Moms beloved Birch Tree

As I age these days there are times when I re-visit a certain question, “What is beauty…?”

I use to slather on dye to my hair when it began to turn salt and pepper, more on the salt side. Until, one day after brushing my hair that began to break and fall out from the chemicals in the dye. I noticed the dye treatments would barely last 6 weeks like they use to and I’d have to go through the stinky ordeal once again to feel beautiful…(in my eyes)

I thought about just how I was applying a rating on myself compared to others I’d see around my little city, never really feeling I measured up to what I would see as a standard of beauty. The above picture was of my beloved Birch tree, taken by my beautiful daughter one day as we sat underneath looking up, while lounging in my anti-gravity chair.

I’ve taken many pictures over the years of this tree, even when it was dying slowly and the woodpeckers made this their dining out spot, because rotting wood draws bugs and bugs draw woodpeckers and other critters. What a beautiful life this tree had growing up tall and strong, even though it’s a soft wood tree and its logs would break down fairly quickly when chopped down. Can there still be beauty in a tree that is no longer standing? I questioned…

July 6th 2016 - Birch Tree Logs

You can clearly see the damage the woodpeckers have done to the tree and the trails the bugs have made in the wood too….The stump that remains of this tree is now a resting spot for me near my permaculture bed.

Moms Birch Tree Stump Chair

If, I documented the damage to my own body, it would speak of broken bones, removal of tonsils, eye muscle surgery, bad knees joints, etc…So, this last remaining part of my tree I’m sure still has roots deep beneath the soil, offers me rest for my knees and back in the heat of the day.

A beautiful moment that one special day last year when my daughter and I shared together our thoughts on my having to hire a gentleman to come and remove this tree. That was true beauty…simple and honest…

I welcome each new hair that pops out of my head looking like I’ve been baking with flour all day and look a mess. I smile at the cashier who thinks I’m old enough for a seniors discount only to reply,  “I’m not that old yet, but look forward to saving the cash when I am…..”

old woman for Laura cookbook

I no longer feel the need to cover my face in concealer, then apply the rest of the make-up (except for the brows, that’s still a must for me..)It’s a good thing too as I found in my mid-forties HOT FLASHES would only melt off said make-up in a matter of seconds after wiping face with a tissue. That stuff was clogging the pores on my face that so desperately needed air… MORE AIR!  ~ I affectionately called this change in life, “My Tropical Heat-Waves.”  


There was even beauty in the hot flashes, because it signaled my body was done having monthly (sorry men it has to be said.) done having babies, done with silly thoughts about beauty… I actually found the beauty inside of me that was always there just waiting for the right time to expose its self.

I was beautifully, free! No more concealing myself to the world…Freedom is beauty…


My beautiful tree still is giving to me as the foundation for my permaculture beds, offering life to the plants I chose to place on top of the soil, while underneath the rotting wood of the birch tree is feeding and offering drainage to living things…That is pure and simply beauty….

So, after the change of life was over at first I felt part of me was dead, due to not being able to still have children, until I realized I had just the perfect number of babies already and the remaining eggs traveling down the chute were just icing on a cake that was already done…..

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On The Bench - 24

Back in the day when I didn’t fully

understand the meaning of true beauty

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Until next time

~  Laura  ~


6 thoughts on “What is Beauty?

  1. I love that old photo of you with the ‘big hair’, Laura!
    The silver bark of the fallen birch is a good comparison with the silver hair we get as we also age, and begin to decay. Like that tree, we still have our uses, even when much of the rest of us has lost its power. What little hair I have left is now silver and white. If I was a gorilla, it would be considered a mark of strength and leadership. In our society, it is sadly often taken as meaning that my best days are over.

    I have had a good response to two very different guest posts so far. Perhaps you would think about writing something for me to showcase?
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Pete, thanking you kindly for your comments on What is Beauty… I can remember way back to a time when folks with silver hair was highly respected for their age and wisdom. My grandparents were in their 60’s when I arrived at 2 on their doorsteps to raise. Growing up lots of the younger generations would visit to ask this or that from each of them.. Times have changed now and it appears less respect is given to the older generations and I hate the word elderly.. and it’s neither the golden age either… I’d rather say it’s the best years as each and every year is the best we have to offer, right up until we don’t.. Stay young at heart my friend across the pond and thank you for the comment on my big hair from many moons ago.. That took 4 hours in the beauty shop to have this outcome, hence I only had it done twice, until I smartened up..

      Take care, Laura


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