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The Autumn of my Life

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It is almost Fall!  And that happens to be my favorite season of the year. 

It is almost Fall.  And I am also in the Fall or Autumn of my life. 

How lucky can a girl get!  To be literally in the season and figuratively in the season.

Today I’m not doing a fall project, although that wreath can be used as inspiration. Today I am getting together with a group of my blogging friends who are over Fifty and we are going to share all about being Fifty and Fab!

​Let me take you on the journey that has led to the Autumn of my life. 

Fifty and Fab Blog Hop Logo

The Early Years

I’ve lived in Greece for the last 20 years. I was born here but left very young and returned with my husband and our two boys.  We wanted to live in one country and not have this tug and pull that we had always felt when living abroad while our family members were still here. You can read more about that here

​The first years were good, very good. I have been blessed with four children and a wonderful man by my side.  As my family grew, so did my happiness.  I must admit it was difficult at times to adjust to this, strange for me, culture but for the most part it was a joy to live here.  We tend to think of our childhood home is based on what our parents remember.  I had this nostalgic picture in my head, a relic from the early 1960s.  The reality was far different.

As the children grew, I entered menopause.  It was the strangest time of my life. Feeling like I didn’t belong in this body. Feeling like my head was in an oven for most of the day.  Of course, the famous Greek heat did not help things at all.  And to top it all off, the economy took a turn for the worst in 2008 as in the rest of the world. 

Blue dried flowers on a wreath, The Autumn of my Life

Spiraling Downward

But here in Greece we just kept on spiraling downward.  Down and down we went and with no bottom in sight. I became very despondent.  What would we do?  Yes we may live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world, but that will not put food on the table. It may be a paradise for the retired older folks, but what about my children? How were they going to grow and become independent if they could not even find a job, let alone move out on their own?

In 2011, we made the most difficult decision of our lives and had the older boys move back to the States. This was very hard for us as we have always been a very close knit family. 

I remember thinking that this was not possible.  We had moved to Greece to avoid this exact situation.  It was then that I hit rock bottom. A sense of despair, a sense of hopelessness came over me.   I would watch the TV news and not be able to make any sense of the nonsense that was being thrown at us. Lies upon lies were being fed to us and yet my sons were six thousand miles away because of those lies. 

flowers and pinecones, The Autumn of my Life

Hitting Rock Bottom

This sense of hopelessness continued as the prime minister’s office became a revolving door for one incompetent politician after another, seeking only to improve their personal fortunes. Yes, the people had made mistakes.  Yes, many had become accustomed to a lavish lifestyle that was beyond their means.  But at some point after many had lost their homes, many had their incomes reduced to poverty levels, the punishment had to stop.  

And yet, there was no end in sight. We were heavily taxed to sustain the banks and not to pay off any loans.  And I … I was waiting?  What was I waiting for?  My younger kids to grow and then what?  Would my obligations be over?  What would I do with myself?  I needed to get a job but there were no jobs here.  I felt as if I had been spiraling downward along with the economy.

The years passed and I bided my time waiting…


Dried flowers on a wreath, The Autumn of my Life

A Light at the End of the Tunnel

In the Autumn of 2014 I went to visit my sons.  It was a magical time for me.  I felt a sense of renewal. It is rather ironic that I should feel renewed when the leaves are falling off the trees. I was happy, and I dived into helping them organize and decorate their home.  Nothing special just a few DIYs here and there. Repainting some frames, reupholstering chairs, simple ideas that made an impact. And before I left in early November, I even put up their Christmas tree.  To give them something to look forward to. To remind them of home. 

​These simple acts gave me life, and hope.  And most of all, a purpose which I felt had been lacking for a while 

Pine cones, The Autumn of my Life

The Decision

It was after I returned from the States that I made the decision to start this blog.  I loved to repurpose odds and ends. I had been doing this in one form or another all my life.  But now with the crisis, it had become a necessity not just a hobby.  I decided that I would share my humble ideas with everyone … and boy, if you look at some of my earlier posts you will see that they were indeed very humble.  I didn’t even know what Mod Podge or Chalk Paint were. 

​Of course, at this point I had nothing left to lose.  I turned off the TV once and for all –  that instrument that had been feeding me lies and bringing me down – and opened my computer!

I started a blog and visited other blogs, met other bloggers and realized that there was a whole community of like-minded people out there.  And after a few months, there was an explosion in my brain.  It was as if the right side of my brain had thrown off the cobwebs and started to work properly. ​

Fall leaves, The Autumn of my Life

The Hibernation is Over

I am in the Autumn of my life and I have never felt better!  The kids are older and they are on their way. Of course a mother’s work is never done, but now it takes a different form.  I want to be a mom who shows her girls that there is life after 50, that we are still vital, relevant women. Actually much more!!   It is time to get the brain cells moving again, to ward off the Alzheimer’s and to learn a thing or two or maybe twenty-two.  

