— Life —

Two Out of Three Pigs…

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I’m not sure hindsight is always 20/20, but it was for me. When I recently took a look at my financials, I was pleasantly surprised. I am about to be 65 – still unbelievable to me – and have to make some adult-decisions I still don’t feel adult enough to be making.

All-in-all, even though I always felt like one of the two little pigs who built their home out of straw or twigs, rather than being prudent and building it out of bricks, I realize I did alright.

You know the tale of the 3 little pigs, right? It’s a fable about working hard in order to not fall victim to the wolf at your door. It’s meant to discourage a casual life, one spent playing and dancing, in favor of sacrifice, conformity, and  security.

But there are those of us who never really wanted security. Freedom was much more important. I always trusted I’d be fine… no matter what wolf happened to show up on my doorstep. And, in hindsight, I always was. Perhaps it was my trust?

I built a clientele of hard-working, successful women, who could afford me (even though there were times I couldn’t have afforded me!) and they were all living adult lives. I admired and respected them, but didn’t want to work as hard as they did, so I built tiny homes, nests, for myself and my one hatchling, and we played, explored, and had fun. And when he flew the nest, I was happy for us both. I had done my job. He could fly!

Did I ever have doubts? Of course I did. Sometimes I felt like a failure for not being a better, harder-working provider. But my work/life balance saw to it that my sticks and twigs wove a tidy little life that afforded me big adventures. As it turns out, I was way ahead of the curve: Tiny houses are hot right now, as is the idea of working for experiences, rather than things.

Been there, done that, need to design the tee-shirt!

So my dears, the moral of this story is there really is no Right Way or Wrong Way. There is only Your Way. Bricks, sticks, twigs or straw… Choose what makes you happiest and trust it.




  • Susan September 12, 2016 at 10:10 am

    Oh Donna, I love this! And I love your flourishing free spirit. I have worried so much over the years about having “enough,” but now I know that I have all I need in my precious relationships with family and friends. There may be nothing left for my children when I’m gone, but we will have had a whole lot of fun while I’m still here! Hugs to you!

    • Donna O'Klock September 13, 2016 at 9:56 am

      Thank you so much, Susan!
      Precious relationships, and having fun while we’re here, is what life is all about, isn’t it?

  • Jen Lawrence September 12, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    This is great. I live in a community where one path is dictated and it’s hard to get my children to realize there are many ways to make a life. When I was young, I opted for security (multiple degrees, a job in banking, savings over fun) but then lost a lot of what I’d accumulated to divorce, lawyers, etc. I wish I’d had more fun. I’m a big fan of follow your dreams now and it’s great to know this path works out too! xo

    • Donna O'Klock September 13, 2016 at 10:09 am

      Jen –
      All we can do for our children is expose them to as much as possible: they absorb what they need, or want, for their own life’s purpose.
      To quote one of my heroes, Tom Robbins, “It’s never too late to have a happy childhood!”
      Keep following your dreams…

  • 1010ParkPlace September 12, 2016 at 4:41 pm

    There are a lot of women who, for whatever reason, haven’t planned as they’d hoped, or should, for retirement. No where else have I read anything like your post that makes women feel like they haven’t failed. As long as they’re happy with their lifestyle and aren’t in a homeless shelter somewhere, all is well. xoxo, Brenda

  • Donna O'Klock September 13, 2016 at 10:20 am

    Happiness with our choices, and lifestyle, is indeed the ultimate goal.
    Thank you, Brenda

  • Christi September 13, 2016 at 11:00 am

    What an encouraging story!

    • Donna O'Klock September 13, 2016 at 11:21 pm

      Well, thank you, Christi! I hope it provides any encouragement you may need to live your dreams and hearts desires!!
      Xo Donna

  • Diane September 13, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    I love that you made your decisions and then lived by them, come what may! Inspiring!

    • Donna O'Klock September 13, 2016 at 11:35 pm

      I was always clear on how I wanted to feel. Maybe selfishly so, but we only get one go-around, right?
      Thank you, Diane, for commenting!!

  • penpen September 13, 2016 at 4:33 pm

    Life passes us by if we have too many bricks in it. There has to be a compromise between a life of indulgent splurges and always saving for a rainy day. Sounds like you found it.

    • Donna O'Klock September 13, 2016 at 11:50 pm

      I was never brilliant at saving/splurges/or compromise. But, I did my best.
      Perhaps it was poor planning, but I always trusted everything would work out.
      Thank you, PenPen for your kind compliment!

  • Brenda Bergin September 13, 2016 at 5:50 pm

    Love this article. I am 67. but young at heart. waves from Ireland.

    • Donna O'Klock September 14, 2016 at 12:00 am

      Thank you Brenda – for remaining young at heart, and for enjoying the article. Please come back and chat again!
      My Grandmother was from Ireland; Nellie Jane McGehee. Seems a land where dreams come from. ☘
      XO Donna

  • angie church September 13, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    love the title of this post one of my most loved childhood stories applied to daily life in the modern world. Thanks for sharing
    come see us at http://shopannies.blogspot.coma

  • Donna O'Klock September 14, 2016 at 7:36 am

    Thank you, Angie. So glad you enjoyed it. Tried your link, but it won’t work – please check and drop me a note, would love to visit.

  • Esther Zimmer September 16, 2016 at 5:41 am

    Oh Donna, you’re such an inspiration! Thank you for writing this, what a refreshing read. Whilst I try to be careful with money I don’t worry about the future a much as many tell me I ‘should’. I’ve spent thousands of pounds traveling and don’t regret a moment, I’ll always choose experiences over things. Our home is in a less trendy part of London because it means we have a smaller mortgage and a bigger budget for life – all of this seems to go against the grain of most people’s ‘sensible’ attitudes but I’m finding that the more true I am to myself, the more I connect with people who share my values. Esther xx

    • Donna O'Klock September 29, 2016 at 7:19 pm

      Oh, Esther, thank you for your sweet words!
      It sounds like you’ve got it figured out – we shouldn’t let others “should” on us. And we should be true to ourselves. You’re doing great!
      XO Donna

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