Looking for answers to life's questions

My son came for a three-week visit across the Thanksgiving holiday this year rather than the Christmas holiday. I didn’t want a replay of last year’s fiasco of a three-hour drive to get 20 miles on icy snow. Pick up from the airport was much easier this time with just a bit of rain.

falling

The last of fall is so beautiful

fall over

Fall is over but the work remains

He spent the first week here recuperating from the pneumonia he caught just before leaving his home. I made him Matzo Ball soup to help him get well faster. It’s what mom’s do. We enjoyed the last of the fall falling and had simple Thanksgiving plans. Gratitude runs deep in this house and it runs daily.

The day after Thanksgiving, his ex-wife joined us to celebrate my son’s 50th birthday. This is always a day of deep gratitude for me as his doctors were certain he would not live after he was born, and they said if he did, he would probably have brain damage. (some days, we still wonder) But he is here in all his glory, coming to celebrate growing older with his mother. It’s an odd feeling when your children have reached that mid-century mark. If he is old, what does that make me?

ur old

My daughter found these candles and we couldn’t resist.

He has spent the last of his time here with his sweet partner setting up the fake tree, clearing up some of the mess in the shed, putting up all my outside lights, scrubbing moss off my roof and cleaning out the gutters for a start. They work as a team and I cook to keep them moving forward.

Towel bars were tightened, lighting updated so I can see better, and a myriad of tiny chores were taken care of by the two of them. He has also rearranged my furniture…again.

tree up top

Getting down Christmas for old mom.

My son has a sweet tooth which he indulges when he comes home. He found an empty can that had contained almond toffee candy and I had no idea he even liked it. It was left from my sewing group and I kept the can to put bits and pieces in. Is this what old age can look like?

the can is empty

It’s empty! So sad!

He baked some cookies and we watched sappy Christmas movies together.

baking cookies

He followed the directions quite well.

cookies off the sheet

Taking cookies off the pan

They will be back later in the dry season to see if we can get a new roof on this place. I have an invisible shield over it this winter hoping to keep it from leaking through. So far, it’s working. Getting the moss off is a good start at helping.

next project

What’s the next project that needs doing?

elf in the house

We have an elf in the house doing Christmas chores but needs cookies first.

At what point do you decide someone is old? Do you believe in the old adage that you are only as old as you feel?

wisdom

With age comes wisdom

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

Comments on: "The Appearance of Old Age" (74)

  1. Your son is a wonderful blessing, just as you are for him!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. nothing greater than kindness, except more kindness
    and warm cookies right out of the oven
    hugs, Eddie

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m so happy you had a nice visit with your son, Marlene. Lately, I’ve been meeting people in their 90’s who are still living independently and quite active. Watching them, I do think you’re only as old as you feel. I enjoyed all of your photos, especially your son’s reaction to the empty tin! xo

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    • He looks two in that photo. Playfully pouting. I picked up a full can on my next grocery run. He’s been working so hard to help me it’s the least I can do. Sometimes the body is old and the mind and heart are still quite young and playful. I can aspire to be 90 and still playful. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. Age is just a number. We either keep going and enjoying our lives or we decide that we are ‘too old’ for everything and waste away. I love the elf hat! Hey, cookie tasting is an important job! 😉 Glad you had a good visit and a nice Thanksgiving.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Jackie. Was planning on sending an e-mail today since you’ve been quite silent. Wondering how you and hubby are doing and a bit worried about you both. I made my son a t-shirt years ago that said official North Pole cookie taster. Thanksgiving was quieter than his birthday. 🙂

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      • Quiet is ok. I like quiet. 🙂 As for me and hubby we are doing the best we can for now. Lots of specialists, lots of tests, lots of lots ……. All in all things are better. I will do an update on my blog soon. I like getting emails. 🙂 ❤

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  5. I’m glad your son was able to visit you over Thanksgiving and help out with a few things around the house, especially baking! As for age, I think it’s a mindset myself and don’t feel old until I realize just how old my sons are. Of course it’s nice getting help once in a while and giving our bodies a breather from the work 🙂

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    • Thanks for the visit, Lois. It’s quite the shock to see your child is 50. It was a mix in a jar that had been a gift so I turned him loose on it and he did a great job. I get tired too quickly anymore to do a whole lot of it. Sending a note shortly. I keep forgetting.

