1 1/2 hours that normally would have taken 20-minutes, safely through a storm of 70 mile-an-hour winds. As I drove down the curvy road next to my subdivision, we paid close attention to our home peaking out between other neighboring homes.  Looking high above the other homes we wondered if anything was torn off the roof?  I.e. shingles, siding ripped off etc., all seemed well.

Goodness, the home in tact but rounding the corner to my home, now in full view, we saw this.Weeping Willow 1

Weeping Willow 2







As you can see, the picture on the left didn’t touch my home much to my amazement and thank-fullness!

The Synchronicity of it all is……Since early spring when this gorgeous Weeping Willow tree limbs began sprouting their greenery, I noted the dead side of the tree, thus causing me to wonder if I should have the whole thing removed to replace with a new tree!

Viola!  No one hurt and no home to rehab, the tree down, answer solved!

Sadly, homeowners insurance, paid like clockwork, will not cover the removal.  I often wonder why we have insurance if it doesn’t pay for this type of event too.

The good side of this is all are well, the tree can now be removed and perhaps a new Dogwood to take it’s place!

I love synchronicity!





Tests & understanding

Today, while watching Joel Osteen’s energetic positive talk about how we need to not judge, but to understand.  I knew I was directed to listen to it.

I hadn’t watched his show in months because quite frankly, I’d forgotten what channel it was on.  Out of sight – out of mind.

But today….I woke thinking of my sister Debbie and all the turmoil she went through with her controlling husband.  Sadly, she died December 19, 1997 at the age of 43.  I knew in my heart he killed her spirit, which disabled her from speaking up throughout their 24-year marriage.  This holding-on-to-thoughts spawned ulcers, which spawned stomach cancer.

To me, her closest sister, I knew he killed her via this silent submissiveness, thus the anger.

I’ve vowed to write a book entitled My Sister’s Salvation, noting how free she is from him and a religious cult we grew up in.  Consequently, I began jotting down notes just after she died.  However, I was so angry at her husband for silently killing her spirit that years have gone by knowing I couldn’t write it in anger.  Hence, no book.

Today, Osteen’s talk encouraged me to see the reason why I hadn’t finished this task.  I needed to release the anger towards him and the thoughts that he silently killed my precious sister.

Today, I also had an aha moment.  I realized I’ve been placed in a similar situation via a son.   I wrote in m my journal: My son is a test.   Merely a test!  Will I write with anger or peace?  Perhaps I had to connect the dots to be able to feel a similar angst like my sister may have felt and the giving up feeling she must have held.  I won’t give up, I need all my children.  My sister gave up and gave in to release this life and left her three children.

Osteen’s message was to see that others are not in charge of who we are, but we are in charge of us.  Others may judge us, but in the end its what we think that makes or breaks us.  He spoke of the prodigal son returning to his father’s home not knowing how he’d be received.  Lot’s of anger, judging and gossip had ensued before his return.  His father, however, knew he was still his son no matter what had happened and greeted this son with open arms.  Rejoicing in his return.

Often, each one of us stray but without the kindness of a parent, sibling or friend we might not have pulled through that test.

Thus the lesson I’ve learned today, is to finally write my sister’s book with a positive lilt, without anger or malice.  Setting aside judgement of her husband and my son for their ways, but to realize each test aides us with understanding to help others along our life’s journey, helping us in the wake.





Greet everyday with a smile

Day’s ebb and flow so quickly that I forgot to blog again of Bob and what he said on Saturday, April 16th.  (I jotted it down on a post-it that resides in my daily journal, now to breathe.)

When he arrives at my sales, he makes a b-line to my checkout table, always with a smile.

I saw him coming and said, hi Bob.  Glad to see you!

He’s 88-years young you see and wears a smile that lasts the entire time he’s at my sales.

He walked over and said, When I peruse the estate sales online, I make sure I stop by the sale where the lady always smiles!

Really?  I asked  I’m the smiling lady?

Yes, you always have a smile for all your customers.  You know when I was younger I had lots of anger issues and went to a doctor for it.  That doctor told me that if I’d only wake with a smile and greet all my adversities with that smile, then all my troubles wouldn’t seem so large.

A positive attitude and smile changes how I see things everyday.

I know I smile a lot because my father also stated something similar.  When I asked him several years back, how do you always seem to smile no matter what?

Well, honey.  I learned a long time ago that I could either wake each morning with a smile and deal with the day or I could decide to be a grump every day.  I chose to smile and that’s how I’ve lived my life ever since.

Bob agreed and thanked me for always smiling and being pleasant to all that enter and leave my sales.

What a grand thing to note.  It made my day, that I make his day when he enters the sales.

Oh sure, there’s clients and customers that curl my toes, but I always handle things with a calmness of spirit.  Why should I stoop to any other level, that would only burn my insides and they’d just walk out the door.

No, I chose to smile.

Thanks Bob.

Victoria name for blog posts 11-1-2015




First time grandmother Gray…..’GiGi’

I now understand why various grandparents tell me over and over, what a grand experience it is to be a grandparent!

Well…June 14, 2016….I became a GP member!

Months of knowing a new `boy’ arrival was on the horizon, now here!

