That philosophy comes from Fern Johnson Newman, who will turn 90 years old onWednesday, Sept. 29.
Nearly 90 and she still drives herself, does her own shopping, goes to church and even attends the LDS temple 60-70 times a year. She even makes the homemade chili featured at her son, Clarence Newman's restaurant, Newman's, in Centerville.
The mother of five balks that the chili is becoming famous.
"I think the only people who like it are my children," she laughs. "They like it because they're used to it."
Newman's been making her chili for 70 years. The recipe includes two pounds of chili beans and vegetables, but that's all she reveals of her recipe. When her children were small that recipe would fill a cold-pack canner and feed her kids for a week.
"I had to add the vegetables so they'd get vegetables in their diet," she said. She figures other people can use the vegetables too.
Daughter, Fern JoAnn Gillespie says her mother is her greatest friend.
"We have the same birthday, the same initials (FJN) and the same hobbies," said Gillespie who goes by JoAnn. "My mother is my greatest friend. I know her no other way besides working.
Newman worked for most of her adult life as the secretary to ZCMI administrator, Dean Williams. Before that she rented out the second floor of her two-story home to college students.
Nowadays, Newman's passions are her chili, reading and gardening. Gillespie is quick to point out that the restaurant also wanted to feature their mom's potato salad, but Newman said making chili was enough for her.
"I only do what I have to do, these days," she said. "Yes, I'll use my age to get out of things if I don't want to do them, including the potato salad."
When asked what changes she's seen in her life, the spry octogenarian-plus replied, "Mer- ciful heaven's sake!"
Changes are too numerous to mention, though she did say television is one of the biggest changes to people's everyday lives--even her own life.
"I will watch a football game, or a good basketball game," Newman admits. "I also enjoy some of the programs on KBYU, but the rest is just a lot of trash."
As for this birthday, Newman will spend it a little more quietly than her eightieth where her children held a large open house for her.
"I got to see friends and family I hadn't seen for decades," she said. "And I loved it, but I told them this year I'd disown every one of them if they did it again."
Instead, her children showed up at her LDS Relief Society meeting with candy for all the ladies as a thank-you to them for their love and friendship to their mom.
"Now that's the way birthdays should be celebrated," said Newman. On Wednesday, New-man will gather with her children, 18 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren, seven great-great-grandchildren, and a few friends for cake and ice cream at her home.