5 BENEFITS OF THE EMPTY NEST

5 benefits of the empty nest - it's not all doom and gloom

WHAT DO WE DO WITH OUR EMPTY NEST?

The empty nest is a strange time of adjustment - we go from having a house full of kids who are coming and going, eating, sleeping, talking, driving, socialising, arguing, and generally driving us crazy.....to a house that is just the two of us with all those demands gone and an uncanny amount of space and time suddenly available. 

What do we do about it? Do we mourn the fact that the noise and action have departed and wait for the occasional visits? Do we look at each other and wonder who we are and how we got here? Or do we stop and appreciate all that is returning to us and start building afresh on that foundation? 

For me, it's a matter of letting go constantly and reminding myself of the benefits that come from having our house and lives returned to us. Today I'm sharing five blessings that the empty nest brings.

A LITTLE FAMILY SNAPSHOT

Donnybrook, Western Australia - giant playground

FAMILY TIME

I sometimes write about how much I miss living near my adult kids. I often feel like I miss out on the little day to day connections because of the distance between us. But then we get a visit from them or we pop up to say hello and have some time together and all that is forgotten in a heartbeat. The benefit of distance is that those lovely visits and catch-ups always last a bit longer because there has been so much time and effort put into the process of getting together.

A NEW LESSON FROM THE EMPTY NEST

The empty nest always has new lessons to teach us - are we ready to learn them?

THINKING I KNEW IT ALL

After several years of being an Empty Nester I thought I knew it all. I've written quite a few posts about how to make it work and how to let your children fly the nest and not cling on to their tailfeathers as they take off. I've waxed lyrical about re-discovering life with my husband and the peace and quiet of living with a couple of cats and no kids. I write about how much I love them coming home to visit and how lovely it is to have the family back together for a while.

5 QUESTIONS ABOUT MY BLOG

Answering five questions about Cresting the Hill


QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

A couple of years ago I took part in a question and answer blog link up that was all about what and why you blog + a few other random questions thrown in for good measure. I thought I'd leave out the random questions and just focus on the ones to do with my blog and the motivation etc behind it. So here we go....

SOME OF MY BLOGGING DISCOVERIES

After blogging away diligently for a couple of years, here are a few things I've discovered


LOOKING BACK

I have been busy looking back at the beginning stages of my blog and I can't believe how far I've come. The simple things I've learned and discovered and the tools and techniques that are second nature now that I'm using them almost every day. So, I thought I'd list a few things I've learned in the last couple of years and how they've helped me lift my blogging game from crass beginner to sort-of-competent blogger.

A FRESH START

Taking the plunge and getting a template that has given my blog a fresh new look - loving it!

A FRESH START

As anyone who has ever read my blog would notice, I’ve had the same “look” to Cresting the Hill  for probably about 2 years.  I’ve played around with it a bit and then settled into keeping it that way because I didn’t want to majorly mess anything up. In the process of all my little nips and tucks, I sort of had things working the way I wanted them to, but there were little things that had gotten lost along the way. 

5 THINGS I HATE

Five Things Friday ~ 5 things I hate

I've often written about 5 things I love, or 5 things that are fabulous, or 5 things I'm grateful for. So I thought (seeing I may be dying alone with my cat!) I'd do 5 things I hate to change things up a bit. So here they are, in no particular order.

DISCOVERING MORE OF ME

Life changes, people change, how we move through those changes is how we grow

CRESTING THE HILL

When I named my blog Cresting The Hill, it was to recognize that the hardest part of the climb was behind me - all those years of learning, and growing, and adapting, of parenting, working in not-so-fabulous jobs, of scrimping and saving, and putting myself last were behind me. It was time to stop and breathe and enjoy the view.

FINDING MY VOICE

It's taken until Midlife to recognize my significance and to find my voice

FINDING MY VOICE

I've been asked many times about why I put my thoughts and my life on display in a blog for other people to read and I gave my answer to that a few weeks ago HERE. But there is another reason for writing this blog, one I've only just come to recognize and acknowledge. And this other reason is that my blog has given me my voice.

People who know me would say that I have a voice that is loud and clear (sometimes too loud and clear!) and in some aspects they would be right about that. I am quite vocal and I do enjoy a good discussion/argument/interaction. But, at the same time, my voice has been controlled by others for most of my life.

