One of the First Women on the National Ski Patrol

Empowered women come in all sizes, shapes, colors, and interests. Patty (Tasker) Morris is such a woman. We know little about Patty. But we know she was, if not the first, one of the first women on the National Ski Patrol. First Skis Patty Tasker got her first pair of skis from her father when she was five. In the early 1900s, people who loved to ski joined Ski Clubs. Resorts were rare and ski lifts were nonexistent. You climbed the mountain you wanted to ski. But Patty didn’t mind. She loved to ski. She said, “I didn’t like to ever take them off.” At 18, Patty moved from Brattleboro to Burlington, Vermont, in the late 1930s to work for the government. In 1937, a friend of Patty’s kept telling her about a man named Winston “Win” Morris.  Meeting “Win” They met in March of that year. In April they had their first date—on the mountain and on skis. Winston “Win” Morris was among the first ski patrollers of the Mount Mansfield Ski Club in Stowe, Vermont. That club established one of the first US ski patrols around 1935. Eventually that grew into the National Ski Patrol. When asked about […]

Four Women First to Enlist

Before 1914 it was a man’s world. Men ran the country, worked for a living, and fought the wars. A woman fighting beside men was unimaginable. Then on July 28, 1914, Serbian nationalist, Gavrilo Princip assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie. That assassination set off a chain of events that escalated beyond their borders and into what we call World War I. And by the end of the war on November 11, 1918, more than 200,000 women were in uniform and serving their countries. On Veteran’s Day, we salute four women first to enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces.  U.S. Army The Army has not officially stated who was the first woman to enlist. However, historians credit Deborah Sampson (1760-1827) as the first woman who served in the Army. An indentured servant, Sampson disguised herself as a man named Robert Shurtleff. Her story isn’t clear, but she enlisted in 1781 or 1782. She was twenty-one. Wounded several times in battle, her physician eventually discovered her gender and kept it a secret. But her physician’s niece became enamored of the young battle-scarred soldier. Not wanting to lead her on, Sampson wrote the girl a letter which ended up being […]

How to Spot Your Strength When You Feel Powerless

Last week I talked about finding your joy, especially in these crazy days of 2020. This week let’s talk about how to spot your strength when you feel powerless. There is lots of crappy stuff going on in 2020 that makes us feel helpless. But there are ways to take your power back. A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles. – Christopher Reeve Strength Can Be Learned You have power over your mind– not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength. – Marcus Aurelius Yes, it can. Like a kid learning to walk or to ride a bike, it’s not a one-and-done deal. The first step is to train yourself to recognize the things that make you feel helpless. These are your triggers. Once you recognize them, train yourself to avoid them or to respond to them differently. Sharpen Your Awareness There are certain images or words or places that trigger a feeling of helplessness. Knowing what these are, avoiding them when you feel vulnerable are one way to take back your control. Pay attention to your physical body. Do you feel shriveled up, closed, tight? Then […]