OC woman celebrates 103rd birthday, shares secret to long happy life – NBC Los Angeles

on Jun30
by | Comments Off on OC woman celebrates 103rd birthday, shares secret to long happy life – NBC Los Angeles |

Isabel Osterberg of Garden Grove had joyful celebrations that were fitting for her milestone 103rd birthday.

Her family at Brookdale Senior Living in Garden Grove threw her a birthday party with festive decorations, including gold tassels and a pink tablecloth. The 103-year-old’s wheelchair also got a makeover with pink flowers as the birthday girl sat on it with her flower crown and special sash.

Her retirement community is literally her family as her 80-year-old son, who previously worked a pastor for the facility’s worship service, also resides at Brookdale Garden Grove. The four generations of the Osteberg family often gather at the Orange County senior center as Osterberg’s granddaughter and great granddaughter like to visit often.

“The door’s always wide open for them,” Osterberg said.

Family celebrations became even more special when Osterberg’s family took her to a local casino to mark her 103rd birthday.

“She loves the poker slots,” described Meg Lowe, Osterberg’s granddaughter. “We all feed her 20 bucks here and 20 bucks there. She has a hard time seeing the screen, so she tells us what to hold and when to hit next.

In addition to getting a voucher for $103 on her 103rd birthday, the birthday girl was serenaded by restaurant workers at her special dinner.

Marking her 103rd birthday, Osterberg (left) took a special trip to a local casino to play poker slots.

Although Osterberg said she did not have a “secret sauce” for living a long, happy life, Lowe observed her grandmother’s joyful quirks.

“She has a saying: if you offer her water, she says, ‘I’m thirsty, not dirty,’” Lowe described while laughing. “She loves Diet Coke. She loves sweets, particularly chocolate and marshmallow peeps.”

While Osterberg is not a fan of vegetables to this day, the 103-year-old gets to stay fit thanks to her family. Osterberg claims she has never smoked and had a drink or two in her entire life.

“She has a wonderful saying – I’ve used it against her – ‘If you don’t use it, you lose it,'” Lowe said. “I have her march in her place and use her knees.”

Osterberg said she still does not recognize the lady looking back at her in the mirror, she tries to take care herself by doing her hair every morning and making sure her clothes and room remain tiny.

“It’s ridiculous,” Osterberg joked. “I’m the oldest one in the whole building!”

Osterberg was born in 1920, which means sliced bread was not invented until she was 8 years old. She’s also older than NBCLA, which was established in 1949.

Osterberg’s retirement community and family are already planning her 104th birthday bash: they hope to rent out a party bus and return to her favorite casino together.

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