Aunt Rachel planned a wonderful baby shower, May 21st with a host of family and friends of both momma Ashley and daddy Doug…..all the while trying to keep the secret from Ashley.  She tried every which way but loose to pry the actual date from her sister and moi.  We stood fast.  We didn’t even tell her fiance Doug, so he wouldn’t give way with Ashley’s inquiries.  Smart Rachel tactic!

Rachel told her it was her engagement party and that Ashley needed to be there by 12:30 for photos.  (Rachel is engaged and to be married September 17th, 2016….another wonderful event to embrace!)

5-21-16 Ashley surprised at baby showerAshley, big and pregnant, wearing a salmon colored, floor length dress entered the room a bit flustered because we needed her there by 12:30 for the supposed photo shoot, walked in with me and Doug, totally surprised!

We did it!  No, Rachel did it!  The rooVictoria and Rachel 5-21-16m was totally planned out.  Neatly displayed clothed tables, with center pieces designed and made by aunt Rachel.

The cake, Rachel hand picked!  Gorgeous!

Ashlleys baby shower cake 5-21-16Then…drum roll…..the pseudo `gift-cakes’Diaper cakes Rachel and Scott made for 5-21-`6 Rachel and fiance Scott created were stunning!  Filled with baby goodies! Diaper bag from Rachel to Ashley at shower 5-21-16 Ashley and Doug viewing Edmond Victors baby book 5-21-16Front cover of Baby book 5-9-16 WITH EDMONDS PIC ON IT 6-25-16EDMOND AND RACHEL 6-14-16GiGi with 1-hour old Edmond Victor Cary 6-14-16

Just-in case….pray

I woke this morn with `just in case’ on my mind.

A recent TV insurance commercial ‘just-in case’ made me think of all the just in case things the TV throws our way.  Or tactics to scare us into submission via our lovely TV’s!  Thank you media!

Since I have four children, I’ve always made sure the furniture corners were never in `running-way’ of my babies. Or the cornered coffee table was replaced with an oval one.  Just in case my babies fell onto it….they were safe.
Ever thought through the various drug commercials?

One makes you keel over IF you take it…..but just in case….you need it, it’s there for you. And another, causes severe bleeding, migraines, etc. etc.

At one time, perhaps 30-years ago, car insurance was not mandatory, by law. However, those of us that understood it’s value, bought it.

Many had liability insurance only, which is “what protects you if you’re at fault for an accident and you hurt someone or someone’s property. It’s made up of two components: bodily injury liability and property damage liability. This type of car insurance doesn’t cover your injuries or damage to your property.” Allstate
Have you ever taken time to think about all the `just-in-case’ scare tactics thrown into our paths?

Of course, just-in-case is very important with children, driving, contracts etc.

Wise Ben FranklClick Me!in stated….”an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”  He actually addressed fire safety.

It’s very true though with our health to prevent something from acting up or out, we, singularly need to take care of us!

When another hurts, it’s that one needing to mend.  However, we can encourage, cajole, coax, persuade another.  In the end it’s the one hurting that needs our just-in-case strength, love and sometimes a drive to the treatment center.

My dear son, Blake needs treatment.  Please pray the treatment center takes him immediately, to save his precious life.

Just in case….

We love you.

He is so special!


A very interesting day….afternoon…

As I drove down the lane and away from meeting Lady H, I decided to view a 2-story Historic home now active as a store of new and recycled home furnishings.

Upon entering, I was greeted by a jovial kind lady of 70-years.  As I entered another room in the house another employee lady introduced herself to me too!  As things unfurled I introduced myself as well.  The first lady noted the sign on my car, Estate Sales by Victoria asking various questions.  All three of us intertwined brief stories of items we liked and a bit of what I do to help others when a relative passes or scales down.  They were intrigued.

I, of course, excitedly told them of my book, Estate Sales Made Easy and that a major U.S. publisher, Hay House awarded me their confidence to publish my book with a contract, a radio show, an eBook and a live webinar to kick things off.  The hard copy to come a bit later.

When I told them that I see and feel `things’ within my many 27-years of handling estate sales, the second lady told me they have a spirit there.  Quickly, I said, don’t tell me anything you may know about the spirit.  I’ll look around to see if I feel anything at all.

Sure enough as I walked up the old 1850’s wood staircase to the landing, my stomach began to fidget!  I continued.  The stairs took a sharp right upward to the long hall with bedrooms on either side and ends.  I shopped around continually feeling – a worried soul- is here.

When I entered the final long bedroom that stretched from the front of the home to the back, I knew the spirit was there and felt worried about something.  I became more fidgety.  I was not afraid, but felt it’s angst.  For or over what, I knew not.

After looking about a bit more, I descended the staircase walking into the back room where I entered and met the second lady there, telling her what I felt.

She said, it’s always at the landing that people feel something and often turn around without shopping more.  She wished she felt something, but never has.  She told me they learned a murder happened in the large room that stretched from the front and to the back of the house.  The same room I felt the extreme worried feeling in.  And that a woman and child were left behind when her husband was killed.

Did I receive the worried feeling from the mother who with her child perhaps were hidding in a closet when the murder occurred?  Did she feel she and her child would be next?  I’m sure she did.

Amazing, as I descended the stairs my stomach started to settle down.

I will have to research to see if an old newspaper houses that story.

I love when these connections take place.

Always pay attention….it’s so intriguing!

Victoria name for blog posts 11-1-2015