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      • I can’t even imagine what it will feel like to have one of my son’s reach 50. They are currently 30 and 33 so I have some time. It seems like yesterday I was in my 30s and a single mother.

        Get some rest, I mean it!

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  6. He will forever be Son-aged, just as you will forever be Mom-aged. Numbers are just that, a way of recording the passage of time, but they don’t *mean* anything. I think you’ve worked out the perfect solution to avoid Christmas stress – do the family time ANOTHER time. Thanksgiving, birthday, help-mom-time all at once. It sounds perfect. I’m 56, but I still wish my Ma was around to do this sort of stuff with. Mind you, she’d have been 97 by now…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hey Marlene! First, I have to say, I love the birthday candles! Certainly good for a laugh at whatever age we find ourselves. I totally agree with the saying about only being as old as you think you are! The more we keep engaged, laughing and living, the better. You have that down quite well, my friend! Happy week to you.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you, Missy. Aren’t they a hoot. My daughter found them and couldn’t resist. Anything for a hearty laugh. Life is short, have fun along the way. 🙂 Hope your Thanksgiving was fun as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. You have the sweetest son (and his ex-wife sounds awesome, too). Those candles on that cake cracked me up! I love your sense of humor and I love how you move forward with each day – lights, candles and action! 😀
    It sounds like you both had some good bonding time. I had to wonder: will he come back to take down the tree and lights after the holiday? I forget where he lives…I thought you mentioned where he was once…like 8 hours away by car? Something like that?
    In any case, I am proud of you: I think you make every day count. You smile and laugh and it’s refreshing.
    I hope you have a wonderful week and I’m looking forward to your next post. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • My son lives in the mountains of Arizona and will be back this summer to help put a new roof on the house before it has to be sold. It’s a 2 day drive and a 4 hr drive to the Phoenix airport. As for the tree, we have decided to leave it up and give ornaments to friends and family off the tree as a remembrance of me. Then the tree will be donated back to where it came from, Goodwill. It’s a beautiful tree. It’s time to simplify and clear things out.

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  9. You have fostered and nurtured a lovely relationship with your son. A guy that comes home and bakes cookies and does chores, shines the light on your good mothering before he headed out on his own. That’s something to be very proud of Marlene! As we all are learning these days, there’s a lot of imposters out there. Guys that want you to ‘think’ they’re good guys but they actually disrespect woman
    I do believe that people that ‘feel’ old will also project that to others. To be young at heart, don’t take yourself too seriously, live with an open mind and respect others. I like to imagine myself skipping along because if you let things weigh you down, it will show in your posture, face and attitude Don’t you find, when you’re surrounded with positivity, life is far less daunting? Boom-zing-gah-zowie! That’s me sending virtual positivity in your direction, LOL xo K

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hi there sweet lady. So nice of you to stop by and visit. Compliments are always welcome. Yes, he’s a handy guy and disrespect would be dealt with swiftly if it occurred, which it does not. I have no tolerance for it. He can cook, clean, does dishes, runs the vacuum, does his own laundry and can iron his own shirts. He can also be funny as all get out. The candles on his cake speak of the family humor. We are older in years but he’s the first one to push frosting through his teeth or go see Christmas lights. A playful side. The fact that he and his ex still get along and even better that they aren’t married, says a lot. They are very much a couple and this seems to work for them. I’m happy as long as they are good to each other.

      Liked by 2 people

  10. You made the poor lad do all that work while he was recovering from pneumonia?????? yoh! I hope you made up for it with the matzo ball soup….
    Just kidding. Clearly you had a wonderful family visit, which is a true blessing these days ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • He rested the first week entirely while I fed him well to build his strength. 🙂 Matzo Ball soup the way I make it cures anything. I add chicken, noodles and lots and lots of garlic. I also plied him with shots of brandy to clear out the chest. He doesn’t drink so it was quite painful for him but did as told. After his partner, (ex-wife) got here, they worked as a team and got things done in short order. Plenty of time to go see the sights. They will be back this summer to help get a new roof on this poor old place. They are a treasure indeed. I work hard to keep family close at heart if not proximity. Thanks for visiting, Jill. Coming round to your place shortly.

