Montana woman celebrates 103rd birthday, says staying busy is key to a long life

Published: Sep. 26, 2023 at 2:08 PM CDT
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SIDNEY, Mont. (KFYR) - It’s a special day for one Sidney, Montana, woman. Ruth Iversen is celebrating her birthday, and she’s 103 years young.

Iversen doesn’t feel nearly that old. She says staying busy might just be the key to living a long life.

Iversen likes to be busy. She completes a crossword puzzle every day.

“I like it because you have to think, and it certainly helps my spelling,” she said. “I just enjoy life.”

Her life is filled with embroidery.

She also loves working in her yard and still plants a garden.

“I enjoy my vegetables,” she said while checking out her carrots.

Iversen also enjoys mowing her lawn. She does it all by herself.

“I like to see it kept up,” Iversen said. “And if I don’t do it, who is going to do it?”

Iversen has tended to this yard since moving here as a young bride in 1946.

“I have been in this same house ever since,” she said proudly. “I appreciate being able to live here.”

It is a house filled with a lifetime of memories. This home could be quiet and lonely, but Ruth fills it with life, laughter and music.

“I should practice more,” she said while playing a favorite church hymn on the piano.

The piano is a new hobby for Iversen. She took lessons at age 70.

“I finally had time to practice!” she laughed.

Now, at 103, she’s still practicing. And note by note, she continues to write a beautiful soundtrack to her beautiful life.

Iversen is an avid quilter too.

She spends every Tuesday morning quilting with her church group. Last year they made more than 250 quilts for Lutheran World Relief and for local high school graduates.