Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. I hope you enjoy this beautiful view from the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina on 6/24/18.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Me at Age Sixteen!!!!

Okay---so I'm going back in years!!!!! This ole' Senior Citizen ---who will be 67 in August is reverting back to 1958. On August 5th of that year, I was celebrating my SIXTEENTH birthday... Oh how little I knew then about LIFE!!! Yet, I thought I was SO smart!!!! It was a Sweet Sixteen birthday (see picture above)--and I was enjoying life in all of the typical teenage ways possible.

Little did I know that I'd be going away to college in a couple of years--only to get married and have a baby BEFORE graduating from college. WELL---I can look back at my life and marvel at all of the joys (and sorrows) that have happened. My first marriage didn't work --but I have three wonderful sons that I adore from that 20 year marriage.

Between 1958 and now, I have lived the 'good life' as they say!!! I really don't have many regrets. BUT---I've lost loved ones (my Dad, my Mom and my brother Jimmy). There's only one more sibling left in my 'immediate' family, my older brother, Raymond. Ray (86) is in a skilled nursing facility in Jacksonville, FL and has not been in very good health lately. I got an email yesterday from my nephew who was visiting his Dad. Bob (nephew) said that his Dad was was sleeping alot during this visit. None of Ray's adult children (3 of them) live near him --and I know that he gets lonely. We try to visit a couple of times a year, and I cry every time I leave him.

My school teaching career and my long career in the ministry in the United Methodist Church was very rewarding---all through the years. But---the BEST times of my life are RIGHT NOW. Meeting and marrying George Adams has truly been a blessing to me in every respect. Little did I ever expect someone like George to meet and fall in love with ME!!!! Our love and life together is just tremendous--and we both feel truly blessed by God for what we have together.

Sixteen???? I'd never want to go back and do it all again!!!! Sixty-Six???? Well----after saying for years and years that I 'dreaded' becoming a Sr. Citizen, I certainly am not dreading being one NOW (despite the aches and pains). This is the BEST time of my life!!!



Anonymous said...

Such an adorable picture Betsy. You are truly a bundle of JOY and INSPIRATION to me. Wishing you and George much happiness this day.

Shellmo said...

Betsy - I just love that photo of you when you were sixteen! You still have that same beautiful smile!! I'm so glad you and George found each other - you definitley have such zest for life! (Are you almost up to 200 waterfalls now???!)
Hugs, Shelley

Jayne said...

I love how you so hugely embrace life Betsy. You make me smile each and every time I come by to visit. You are just a pure joy my friend. :c)

jlshall said...

That's a really cute picture - you were a very pretty Sweet Sixteen! Like you, I wouldn't want to have to repeat those teenage years, although I could do without the arthritis!

CountryDreaming said...

It's not the number of years, it's the amount of life in them. Great self portrait of you on a happy memorable day!

~Vanessa~ said...

What a great post! You were a cutie patootie 16 year old! Did your Mom make your cake? I am a lifelong Methodist; proud member of the Holston Conference. Another tie :)My mom is an educator also, working as a teacher and a principal and now for the state (mentoring new teachers).

dot said...

What a sweet post and a pleasure to read!

Connie said...

WOW you were pretty then and pretty now. I have no trouble seeing what George sees in that beautiful wife of his. I think you're both lucky to have found each other. And I feel a little lucky myself being able to visit with such nice people almost every day.

Smilingsal said...

They tell us that these are the golden years. Hmm, gold is hard and cold isn't it?

A Brit in Tennessee said...

What a beautiful young lady you were at sixteen, and still are at six {cough}...hmm.
I can tell by reading your posts, you are a very happy lady, full of life, and love.
I wish you many more years together with your family, and wonderful husband.

Kathleen said...

Sweet "16" Love photo's that take you back.

Cedar ... said...

Yes, we are the same "vintage!" Go back? never. Stay as I am now, sure! Maybe with a little more money so i could live a bit easier, but even that isn't necessary. Life IS good.

Busy Bee Suz said...

Oh, how I loved reading this. You are such a cutie Betsy, then AND now.
I am so happy for you and George...your story is just so wonderful and gives hope to lots of lonely people looking for love. (not me, of course)
My heart aches for your brother....did his wife pass away recently? No one ever wants to end up alone...
take care,

Bird Girl said...

Betsy - I bet when you were 16 if someone told you that you'd be taking pictures of birds and falls for fun ...you would think they were CRAZY! Haha! You look so sweet there!

The Incredible Woody said...

I dearly love your zest for life! I hope you have a wonderful day!!

Mary said...

