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  • On July 1st, my mother will turn 80. She just finished a term as President of the Wake Robin Association, the retirement community where she lives. She still has a lot of energy and verve. When she turned 75, she was in the process of moving, selling the house, trying to unravel and reweave those pieces of forty years in one house that she could fit into an apartment about the size of half of her downstairs and those posessions that mattered most to her. My two sisters and I didn't throw her a big party, surprise or otherwise, as she was pretty overwhelmed and consumed by her "project." We did try to make it special and it was, but it wasn't the social hoopla upon which she thrives.

    This year, we felt, needed to be a big deal. The folks that matter most in her life, aside from her three daughters and eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter, are getting older. They, like my mom are pretty spunky and energetic, but life happens and to get them all in the same place at the same time might prove more challenging as time wends its way like a slow moving river.

    The venue she chose is a park on Lake Champlain. There is a pavillion with a roof (necessary this year as we are being pummelled by thunderstorms daily!). Today, I took a "fieldtrip" to the park to scope out the area. Certainly not posh by any stretch, but picnicky, summery, accessible. I took some photos so that my sisters could see what it looked like. The best part of the Park Pavillion was that right next to it, within walking/walkering distance, is a treehouse designed especially for ALL people. Young, old, sighted, blind, energetic, slow moving, runners, hobblers. You catch my drift. How cool will it be to provide a chance for each guest to spend some time in a tree house at an 80th birthday party? I for one am excited! I will be able to enjoy it despite the cast on my lower right leg encasing a broken foot.

    May we all be able to find our inner child and Be Forever Young!
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