Thursday, August 17, 2017


Last week I celebrated my 79th birthday with two birthday cakes in one day. My sisters and sister-in-law met me at a restaurant the day after my birthday for lunch gifts and a chocolate cake, my favorite. It was on a Saturday, a day after my birthday when no one was working.

That evening my son had me come over to his house for pizza and a Dairy Queen cake. I had told him not to get me any gifts because there wasn’t anything I needed, and he’s been mowing part of my lawn.
On the fireplace in my sun room

I was getting birthday cards the whole week before my birthday from people I didn’t even realize they knew it was my birthday. 
Now that seems like a very old age that could make me feel I’m nearing the end of my life, but because I get AARP and Reader’s Digest I’ve read articles that let me know the best ways to stay healthy and live to a long age.

This is just one of many gardens

Some facts I’ve learned is that gardening is good for you, and a lot of older people, especially women garden. That includes me.

My lawnmower stopped while I took a short break.

Exercising is important. (I have to admit I don’t do much of that except for walking in the woods with my dog, carrying water to my ponies, and mowing sections of my lawn, too.)

We need to eat more protein, calcium and fiber. Most older people don’t get enough protein for the muscles and calcium for the bones. (I drink milk every day and some form of meat or eggs almost every day, and I usually have oatmeal or toast for breakfast and 12 grain bread for my luncheon sandwich.)

Vitamins are important. (I take my vitamins.)

As we age we have trouble falling to sleep or staying asleep, but that’s because of age-related hormone changes or sleep-robbing health problems. (My problem must be the hormone changes because except for the rare case of pneumonia several months ago, I’m very healthy.)

Other good news, I’m not a smoker and have never been one. The only drinking I do is the occasional half glass of wine at one of my book clubs or dinner at my sister-in-law’s home. (Actually, I’ve heard wine is good for you so maybe I should have some in the evening before I go to bed.)

Ways to keep your brain sharp. According to AARP preserving memory is our main concern as we age. I know I worry about that when I try to remember someone’s name or a word, but from talking to others even those younger than I am have the same problem. It’s called mild cognitive impairment (MCI)
Just a few of the many books in my library where I write, too.

Some things that help us with that: Do what you love. (Okay, I love writing and reading. I do a lot of both.)

Don’t let the negative stereotype about aging get to you. (Up until several years ago, I said I wasn’t old, I was just in upper middle age.)

This is Puffy one of my two sister ponies.

Take a stroll after dinner. (Well, I don’t exactly do that, but I do go out and feed and water my ponies and gather eggs in the evening.)

Having friends and getting together with others is important. (I belong to two book clubs, two writers’ groups, go to church every Sunday, and at least once a month get together with siblings for dinner or visit with my daughters (usually on the phone) or talk to my son.)
My Mobile Meals sticker is on the back window.

Volunteering is important. (I do Mobile Meals every other Thursday and get a lot of satisfaction from that.)

Trying something new. (I’ve tried a lot of new things over the years, but I can’t think of anything in particular so far this year.)

Most people my age (83%) prefer print books to e-books. (I’m one of them.)

According to a Pew report, ninety-one percent live in their own place and plan to stay there. (I’m in that percentage.)

It’s important that we laugh every day. It gives your immune system a boost. (I tend to be a happy person, and even if I don’t talk to others some days, I laugh at my dog and my cat or something I’ve read.)
I'm heading to the woods to trim some branches along my trails.

We get more respect. According to one poll six in ten people in their late 70s say they get more respect. I’ll have to pay attention and see if that’s true or not. I know family members have been more caring since I was so seriously ill in June, and it seems to be continuing even though I’m perfectly healthy and feeling well now, and will probably stay that way because I’ve never been very sick. I seldom missed a day of teaching even though those students often showed up sick because mom or dad didn’t believe it when they said they were sick.

Do you dread getting older?
What are the things listed above that you do to help you stay young as you age?


  1. Gloria,
    You are the master of age. Young at heart and in body, mind, and spirit. Based upon the criteria in your blog, I think, if I'm not careful, you and I will, in the not so distant, future, pass in terms of age -- me creaking along even though the numbers aren't there, yet, and you sailing back to being a swinging teen. A belated happy birthday and so glad that bout with pneumonia was only a temporary set-back.

  2. Happy belated birthday, Gloria. You are an inspiration for aging well.

  3. Happy birthday, Gloria! Excellent tips...most important is your positive attitude. :)

  4. Thank you, for this. Just what my whining-self ordered. Happy Belated Birthday. Now, heading out to my little garden.

  5. You sound healthy to me. Happy Birthday.

  6. Too bad we can't take all we've learned into our next life.
    Happy birthday.

  7. Happy birthday to you, Gloria. I can't think of anything better for an aging brain than writing so I expect to see many more blog posts and books from you. I took up ballroom dancing in my late fifties (a decade ago) and it's a wonderful activity for the brain and the body.
    Not so much the knees, though. Sigh.

  8. Happy birthday, Gloria! Whatever you're doing, it works. I think a positive attitude and many interests keeps people going.

  9. happy birthday Gloria. I hope we have a long, mild fall so you and Maggie can get out to enjoy it.

  10. Debra, you made me smile. No way am I going back to my teen years. Too much drama there. I look forward to seeing you at Malice next year.

    Thank you Grace. I've been lucky to have had good health and a wonderful family and friends.

    Thank you, Joanne. I've had problems in my lifetime, the death of my oldest child, divorce, etc. but I've always had people who cared about me.

    Enjoy your gardens, Holly. I hope they have less weeds than mine do. :-)

    Thank you, Warren.

    Pat, who says we can't?

    Thank you Cynthia. A friend and I took up clogging in our 50s, although I don't do it anymore except when Celtic music or bluegrass comes on the radio I dance in my living room to the surprise of my dog.

    Shari, I totally agree with you.

    Margaret, so do I. Spring was too wet and rainy. At least we get outside every day to take
    care of the ponies and chickens, and I walk a short distance to feed my son's peacock.

  11. Happy birthday, Gloria. What a great post. I love your garden and the hostas - - - yummy!

    Do I dread getting older. Heck no. I feel as if I'm just coming into my prime. All life is an adventure. Grab it with both hands and practice contentment. Sounds like that's your secret too.

  12. Happy Birthday, Gloria. Sorry I'm late to your party.

  13. Thanks, Kait. I like your attitude. It is an adventure and I feel free to do whatever I feel
    like doing.

    Thanks, Elaine. You've had a lot going on so I can understand that.