You have such a happy outlook on life that I bet you have made the most of every age :-) I'm glad that you and George found each other and are now enjoying the happy golden years together! You seem to be a perfect couple and enjoy the same things. Have a great day and a great rest of your life!

NCmountainwoman said...

I totally agree with you, Betsy. When I was a bride, I thought life could not get better. When I was a mother of two young children, I thought life could not be better. When I had a rewarding career, I thought life could not get better. And now that we are retired, I know the life can indeed get better.

Anonymous said...

My dad, my husband, and me were just talking about being a teenager. How hardly anyone would want to go back to that decade and live it again. My dad grew up in the U.P. of Michigan on a farm though, and he said his teenage years were fine. He played sports, went to school, worked on the farm and was just getting interested in girls. It really was a simpler and much more peaceful way to grow up compared with kids today:)

Kallen305 said...

I agree with Shelley about your sweet smile! It's the first thing I noticed when I saw the picture. I liked hearing about your life story too!

fishing guy said...

Betsy: Cute photo and well written, 1958 seems so long ago.

Dorothy said...

Good Morning Betsy!
Those were exciting times, growing up, but I agree with you that NOW is the best time of life. Reading your post reminds me so much of the love and life that Jeep and I have right now. BTW, my grand-daughter was born on your birthday!

Deborah Godin said...

That's sweet, the pic of you! And how wonderful look back at your life and have almost no regrets!

Pigeon said...

I was three months old when that picture of you was taken! We never know what the future will bring, and it is usually very different from what we may have planned for. I read your question on Jen's blog about finding an easy camera. My camera has a 15x zoom, which is a toggle type switch. It has a lot of bells and whistles, but one of them is an "easy" setting. Here is the link. I did buy it from Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Sony-Cyber-shot-DSCH50-Digital-Optical/dp/B00154MCRO

Diane said...

A very lovely post, Betsy. Is this your birthday? If it is Happy, happy birthday!! So nice to hear the review of what's happened in your life. Thanks for sharing.

Diane said...

Oops! I just reviewed your post and it isn't your birthday. Well hope you have a wonderful day anyway. (This is what happens when you get to be 67!)

Jackie said...

Oh, Betsy, what a terrific post! Your life now is exactly the life you were meant to have. Sometimes it just takes Our Father our lifetime to get things the way he wants them. Have a great Tuesday! We kinda give him a lot of material to work with, lol.

Small City Scenes said...

Sweet Sixteen--I guess we are in the same age group. I always wanted to be a groupie. Remember peddle pushers? I had a pair just like Marilyn Monroe's. So someone said. I enjoyed what teen aged years I had and I would like to do them again. I got married waaayyy too you so missed some of them. but only small regrets.
Your picture is wonderful and you did and still do have a wonderful smile. MB

Cicero Sings said...

Weren't you a cutie! I'm with you, I'd never want to go back and be 16 again. I didn't have a bad life but I'm just as happy not to do it again. I'm very happy to be who and where I am right now! There is great gain in contentment!

Darla said...

What a great photo! I am 46 and would not want to goback either. I can't wait until my husband can retire and the kids are all moved out so we can have as much fun as you and your husband do!! YOU GLOW GIRL!!!

Susie said...

I love hearing the positiveness in your story Betsy! You sound extremely happy. I hope that if I make it to 67 I'll be as happy as you.

That's a cute little sweet 16 pic! I enjoy black/white photos much!

Pigeon said...

Hi Betsy,
You can Email me any time!

Anonymous said...

Betsy - I'm crying now, but tears of joy - that's one of the sweetest stories I've ever heard!!! You are so sweet & George is so sweet - You two belong together & you've given something to look forward to!!! Thank you for that!

ShabbyInTheCity said...

Beautiful then...beautiful now!!!
I'd better get an invite to your party when it happens :)

So happy you found love again...or it found you rather :)

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Betsy enjoy each day to it's fullest.

Betty said...

Hi Betsy,

What a pretty 16 year old girl you were, and you have definitely aged very nicely. You still look good.

Like you, I think my golden, senior years are the best years of my life.

Thanks for checking on me to see if I was okay after you didn't hear from me for a while.

Wendy said...

What a happy post! Your love for your family shines all though it.
We have some similarities - my first marriage didn't work either. I checked out after 20 years and 3 wonderful children too.
I also have lost my mom and dad and one brother. And the best thing ever is my second marriage to my present hubby.
Love your sweet 16 pic! No, I wouldn't go back there either.

mountain.mama said...

Very sweet 16. Isn't it amazing we can remember back that far? Who knew back then.

This Country Girl said...

