A Quiet Life of Trust

Looking back over the year, I cannot fathom how quickly December 1st has arrived! In all honesty, I can’t recall any significant changes in my life since December 1st of 2020.

Perhaps this is typical of my age group. I live a rather quiet and serene life. Hobbies fill most hours in each day fitted around errands, appointments, lunches with friends, laundry, housecleaning, church worship, small group study, and reading the Word.

Accepting the limitations of my aging body is part of aging gracefully. Whining and complaining are not productive. Prayer is what fills my mind and heart with peace. There will be sufferings in the days I remain on earth, but all is part of God’s plan. I’ve learned not to live in anxiety, but to trust Him and give Him my worries.

The greatest benefit, while on earth, is the peace that comes from trusting God. Lifting my cup of tea with much gratitude.

Christmas Decorations, Cards, and a New Great Grandson

The rumbling of the trash truck is the first sign of life in the world outside my condo. All is quiet and serene as the sun kisses the lightly frosted green grass. No sign yet of any flying birds, but in the distance, beneath the autumn clothed trees, ducks waddle toward the morning breakfast provided by a kind-hearted neighbor.

I breathe in deeply, enjoying the peace before setting off on a busy day of errands and appointments. This past week has taken a toll both physically and emotionally. Sometimes aging gracefully can be lost in the rush of busyness. I finally finished making my Christmas cards, writing notes inside, and addressing them in preparation for mailing today. Each card is different. Next year, God willing, I am going to make every card the same.

Yesterday as I was getting ready for church, my daughter in SC called me. I knew it must be important since she knew I would be preparing for church. So, with a mouthful of toothpaste, I rushed to the kitchen to answer. She told me her daughter, my beloved granddaughter, had awakened thinking her water had broken. (She was being watched for high blood pressure during the last trimester of her pregnancy. Originally due in January, they had moved the date up to Christmas Eve.) At 1:30am on Sunday morning, she found it wasn’t water, but blood. She was rushed to the hospital and had an emergency c-section due to a ruptured placenta. Both mom and baby are doing okay, though mom lost a lot of blood and baby will be in NICU for a few weeks. Thanking God for His love and mercy! I can’t wait to meet Wyatt Robert McDine.

With my focus on finishing Christmas cards, the only coloring I completed this week was swatching two new sets of pencils. The Christmas decorations are in place so after this day of errands, I’m hoping to be able to resume coloring some Christmas pictures while listening to Christmas carols.

Lifting my cup of tea and wishing all of you a happy Monday. Until next time…God bless!

A Snowy, Cold, Day After

Thanksgiving was wonderful. Youngest daughter and her hubby hosted our family this year. So much yummy food. I tried everything, of course! I’m a family oriented person, and being with family really warms my heart.

This morning, I woke and it felt chilly. The rain we had been getting changed to a sleety snow. The rooftops are painted white and the grass is slowly getting a light blanket of snow. When I checked the thermostat I realized my furnace wasn’t working. It had dropped to 64 degrees. Thankfully I’m in a small condo so I’m staying warm by sitting in the kitchen next to the stove and it is set to 400.

Ah, aging gracefully isn’t always easy. I thought moving into a new condo four years ago where everything was brand new would be perfect for me. I do love it here, but there are drawbacks even to a new home. I’m hoping the furnace can be fixed without having to replace something major. I found a warranty page inside the installation manual but reading it says it should have been registered within 90 days of purchasing the condo. Sigh.

Trusting God in this. A solution will be found. He always makes a way! Lifting my cup of tea and wishing everyone a lovely weekend. Until then…love and prayers!

Peaceful Anticipation

I am aging gracefully this morning with a cup of tea and comfy lounging PJ’s. I wait in peaceful anticipation of our small family gathering tomorrow at my youngest daughter’s home. I can imagine the wonderful scents of thanksgiving: roasted turkey, gravy, potatoes, vegetables, pies, and so much more. Best of all will be the joy of being with family as we voice our love and the things for which we are most thankful.

Today is a stay at home day wearing comfortable slippers and loungewear while I work on addressing Christmas cards. Other than tomorrow’s gathering, I won’t be leaving the comfort of my home again until Sunday morning. No shopping sprees for me. Once I finish the Christmas cards, I’m going to dedicate a day to remove the fall decorations and replace them with Christmas things. That day will consist of music, singing off key, smiles, and thanks to God for it all!

This is the season for me of peaceful anticipation of the most joyful celebration of remembering Christ’s birth and the hope He brought for all of us! The greatest gift of Christmas–the gift of a beloved Son to save the world.

Lifting my cup of tea and wishing everyone a Happy Day of Thanksgiving.

Love is An Action Word

Lately my posts have been all over the place as far as content. My plan is to refocus back onto the theme of aging gracefully!

Yesterday God reminded me that love is an action word. I’ve become content using words to try and convey my love from the comfort of my home. The past two years have changed the way a lot of people communicate. The greatest blessings of my week are when I attend church each Sunday and when I meet with my small group sisters.

So how do I put love into action? That’s the question I’m asking myself. This will be the focus of my vision board for 2022. It is time for me to move, to put my faith into action, to share love in a more action-oriented way. My prayer is for God to open opportunities, lead me and guide me, and to stop me from being a boulder along the way!

Lifting my cup of tea with a smile and a wish for you to be blessed today with seeing and being “love in action.”

Participant or Spectator?

Last night, while watching The Crown, a line Philip’s mother said resonated with me as truth for my own life. The line is “When I turned 70 I realized I was just a spectator not a participant.” As I look at my life, I find this is mostly true.

I am a spectator. I’m not complaining, just observing. Most of my time is spent alone. When I’m with a group of people, mostly I’m a spectator. I’ve lost the quick wit and spontaneity of youth. My life offers little in comparison to a younger generation.

