Expect Changes

Al Turnbull  Guest Blogger
                                      (An Old Man's Guide to Advanced Age) You are old Father William and your hair has become very white...Lewis Carroll
We are constantly told in the daily news reports that our population is aging.  An advertisement in a popular magazine proclaims that 10,000 people turn 65 every day.  They don't cite their research, but anyhow, it is evident that there are a lot of children and a lot of old people around; also, there is evidence when you read obituaries in the newspaper that many people are living long lives.  As one of the elder eldest (I am 89), I feel that I am in a position to expound on old age as an expert on how to exist in a hostile environment.  At least I have some ideas and suggestions to those of you who are in your middle seventies and are going to have to be canny and realize that you are going to have to re-learn many things as time rushes by, and you become among the old older.
First of all, particula…

Catching up with Technology

I have collected cookbooks for years. I've even created my own cookbook cutting out interesting and unique recipes from newspaper and magazines.One evening, I decided to make spinach quiche for dinner and began searching through my collection to find one without too many ingredients and not too difficult to make.While going through my cookbooks, my head buried behind the pile, my niece walked into the room. "Auntie, what are you doing?"I looked up at her and down at her hand in which she held her cellphone. an appendage attached to her hand as she seldom puts it down.When I told her, she said simply, "Why don't you just goggle it."
"Google it?" I asked. She peered down at her phone while tapping on the screen. Within seconds, she pulled up several recipes for spinach quiche and showed them to me. I was impressed.In response to many questions I have about anything and everything, her response is always "just goggle it." Reluctant to give…

Living in the Present

Anna Chase   Guest Blogger 
Living in the now and being fully present and mindful of each and every moment sounds like a great idea – it’s so Zen!But have you ever really tried it?How can something so basic be so hard?
I don’t dwell much on the past but I do a lot of thinking and sometimes worrying about the future.A certain amount of planning is necessary, but worrying about something that hasn’t happened yet is a waste of time and energy. If you think about it, our feelings of love, spirituality and true joy are “in the moment” feelings.Yet, how to achieve this state all the time seems impossible.
When I try to concentrate on the here and now, my mind always wonders.For example, when I’m taking a walk I’m usually timing myself to be sure I do at least 30 minutes, and all the while I’m thinking about what I’m going to do next, when I should be soaking up my surroundings and just appreciating what is right in front of me at the moment.What’s my hurry?Time pass…

Studying Other Writers

I’m always looking for ways to improve my writing. I try to write every day, I keep a journal. Whenever I read a particularly good book, I write a review for myself. Sometimes I’m so impressed with the author’s writing style, the seamless way in which a story is told combining all the right elements, in the right proportion, I study the author’s technique; not for the purpose of imitating his/or her style, but to understand what makes one author’s writing stand out from another’s.  
In most novels the following elements are present in one form or another - protagonist, antagonist, conflict(s), setting, dialogue, exposition, theme, minor characters, storyline, plotting. But it is the way those elements are put together that distinguishes good writing from bad. I recently read a novel that contained all the above elements; however, as I read I was aware of the author’s missteps and rather than losing myself in the world the author had created, I found myself noticing the problems with t…

You're Not Too Old

“I’m too old,” a friend said to me when I asked her to go with me to the (gym).“What do you mean you’re too old?” I asked.“I’m almost 73," she said, "and when you get to be my age, you can’t do the things you use to do.”
I’ve heard that mantra from people younger than me, “I’m old.”They talk almost obsessively about their age.I wonder if it’s an excuse not to try anything new.When one says one is old, what exactly does that mean?
“I'm old. I’d just rather sit in front of the TV, and watch the world go by, content in my suffering."Satisfied to live vicariously?
Does it mean one is ready to give up on life, sit down and wait for death?Have they stopped living? Not interested in exploring new areas? Close minded, stuck in the past; unable to accept changes?
Does that mean all the aches and pains remind one of ones age. And prevents them from trying something new?
“You can’t teach an old dog new tricks,” one friend said when I tried to get him to accompany me to a cla…

Vanity, Thy Name Is...

I don't think we ever outgrow vanity in some form or another.I remember when I was young, my eyesight was so bad that I needed to wear thick glasses. I wore them reluctantly, and would remove them whenever I could though it left me quite blind. Unless I wore those thick lens, my world was draped in blurred images like the time years ago, when I was in a play at a theatre in L.A. Though I was part of the Greek chorus, every evening before running on stage I left my glasses upstairs in the dressing room and made my way down to the stage. To this day, I couldn't tell you who was in the audience. We could have been playing to an empty house as far as I could see.
Hating to wear glasses as a young girl was understandable then. During my teenage and young adult years I was very aware of the saying "men (boys) don't make passes at girls who wear glasses."More than a few times I and my other spectacle-wearing friends suffered under the moniker "four eyes" hurled…

What Ever Happened To That Old Dress?

Do you remember your old clothes? At times I look up and begin to wonder, "What ever happened to that red dress that I wore to a party when I was a young girl? It was a long sleeve red knit with white dickie." My mother bought it for me from Macy's Department Store where she worked; I wore it on my first date.She was always bringing me the latest fashions which she got at an employee discount; that is until I was a young adult, working and able to buy my own clothes.I remember buying a beautiful chiffon, yellow striped shirtwaist.At the time I wore size 10.I got to wear it once before it became too small or did I gain weight?Still I held on to it for the longest time, hoping one day I'd be able to fit into it again.After a few years, reality set in; I gave it to my local thrift shop. What ever happened to the dress I wore at my wedding? It was beige with brown trim.Being impulsive and a romantic, I had convinced my boyfriend to elope to get away from his domineering…