What a cutie, Betsy! :)

I wouldn't want to be 16 again either! I consider each year to be a blessing and I will take them all....the alternative is not good! :)

My dad will be 67 this Sunday! And my birthday is in August...the 28th...when's yours?

Have a great rest of the week!

Anonymous said...

Awww..you haven't changed a bit. You sound so youthful, excited and in love...isn't that like being 16?

Janie said...

Great photo of the 16 year old Betsy.
Some of that age was fun, but a lot of it was awkward and insecure. I wouldn't want to go back.
Glad you've come into your happiness in your older years. Hope you and George keep right on having the best of times for many years to come.

lola said...

I am so glad for you that you have had the wonderful life that you've had. Now it's even better. You have George, health, happiness & a zest for life. I truly hope you have many more.
I'm so sorry for your brother. I was in a nursing home for rehab & I want no part of those places ever again. If he was close by I would go see him to help him pass the day.I send a card once in awhile to a gentleman in Tn. to help pass the day even tho I've never met him. Maybe I could do the same for your brother even tho he wouldn't know me. Do you think!!!!
Ah ha, I am older than you by 4 months. I too remember my sixteenth bd also.

Patty said...

Aww to be 16 again...I really enjoyed this post. Thanks for sharing with us

Mary Isabella and Kiley too! said...

Oh you were just as pretty then as you are naow!! You go Girl and enjoy every minute of your life with your sweet husband...Hugs...m.

Robert V. Sobczak said...

Wow! Great retrospective. I'm with you: how ever I got here where I am at 39 and a half, I'm happy with that, and doubt I could find my way here again if you flopped me down wide eyed and bushy tailed at 16. Life is all about liking yourself and where you are now, at the moment. Memories are elusive and never sustain like the precious moments in front of us ... or something like that. I'll get it right when I turn 40 (and be happy I'm no longer 39 and a half!)

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Mildred---Ditto---you are special to me too!!!!! Happiness to you and Nalley!

Shelley--I'm glad that George and I found each other also. We're almost to 300 waterfalls --not 200!!!! Hope we'll get there before spring!!!

Jayne--That's my goal ---to make other's smile and feel life and my joy as strongly as I do!!!! Thanks!

Joy--NEVER would I want to repeat those teen years; BUT--I wish I had met George first... I would have loved to have been married to him when I was young and could have his children... BUT--I wouldn't trade my 3 sons for anything!!!

Country Dreaming--Thanks!!!! I really have had a good life despite my divorce.

Vanessa-- Yes, my mother was an excellent cook.. She cooked from scratch --and tried to teach me.. It didn't take!!! ha... I was a Methodist ALL of my life until retirement. I worked in Youth Ministries, Children's Ministries, Adult Ministries , Christian Education, Associate Minister---and you name it, in 5 different churches for about 25 yrs. Now I'm happily in the Episcopal Church.

Dot-- Thanks!!! It was fun writing it!

Connie--Yes, we are lucky to have found each other. His wife died of cancer in 1998 --so he was ready for a relationship when we met in 2001. I had been divorced for 20 yrs--and never thought I would meet this wonderful man in my dreams!

Sally--Whatever they are, I love them!!!! These are truly the BEST years in my life.

Josephine--I am extremely happy.. After a failed marriage and 20 yrs. single after that, I never knew I'd meet someone as wonderful as George.

Kathleen-- Those were the years!!!! But---I wouldn't want to do it again!!! ha

Cedar--Glad life is good for you also. You sure do live in a gorgeous area of the country.

Suzanne-- Well, there's always hope. That's what I say to others who are still looking. After my divorce --I spent almost 20 yrs. being single, married to my JOB. I became more and more lonely. BUT--I never dreamed that I would meet someone like George. I'll write our story sometime. Ray's wife died over a year ago--and he misses her so much. They were both together in the retirement home.

Barb--You are SO right... I never paid any attention to birds or waterfalls when I was young. Even my mother (who died in 1991) would be so pleased to see me outside growing flowers. She loved her flowers--but I never appreciated them back then. She (nor Daddy) got to meet George--and I'm so sorry about that. They'd love him too.

Woody--I do love life for sure... Thanks!!! You have a wonderful time babysitting also!!

Mary--Well, we struggled when I was married and had little children... Life wasn't wonderful then--although I do have 3 wonderful children from that marriage. I do intend to have a great rest of my life.. Thanks!

Carolyn-- Oh I love your comment... It's so true... Life just gets better and better. We worked hard our entire lives to have this time just for US, didn't we????

Lilli--I think it's even harder now to be a teen than it was in 1958. I worry about my grandchildren.. There are so many issues in the country now that scare me. Times are definitely not simple and safe anymore. That's a shame isn't it?