As the conversations fly amid laughter, I’m usually a beat behind. Sometimes I open my mouth, but what emerges falls flat. I’m much more comfortable interacting with people of my generation…once I get to know them.

I lost participation when I retired. I wonder how many others my age feel the same. With age comes a bevy of body breakdown which removes the possibility of standing for long periods of time, lifting weighty objects, and endurance. How does one volunteer with a heart willing, but body unwilling?

And so, I sit at home, writing words on a keyboard, participating in a passive way…alone. Not that I’m sad about this stage of life. It gives me more time to spend getting closer to God.

Lifting my cup of tea, grateful I can do this with ease, and asking the question: Are you a participant or a spectator?

The Joy of Changing Seasons

I am delighted Autumn has arrived! I slept so soundly under my comforter as the outdoor temperature plummeted to 40 degrees. I haven’t used my A/C or heat for two months now. There’ve been nights when I’ve struggled as the inside temps rose to 80 degrees. Thank goodness for overhead fans! Now it is a comfortable 70 degrees inside.

Last winter there were many times when my body temperature dropped and I shivered and couldn’t get warm even though the inside temperature was 70 degrees. I am going shopping for thermal underwear because I’m setting my heat to 68 degrees this year in response to the rising costs of natural gas.

Oh, if one spends time watching news, there is danger of growing fear over inflation, supply chains, and such, but what good is it to worry? Worrying only means one doesn’t trust in God. I do. He gave us common sense, but many don’t use it.

There are people saying Christmas isn’t happening this year! Why? Because of supply chains. Crazy, right? The world wants to make Christmas a commercial holiday. I’m not buying into what the world has to say. Christmas is a holiday Christians celebrate to mark the birth of Jesus Christ. Supply chains can’t deter that!

As for my cat, Templeton, he is doing great! His digestive system has calmed down after many months where he continued to decline and I feared he would die. He is now eating a digestive health canned food along with his dry food. Life is back to normal for him and me. I’m humbled by answered prayers.

I’m enjoying my small group Bible study and the camaraderie of these beautiful women. Every Wednesday I have lunch with a dear friend, and on Sunday after church she and I have lunch together. I spent a little time with my daughter on Friday and she presented me with a gift for my upcoming birthday–a fantastic outfit. My favorite part is a very warm, cuddly long cardigan! I’ll be wearing this a lot as the weather continues to change. It’s perfect for snuggling in when I’m reading!

Last week I did a lot of reading. When I get caught up in reading, I have difficulty tearing myself away from the story. As such, I didn’t work on my Christmas cards, nor did I do any research for my winter book project. I did work on a puzzle in short spurts of time, but it’s going to be another week before it is finished. I colored a few pictures, too.

As Autumn brings beautiful colorful changes into view, I’m happy to enjoy every moment with gratitude. And I realize how special each day is, bringing unique opportunities. I’m thankful to learn new things as God teaches me how to age gracefully. Lifting my cup of tea and leaving you with these words: The Word of God should be the source of truth for our lives. Until next time…

Trapped in a Recliner!?!

I’m still laughing at myself from what happened yesterday afternoon! To set the picture, I keep a footstool in front of my rocker recliner. I like to rock in my favorite chair and in order to elevate my feet a little the footstool works great. If I pull up the built in footrest on the recliner then it won’t rock.

So yesterday I was enjoying a good read while sitting in my recliner. Eventually my eyelids grew heavy and I decided to go with it and take a little nap. So I raised the footrest and tipped the chair back a little to get super comfortable. A few minutes later the phone rang.

I tried to put down the footrest, but it wouldn’t go. It was hitting the footstool which was too close to the chair! The phone kept ringing. I answered it and chatted with my oldest daughter while still reclining. We talked for a little over 30 minutes. Then it was time to get out of the recliner.

I struggled. I tried to reach the footstool and move it, but couldn’t touch it. I tried to push the footrest down but it wouldn’t go. I wiggled to try and get out of the chair, but I couldn’t find a way. I was getting out of breath. Oh, no. I was NOT going to call for help. NO WAY! If the footrest came up, it had to go down, right? One would think this made sense. So why was I stuck?

I understand now how turtles feel when they are on their backs. Poor little things! I realized the truth of the situation when one is comfortably reclining. The heaviest part of the human body is deposited in a right angle. Arms and legs would move, but nothing else. I wiggled, I twisted, I tried movements this aged body should not be doing. I rested and breathed. This was ridiculous.

Every time I tried to use my foot to move the stool, my foot would cramp. Sigh. Finally, I squeezed my chest to my legs and reached for the stool. I touched it, but it wasn’t moving much at all. So I rested and breathed for a while. Then I repeated but used my other arm. This continued for several minutes until the footrest finally went back into place. Fifteen hours minutes had passed.

I had to rest for five minutes before my shaky limbs would hold me upright, and by then I didn’t remember why I needed to get up!

Lifting my cup of tea and leaving you with this word: God gave us a sense of humor. Use it to laugh at yourself, but only laugh with others not at them!

A Place of Quiet Restfulness

Have you ever looked through a raindrop filled window at a beautiful sunny landscape? That’s the view I had this morning. So lovely! My office window is a magical place where I see wonders from God every morning. If we open our eyes and see through the eyes of love, even a stormy day holds beauty.

When I enter my office/craft room each day, I am full of anticipation for God’s postcards or videos. Perhaps this comes with age, when we don’t have the many responsibilities of caring for a growing family or the hustle of preparing for work.

At this stage of life, I want to appreciate all the goodness in my life, past and present. My heart and soul overflow with gratefulness and there is a peace which I cannot explain. This is my life, the ending of a long journey, a place of quiet restfulness where God has placed me for a time and purpose. This is me…aging gracefully with God. And I am thankful.