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  11. Clearly you did a top notch job raising your boy, a grand chap. My Youngest will be 30 next year and the oldest will be 40 the year after, not babes any more, but always my babes. In the eyes of the world I am old, inside I am still 16!

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    • Thank you, Cathy. He is top notch. 🙂 I can tell yours are as well from how you write about them. I was younger when he was 40 so it didn’t feel quite so old. 16 is a good age to be inside, 🙂

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  12. No matter how many years they have our babies will always be our babies. And after a while the years are so senseless it doesn’t do to ponder on them at all – I guess we can all be grateful we get to be in this dilemma 🙂 Your lad is a star!

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    • Thank you so much, Pauline. He has his faults but when you look around, he’s so much more caring and giving than most. Not to mention that he can do for himself and not depend on someone to do it for him. I cooked while they worked. Then they each take turns doing that for me. Just lovely. Yes, we do still take care of them but now they get to help me as well. Hope your little one is getting better. Sending love to you both.

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      • Her leg is a mess, she is cross more about the accident than the outcome I think. We are hopeful of getting her released in a day or two and having home care.

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      • I was going to ask what happened but decided against it. Often we are upset with ourselves about having an accident. I hope she gets to come home soon too. You can never get good rest in a hospital and Siddy isn’t there to sit on her. 🙂

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      • Hopefully tomorrow Marlene we’ll get her home. Her sister is flying in for a week to help with her care and her job has arranged home help and visiting nurse care too. She will heal much faster at home and be less stressed too. Life will be slower for her and busier for me 🙂

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  13. I’m so glad you spent a lovely time with your handy son, Marlene – he really is like an elf doing all that work and baking cookies of which there never can be enough in my mind 😉 Here in Germany we would maybe call him a Heinzelmannchen 😁

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    • Heinzelmannchen is like an elf right? I’m still trying to work on my German. 🙂 He works hard to make my life easier. I am a very lucky mother with my kids. He also thinks there can never be enough cookies. 🙂 Thanks for the German word. I’ll get back to it after the holidays. Have a great weekend.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. So enjoyed seeing the pictures of your son during his visit. Sounds like you did a very good job raising him. Who cares about age, its what comes from the heart that matters. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for visiting, Celine. I worked very hard to raise kind, caring children. That was what was most important to me. That they were respectful to everyone and have open minds was more important than whether they made a good living or had the “look” of success in other’s eyes. You are correct, age is just a number as long as you can keep doing what you love to do. Have a great weekend. I’ll be catching up as soon as they head back home.

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  15. Marlene, this is wonderful. I can see you and your son together- you cooking and him fixing. We’ll take any time we can get with our kids.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. What a wonderful Son you have Marlene.. And I am happy to learn he recovered from his bout of pneumonia, not nice at all..
    Such wonderful photo’s, and so many chores sorted to help you settle over the winter months..
    I so know the feeling of our children getting those birthdays, My son was 42 this year, and that made me feel ancient.. 🙂 lol But we are all still teenagers at heart 🙂

    I hope that invisible Bubble shield keeps working too over your roof.. I often place our home in a similar one, when the wind howls and when we go away..

    Happy to now be back home from our travels, and now I must get the Christmas shopping started.. 😀

    Wishing you a lovely December Marlene <3.. Hugs Sue xx

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  17. Sounds like something to be thankful for indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Looks like lots of important stuff got accomplished with some fun thrown in to mix it up! I’m very happy you had a good visit with everyone to celebrate a birthday and Thanksgiving. As to the age old question of age, I find that it’s what you make of it! I also believe that an open mind is helpful in keeping us younger in heart, body and thinking. Enjoy your week Marlene! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  19. What a wonderful way to spend Thanksgiving! You have achieved what many aspire to: a loving family who are there for each other, no matter what. Just loved the candles on the cake. The look on your son’s face when the tin was empty… priceless. What a good sport he is to wear the elf hat! Age is definitely not a number. It is how you feel on the inside. I know people in their 50s who are old and others in their 90s who are young at heart.

