Join us to celebrate the life of Sandra Gardner Ostrander "Many people met Sandra Ostrander through Good Shepherd Humane Society. Her devotion to animals was heroic, volunteering at the Doggie Thrift Store and writing the organization’s monthly newsletter for many years. This prim and proper woman with a wicked sense of humor and a mouth that could make a sailor blush was a great writer, a steady fixture at the Writers’ Colony’s Poet Luck whose poignant short stories were sometimes dark, but always funny. She left Eureka Springs several years ago to be closer to her daughter. Her 'Cancer Chat' posts on Facebook, like all her writing, were painfully honest, gut wrenching and hysterically funny, and her Oldbitchuary contains sage advice we could all use. --- JOHN RANKINE Sandra wrote her own “Oldbitchuary” that was published in the Eureka Springs Independent: "Good news and bad news: If you’re reading this, the bad news is I’m dead. The good news is you’re not. Top Ten Things I’ve Learned on My Way to the Grave 1 Cherish your youth. You only get one shot. It’s not coming back, no matter how much you spend on plastic surgery. When you’re young, you look great, even when you don’t. Once your youth goes, let it. Having your face stitched and stretched until you look like a dog with its head out the window of a speeding car will not bring it back. Move on. 2 Live up to your potential or you’ll spend your old age worrying about what could have been. Develop your natural talents, make time for them, and never stop doing what you love, even if you suck at it. 3 Never marry someone you don’t like. In the long haul, that’s a lot more important than most anything else. Attraction is frequently confused for love, especially when you’re young and in heat. Don’t fall into that trap, and if you do find yourself ensnared there… run! If your mate doesn’t treat you well… run! Don’t take any shit off your mate. It will not get better with time. Don’t waste your life with someone who doesn’t have your best interest at heart. Run fast and far while you still have the will to live. 4 If you have a tendency toward jealousy, let it go now. It’s unattractive and will get you absolutely nowhere. No stalking, no spy apps. If your mistrust in someone is founded in absolute truth, move on. If not, give that person the benefit of the doubt and bite your jealous tongue every time it rears its ugly head. 5 Laugh! Sharpen that sense of humor and wield it like a machete. It will help you through rough times. Find the funny in everything. It’s there, even in hospitals and at funerals. 6 If you love someone, tell them now. You may not get another chance. Even if they don’t love you back, you’ll still feel better for having put it out there. If you see a stranger and something about them catches your eye… hair, dress, tattoo, interesting skin rash, whatever… tell them. I did it all the time and was never once presented with a restraining order. People like to hear good things about themselves, even from strangers. Never pass up an opportunity to brighten someone’s day. 7 Be happy. It is a choice. You can’t always control what happens to you, but you can control how you react to it. Be grateful for everything in your life. You’ll never be happy if you don’t appreciate what you have. It’s not having what you want, it’s wanting what you have. 8 Learn to say no. Do what’s right for you. You don’t have to say yes to everyone who wants something from you. If you never turn anyone down for anything, the parasites of the world can smell it, and will rain down on you like a plague of locusts. It’s OK to say no. Equally as important as learning to say no is learning when to shut up. Here’s a clue… when you’re talking to someone and their eyes roll back in their head, it’s time. Once they grab the nearest sharp object and disembowel themselves on your Birkenstocks, it’s too late. 9 Don’t give a shit what others think about you. As long as you’re not doing anything immoral, illegal, or hurtful, follow your own heart. It’s very liberating. Never let the opinion of another influence your opinion of yourself. 10 Enjoy yourself. I think we were put here to enjoy our lives and to help others enjoy theirs. Give back to your community. Take joy in simple pleasures and comfort in family, friends, and pets. Remember that it’s never about money or stuff. Relationships are what matter. There will be no funeral service. I’ve donated my corpse to science. It’s the ultimate recycle. Please send any memorials on my behalf to the Good Shepherd Humane Society, PO Box 285, Eureka Springs, AR 72632. I leave behind my amazing daughter, Andrea, my gift to the world, who lives near Mike and me in Westbrook, Maine, with my terrific son-in-law, Jason, and my lovely granddaughters, Bitch 1 and Bitch 2. aka Mia and Shurube. Then there’s my longtime love and confidante, Mike Durff. If you know him, bring him a hot meal every once in awhile and make him eat it. Also, to my lifelong BFFF, Wheat, aka Sandra Wells, my life would have been so much less without you. Please, don’t shed a tear for me. I’ve had a great life and will be waiting for all of you at the Rainbow Bridge. Just don’t be in any hurry to get there!"