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Taking a breather

The last 2-3 months have been really busy for me.

I know; I’m retired, right?

I’m a soccer granny these days, and I love it! It’s a way for me to spend time with the grand kiddoes, but also stay active. Moving keeps my blood sugars down, and my mood at an even keel. 

But it’s been busy, as I said. I got kind of tired out. But thanks to my son Jay and my new daughter-in-law Aya, I’m getting some time to chill!

I hope to spend some time with friends tomorrow night (happy hour+movie), then Saturday night I’ve got an reservation at a swank area hotel (the jacuzzi suite, thanks again Jay & Aya).

So staying busy is good, but so is taking a breather!

It’s 57 degrees F in Seattle today, a few clouds but some sun also! I’m sitting on the back porch watching Rose and just breathing…

a bit of this, a bit of that

The National Weather Service is predicting our first “fall like” storm tomorrow.

For Seattle, that means rain, wind, possible power outages.

It means that fall is closing in on us, and I’m ready for it!

It’s been a hot dry summer here in the PNW, and I’m ready for rain, cooler temps, and hot soups for dinner )along with a load of fresh bread with a nice crust). I’m not complaining. At my age, I try to remain grateful for every day I can swing my legs out of bed and get ready for another day!

Ha!

Kids are getting ready to go back to school-my youngest grandchild is taking advanced placement courses and Chinese this fall. Where does the time go?

I got my free copy of Windows 10 (FREE) and downloaded it to my laptop. It’s working pretty good so far.

Washington State has been dealing with lots of wildfires; I’m hoping the rain helps put some of these fires out. I’m not always a praying kind of gal, but I’ve been sending out good thoughts and hoping our neighbors and firefighters stay safe.

I’ve not been blogging a lot these days, because Facebook is so damn easy. I sometimes think about the days I would rush home and get ready to push out my daily blog posts. Hell, a long Facebook post is three paragraphs! Add a picture or a smiley face and you’re done!

As for my reading, I’m re reading the “In Death” series of books, in order. I own a lot of them, and borrow the rest from local libraries. On Kindle, of course.

It’s been almost 14 months since I retired, and I’m still in a kind of weird space. I’m really enjoying not working. I miss the money, of course, but my heart just isn’t into going out and working every day. I’m enjoying looking after the family, doing yard work, trying out new recipes, and sleeping in once in a while. It’s a lot less stressful, and something I’ve needed to do for myself for a long time.

So if you take the time to read this, I thank you and hope you are doing well.

Come on, Fall!

Seattle pcs

Seattle pic

The photo above is one of mine, taken a few years ago at the Seattle waterfront.

“Sorry, I don’t want to do that. I’m retired.”

It’s been about nine months since I retired, and what a journey it has been so far.

In the past nine months, I’ve looked at people around me who are still working, and felt kind of guilty.

These poor little puppers have to get up and go to work every day, and I do not have to.

But lately, those feelings of guilt have started to disappear, because I remembered something.

I’m older than most of the folks who are close to me (a LOT older, in some cases). I was getting up and going to work when a lot of my inner circle were getting signed up for kindergarten.

So I’ve been telling myself to loosen up and relax, and let go of that silly guilt. Finally, I’m asking myself what I want to do, how I want to live in retirement.

And the next time someone asks me to do something I would rather not do, I’m going to answer, “Sorry, I don’t want to do that. I’m retired.”

The clinical social worker in me says this is just another way of setting limits with people.

The retired person responds with a shrug of the shoulders, a smile, and a relaxed breath.

YEAH.

Who’s got the power, baby?

I DO.

hammock

Shaving: Getting rid of unwanted hair + shaving bucks as a semi-retired person

I’m not sure if you have heard about the Dollar Shave Club, but it sounds pretty cool to me.

For a few dollars a month, you can have razor blades razor blades delivered to your home.

There are three different shavers, and prices:

-The Humble Twin; you get 2 stainless steel blades and 5 cartridges per month for $1 a month. Shipping and handling are added to this option.