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    • Thank you for stopping by and your kind words. It was another different Thanksgiving and Birthday celebration. My son has the best sense of humor which I dearly love. There will always been a playful child inside the man that just got his first AARP membership form. 🙂 I’m glad you liked the candles. They made us laugh too.

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  20. So glad I came across your blog! Looking forward to reading further posts. I had to ‘Google’ AARP. Don’t have that in Australia. So I learnt something new.

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  21. Hello Marlene! I’m reading this for a second time, and it is all the richer for two reasons: One, I now can hear your voice when I read. That makes me so happy. Two, I read it on my phone and the photos refused to load, so I’m back to get the full picture. I’m so glad I did. I love your elf. It’s wonderful you continue to love and support each other, and that he could make the time for a visit, even though he was sick. I’m glad he’s been souped back to health (well done, Mom) and happy to hear the rest of the visit went well. xo

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    • I do wish I could introduce you to that impish man child. 🙂 He is always good for making people laugh out loud and then driving them crazy. 🙂 I turn matzo ball soup into a full healing recipe way ahead of canned chicken noodle soup.. I’ll make you some without the chicken. Not sure why chicken noodle soup works but it does. Have you ever seen such a face on a grown man? 🙂 He has such a sweet tooth. Don’t we all? Hugs.

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  22. Such a lovely visit Marlene! And I love the story – Happy 50th to your son! A miracle indeed dear friend! Thanks for sharing your/his story! xoxo

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  23. P.S. Loved the photos! Good luck this winter with the roof!

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  24. Sounds like a great visit, Marlene! I’m glad the soup worked. That pout is epic; I can just see the wee boy in him. How nice to have all that help, too. And cookies . . .
    As to age, here’s mu personal scale: 0-50 = young, 50 – 100 = middle aged, 100 – 150 = old and after that you are ancient! Works for me, as I’m partway through middle age now. lol

    Truly, I feel it’s an attitude generally, although sometimes something happens to make me feel old before my time; like going to a small town where I used to ride to on horseback and shop. I couldn’t recognize anything except for a few buildings and a stand of trees just outside the central part. Large condos are replacing the small homey post-war bungalows with space for gardens. There are medians down all the streets and they have planted dozens of palm tress!! As if our own native plants aren’t beautiful enough. I could ship the lot of the municipal government to California; obviously they prefer that scenery.
    But the rest of the time I don’t feel much older than when I was in my teens and twenties. Sae interests, same enthusiasms, same questions, same joys. Not the same body, though, but I tend to ignore that bit . . . Peace and love to you, Marlene. ~ Linne

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  25. What an interesting and loving post, Marlene. So glad your son came to visit his mom — and even posed for that picture, looking fake-miserable! Made me smile. That maple tree is glorious. What kind of maple is that?

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  26. I will have a daughter turning 50 in the next few years. Yes it is quite astonishing to see your babies at these on your mental age is but like you I believe age is just a number. Glad that you were able to spend some time with him over Thanksgiving. We were off camping trip to Death Valley with additional family this year which made it extra special. Much hustle-bustle with Christmas around the corner and my brother staying with us. Looking forward to it and just plodding along. So good to see you active with your blog. It appears mine will soon be officially abandoned. Much to my dismay, I just don’t seem to be able to get to it. I barely follow anyone anymore but you hold a special place in my heart so I will definitely be checking in from time to time. Merry Christmas to you and your family and big hugs to you, Marlene.

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    • Merry Christmas to you as well, Jan. I’ll hold out on the blog as long as I’m physically able. There are lots of changes here that may throw some wrenches in the works. I am only reading blogs that I have a connection with and letting the rest go. Been thinking about you often. Merry Christmas, Jan.

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  27. Clearly, I’m going backwards … what a lovely post.
    So glad that you had this time together.

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    • You make me laugh. I read backwards all the time. Haven’t even had time to post anything lately. 🙂 Thanks for taking time to stop by. I know how full your schedule is. I’m old and retired and still can’t keep up with all this. Have a wonderfilled week, Laurie

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  28. Love the candles!!

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    • They were a hoot! My daughter found them for a friends birthday and we decided her brother should have them on his cake. We really needed a laugh. 🙂

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