10 things I learned after joining a Senior Citizens Choir


You're never too old to sing.

You’re never too old to sing.

1. Just because you’re older, you can still have fun. This choir puts on hats, cowboy scarves, Berets, necklaces, and whatever costume fits the songs. The choir director is a bubbling, optimistic person. The piano player finds joy in the music, and rarely makes a mistake.

2. Age is just a number. You can learn a new musical interest when you’re quite old. Look at Mick Jagger: he fills stadiums!

3. You will meet people with all kinds of life stories: retired army heroes, teachers, nurses, musicians, rich and poor people. Some really enjoy retirement, and other’s have a harder time living on a pension.

5. There are all kinds of old age diseases, but the secret is to just ignore them and keep going. It’s all in the attitude. Find joy in something, like singing and it won’t bother you as much.

6. Even if you’re old, you can sing for others and they will appreciate it. Giving to others never goes out of style.

7. Even if people are older, they are still concerned about the performance. How they sound, look, and stand. One choir woman in particular, always dresses beautifully, wears makeup, and cares about her appearance. If you’ve lived a good life, it shows on your face. This lady is 87!

8. You’re never too old to want a solo, duet, or quartet. There are no shortage of volunteers for this.

9. The repertoire is older songs, but I recognized every one of them. Enough said!

10. There is a chance I may someday sing at a current member’s memorial service. Just keep going!

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Women’s USA Team Wins the World Cup: You’ve come a long way baby! 


When I was growing up in the 1950’s girls didn’t play sports. It was the boys who played baseball, and did the boy stuff. Girls did lady like things like playing with dolls, rolling their hair in curlers, and dreaming of being secretaries, nurses and teachers.

My mother once described life to me by these words. “Daddies work, and mommies stay home with the kids. Sounded good to me. It took quite a while for me to understand that this wasn’t the most satisfying way of life.

I used to feel sorry for my father because he never had a son. Being a third daughter, I felt the responsibility of playing catch with him in the backyard. I also went to several Cleveland Indians baseball games with him.  Even though I knew he loved all his daughters, I felt guilty because I knew I’d been his last chance for a boy.

2015 Gold Cup winners

2015 Gold Cup winners

I am glad I had the chance to raise two daughters who had more dreams than me or their grandmother.  I always told them they could be anything they wanted to be, and they both surpassed my expectations.

Watching the women’s soccer tournaments made me smile

The ladies on this team are cool, confident, women. The way these young women have energy, talent and spirit makes me see how far the females have come since the 1950’s. It is really mind-boggling.

I was totally impressed with the goalie. Wow! That girl wasn’t letting many of those Japanese girls make goals.

How the USA team came right back after the Japanese team scored a second goal was truly exciting.

I am so proud of the USA Soccer Team!

You’ve come a long way baby.

A Baby Boomer sings her way to 65


“Sugar Time”

I just received my Medicare card in the mail. I can’t use it until June 1, but it still “freaked” me out. It’s made me face my mortality. On June 24, I will turn the dreaded 65.  I’ve never been one to care about approaching age,  but this year I’ve thought about it a lot.

A few years ago I started looking in the mirror and my older mother and grandmother were staring back at me. Yikes!

Walking into a Senior Center for the first time

I got up the nerve and joined a senior center. When I walked in, I felt really sheepish. I went up to the lady who runs the place and blurted out, “Could you tell me about this senior center. I feel like I’m not old enough to join .” By the knowing look on her face, I think other people have said the same thing to her.

‘You won’t be the youngest one here, our starting age is 55,” she replied. (I later found out she only has a year to go.)

At the center, they play card games, majong, do crafts, and exercise.  I lose at cards, am not crafty,  and still do outdoorsy stuff and attend a health club where i am on the old side.

I do enjoy singing in choirs. I am not a solo singer, but I can carry a tune. Even in the worst of times, I’ve managed to keep singing.

