After a night of trick or treating, our son consumes nearly all of his Halloween candy before we make it home. If it were left up to him, he would eat the entire bucket that night.
In contrast, one of our daughters will first organize her candy into chocolate, gummy, hard candy, etc. She will then eat just a few pieces of her candy that night and limit herself to one piece of candy per day to make it last as long as possible.
She certainly shows a great deal of self-control.
But at what cost?
Inevitably, as the winter holidays approach, I will throw out a large amount of her old, now stale, Halloween candy to make room for the candy canes, peppermint kisses, and chocolate treats. She ends up missing out on a good portion of her Halloween candy.
Now, I am not advocating eating an entire bucket of candy in one day. But perhaps living life to its fullest and enjoying what we have while it’s still good isn’t the worst approach.
And given that this is now an annual occurrence, perhaps it makes sense for her to make a plan for that excess Halloween candy and give some away while it’s still fresh.
I met with a potential client at his home who was in the end stages of a terminal illness. He was living at home with his sisters providing 24-hour care. His mental capacity was slipping. He had good days and not so good days. He wanted me to draft a will that gave his estate to his sisters and their brother and to disinherit his children as they had been estranged for decades. When I came back to his home to review his will, he was having one of his not so good days and was angry with his sisters because he didn’t want to eat his lunch and they were being pretty persistent that he needed to eat. He decided that he was going to take his money, his boat, and his truck with him and not leave anything to his family. I explained that he couldn’t take it with him when he passed. He insisted he would find a way.
Needless to say, we did not execute a will that day.
He passed a little while later without ever executing a will. His estranged children will inherit everything.
None of us know when we are going to die. But we do know that you can’t take it with you. While we are here, we can live life to its fullest. Maybe eat a few extra pieces of Halloween candy. And if we are lucky enough have something left when we die, we can have a plan in place long before we lose the capacity to do so to make sure the transfer of wealth goes smoothly and according to our wishes.