I am living proof that life is not over after Fifty.  In fact, it is better than it has been in a long time.  Instead of letting the economic crisis beat me down, instead of giving up, instead of having a sense of defeat, I have taken my life into my hands and created.

Yes, I have created something out of nothing.  A bit like giving birth.  And believe me this is one of my babies. This blog is a labor of love, for me and for those who come here every week to see what I am up to.  It has given me joy and connected me with a whole world out there that is positive and vibrant.  No negativity and a defeatist attitude here … not any more! 

Pin image, Fab and Fifty Blog Hop. The Autumn of my Life

​We are always learning in life. Never let anyone tell you that you are too old to learn. In a year and a half I’ve learned more than I had learned in the past ten years.  I’ve learned things that I didn’t know existed! And I have picked up a camera, which has been a revelation all by itself.   And I am the better for it! ​ I guess the old foggy brain still works.  And let’s not mention that right hemisphere which had been rotting away for a long, long time. 

I am in the Autumn of my years!  And yes, I am Fifty plus and Fabulous!  There is so much more to learn, so many projects to make, so many posts to write!  The second half of my life has just begun! 

As I mentioned above, this post is part of the Fifty and Fab Blog Hop.   Below you will find many more Fabulous ladies who are sharing their ideas and thoughts on being Fifty and Fab.  We older ladies will surely relate, and the younger ones can read and with relief, come to the realization that there is a second better phase to come after the diapers and the graduation caps are gone.  

So don’t be shy, go and visit my Fifty and Fab friends!

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mary springer

Friday 11th of November 2016

Wow Mary....So glad I read this post just now, was just about to shut down n head to bed. I was meant to read this. Like you ,,same name even.I've a very rough time for too long now one thing after another...cancer, fibromyalgia ,rheumatoid arthritis ,and very painful days, lost my work ,home all day ,four kids on my own, seperated..,bills piling p no money when we use to live ok and have things..I have been so down in despair wondering what I was even doing..I had just started a blog .something i had wanted to do for over a year but too afraid to do it due to only basic computer knowledge and technology I cant keep up with! I had started it didnt have money for a few things, others I got stuck didnt know what to do and its been frustrating along with so much else going on.and ended up in just in lingo for two weeks. Your post just shook me up.. it is time to brush off the cobwebs and get moving, Finish up he blog one step at a time call support for help .. and who knows one day at a time, what I can control I will figure out what I cant, I will let go and create instead! Thanks more than you know! Refreshed!


Sunday 13th of November 2016

Mary I am so glad you reached out to me. I too started out with no computer skills. I used Weebly which is a very simple system of drag and drop, there is no codes involved. We learn as we go along. I am still learning so much every day. Don't be afraid to take the plunge. I think the hardest step is this first one. But once you have begun you will see that it gets easier. For me it is like talking to my friends over coffee. Also reach out to the community they can be a great source of support and encouragement. You can even send me a message and I will be more than happy to help. Go for it Mary, it will open up a whole new world for you.


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

Thanks for sharing your story with us! I can only imagine how difficult it is to watch everything around you get worse and worse and feel helpless... I'm so glad that your blog is such a positive in your life and that it has helped you deal with a difficult situation!


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

It is incredibly difficult Andrea. And unfortunately there is no end to the misery. It breaks my heart to have to see so many young people forced to leave their homeland because of the stupidity of politicians. I am so blessed that something clicked in my mind and I left all of the negativity behind. I am one lucky girl to have met all of you ladies and now live a life of positivity and creativity. Thank you for all of your support.


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

What an amazingly beautiful post Mary. I've got happy and sad tears running down my face, while I type this. Isn't it strange how sometimes the lowest points in our lives create a platform for us to reach some of our highest points. You are an incredible woman and truly fabulous.


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

Michelle, thank you so much for your kind comment. I think that I am an everywoman. We all have the potential to reach down and find strength within. We control our lives and really all it takes sometimes is just looking at things from another point of view. Thank you so much for your support and friendship.

Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

Wednesday 14th of September 2016

What a wonderful post! I am so glad we met thru blogging! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

I am too Marci. There are so many wonderful ladies out there who are going down the same road and it's nice to know we are not alone. Especially when it comes to menopause. If only I had this group when it began, I'm sure I would have weathered it better. Thanks for your support and for all the great photos.


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

I''m so glad I found you and I can't wait to read the other blogs here. You have an incredibly emotional story to tell Mary. I love how describe your age as being in the Autumn of your life, I too love Autumn, I had much difficulty with accepting that I would be 50 but once it happened I realised that age after all is just a number. I've had an incredibly difficult year since my 50th birthday though, but on my 51st birthday this year I will be getting married!! I will write a post to add to your blog hop, but I do have an old post about being 50 I could add too x


Wednesday 14th of September 2016

Yes Anne , it is just a number and it cannot keep the spirit down. I want to congratulate you on your upcoming marriage! That is really wonderful news. You'll be making a new start. And that is what this post is able, finding new life and hope after 50!

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