5 QUOTES ON QUANTUM CHANGE

Five Quotes relating to how you feel after a Quantum Change occurs in your life

WHEN OUR WORLD VIEW SHIFTS

The last couple of weeks I've been writing about Quantum Change and what happens to our values after we experience a Quantum Moment. These five quotes all spoke to me about the shift in attitude that occurs once our values move from being focused on other people, to being focused on our own growth and self worth. 


LETS DIE WITHOUT REGRETS

Dying Without Regrets - You get to decide how you are going to spend the rest of your life

ARE WE CHOOSING WISELY?

Life is short and it's too easy to let it run away from you while you are trying to be all things to all people. As a woman I think it becomes a snare and an obligation where you can allow yourself to be taken for granted and lose yourself in the process.

We forget that we have choices - more choices than women our age have ever had. It's time to use those choices to decide how to spend the years ahead wisely. 

WHAT IF I DIE ALONE WITH MY CAT?

What if the changes in my values and deciding to place my needs first, mean I die alone with my cat?

WHAT BRINGS MEANING TO LIFE?

It's strange how our values change and when they do, it shifts our whole focus in life. A couple of months ago I contributed to a post that Sue from Sizzling Towards Sixty wrote on what brings meaning to life. My answer (and the response from most of the others) zeroed in on our relationships with our family and friends being the most important factors. The only person who listed different factors was Denyse - and reading back now, I think she is far closer to the crux of it all than I was when I sent my list in.

GETTING TO KNOW YOU | 30 ODD QUESTIONS

30 Odd Questions - my answers for the link up - a great opportunity to get to know each other


30 ODD QUESTIONS

As part of the 30 Odd Questions link up with Debbie from the Doglady's Den – here are my answers to the thirty questions in the Challenge. The link up lasts for a little while yet, so feel free to visit her blog, copy the questions and then link up your answers.

5 THINGS I DON'T HAVE TO DO

5 things I don't have to do now that I'm a grown up

After writing about Quantum Change on Monday I remembered some of the changes being over 50 has brought about - here are five of things that I came up with a while ago that I don't have to do any more because I'm a grown-up:


CREATING A LIFE YOU'RE HAPPY WITH

It's time to do the things you need to make a life you're happy with

CHANGING MY MINDSET

On Monday I wrote about Quantum Moments - one of the biggest Quantum Moment outcomes for me was giving myself permission to not be the "oldest child" super responsible person I'd always been. I stopped thinking about how much I needed to stay in the job I hated because it was our primary source of income - and instead, started to think about what would give me a life I wouldn't want to escape from.

MY QUANTUM MOMENT AND VALUE SHIFT

When you discover that a Midlife Crisis is actually a Quantum Moment


A QUANTUM CHANGE

I've been discovering a whole new concept called Quantum Change and how it affects our values and wanted to share it on the blog today. It started with a reference to value shifts in this TED talk on Happinessand from there I was on a bit of a mission to figure out what Quantum Change actually was and how it affects people because it sounded very similar to the process I went through a few years ago.

Five Things Friday ~ 5 Reasons for Blogging

Five reasons why we blog - I'm sure there's many more but these are the top five in my opinion

Have you ever wondered why people blog? There are probably as many reasons as there are bloggers, but these seem to be the top five from what I've encountered. Some of them are combined together but I think at least one reason could be ticked by every blogger.

Wind-Back Wednesday ~ Finding My Blogging Community

Finding My Blogging Community and sharing the journey together

FAILING SISTERHOOD 101

I have never been very good at women's groups and get-togethers. I always feel like the odd one out because I'm not really a girly girl. This might be the fall out from growing up with two brothers and a mother who wasn't very good at mother/daughter bonding rituals.

Midlife Monday ~ Why Do You Blog?

"Why do you blog?"   How do you answer this question?

WHY DO YOU BLOG?

If you are a blogger then you probably hear the question "Why do you blog?" on a fairly regular basis. I've read articles on how to give an answer to this question and how important it is to have an answer ready that engages with the person who asked. This is because a lot of bloggers are in the business of making money from their blog and a question like "Why do you blog?" can be the beginning of a partnership and/or a new source of income.

