Friday, January 27, 2012

Exercise and Memory Decline

There is a study going on that is looking at the relationship between exercise and memory.  It seems like the verdict is already in on this so I'm not quite sure why this study is going on but it is.....and I'm in it.  Actually I think it's just a baseline and the "real" study will seek to specifically address what kind of exercise and how much it takes to stay mentally strong.

Anyway that comes later.  Yesterday was the first part of the study.  I was given 3 words to remember for later recall.  That was fine. I still remember chocolate, strange, and yesterday after 24 hours. Yay!  Then I had to connect randomly scattered numbers and letters all over a paper (1 to A to 2 to B to 3 to C...).  So far so good.  Then I had to read out the colors 25-30 words were printed in...while being timed.  Here is an example.

RED           GREEN             YELLOW            BLUE   (Answers: blue,yellow,red,green)

Today is part 2, the physical fitness part.  Since I exercise a lot that will be a piece of cake.  I also get a Bone Density test today including data like BMI and Fat Percentage (UGH).  So I'm off for an exciting day at the college!  I have my fingers crossed for good "bone numbers".  'Not so good' bone numbers run in my family so I'm eager to find out how I'm doing at 64.  I'll let you know.

You?  Go take a walk or get some weight bearing exercise somehow today.  You'll feel better and your bones will thank you.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Advanced Style Blogger On Today

Guess what I saw on the Today Show this morning!  Hip, cool, healthy, stylish older women.  I was so inspired.  I mean, who wouldn't be?  Don't we all love knowing we can keep on aging and  still have fun with fashion while staying fully engaged with our womanhood and enjoying life.  

If you check out the blog Advanced Style you will see their pictures.  Then you will know exactly what I mean.  In honor of them and of all of us aging divas, I am rerunning a post I wrote two years ago.  Enjoy!  And go visit Advanced Style too.

Repeat:  November 2009
Yesterday when I was blog hopping I came across the words just stay current.  I don't remember where I saw it or the context, but since it has been my personal mantra for some time now, I decided to write about it today.  It's for everybody but for those of us gettin' on up there, as they say, take notes!

Jan, an old friend, and I were talking a few years ago about aging....we were really talking about our hair, how we were wearing it, the color and things like that.  It is so very easy to get stuck in a hairstyle, right ladies?  I mean you will still see us walking down the street with Farrah Fawcett wings, especially if we hit our stride in the 80s.  Dorothy Hamill hair is still out there.  Helmet hair is out there.  Sprayed hair, permed hair, and fixed hair are all still walking around out there.....and a lot of these folks have had it that way a long time.

So here's my take on that. We all want to look as young as we can, go on, admit it,you do, surely.  But we don't want to look like an old teeny bopper.  I mean, we don't buy our clothes in the junior department do we?   What I am getting at is what we really want, I think, is to look current.  Even if we don't have the latest and the greatest fashions, makeup and hairstyle, we want to look like we are at least in this century!  We want to stay current.  Not young, really, but current, maybe even a little edgy.

Think of other areas of real life.  Like scanning your groceries and checking yourself out.  I'd much rather someone check me out and "take care of me", but I do it every now and then anyway because I want to know how. I want to be able to. Train the brain while it is trainable :) and learn all you can, while you can.  I don't want to look up one day and find that I no longer know how to navigate this fast moving world because I just haven't kept up along the way.  

Think of the ways older folks can get left behind.

  Using the Internet to communicate is a huge one.  Have you noticed how your land line doesn't ring as much as it used to?  That is if you even have one. My mother has a terrible time with that one.  She doesn't understand it.  Why are the grandkids only emailing, texting, Facebooking, and  Tweeting instead of calling and writing letters!  Do they not love me?  "No mom.  It's not that."

You can dig your heels in where you are or you can get out there, learn, and change with the rest of the world.  You can insist on writing checks if you want to, but pretty soon you'll be the only one doing it.  Go ahead, get with the flow early on.  Learn it while everybody else is learning it, while your brain is spry and it learns fast.  Folks who are set in their ways even have trouble watching TV these days.  Back in the day you just turned on the TV and watched.  Now, those remotes, OMGosh!  You need an MIT grad to operate them!

So, older folks, like me, hang out with some younger folks who speak the new language and learn it.  Don't just always get them to do it for you.  Learn how.  Pay your bills online.  Scan your groceries.  Get an Ipod for Christmas.  Have a digital camera and learn all about it. Maybe even a smart phone.  Find out all the stuff your cell phone will do.  And if the same person's been doing your hair for 10 years, try someone new! 