Kallen--thanks.... Hope you had a great day. Loved your pictures today!

Tom--Yes, 1958 does seem like a LONG time ago!!!! Alot of living has been done since then!!! ha

Dorothy-- I'd love to hear your story of the love that you and Jeep have. For me, love is definitely lovelier the second time around. George lost his first wife in 1998 and he had a good first marriage. I, on the other hand, had been divorced for 20 yrs before meeting George. But--for both of us, life is GRAND.

Deb-- No regrets really --other than a bad first marriage; I did get three wonderful sons out of that marriage--so overall, no regrets.

Pigeon--You are such a young-ee!!! You could be my daughter!!! ha.. In fact, I have a son who is almost 46 (July). Thanks for the info on the camera. I definitely need one with a better zoom. Today I took George's camera outside and am trying to learn to use it. I got some pretty good shots which I'll share sometime.

Diane--No, my birthday is August 5th. Sorry if I confused you talking about my 16th birthday!!!! We all get confused at times--no matter how old or young we are!!!!

Jackie--Well, one of these days I will share our story with you (and others). We truly felt as if God put us together. There were just too many signs!

Hi MB---Welcome to the 60's!!!! Ain't life grand????? ha .. YES, I definitely remember peddle-pushers. Are you still married to your high school sweetheart??? I got married at age 20---still too young!!!

Cicero--No, let's not go back and do it again. We can't play Monday morning Quarterback, can we???? ha ... Contentment is a good word to describe me.

Darla--You are such a young thing also... You could be my daughter... Wouldn't that be a hoot???? I always wanted a daughter.. My oldest son will be 46 in July. Well---it will happen to you one of these days... AND--remember, the best is yet to come (unless you are like my good friend who is STILL raising her adult kids and their kids)... Yipes!!!

Susie--67 is YOUNG these days. People are living longer. I hope to live much longer!!!! George and I have alot of making up to do.

Pigeon---Thanks for your email. I always like to send personal stuff via email...

Tricia--Oh you are sweet. George and I DO belong together ---and we hope to have many more years together. Life does get better---believe me!!!

Phyllis--Which party???? George and I celebrate constantly--since we have so many years to make up for. Yes, LOVE found me for sure!!!!

Ruth--I am and will continue to enjoy life to its fullest. Thanks!

Betty--The 'golden' years are the best FOR SURE. George and I, although we are busier than EVER, we at least are busy doing the things we WANT to do these days. Glad you are fine. I was just worried.

Wendy--We do have some similarities in our lives, don't we? That's amazing. No--let's not go back and do it again... ha

Loran--Back then, if anyone would have told me that I'd be hiking and searching out waterfalls and growing flowers at age 67, I probably would have laughed in their face.

Tammy---George will be 67 in March and me on August 5. George's Dad's birthday is August 29 (he'll be 97) and one of my grandson's birthdays is on August 25. SO--we have alot of August birthdays.

Michelle--Ha---I've changed ALOT. AND--where are all of these aches and pains coming from???? Being 66 is wonderful---but I am not as agile as I used to be! ha

Janie--Thanks... George and I hope to have many more years together. We have SO much we want to do!!!!

Lola-- You are welcome to send my brother a card. I'll email you his address. You can just say you are a friend of Betsy. Thanks!!! I'm sure he'd love any attention he can get. I feel SO far away. So you are 66 also!!!! Wow!!!! Welcome to the club of aches and pains. ha ha

Patty--Thanks... I enjoyed sharing my life!!!! More to come tomorrow --about my hubby and me!

Mary--I hope to enjoy many more years with George.. We have alot of making up to do!!!!

Bob--- Oh you are just a baby!!!! Just think what you will get time to do when you are our age!!! You'll get to see all of those waterfalls we've told you about!!!!

Karin said...

Well, I'm at the end of the line again - just like always! It is so wonderful to read about your life and how God has truly blessed you! I'm so happy for you! I, too, love living in the NOW. The past with its memories is a nice place to visit, but I don't want to stay there. And if I live only for tomorrow I'll never enjoy today!!


Betsy from Tennessee said...

Karin---You will never be LAST!!!! Just consider yourself as SPECIAL!!! Thanks for the kind words. We both try to live in the NOW and not worry about either the past or the future.

Leedra said...

Great photo of you at sixteen. You make me want to spend the money for a scanner, so I can scan at least some of the 10s of 1000s of photos I have.

Loved the story, learned more about you. Knew George was Methodist, but just recently learned you are. Is that where you 2 met? At church?

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