Five Things Friday ~ 5 Quotes For Mothers Day

Five Quotes about mothers, kids and parenting for Mothers Day



FIVE OF MY FAVOURITE PARENTING QUOTES

Keeping it simple for Five Things Friday - here are five of my favourite quotes that relate to mothers, parenting and launching your children - all those things we celebrate on Mothers Day this Sunday. I hope you enjoy them too.

Wind-Back Wednesday ~ Mothers Day (from a Daughter's Perspective)

We all love to our kids to remember Mothers Day - but do we do the same for our own Mums?

MY MOTHERS DAY

Mothers Day brings all kind of feelings my way. I get caught up in waiting for my "kids" to call and reading posts on facebook from friends who have their kids nearby and put up happy snaps. I always seem to want more from the day than what it actually provides.

Midlife Monday ~ Mothers Day - It is What it is

Mothers Day - is it ever okay to admit that you feel a little left out?

WARNING: NOT YOUR USUAL FLUFFY MOTHERS DAY POST!!


A VERY BRADY MOTHERS DAY

Every year when Mothers Day rolls around I read and write wonderful things about being a mother and how meaningful Mothers Day is. I morph into Carol Brady and start thinking warm fuzzy thoughts about my children and what a wonderful mother I was, how much time and love I invested in them, how that has paid off so well as they've become wonderful adults contributing to society etc etc.

Five Things Friday ~ 5 Of My Lesser Superpowers

Five Of My Lesser Superpowers - do you have superpowers that you haven't even noticed?

LESSER SUPERPOWERS

On Monday I talked about my Secret Superpowers and while I was writing about them I realized I had a few minor ones that I could share in today's Five Things Friday post. I'm not sure that everyone would consider them Superpowers, but they don't apply to everyone on the planet, so I'm claiming them as mine. So here we go with Five Lesser Superpowers that I manifest regularly.

Wind-back Wednesday ~ What Does Abundance Mean To You?

What defines "Abundance" for you - is it wealth and material possessions? Or is it something else entirely?

HOW DO YOU DEFINE "ABUNDANCE"?

Abundance is such a rich and meaningful word......but I got to thinking how the meaning of "abundance" changes depending on your world view and what you consider to be important in life. For those in Third World countries, abundance is having enough food to eat with some left over for later. For those in war torn countries, it is having somewhere safe for  your family to live. For those in countries that repress their people, it is having an education or the right to free speech. So abundance can mean something different depending on who you are and where you live.

Midlife Monday ~ What's Your Superpower?

We all have a secret Superpower or two - it's just not always what we expect

SUPERHEROES AND SUPERPOWERS

Since time immemorial human beings have envied those fictitious characters in comic books and on our screens, who have Superpowers. We've grown up with Superman, The Fantastic Four, Wonder Woman, Spider Man, The Bionic Man, and countless others. 

I think we all secretly long for a Superpower of our own, but what if we already had Superpowers that slipped under the radar? What if I have something I think is normal, but others would kill for (well, maybe not kill for, but at least be a little bit jealous of?) This got me thinking and I came up with THREE Secret Superpowers that I wield with ease...

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Zest for Life

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Zest for Life

LOOK WITHIN

Living with Zest isn't about finding a "thing", but rather it's about finding yourself. It's about discovering who you truly are and igniting something within you that wants to know more and discover more. It's about being the real you and not the person who is trying to please everybody else.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Young at Heart

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Young at Heart

UNREAL EXPECTATIONS

One of the biggest downsides of the internet is the exposure you get to the unnaturally beautiful people of the world and they are sold to us as being someone we should aspire to looking like. In the media today it's all about eternal youth and trying to stay 20 forever. Apparently if you eat right, exercise madly, and use the right moisturizer, then the world is your oyster and you will have discovered the secret to eternal youth.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ The "X" Factor

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ The "X" Factor

MIDLIFER "A" OR MIDLIFER "B"?

There are two types of Midlifer - those who are old before their time, grumpy and cranky, and always finding fault (they even have TV programs based on "Grumpy Old Men" and "Grumpy Old Women" - and these people aren't old - they're in Midlife!) Then there are those Midlifers who are vibrant, and busy, and involved, and smiling, and celebrating life - they have what I call "The "X" Factor".