-The 4X, which gives you 4 cartridges and 4 stainless steel blades for $6 a month, shipping and handling included

-The Executive, which comes with 6 blades and 4 cartridges, for 9 bucks a month, and the cost also includes shipping and handling.

The Dollar Shave Club also offers shave butter and after shave options, in addition to butt wipes for men.

As I was looking over the Dollar Shave Club, I wondered if women could use these razors, so I Googled “can women use dollar Shave razors?” and learned that women are trying them! I may try some razors myself, once I use up some of my pink lady-type razors.

As many of you know, I am now semi-retired. I’m looking for a part-time job, but my income has certainly taken  a nose dive in the past few months. This means my budget is a lot tighter, and here’s how I am saving money:

-Making coffee at home. When I was working every day, I stopped at Starbucks every few days. Even when I bought drip coffee, it sure added to some bucks throughout the week.

-I’m buying fewer books, both Kindle and print, and using the Seattle Public Library more. Seattle also has Half Price Books, a cool used bookstore, and I’ve actually gone out of the house to buy a book!

-I’m eating out less, and cooking at home more. When I was working, I bought my lunch 2-3 times a week, and ate dinner out weekly.

-I love to buy clothes, and I’m looking out for more sales, checking out lower priced clothing stores and consignment shops. Wow, much cheaper!

-Finally, I’m making fewer impulse purchases, and asking myself if I really need to buy a fancy new perfume or pair of shoes.

I hope you will check out the Dollar Shave Club, and if you do, let me know about your experience!

I would also love to hear your own tips for saving money!

And, as always, I’m amazed at what can be ordered online!

Holy moley. I retired.

It’s been an amazing few days.

Friday was my last day of work.

I have worked at my agency for a total of 12.5 years. It’s stressful work, as all work is, and I have done it a lot longer than most staff. Most people burn out in a few years, for a variety of reasons. I held out longer, in two separate periods of employment. The last two years have been difficult for me, because I have some ongoing health issues. My body has been telling me it is time to slow down a bit. My work load was increasing my stress levels, which has made it harder for me to keep my blood sugars low. And I have been exhausted, all the time, dragging myself around day-to-day, and I’m sure that I have been depressed. And moodier than hell. I’ve worked hard to exercise and watch my diet, but I knew deep inside my soul that it was time for me to move on from the work I have done for so long. I have not enjoyed my work for some time, and at my age I do not want to live my life with regrets. I’ve learned to listen to what my gut is telling me, what I know I need to do for myself.

So, after threatening to retire, I finally decided the time was NOW and gave my notice a few months ago.

When I walked into my office for the last time, on Friday, here’s what I saw:

last day

last day 2

Yeah, I cried.

Friday night, a whole bunch of us got together for a happy hour to celebrate my last day. Thirty people showed up, staff past and present, and I had a great time talking to people who came to see ME.

And it’s what they all said to me that has humbled me and made me swell with pride. The compliments I got were amazing. I was kind of numb, to be honest with y’all.

Retirement?

Me?

What the hell is next?

Who the hell knows?

I know that my work life is not completely over; I will work at something after a taking the summer off to play (and move). And when the right job comes along for me, I will be ready. It’s not going to be full time, that’s for sure!

This weekend I’m relaxing; the retirement parties are over and I have time to read, blog, exercise, sleep, and just breathe. Tomorrow afternoon I’m off to the dentist .

I’m retired.

Holy.

Moley.

Retirement weekend

Friday is my last day at work.

I will celebrate my retirement with colleagues at 5:00 p.m., at a local Seattle restaurant near Pike Market.

This weekend I’m going to relax, unwind, and take time to breathe.

I’m going to get outside and get some sun, but I’m also going to take LOTS of bubble baths, read three books (the latest Linda Fairstein is on my Kindle), sleep, watch t.v., and go to another retirement party Saturday night (my boss has graciously offered his home and barbecue grill for a small get together).

And breathe.

Yeah, I said that already.

I am so looking forward to having a summer without work!

And I’m sure that I will be updating y’all about what retirement looks like from my perspective!

Gotta go right now, get to work, and keep working on closing up shop at work.

hammock

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