The Golden Clefs

I had a friend tell me about a Senior choir called “The Golden Clefs” that meets in the center. I decided to check it out. Not only was I late, but I tripped into the room after mishandling the lock on the folding door that led into the rehearsal space. The director gave me a big smile and said,  Come on in!”

The leader is one energetic, upbeat senior citizen. The piano player for the choir is a former professional pianist and music teacher. When she tickles those ivories, you can tell she’s not the typical choir accompanist.  She smiles a lot too. The members range in age from the late 60’s to probably the 90’s.

The songs we sing are really old, but I know them all.  My mother loved music,  and I think of her every time we sing some of her favorites.

Serving the community

Twice a month The Golden Clefs go to some kind of nursing home or senior residence center and perform.   I felt a little silly wearing my sparkly golden clef vest for the first time. I kept thinking, what would my adult children say if they saw me wearing this get up?  (Would they start adjusting my seatbelt for me in the car?)

After we arrived at the nursing home, I was pleased to see chairs set up for us. I was a little surprised when I found out we had to stand up for each song. One of the choir members mentioned she graduated high school  in 1946 when one of our  songs, “Cement Mixer” was popular. I wondered how she was going to make it for an hour.

Once we started singing, my uneasiness vanished. Audience members knew some of the songs, and many were softly singing along. People who looked somber began to smile.  A lady, bent over with some malady, got up and started moving to the music.  One of the aides got up and started dancing with her. It was one of those moments you don’t forget.

Suddenly, I heard an alarm go off. It took me a minute to realize it signaled that someone was trying to get out of their wheelchair. The director ignored it, and we just continued singing.

I found out how the director had tackled the standing problem. I was relieved to sit down between some of the numbers. That’s when some choir members got up and did little solos or quartets.  I  hadn’t heard some of these songs in decades. They brought  back cherished memories.

One lady sang “Que Cera Cera” (whatever will be will be). Doris Day sang this song, and it was popular when I was a little girl. I loved it, and remembered singing it with my mother. A quartet sang the 1958 Maguire Sisters hit, “Sugar Time”.  Another group sang “Love Me Tender” by Elvis. The audience really liked that one!

After the performance  was about over, the director asked the audience and choir members if they celebrated their birthday that month. Everyone got to sing “Happy Birthday” and we incorporated those names into the song. This was a big crowd pleaser. Even the most disabled audience members participated. (Who hasn’t had at least one happy birthday?)

After our concert was over, we went into the audience to talk to the residents. A chorus member mentioned to me that touch is so important to these people because when they’re in a facility, they  don’t get much human physical contact.  So, I made it a point to touch people’s hands and give them hugs. A lady , slumped in a wheelchair, grabbed my hand and smiled after I hugged her.

Many people told us how much they enjoyed the show.

So I guess I’ll continue with this for a while, and I’m certain the time will come when I’m not one of the youngest singers. I’m hopeful I can pick up on the happy and energetic attitudes of the members of the choir. I’m betting that when I’m 90, I’ll still want to get up and sing out.

The baby is 9 months today


Only 3 more months until he’s not a baby anymore! He is still happy, and knows us when we come in the door.

His Dad’s birthday is tomorrow, so we got to watch him while they went out to dinner.

My daughter got dressed up in a pretty blue dress. She wore her high heels, and she looked as pretty as her dress. ( I had a flashback to me and my high heels and long legs. Oh well, nothing lasts forever.)

The baby was pretty happy on the floor looking at his toys. He scoots around and goes after what he wants. No real crawling yet. I’m trying to remember when my children crawled, but I haven’t a clue. I think he’s right on schedule .

I did tell my grandson “Prince George took his first crawl last week, and he’s a month younger than you.” He didn’t seem to care.

He got tired during his nightly beverage and fell asleep on my shoulder. I know my days like this are really numbered. There is nothing sweeter than a little warm human baby snuggling on your shoulder. It really makes me feel needed. Don’t we all like to feel this way?

