Thursday, April 30, 2015

Eight years ago tomorrow...

my honey and I ended one adventure in our lives and began another.  We sold our home we had built together in Ft. Myers, Fl and moved a bit north to be closer to our kids.  We bought a house in Tarpon Springs, Fl and proceeded to make it a home.  While we miss our wonderful neighbors and friends in Ft. Myers, we have found a place to call our own...we love this town.

We have gone from not knowing anyone in the area but our kids and their friends to having upwards of 40 people at our annual holiday party every December.  We are both essentially small town people though we spent most of our lives prior to retirement living on the outskirts of bustling St. Louis, Mo.  Tarpon Springs is our kind of town.  We can walk or bike to all but one of our doctors, have found our favorite groceries, watering holes and eateries, have gotten to know the owners and staff and feel we belong.

We stay as busy or as idle as we choose and will have more time soon when our granddaughter starts pre K 3/4 at a school closer to her mother's.  The twins will be in kindergarten at their mom's school and our son in law, Chris, graduates this Sat. with his engineering degree from USF.  We will then proceed to spoil the Grands even more than we do now and be the 'back up' care for workshop days and illnesses rather than care givers.  We will miss seeing the Grands on a daily basis but we have some great plans to fill the time:  an anniversary trip to New Orleans, a few weeks at the beach and a cruise with our friends, Bill and Jo (who also love our little village enough to buy a condo and be "Spongers" for several months...Spongers is the name of our high school sports teams).

We love the diversity of our town.  There is a Jamaican Jerk restaurant, tons of Greek ones, and Italian one and more and our favorite, Tarpon Tavern, where we are greeted like family.  Our down town is straight out of a 50s tv show...small boutiques, a bank, a meat market, antique shops and more and our Sponge Docks...straight out of a Grecian quay.  We have 2 beaches, several lovely parks, the Anclote River and a big lake along with the bayous. 

I know I sound like a Chamber of Commerce ad for Tarpon  Not to mislead, this rich, vibrant place we are so proud to call home is not perfect but it is our Paradise.  

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

There went Peter Cotton Tale (who looked a bit like Papa).

The Wed. before Easter, Kristen brought the 3 Grands over to dye Easter eggs here.  Chris had class until ten and all 3 Grands and their mama were on Spring Break.  So were we! lol.  While E and I helped two of the Grands dye eggs after dinner, Mama bathed a 3rd. and so we rotated til bath time and eggs were done.

On Sunday, after church, the Grands, their mama and daddy came over to our house for Easter brunch.  While Papa put the finishing touches on our meal, the Grands and the rest of us had our Easter Egg hunt., ah, Peter Cotton Tale, had filled plastic eggs with pennies and baskets were waiting when the hunt was done.

Peter Cotton Tail left Legos for the boys and a princess magnetic "paper doll" for Leighton in their baskets along with a chocolate bunny each and jelly beans, which Leighton adored...hers, and her brothers!

And then there is our little Diva in the darling outfit Auntie NeNe gave her!

And a few random shots ....

I hope you all had a lovely Easter as well.

Friday, April 03, 2015

A Few Thoughts on Aging

 A recent spill on my bike has caused me to be a bit more reflective of my aging.  I'll be 68 in a few weeks and, in September, E will turn 70.  Neither of us feel  we are old but our bodies daily remind us we are.

  We have the usual aging signs: odd sleep, aches and pains and developing arthritis and forgetfulness.  We have done what we can to take care of these while maintaining our quality of life.  And we have a wonderful life we want to maintain. E has an appointment with a back specialist and has a follow up with his heart doctor in an effort to improve his mobility which has decreased significantly this past year. 

Until this spill, for me, aging has been more superficial.  I look down at my hands and wonder what old lady switched hers with mine.  Age spots appear and grow, it takes me longer to cover the ones on my face and my hair...more wire and dry no matter what I use on it. 

This spill has left me with a knee that is black and blue and missing a sizable amount of skin, a sprained or jammed finger and a palm also missing some skin and an aching shoulder.  But, most of all, the spill was a wake up call about my mortality.  We go through life thinking not me, I'm fine and I'll be able to walk, bike, run, etc. forever.  Many seniors do and, once I heal, I'll start my morning walks again.  I need to think about my bike, which I love.  Perhaps it is time to trade it for a 3 wheeler, not necessarily a trike and perhaps I am overreacting and perhaps not.

I don't feel my age, not inside and not in the way I perceive myself. But, it does take me longer to recover from colds, injuries such as the ones from my spill, and longer to get myself in gear.  I've given in to the afternoon Nana naps which I fought for eons.  I can't keep up with the Grands the way I did even a year or so ago. 

I believe a reality check is a good thing.  I was riding my bike fast trying to get my speed up for short periods of time and BOOM! I hit a hose across a sidewalk the wrong went one way leaving me skidding across the sidewalk and into the wet grass the other way.  I think my dignity was hurt more than my body 

With all the cancer in my family, I have tried (sometimes not succeeding) to live each day fully and full steam ahead.  Perhaps I can still do that but a slightly less 'damn the torpedoes' approach. 

Off to (figuratively) lick my wounds, apply more antiseptic and ice and take it easy for a couple of days.

My new favorite song:  When I Grow Up I Want to be an Old Lady...'cause I am!