The Joy of Old Age. (No Kidding.) –

A wonderful essay from Oliver Sacks on the approach of his 80th birthday…

My father, who lived to 94, often said that the 80s had been one of the most enjoyable decades of his life. He felt, as I begin to feel, not a shrinking but an enlargement of mental life and perspective. One has had a long experience of life, not only one’s own life, but others’, too. One has seen triumphs and tragedies, booms and busts, revolutions and wars, great achievements and deep ambiguities, too. One has seen grand theories rise, only to be toppled by stubborn facts. One is more conscious of transience and, perhaps, of beauty. At 80, one can take a long view and have a vivid, lived sense of history not possible at an earlier age. I can imagine, feel in my bones, what a century is like, which I could not do when I was 40 or 60. I do not think of old age as an ever grimmer time that one must somehow endure and make the best of, but as a time of leisure and freedom, freed from the factitious urgencies of earlier days, free to explore whatever I wish, and to bind the thoughts and feelings of a lifetime together.

I am looking forward to being 80.

via The Joy of Old Age. (No Kidding.) –


Aging Brain Facts – Do You Get Smarter as You Age –


It’s true that as you get older, your brain’s processing speed begins to slow, and your memory may occasionally short out, says Margaret Gatz, PhD, professor of psychology, gerontology, and preventive medicine at the University of Southern California. But researchers have recently made some surprising discoveries about what’s really happening in our heads as we age: “We are identifying ways in which older minds hold their own against younger ones and even surpass them,” Gatz says.

via Aging Brain Facts – Do You Get Smarter as You Age –

Reinventing Old Age: The Good We Do When We Work Forever | The Business Desk with Paul Solman | PBS NewsHour | PBS

Marc Freedman: I think we’re in the middle of restructuring what a life looks like in the context of much longer lives. You can’t just fold, spindle, stretch and mutilate a life course that was set up for 20th century life spans for 21st century spans that ultimately will last 100 years. You’ve got to rethink the whole process of education, of productivity, and balance the working lives over much longer periods of time as well as human capital development.

via Reinventing Old Age: The Good We Do When We Work Forever | The Business Desk with Paul Solman | PBS NewsHour | PBS.

Own Your Grief

Good advice for the grieving…

Memory Bears by Bonnie


Each one of us will experience the death of those we care about at various times in our lives. Each of us will grieve. The depth of that grief depends upon the relationship…the closer you were, the greater the grieving.

One thing to remember when grief comes your way; the grief belongs to you, alone. Others will be there to console you and some will understand, but no one owns your grief. The point is, no one can tell you when, how and how long to grieve. Don’t let that happen. Own your grief; protect it, for grieving is loving.


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Making The Commonplace Journaling


We’ve talked a lot about Commonplace Journals, and I thought it might be a good idea to show you mine. The purpose of a Commonplace Journal is to record items you need to remember, everything from the name of a book to an idea for a future art project. It’s not formal, it’s not meant to show to others or as a brag book. It’s your memory, your imagination, and the garden of your muse.

To hold my Commonplace ideas, I bought a hand-made journal from Val Bembenek. She makes wonderful, traditional Japanese-bound journals, about 8-1/2 inches  x 5-1/2 inches, with horizontal orientation. Val ties non traditional buttons on the front as decoration. She also uses paper bags as covers.  (You can buy them from her via email, too.) This one has a wine bag front cover and a bread bag back cover. Perfect combination!


I’m not showing…

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Elderly and my Pop

Courageous, compelling, and deeply moving…

Ramblings From A Mum

I have previously written posts about my Pop but today I needed to write once more, so forgive me for not having a ‘cheery post’ to submit tonight. I simply need to be able to talk about how I feel.

I am watching my father decline rather rapidly. It is the most heart breaking thing I have had to witness (apart from having to hold my 16 year old dog as the Vet put her to sleep) and anyone who has cared for their elderly parents will know what I am writing about. This.. this is something almost unbearable to face.

He will be 86 in July my dear Pop.  Pop

The last few weeks he has been experiencing so much trouble walking, he struggles to actually raise his leg to place one foot in front of the other. His hands also shake uncontrollably and he is embarrassed to eat…

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