It’s funny, with your own kids you can’t wait for them to get a little older and independent. (Especially when you have 3 in 5 years.) With this child, I am savoring every minute.

I guess that’s another difference between parenting and grandparenting.

10 things volunteering can do for others and you!


1. There’s nothing like giving to others. It makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside.
2. People do need people. Although some animals need help too.
3. Meet other people you wouldn’t ordinarily ever come in contact with.
4. Share your knowledge about something: for example, art, writing, music…
5. Helping older people is a good thing. Some of them are very isolated, and this is not a good way to live. There are many children who need someone too!
6. Put good karma in the universe. ( I’m not sure there is such a thing, but
who knows?)
7. You would be surprised how many people you help will want to pay it forward and help someone else.
8. Maybe learn a new skill while you’re volunteering.
9. Stretch yourself further than you thought was possible.
10. In the process, you will make some good friends.

What have you gotten out of volunteering? Share your experiences and thoughts.

The baby is becoming a toddler!


At eight and a half months, we are babysitting the baby. He is becoming more mobile. He isn’t exactly crawling, but he’s going around in 360’s and manipulating himself to get where he’s going. He kicks his legs with a lot of energy, but has figured out exactly how to move them. His upper body is getting pretty strong.

Today we bought him a folding high chair. We figure if he’s going to stay overnight once in awhile, his majesty better have a place to dine.

I see him eyeing a table, so I’ll have to move it. I can also tell that he’d love to get to the sliding glass door leading out to the backyard. My husband has built a room to the back of it. (His own mother stood up for the very first time holding onto the very same glass door).

He didn’t like the way I put him down on the red Ohio State blanket placed on the floor, and he cried a little. He is letting me know, I’d better be as careful as can be. He also baptised a portion of the rug when I was changing his diaper. I don’t remember my son doing stuff like that. I guess I wasn’t noticing, or he didn’t do it around me.

We put him in the big bathtub. His parents put him in this baby to toddler bathtub, we only had a very little infant bathtub, so we got our kids in the bathtub by six months. I suppose we shouldn’t have done a first like that without his parent’s permission ,but he is just too big to fit into the sink.

We held onto him, and he seemed delighted with the whole experience. He splashed his hands. We made sure it was the proper temperature. I couldn’t help remembering my own children in the bathtub. It wasn’t my favorite thing to do. I couldn’t get them in, or out to efficiently. It probably didn’t help that I had a lot of bath toys in there. My husband, on the other hand, is pretty good with moving things along.

We sang a few songs,and he seemed to really enjoy the experience. He seems pretty musical already, and bounces to the beat. I tried to put him to bed, and he protested with a few little cries, but I just checked and he’s sleeping like a champ. It sure has brought back the good, fun memories of having a little one.

Seeing my bad behavior reflected in others : It’s never too late to change!


When I was a little kid, I used to tattle on my sisters,  even when they didn’t really do anything wrong. I’d say, “mommy she’s hitting me, or pinching me, or kicking me.” Sometimes those things would happen, but more often they didn’t. After all, siblings do regularly plummet each other.

One day I was playing at a neighbor’s house. I was about 7 or 8.  I distinctly remember sitting in a treehouse.  I was listening to the little sister constantly complain about her brother. I suddenly realized that was how I was acting. It didn’t make me happy to see my own annoying behavior mirrored back at me. After that day, I stopped the tattling.

Another thing I’m still not good at is accepting apologies. My husband can say, “I’m sorry” and I still go on. I think I’ve done that with other people too.

I took me until today to realize that is not good behavior. I won’t give you the details, but I apologized to someone about a minor infraction and they were still upset.

From this day on, I will be accepting people’s apologies. Really accepting them.

Who says it’s never too late to change? I’m 63 and 1/2.

Is there a behavior you display that you can change. Did you ever have one of those wake up moments.

My two older sisters and me!

My two older sisters and me!