You bloggers are all over this, I know, so I don't know why I'm preaching to the choir. But I bet you know someone who is aging too fast, stuck in the past.  Nice place to visit.  Don't pitch a tent there.  Learn something new.  Stay current or be left behind!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

And Speaking Of Sleeping More...

Wordle: sleepy

Not sleeping enough has been one of my trademarks over the years.  I'm not especially proud of that.  It's just a fact.  I've always liked to stay up late.   Therefore I was sleepy a lot.  Past tense.

There was the time I actually went to sleep while walking on the treadmill.  Yes, you read that correctly.  I went to the gym before work, 5:30 AM, so I would be feeling good looking good when I walked down the aisle as mother of the groom. You know how that is.   So, in case you wondered, when you go to sleep walking on the treadmill, you actually fall off the machine....or rather you are thrown off. To the floor.  Not fun.  And one of my most embarrassing moments!

And then there was the time I was driving home from work and I was so very sleepy.  I had "fought" sleepiness all the way home.  I had chewed gum, let cold air blow in my face, and turned the radio up loud.  As I rounded the corner in my subdivision I relaxed just enough  to drift off and I never straightened up from that turn.  Instead I crashed into a parked car!  Another embarrassing moment.  And a very thankful moment that no one and no pets were on the sidewalk or in the car.  Whew!

Now I sleep more.  I don't burn the candle at both ends anymore.  And I'm glad because it's not only safer (!), it's very healthy.  We all know sleep makes you look better by giving you that fresh, rested look.  And it also helps lower your blood pressure, boosts your memory, and renews your body everyday.

We are hearing more about inflammation these days and how it makes us age faster.  So now that scientists know that sleep helps reduce inflammation, we have even another reason to hit the sheets earlier.

So if you want to help your heart, reduce stress and depression, lose weight, look better and be healthier just spend a little more time in your crib.

How long do you sleep every night?  Do you take naps?  Do you wish you could sleep longer?  Share your embarrassing sleep moments tso I won't feel like the only one!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Consider Your Butt Already Whipped

"Consider your butt already whipped."

When your new instructor at the gym walks in with this on her shirt, just wonder what is coming!
You are not sure whether to 'leave now' or take a deep breath and go for it.

Just remember:

Never leave!
It's just a scare tactic.
What doesn't kill you will make you stronger. 
You can do it!
It will make you stronger.
Drink water.
Come back tomorrow and do it all again.

We all need our exercise.  Find something you like to do and make it a real part of your life.

Your bones will be stronger
Your heart will be healthier
Your weight will go down
Your jeans will fit better.
You can have dessert.
You will sleep better.

How do you get your exercise?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Advice From A Whale


What a sweet gift from a friend!  Think, bookmark.  A real one that you use to mark your place in a book.

Advice From A Whale

Make a Splash!

Move with Grace and Beauty

Explore the Depths of your True Nature.

Think Big!

Keep A Song In Your Heart

Remember To Come Up For Air

No Blubbering!

by Ilan Shamer at

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

1000 Mile Checkup

A morning in the stirrups is the ultimate 'back to reality' check I suppose.  I was a little overdue for my yearly checkup so today was the day to get 'er done.  Nice to check this one off the to-do list.  It's been sitting there too long.

Verdict:  Lady box is just fine.  Boobs are just fine.  Weight's up a little.  Height's down a little.  Wish it were the other way around.  I asked my doctor, "What are the top 3 things women (my age) can do for their health?"  Without hesitation she said:

Vitamin D

Her next take away was this:  "Don't look back at the past. Don't look at the future.  Just enjoy today.  Just enjoy", she reiterated.  What a great prescription!

I'm glad the holidays are over and we are finally back to "normal".  I love "normal".  And now I have it back.  Just a normal check up and drive home.  And then there was this sign on the side of the road.  Isn't it cool?  To whoever painted it, "Thank you.  I love it!"


Saturday, January 7, 2012

Blubbering Like A Beluga Whale

Every now and then something strikes me as funny.  I mean really funny and I can laugh myself right out of control.  Doesn't happen a lot but it's as good as it gets when it does.  