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Wisdom

 The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Wisdom


WISE WORDS

When I ask my husband what the benefits of getting older are, the answer he always comes up with is "wisdom" because it ties in so closely with life experiences gained from living long and well. Wisdom is such a valuable life skill and is a hard earned one. It comes from years of interacting with people, living through life's ups and downs and learning that there are not always black and white answers to all the questions that arise. 

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Volunteering

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Volunteering

A LITTLE BIT OF SPARE TIME

In Midlife you come up for a breath of air and realize that you have all you need and a little bit left over. For some that means they need to keep working until the little bit left over becomes a bigger and bigger bit......for others of us it means that we can slow down a little and look at how we can give something back.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ It's Under Estimated

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ It's Under Estimated

DON'T UNDER ESTIMATE WHAT MIDLIFE OFFERS

I always thought that being "Middle Aged" would be a dull and dreary time of life. I was so wrong because what I've found instead is that this stage of life, and who I am in the midst of it, is pretty darn fine. Midlifers like me have a lot to offer - we're not callow youths who have no life experience or wisdom. We're mature people who have lived and loved, worked and played, lost friends and found new ones, and the list goes on. We have so much life experience we hardly know what to do with it all!

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Time To Travel

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Time To Travel

MIDLIFE TRAVEL

Midlife is the time to go to all those places you have on your bucket list. You might not get to all of them straight away, but it's a great time to make a start and tick a few off. Living in Australia means that most overseas travel can involve long haul flights and lot of money. You can't pop across the Channel for a weekend in France or jump on a plane for a few days in sunny California. It takes a considerable amount of planning to launch off to one of these (very attractive) destinations.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Self Confidence

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Self Confidence


HAVING AN EPIPHANY

When I reached Midlife I had an epiphany of sorts as far as my relationship with myself went. I stopped seeing myself as middle aged, and settled and stuck, treading water in the same place, and started seeing a whole new person - someone who could stand alone if need be, someone who had a lot to offer, someone who had a brain and a heart, who had good friends and a great family network, who was a person in her own right......and I liked that person a lot.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Retirement? What Retirement?

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Retirement???

TO RETIRE OR NOT TO RETIRE? THAT IS THE QUESTION

There comes a time in every Midlifer's life when the question about when to retire raises its confusing (and yet strangely alluring) head. We see some of our work colleagues taking the plunge and leaving the 9 -5 daily grind behind and heading into a lovely sunset of late morning sleep-ins and a lifelong holiday. The temptation is to follow them out the door and into a twilight of endless leisure.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Quotes About Midlife

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Quotes About Midlife


THE QUEEN OF QUOTES

Sometimes I look at my Pinterest Page and am a little amazed at the vast range of quotes I have collected over the years. There is something about a quote that succinctly sums up a thought or a feeling in a way we may not have been able to do on our own. I think I might just be the Queen of Quotes - a title I'm quite proud of really.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Ageing Parents

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Ageing Parents

PARENTING

Midlife brings with it a change in parenting. We spent 20+ years raising our children from babies into becoming capapble, self-sufficient adults. We breathed a sigh of relief as they launched themselves successfully into the world and thought we could sit back and rest on our laurels.

What we hadn't noticed during all the time we focused on our own little family, was that our parents were growing older. They went from being Midlifers to becoming "old people" while we were looking the other way.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Owning Who You Are

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Owning Who You Are

WHO ARE YOU REALLY?

The world we live in tries to tell us how we should look, how we should think, how we should feel, and how we should behave. Often a shiny wrapper on the outside does its best to cover a not so lovely inside. People are so busy trying to impress others and trying to be what others expect that they forget who they truly are - or maybe they never found out in the first place.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ New Experiences

A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ New Experiences

DON'T STAGNATE!

