The Hike

nancy is 60

nancy is 60

October 10 was my 60th birthday, and I decided to do all the things I love most.

Because Barry was still at home, I needed to check on him throughout the day. I gave him money to go buy blueberries so he would be happy and have something to do. I left him early that morning watching TV with his blueberry money in hand, while I set out on a birthday bike ride.

I love to bike and spend most of the summer on the wonderful bike trails around the Twin Cities. On this beautiful fall day, I headed west to the town of Excelsior. After a 45-minute ride, I found my favorite café and ordered a yummy quiche for breakfast. The day was going pretty good so far.

Lowry Nature Center

After breakfast, I biked down the trail toward the town of Independence. My plan was to go to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum to hike and see the beautiful fall colors. But then as I biked by Carver Park, part of the Three Rivers Parks system, I saw a sign for the Lowery Nature Center and decided that would be my hike of the day!I locked my bike and followed along with a few busloads of school kids to hike the trails.

After a couple of loops walking, I started to feel like the old me was slowly coming back. For the past year, I had put my nose to the grindstone to figure what was wrong with Barry, try to get out of debt and just keep my career going. I was kind of crabby all the time. But today, I was me again. I was striking up conversations with people just like I used to. It felt really good to feel, well, kind of happy!

Leaves of Fall


After my hike, I rode back to our place and checked on Barry. He asked, “Is it your birthday?” I said, “Yes.” But Barry just went back to watching TV without saying anything else.

Here’s to me

The next fun thing for my birthday day was to draw. I have been drawing most days since kindergarten and still love it more than anything. I went to my studio where I let myself work on my fine art pieces. That day I decided to focus my upcoming February art show on my journey with a husband afflicted with dementia.

The final fun thing I did after a few hours of drawing was walk downstairs to the restaurant below my studio for a cold beer and dinner! Here’s to me I thought — I think I am going to make it after all.
fall is wonderful
When I got home Barry was watching TV and without looking up he said, “Happy Birthday!”

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  1. Nancy, My birthday is Oct. 3, maybe we could met at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum and celebrate, me with my camera and you with your drawing pad and later we could meet Steve and Vicki for dinner!

  2. Sara O'Brien says:

    Nancy, I’m sorry I haven’t commented earlier. I have been praying for you and your family. My girls, Betsy and Emmie went to school with your boys. Although I cannot begin to emagine what you and your family have gone through this past two years, you are all in my/our prayers. Nancy, you have such courage and fortitude. God Bless you and your’s. If there is anything I/we can do please let me know… Your strength is inspiring. Love and prayers to you all.

  3. Two beautiful words at the end of many, many more.

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