That decade brought a big move to Boston to live closer to her eldest children (cousins Martin and Helen), and an end to her driving the giant Buick (thank goodness!). When she moved to Boston she was living in her own apartment, the first floor of a two-story home, with her beloved cat Duchess (who has since passed away).
Five years later she came down to the Ewing area again (well, Bucks County, PA) we gathered at the Yardley Inn to celebrate her 95th birthday, at which point she quipped "what, you don't think I'll make it to 100?"
Don's Aunt Elva did what many only dream about, at the end of July she celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by family and friends.
Unfortunately due to a stroke about two years ago, Aunt Elva was not up to traveling to Ewing, NJ. Instead we drove to Boston.
I once heard as you age, you either lose your mind or your body. Unfortunately you don't get to choose. In Aunt Elva's case it is her body, her mind is still razor sharp. Her wit is quick. Her personality is sparking. She has made friends in her new home (an assisted living place in Jamaica Plains, MA). She has a few women who travel to visit with her and talk to her. Martin and Helen each visit several times a week. She is someone you want to be around. If we were closer (or at least if her hearing were better) I would record her history. She is a joy to be around.
Her hearing is not what it used to be, but she still loves to read. A passion that was noted by most of her guests. Amazingly she received about 30 books (which she plans to read over the next few months); no duplicates, and none that she already owned. That is quite a feat. We gave her a book about another woman born in 1916 (unfortunately Mollie Moran "only" lived to age 97).
It is hard to find a good gift for a centenarian, especially one with limited living space.
The party was a lovely celebration of a live still being lived.
|All of the guests:from New England, to DC to Colorado |
|Grandchildren, plus Ashley (Ashley, Nick, Elva, Sara, Joe)|
|Her children: Helen, Martin, and Nancy|
|Us with the birthday girl|