Life, Menopause

If Measure I Must…

A poem, written by me, inspired by my old measuring cup:

It’s the measuring cup’s job

To measure, not mine,

But if measure I must,

May it be with a

Good measure of love.

I find there’s a laidbackness (sorry for a word that’s not all the way a word) that comes, in some ways, with menopause.

As I grow older, I’m becoming less judgmental.

Perhaps because I’m more aware of my own failings.

Or perhaps because time is picking up speed, making me want to spend less time picking at people.

Or maybe it’s because as we age, we are better able to see life from other angles.

Lots of angles, because part of humanity’s great charm (at least some of the time) is the diversity of opinions, personalities, and lifestyles.

What about you?  Do you find yourself more or less judgmental than you were in your youth?

Photo: The measuring cup above has a hard time in my kitchen. The shiny, newer measuring cups poke fun. I hope they will work on measuring with cupfulls of love. The cup is perched on an old apron, circa 1940.

Winners!  Congrats to Lisa and Carol, who are the Replens giveaway winners!

Aging, Life

The Messy Paintbox and the Second Blooming

Remember the disappointment when your paintbox got messy?  The brush and the water mixed up the colors.

Remember the sadness when the seat of your swimsuit wasn’t smooth any more?  The side of the pool picked at the fabric.

Remember the shock when your shiny bike rusted?   The rain and the air played nasty weather games.

Remember the year  you realized you were getting old?  Father Time finally said,” Gotcha!”

Were you thirty-five?  Forty?  Forty-five?  Fifty?  Later?

Lovely watercolors from the messy paints.

Gorgeous strokes despite the picks in the suit.

Miles of happy pedaling on the rusty bike.

Dame Agatha Christie wrote, “I have enjoyed greatly the second blooming that comes… at the age of fifty, say… a whole new life has opened before you.”

Enjoy the second blooming.  Some jolly times ahead!


Aging, Celebrations, Gratitude

Ditch the Old Model? A Question to Consider

A few months ago, Cliff said, “I have something for you to consider.”

That line always makes me nervous.  And although the question ended up being a generous one, it did reach deep into the OH NO WHAT SHOULD I DO region of my brain.

“Would you like a new stove?”

Normally, I spring at the chance for something new.   The word “new”  suggests small miracles like more heat or a washing machine that doesn’t dance across the floor.

But a new stove.

Our stove is sixty years old.  It came with the house.  It’s roasted turkeys, sent fudge to a rolling boil, baked birthday cakes, simmered spaghetti sauce, heated hot chocolate and winter wine, and melted Shrinky Dinks  (actually not so many Shrinky Dinks lately but I’m hoping those days will come again).

The stove is down to two burners, one of two ovens, and wouldn’t think of self-cleaning itself.  If you look at the picture, you’ll see  a strip of masking tape on the left.  That’s to remind us not to press those switches because if we do, we might recreate the Christmas Eve Stove Fire of 2004.

But still, the answer to the stove question was NO.  Our stove is the Senior Stateswoman of the Kitchen.  For now, she stays.

And here’s another question.  If I could trade ME in for a newer version, would I?

When I look at the age spots on my face, hear the creak of my feet, or feel the tinges that I suspect are the start of arthritic hands, I am tempted to trade this one in.

But then I remember the birthday parties, the Thanksgivings, the spaghetti suppers, and the Shrinky Dink Festivals this  body has helped engineer.  Good times.  Great times!

For now, I’ll keep this model.  I suspect the day may come when I shout, “Yes!  Send something new.”

But not yet.

What about you?

No matter your age, if you could trade your body for someone else’s, would you?

If you could trade your older body for a younger version of you, would you?

Photo:  Laura’s boyfriend Matt flipping Christmas pancakes 2011.  Thanks, Matt and thanks, Stove!   Photo was taken by Laura for her blog, Taking Back My Twenties.  Matt’s flipping Great Harvest Charlottesville pancakes!