Friday, August 20, 2010

retirement report

It's been five years since I punched the time clock for the last time. Now I'm 65 years old, on Medicare, and, I suppose, officially a geezer.  If you're wondering why there are cupcakes in the photo instead of a cake it's because I requested a peach cobbler. The cupcakes are for the grand kids and they hold the candles up better.

So, here's what I've been doing this year.  I continue to learn piano.  My progress is slowing because I'm trying to learn more advanced techniques and styles.  I do pretty well with simple triad chords with the left hand and single note melodies with the right, but I want more than that.  I've picked up a few boogie woogie rhythms and I'm learning new chord inversions that make the songs come alive.

Since February Dorothy and I have lost 20 lbs.  The doctor advised her to change her way of eating and to exercise more to avoid type 2 diabetes.  So I changed my way of cooking and it has shown results. I still make things like pizza but I add wheat germ and ground flax seed to the dough mix to create a more complex carbohydrate.  We try to eat a low carb snack between meals to keep our blood sugar from spiking and that helps to assuage our hunger so we don't eat too much at each meal.

I continue to read a lot.  I try to keep up with the contemporary bestsellers in fiction and non-fiction while reading some of the  good  older books I missed through the years.

Spending time with the grand kids is a source of joy.  Have you ever noticed that your grand kids are so much more beautiful and intelligent than other kids?

I'm thinking of getting back into the business of online book sales.  I enjoyed it while I was doing it and the extra money would be nice.

I'm doing more projects such as clearing brush and trees around the property. (I'll be posting photos) The remodeling is on hold for now because I'm saving money  to stay out of debt.

Sometimes I run into friends who are still working and they always ask how it feels to be retired and whether I am able to find enough things to do to keep busy.  I tell them that retirement is especially sweet for someone like me who does not require structured time. If you need something to do every moment of the day you should keep working. The freedom to sit in the yard listening to the birds sing is something I value. There are chores that I do every day but they don't command my life.


Bumps Stump said...

Hi Retired Peach . . . Like you I gave up working a few years ago. Unlike you I had a hard time making the transition. During my entire working career I was a pusher. Moving all the time. Self motivated. Ambitious. Etc. First a salesman, then sales mgr., then Vice President and Gen. Mgr. 30 some odd years went by. I figured I could retire - so I did. Big mistake.

Within a few months I knew it wasn't going to work. So I looked around and bought a small business that was already up and running. I figured (wrong again) that I'd hang my hat on a hook and put my feet on the desk and generally be a lazy boss. The damn business grew like topsy and became very busy and everyone (all six employees including myself) had to run to catch up.

On reaching 70 years and, counting 5 years of military service, I had worked at 53 years without a break and was getting tired. Sold the business and retired again. This time I was ready. My wife wasn't.

So now I piddle and fret on my own while she is still working for her brother the dentist. I quickly learned that the key to enjoying retirement is to get involved with things beyond yourself. For four years now I've been a happy member of the world's best geezer book club, and I've continued my active participation with the local Kiwanis Club, and I contribute to my blogs every day. The blogs were a surprise. I started out ranting about my conservative-libertarian leanings and arguing with the liberals that responded. One thing led to another and pretty soon I had three blogs going.

1. Topical. What ever strikes me.
2. Political/Cultural/Religious.
3. Critical Book Reports.

I know it doesn't sound like much, but these things keep me busy and with other people and fighting with friends and helping people who need a little help. My days are full and I feel as connected as I ever was. The rest of my time is devoted to family things, two daughters, three grandchildren, and one great grand child. It's a terrific life if you just lead it.

Stay busy. Help others. Blog a little.


wally said...

Thanks for stopping by Bumps. Sounds like you've got a handle on that retirement thing.

Nance said...

My grandson is the most beautiful creature I've ever seen. Retirement fuddles me, so I may have become one of those who needs structure, although I'd never have thought so before. Time; I'm nearly resigned to dying before I've ever made peace with it. Your piano lessons and exercise are probably ideal for brain health. Happy Retiraversary!