On the other hand, however, I can be deadly serious.  Like today.  And yesterday.  For some reason that I think has something to do with Christmas, I've fallen off the cliff of sanity into the valley of depression.  I have lots of an emergency oral surgery....and my sister moving to friend's funeral today.....and my lack of anything slightly resembling a hormone in my entire body.  Whine, whine, whine.

For example, yesterday I was reading a magazine article to my husband about a vibrantly healthy 86 year old man from his home town who bikes all over the world.  When I got  to this sentence, "In 1995, I was sitting in my house alone, and I decided I needed to do something",  my voice quivered and tears fell out of my eyes. I had delivered the sentence as dramatically as little Elliot when he said goodbye to ET, "I'll wait right here."  No dry eyes in the theater. The absurdity of my reaction coupled with  the stunned look on my husband's face now strikes me as funny a day later.  But it was just so poignant in the moment that it moved me to tears.  I know.  That's a little over the top.

Since I am not so funny, sometimes I steal a funny phrase from someone else...someone born funnier than I.  So, today I borrowed a funny phrase from Marla.  I have been, as she said, "blubbering like a Beluga whale".  Off and on, but that's enough to spoil your day.  I knew it was not a good day to go to a funeral but I wouldn't have missed it for the world.  The preacher could have talked about Miss Daisy's affinity for Chick Fil A diet lemonades, or how she always took a bite and fed Winston (the dog) a bite, and I would have still blubbered.  It was just a blubbering kind of day.  It has been for a week now and that's not a good thing.  I'm thinking maybe it's time to try out some bio-identical hormones, or maybe Prozac, or maybe even just a glass of wine might help.  Once I climb back up the cliff, I'll get a grip and return to my normal, happy go lucky self.  It just isn't happening today.


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Way Behind Already

I am so behind!  How can it only be January 4 and I already feel behind.

For me, the week between Christmas and New Year's is my favorite time of year.  It's quiet, usually.  I get to reflect and I love that.  I get to look forward and dream for the new year, and I love that.  BUT this year I haven't yet done any of that.  All kinds of legitimate reasons.

  • Spent the last 4 days with my mom.
  • Took a trip to the lake to winterize the cabin...just in time.
  • Met with a realtor to sell that same little cabin.
  • Spent time with hubs when I got home.  It was his bday after all.
  • Reeled from the shock of losing a special friend
  • Unpacked.  Blogged.  And now it's the 4th!
Theme for the year:  Do I want a one word theme this year?  I've settled on, "No, I don't."  Too vague.  Too confining.

New Year Challenges:  I see them all over Blogland.  Do I want to participate?  "Yes, I do."  Haven't decided which ones for sure yet.  Any suggestions?

Resolutions/Goals for 2012:  Do I want to make a list for the New Year?  "Absolutely!"  I'm thinking more like a bucket list for 2012.

So it's coming.  Stay tuned.  I'll be throwing mine out there about the time many people, not bloggers of course,  will already have abandoned their shiny, new intentions.  Losing weight and saving money will be down the drain for them!  

I stumbled upon Woody Guthrie's New Year's List for 1942 and I love it.  Hope you do too.  Ah, the days before technology!  "Who was Woody?", you ask.  He wrote, "This Land Is Your Land, This Land Is My Land".  Great song!  Now it will be on my mind all day...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I Lost A Friend Today

Miss Daisy Sargent went to heaven today.  Whatever "heaven" is, it is even better now that Miss Daisy is there.

I met Daisy about a year and a half ago.  She is an artist and I am an artist-in-learning....and I learned a lot from her.  Every Thursday we would paint together with a handful of other special friends.  Part of our time together was lunch.  We all brought our lunch in a sack and offered to share everything we brought with everybody else.

 It was sort of like Jesus breaking bread with his disciples except we had Cheetos and salads instead of bread and wine.

It's easy for me to remember Jesus and Miss Daisy in the same sentence.  They were best friends.  You couldn't know her without understanding that at a deep level.  It was not proselytizing that gets on people's nerves sometimes.   It was just her was the same as His.

I learned much from her when it came to art... and when it came to life.  And no matter what my efforts looked like, they always looked beautiful to her.  And she meant it.  Her praise was prolific and genuine.
Daisy was a classy lady!  Her air was a unique blend of sophistication paired with  humility that made you want to come up higher.  You wanted to live up to her compliments. 

This morning Daisy closed her eyes to this earth...and then she opened them to her next life experience.  She is where she wants to be now.  I just hope she can still paint!

Love ya Daisy,