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Take it from George Strait: “Write this Down”

by | Aug 8, 2023 | Estate Planning, Motivational, Real Estate

I just got back from a George Strait concert in Tampa, which was a good time, and I’m inspired to sprinkle some of his lyrical wisdom into a blog on maintenance of your personal affairs. Let’s start with, “Write this Down,” in which he urges his loved one to “take a little note.” Although the King of Country was not thinking about legal affairs when he sang that song, we’d be smart to ensure that essential details about our lives are documented and accessible to our loved ones “in case they didn’t know.” It’s another way of saying, I love you. If tragedy strikes – be it death or incapacity – the last thing we’d want is to leave our loved ones struggling to piece together our affairs, saying “Give it Away.” Here’s a few things to write down.


How to Write it Down:

  • Avoid: Simple passwords; saving passwords in an unprotected document on your computer called “passwords;” or leaving your password list on top of your desk.
  • Use: A password manager, which stores encrypted passwords. Ensure a trusted person knows how to access it. Most password managers give you a master password and tips on how to store that.

Don’t let your loved ones go looking for “Oceanfront Property in Arizona,” but instead document what you actually have so someone can find it. You might feel like it’s easy to know what you have, but others will have no idea, and it’s possible the asset will be lost.

How to Write it Down:

  • List: Every real estate property, vehicle, artwork, jewelry, bank, and investment account. If there’s something unique about the asset others might not know, make a note. For example if you own a $10,000.00 painting, tell someone in writing so they don’t sell it for $20 at a yard sale.
  • Beneficiaries: There are special ways to legally determine who gets your properties, and I’m probably a broken record about estate planning with trusts, wills, and updated beneficiary designations with institutions. If you’ve made your estate plan, update your inventory with who is the beneficiary, but remember that actually making the beneficiary designation must be done a specific way to be effective. If you use someone like me or Rizza for your estate planning, in addition to drafting the documents you need, we’ll help you create an inventory and advise you on how to keep it updated going forward. This can make a cloudy situation more like a “Blue Clear Sky.”

Photos & Appraisals: For valuable items, this will be helpful if there’s ever an insurance claim.


For those of you with digital treasures, please make a treasure map. My goodness, it’s not good if you lose your cryptocurrency key – you or someone else will be driven to “Misery and Gin.” (That’s a Merle Haggard song, but George did us a favor and covered it.)

How to Write it Down:


When “The Cowboy Rides Away,” you better know where to find his original Will. Having the original, not a copy, is essential.

How to Write it Down:

Let someone, including your attorney, know where your original Will is. Good options include

  • Safety Deposit Box: With access details shared to a trusted person.
  • Attorney: If you are an established client, our firm, Bryant & O’Connor Law Firm, can safeguard your Will if you ask us, assisting your family when they need it.

Do you want your life prolonged in a vegetative state?, “Check Yes or No.” This and other important healthcare choices and information need to be recorded. Some of what you need to record should be prepared by an attorney to ensure it’s legally enforceable (like an Advance Directive in Georgia), but you also want to make sure a key loved one has information on your medicines, medical providers, allergies, etc.

How to Write it Down:

  • Medical ID: On your smartphone. Look in your phone’s App Store for a good application to store important medical information that can easily be accessed in an emergency.
  • Physical Card with Key Information: In your wallet.
  • Legal Documents: Get from your attorney.

In “I Saw God Today,” George relates being in the midst of a stressful, hectic world, and a flower growing through a sidewalk crack made him slow down and see God. If you want to remember what’s important, tell someone and write it down, and this certainly includes your intangible wealth, such as your faith, experiences, memories, lessons, etc.

How to Write it Down:

  • Letters or Journals: Sharing life’s lessons, hopes, and dreams.
  • Audio or Video: Okay, this is not literally writing it down, but it may even be better. If you are so inclined, there a number of recording devices you can use to memorialize things you want to pass on. My Grandfather recorded the equivalent of a book about different tracts of land on the family farm, memorializing in audio form many historical details that would have been lost. You may not know this, but our estate planning clients have the option of making a video with a message to their loved ones so that something other than financial assets are left in a relatively tangible form.


A well-organized life isn’t just a favor to oneself but a lasting gift to loved ones left behind. The last thing our families need in moments of grief or urgency is the added stress of hunting down assets, decoding wishes, or facing legal ambiguities. If you get yourself organized and do what needs to be done, your loved ones will be singing, “Carrying Your Love With Me,” not “I Hate Everything.” Take the advice of George Strait, put it in a song, or in this case, well-detailed notes and the right legal documents. If that seems overwhelming, our law firm can help you. If you haven’t done an estate plan with us, consider making an appointment for a family planning session, at which we’ll help you get clear on these issues, not just make documents that might or might not help when you or your family needs them. If you have already made an estate plan with us, don’t forget that we offer personal maintenance plans in which we offer annual reviews of your plan and priority access. If you’re not on board yet, you can still make Cheyenne before the setting sun reaches the horizon.

Disclaimer: This content is intended for informational purposes and should not be considered legal advice. Always consult with professionals for decisions about your personal assets and legacy.