Aging Well in the Gorge July 12th 2016

Your house is full of “stuff” you have accumulated since your children were born: family pictures, your children’s school work, and all their ribbons and trophies. And now you want to downsize before a time when it might just be too hard to sort through everything. But what should you save for your children that they would actually appreciate and keep? And what should you throw away or recycle?

It is something I have been thinking about since my children have left home, and recently I found an article on the Next Avenue website suggesting the following items that are often overlooked when considering what to give your children.

1. Your first passport with the country stamps from all the worldly places you visited during your more adventuress days.
2. Your military discharge papers which your children may need to help you get services, but also because it’s always fun looking at old papers from those days way back when.
3. One printed photo of your wedding – that you can actually hold in your hands. I wonder how our grandchildren will be sharing pictures with their children. On a thumb drive?
4. Something belonging to the oldest living relative they know and care about.
5. A sentimental piece of jewelry. Not necessarily something they would wear, but something meaningful to you such as the watch you received from your dad when you graduated from college. 6. An old receipt with a date on it to prove you aren’t lying when you talk about how much things use to cost. Yes, gas did cost twenty-nine cents a gallon (when there were four gas stations on every corner); and there was a time when we were afraid a loaf of bread would cost more than a dollar.
7. The photo of the first time you held them – because the first time is always special.
8. Highlights of their childhood. That does not mean all the little league pictures or the ceramic hand prints – which I still have. But report cards, especially with teacher comments; or their acceptance letter to college.
9. The dog tags worn by their childhood pets or pictures of their furry friends.
10. Your favorite music – in a format they can use such as an iTunes playlist. But no eight tracks or cassettes, although they may still have a CD player.

Not all of these suggestions I found useful, but they reminded me that it is often the little treasures your children will find special and appreciate. And they may even give you an opportunity to share some stories from the good-old-days.

The Center’s Annual Membership Meeting for 2016 will be on Tuesday, July 19th starting at 3:00. There will be an election of board members, a financial report and an update on the Elevator Project. After the membership meeting, you will want to stay because at 4:30, Cherry Heights Living, our neighbor to the north, will be literally giving you a taste of what it is like to live there by providing a Pot Roast dinner with all the fixins for members at no cost.

I thought the Center would be back on the regular music schedule, but no, I was wrong. I want to thank the band Shades of Country (although for some reason I keep wanting to say “shades of grey”), for filling in tonight for Martin and Friends. But next week, on the 19th, we will be back to the usual line-up with the Simcoe Boys playing for your dancing and listening pleasure. Doors open at 6:00, music starts at 7:00, and donations are appreciated.

The Baseball Hall of fame pitcher, who spent his entire 18-year career with the Yankees was Whitey Ford. (The winner of a quilt raffle ticket is Jess Birge.) I always enjoyed this comic strip because of its social and political satire. So for this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name of the comic strip created by cartoonist Walt Kelley that included various animal characters: possums, alligators, owls, turtles and porcupines living in the Okefenokee Swamp? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or mail it with a t-shirt with the quote “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

Well, it’s been another week trying to take the long way around. Until we meet again, it may not always be the same, but it could be better.

“Don’t take life so serious. It ain’t nohow permanent.” Porky Pine

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