Keeping Alive by Keeping the Mind Occupied
Alene Kate Stewart McCorkle
(This is the second in a series of articles written by Mrs. McCorkle
as promised in blog 67 which you should read first for background.)
I get pleasure out of reading my NEWSLETTER from Vernon Herron. He keeps me aware of how great the students are who finished Second Ward. I just can’t imagine the great information he is sending us. It looks like he is trying his best to keep all of us ALIVE. I just wonder if it might have helped some of our deceased ones had this wonderful NEWSLETTER been sent before they passed on to the great beyond.
I have an addition to make to Vernon’s recommendations. It is not only exercise and proper eating but it pays to KEEP THE MIND OCCUPIED. Think positively. We have come a long way. Thousands of people are living to be over a hundred. Come with me as I hope to celebrate 100 years . My mind is busy. I wish that I could show you some of the things that I have done or made since I became 90 years of age.[Now 96].
I sew and crochet. When I was 91 years of age, I crocheted over 100 snow caps for members of the family and their friends. Two years ago, I did 11 jigsaw puzzles, 5 with 500 pieces, 5 with 1,000 pieces and 1 with 1500 pieces. The one with 2000 pieces is still under the bed in a shoe box. I think that I will let it stay there.
I read, do jigsaw puzzles, play pinochle, single and double. I learned double after reaching the age of 92. I play euchre double hearts, scrabble and spade on the computer. I do at least half of the cooking in our house. I can’t work in the garden but I freeze what comes out of it. I make juice from the oranges that grow on our tree in Puerto Rico.
I go to church or I listen to sermons on TV. I keep up with my little money and I pray mightily. Sometimes I wake up about 1 or 2 a.m. and send up prayers of Thanksgiving because I realize that even though I lived through the great depression, God has been GOOD to me. So you see that I am busy everyday. I even cut some hedges the other day. I was sore for a few days.
When I feel like I don’t want to do anything, I go to my “music box” collection. .I turn them all on at the same time. That is great noise and I love it. I collect music boxes.
I love Obama. I listen to him every time I know when he is speaking. He is having a hard time so we must pray for him and his family. He has a big job. Many people hope he will fail in his efforts. He is where we thought we would never live to see one of us. We helped him when he was running for President, so let us help him now that he is President with the highest rating of any President. Prayer is a little thing that helps us all. We, as Second Ward grads and supporters know what prayer can do. We have lived by it.
It looks like that I am bragging about my activities, doesn’t it? Well, I guess that I am, since I thought about it. I am doing this to let you know that as you get older, there are still lots of things you can do to help you live even longer.
I have a little message which I’ve placed some where, the lack of which I don’t remember. But when I read it, I thought how any one over 75 could certainly agree that it is all good and could see all of these things in their lives. I think it is called…
Everything is getting father away now than they used to be.
It is twice as far to the corner and I notice that they have added a hill.
I have given up on running for the bus, it leaves faster than it used to.
And it seems to me they are making stairs steeper than they did in the old days.
Have you noticed the smaller print they are using in the newspaper?
There is no sense in asking people to read aloud.
Everyone speaks in such low voices, I can hardly hear them.
It is almost impossible to reach my shoe laces.
Even people are changing. They are much younger than they used to be when I was their age. On the other hand, people my age are so much older than I am.
I ran into an old classmate the other day, and she had aged so much.
I did not even recognize her.
I got to thinking about that poor thing while I was combing my hair this morning
And in so doing, I glanced at my reflection.
You know, they don’t even make mirrors like they use to.
I did not recognize me in that mirror.
Have you looked in the mirror lately? I have and I don’t know who that lady is looking back at me!
Smile and be happy!
The following are scenes from the 96th birthday luncheon
Pictures by William C. Youngblood