Hi, Lynn, nobody else is flying to you with an answer, so I'll tell you one technique :)
Rinse the beans. In the pot, melt unsalted butter, about a tablespoon or two. Keep the heat low enough. Add a chopped white onion. Cook on low till transparent. Remove the onions from the pot. Add about two tablespoons olive oil. Once the olive oil is warm, add the ham, in small pieces. Add back the onion. Add about two cups distilled or spring water and allow to heat. Add the limas, and enough water so that the height is half beans, half water. Raise the heat, and allow them to come to a boil. Lower the heat a little, keeping them turning over (if you want them done fast) or lower it a lot to let them cook slow.
I hope they turn out.....!