How to Keep a 98 Year Old Busy…

IMG_7169This is my mom, her name is Sarah…she just turned 98 last Wednesday…Marilyn and I brought her to The Chateau for lunch to celebrate, as the snow started falling hard, then had cake and opened gifts at her home…she was napping by 1:30 pm:) IMG_7171 The days are long for her and us, especially in the winter…She was a seamstress, but has no interest in sewing or doing any of the crafts that she was so good at…crossword puzzles used to keep her busy, but now she only picks them up occasionally…she has a hard time following TV programs that she once would enjoy watching…and so it is, we have a jigsaw puzzle going all the time out on her porch…not only does she enjoy it, but I do too and various people walking by, will sit down and get hooked…

The puzzle boards were made by Victor and my cousin Janet’s husband John, who saddly just passed away last year, they were and are master woodworkers…puzzle boards are a must, especially in a small house when you need to move the puzzles from one place to another and when you want to get it out of the way…my strategy for putting together jigsaw puzzles is to separate the pieces according to color and subject…my mom is in charge of separating the flat edges to do the border, she’s good at that:)  The puzzle on the left is all old fashion candy bars, so much fun to put together!!!  The one on the right was given to my mom by Gina…it’s a photo of Gina and the kids made into a puzzle, she ordered it online…

The next thing you could do with a 98 year old is bake cookies…they love cookies…These cookies are very simple and yummy…

Strawberry Chocolate Chunk Cookies

• 1 Box Strawberry Cake Mix
• 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
• 2 Eggs
• 2 cups Chocolate Chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together cake mix, vegetable oil, and eggs in a large bowl until combined. Mix in chocolate chips and stir until evenly distributed. Place heaping spoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 12 to 14 mins. Let set on pan for 2 mins then remove to a wire rack for cooling. Great treat for Valentines Day too!!!IMG_7416

Version 2All this puzzle making and baking can wear out someone who is 2 years away from 100, but my mom has lots of rest time too…she sits in her chair every morning and many afternoons, not watching TV, just sitting very calmly and quietly, sometimes sleeping and sometimes not…at these times I think she is meditating, although she knows nothing about it, it just seems to come naturally to her at her age…I usually sit on the couch opposite her working on my computer, just keeping her company and many times she asks me if I hear a chorus singing, she says it’s coming from the cellar???  She also sees people around, like her mother and other women working around, she very often sees a little girl around me???  Frequently she asks, “When am I going home?”   Now I’ve read that people with dementia and Alzheimers go in and out of the spirit world…Could it be that this is what she is talking about when she says she wants to go Home??  I don’t know for sure, but if it is, I am honored to be quietly and gently walking her Home…16d1d74cd5706baa18a0ca001d11e310


17 thoughts on “How to Keep a 98 Year Old Busy…

  1. Love reading your stories Carol. They are beautifully written and very poignant…I see a lot of the way my mother was in your descriptions of your mother. Your mother is so lucky to have two wonderful daughters caring for her.

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  2. I know I’m lucky, Dana! Your mother was an amazing lady, she had such a presence and so missed by Tom, Gina and the boys. I remember her puzzles set up in Rangeley, I was very impressed she could do them without a picture‼️ ❤️


  3. I just loved this post! Your mom is doing great! My grandmother lived to be 98. She suffered from dementia a little bit as well. She thought that raccoons lived in her oven and that she needed to feed them. She’d always leave some sort of little sweet treat in there – a cookie or a slice of cake:)


    1. Oh my goodness, that is so funny and cute about your grandmom and the raccoons, I could totally see my mom doing the same thing!! I enjoy your blog especially the post about Betty Wason, you did a lot of research on her and it was well written and photos were great!! Thank you for checking in and your kind comment on my blog, I appreciate it!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh thank YOU for your lovely comments! Likewise, on your blog – your posts are really fun and interesting. So glad you liked Betty’s story. While doing research it really amazed me that some (TransRadio Press, Paul Smith, the state of Indiana etc) have now given her due credit for her influential role in broadcasting but others (like CBS) have still brushed over her efforts. I’m hoping we can keep her story circulating and draw fresh eyes to her contributions. And I can’t help but think what an interesting movie her life would make.

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