Life is short, and reaching the half way point has been a real eye-opener for me. I saw I had stopped growing and was pretty close to stagnating. Sitting still and assuming there is "nothing new under the sun" to quote Solomon - is the worst thing we can do with the lives we've been given. When you feel like this it's time to step out and try something new.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Marriage

A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Marriage

DON'T MOCK

When you've been married for a very long time you come to realize how important it is to invest in the person who you made a life long vow to. It's so easy to take each other for granted and to let small annoying things drive us crazy. It's easy to "take the mickey" out of someone you know so well. It gives us a smile at the time but doesn't do anything to build up the person we love.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Letting Go of Drama

A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Letting Go of Drama

I have spent many years surrounded by people and their drama. It sucks you in and you find yourself swimming in this constant stream of chaos where you never know when the next crisis is going to arise.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Kids Who Are Adults

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Kids Who Are Adults

A JOB WELL DONE

I often wonder how you decide if you did a good job of parenting your children. So many people struggle with putting in the effort and then having their adult children turn their backs on everything and make some truly awful decisions. It is so hard to be a mother of a child who makes wrong choices over and over again. Fortunately those children are in the minority. 

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Job Changes

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Job Changes


WHAT MIDLIFE CRISIS?

When I reached the grand old age of 52 I had a Midlife Employment Epiphany (as I prefer to call it) others may refer to it as a Midlife Crisis. I had been in a job for years where I was taken for granted, under-paid and under-appreciated. It was sucking the joy out of my life and yet day after day, week after week, I turned up and did the 9-5 routine.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Invisible? Not Me!

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Invisible? Not Me!


LEARNING A LESSON

A couple of years ago I wrote a post about feeling invisible in Midlife - only to find I have had a complete about face and don't feel in the slightest bit invisible anymore - it's amazing what a change of perspective can do for your confidence!

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Happiness

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Happiness

CLOUDS AND LININGS

One of the biggest lessons Midlife has taught me is that the key to happiness lies firmly and securely in my own pocket. I am responsible for how I see life and I get to choose whether to look for the silver lining, or wallow in the rain cloud. Give me a silver lining any day!

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Gorgeous Grandbabies

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Gorgeous Grandbabies

THE CIRCLE OF LIFE

One of the most fabulous parts of Midlife is the joy of sharing in the blessing of the next generation. To see your children's children and to be allowed to participate in loving them and revelling in their cuteness is beyond words. To be part of the life of a happy and sun-shiny grandbaby fills my heart with gratitude every day.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Friendships for Life

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Friendships for Life

A LIFETIME OF FRIENDS

Friends are one of Midlife's greatest blessings - true friends enrich our life immeasurably by accepting us for who we are and choosing to share their lives with us. As I look back over 50+ years I am so grateful for the friends I have gathered along the way - both old and new, and those somewhere in between.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ The Empty Nest

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ The Empty Nest


THE STEREOTYPICAL EMPTY NEST

The empty nest is often spoken about as a sad and lonely time. The kids leave and take all the life and interest and excitement with them. There's no-one left who needs looking after, nobody coming and going, no strangers wandering through the house, nothing new and nothing out of the ordinary any more. It can all be so silent and sedate and fairly boring if you let it.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Dealing with Depression

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Dealing with a Dose of Depression

ASKING THE HARD QUESTIONS

Midlife brings with it a time where you question a lot of your assumptions. Life changes and the kids move out and you're home alone with your partner and you start wondering why you do a lot of things. Maybe it happens sooner for some people, but for me it was Midlife when it hit me between the eyes.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Crazy Cat People

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Crazy Cat People

SPINSTERS AND CATS

Craziness and being a cat person is usually associated with spinsters - the obvious sign that you are never going to get married is that you own a cat (or two, or three). It might be the symbol for spinsters, but there is another stage of life where cat ownership sneaks up on you and that's Midlife. Before you know it you've become one of those crazy people who need to de-hair their clothes before they leave the house.

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Blogging in Midlife

The A-Z Challenge ~ Why Midlife's Fabulous ~ Blogging in Midlife

WHO I'M NOT AND WHO I AM

When I was a Mum of young children the internet hadn't been invented so I never got to be a Mommy Blogger, I'm a fairly ordinary cook so I never got to be a Food Blogger, I'm the Anticraft so I never got to be a DIY Blogger, and I am no clothes horse so I never got to be a Fashion Blogger. 

But! One thing I am excellent at is being a Midlifer - I am learning so much, experiencing so many new things, and growing heaps now that I've hit my Fabulous Fifties - why not blog about it? So, a couple of years I jumped in feet first and became a Midlife Blogger - and what a ride it has been.