A message from Aunt Jean

Anyone who tells you gardening isn’t exercise is an idiot.  A real one.  The kind that mumbles and drags their hairy knuckles on the ground while searching for poop to eat.

Because last week I spent 5 hours cleaning up my 20′ x 40′ community garden and  I was more exhausted and sore after that than I was after moving and stacking 2 bush cords of wood for 12 hours.

In fact as I type this, the day after cleaning up the garden, it’s noon and I’m still wearing my pajamas.  Just  one room over from my office is the bedrom  where the two cats are sunk into the duver like liquid fur.

I hate them. I hate those cats.  I hate them I hate them I hate them.  I’d say they were idiots, but I’ve never actually seen them try to eat poop.  Although one time one of my cats threw up a mouse head.  Not a mouse.  Just the head; the way a cartoon drunk might burp up the cap to a 40 ounce bottle of vodka.

The day I stacked the wood I had a lot of people stopping by to ask if I needed help and one of those people was The Famous, 100 year old, Aunt Jean.

She wasn’t actually coming to see if I needed help but when my mother drove up with her in the passenger seat I tried to physically yank her out of the car to put her to work.  No go.  She wouldn’t budge.  She’s strong for 100 years old.  Even more surprisingly I couldn’t trick her into it.  You’d think by 100 a person would be really easy to trick.  Not this one.

My mother had just brought her over to have a look at what was going on in the world outside of the her retirement residence.  NOT nursing home.  Retirement home.  I showed her Mabel, who was named after Aunt Jean’s mother.

Aunt Jean and I talked a bit about politics and entertainment.  I told her how many fans she had on my website.

I asked Aunt Jean, “Do you have anything you want to say to your fans?”

Without missing a beat or thinking about it she had a message for you, her fans. It’s an insight and proclamation that I think will strike a chord with all of you. Aunt Jean has seen many changes in our world in her 100 years on this planet. She has seen 100 years worth of wars, death, births and inventions. So if she has a message for you, you can bet it will be impactful.

Here is her message.



“I have all my own teeth”

                                   Aunt Jean, November 2014

Have a good weekend!



  1. isabella wigrenini says:

    Love aunt Jean. She reminds me of my aunt Minnie who loved to have a cigarette every night after dinner along with a scotch on the rocks. At 94 she had a stroke and while in the hospital her little brother ( age 90) came to visit and scold her by saying , ” I told you that all the smoking and drinking was going to get you”. She lived happily and full of health for another 8 years.

  2. Leslie says:

    That’s perfect!!! I looked at her photo for quite a while, thinking how beautiful she is and how fabulous her glasses and teeth look. Then I saw the caption. :D

  3. Holly says:

    Karen – your Aunt Jean is so wonderful! She reminds me so much of my dear sweet mother I lost last year at 91. She had all her teeth, too, and cool glasses! She was adamant about brushing and dental appts. And always made sure she looked appropriate. I’m not kidding, people would stop us at the mall as we pushed her in her wheelchair and comment on how wonderful she looked. She had that aura, same as Aunt Jean. Her mental faculties were amazing. She was valedictorian of her class and a wonderful teacher. And funny. She would get very upset when when she couldn’t remember something. I was always telling her, mom, most people know less than what you have forgotten. I had the great privilege of caring for her for her in her final four years, along with my sisters, in her home. She was never alone and it came at the perfect time, right after I had retired. I finally got to spend more time with my mom than I ever did before as I was working 2 jobs and raising a kid as a single parent. We had wonderful times and talks. Make the best of the time you have with loved ones. I think your Aunt Jean rocks! Please let her know : )

  4. Julie says:

    my gramma was always obsessed with teeth. i’m trying really hard to keep all of mine! you should write a book of “aunt jean’s wisdom”…it will be so precious to you!

  5. Anita says:

    I’m actually a little jealous that you have all your family around you. My family has scattered to the winds and it’s a two day drive to see any of them. Treasure those words of wisdom from your Aunt!

  6. Angela Wells says:

    Beautiful teeth they are. She nor her teeth look a day over 80. She’s a beauty!

  7. Sarah says:

    Love it!

  8. Laura c says:

    I saw Aunt Jean’s photo and thought how great it was that she had her own teeth.

  9. Sandy says:

    She is the best!!

  10. why were you asking a 100 year old person for help? what are you “insane”?

  11. Jack Ledger says:

    Having your own teeth at 100 is most certainly an accomplishment but let us not fail to mention the influence of two brothers who were dentists………….I am sure she can attest to the constant harrassment which bore down on her over those many years hearing those immortal words day in and day out, “floss, floss, floss….”
    And let us not forget that her son-in-law is also a dentist, but wisdom being the better part of valour, he knows that when it comes to mother-in-laws, advice only goes one way.

    • Karen says:

      This is true (Jack is my Uncle, everyone … that’s how he knows). Although in the days when her brothers were dentists I think more than floss, floss, floss the mantra was pull, pull, pull, lol. ~ karen

  12. dana studer says:

    Funny Aunt Jean! You need to name a chicken Aunt Jean. Then when you introduce people to it they will think that Karen thinks her chicken is her aunt. Aunt Jean is so way cooler than I am. I didn’t have all my own teeth when I was 20. Although, like fake boobs, I guess they are my own teeth if I bought and paid for them, right? ;) More Aunt Jean! More Aunt Jean! More Aunt Jean!

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