Monday, April 12, 2010

Some Thoughts On Retirement

It's been three years since I stopped working. Hard to believe it's been that long. Those three years have been some of the best years of my life.

My life is quiet; I love it that way. I don't need much money; I don't have that many material needs. Fabric and good, healthy, organic food are the two things on which I spend the most money. We rarely eat out because the restaurant food is not very healthy. The exceptions are Paul Martin's American Bistro in Roseville and Chipotle. Love their burrito bowl.

I gave away all of my expensive suits, blouses and shoes. Someone else can wear that armor now; not me. Jeans, shirts and fleece plus comfortable shoes are my outer expression. My panty hose are used to collect lint at the end of our dryer line under the house. That's a good place for them.

I'm healthier because I'm not always on airplanes.

I can't think of one negative thing about retirement.

We rarely get up earlier than 8:30; no alarms in our life unless we made the unfortunate decision to be somewhere early.

Our travels are mostly by car to spend time with family and friends. We haven't been to the Bay Area in several years and have no plans to go. That place is filled with noise, pollution and tension. Don't need any of those things. If someone wants to see us, they come here and enjoy the beauty and solitude of our five acres.

I've made new friends; discovered that I really want to express my creativity with fabric; learned that being in a large group is not for me anymore; discovered Michael Pollan and became a locavore; shopped at the farmer's markets and cooked what I found there; and learned a lot about organic farming from the farmers I follow on Twitter.

I also learned that I love to nap each day; luckily Kerry does too.

The days fly by; most of the time I can tell you what day of the week it is but not always the date.

One of the best parts of retirement was Mark finding Julia and getting married at the Grand Canyon.

My quilting went from buying and learning to use all the tools needed to create perfect quilts that would win prizes to tearing strips of fabric for my latest art quilt. This summer Kerry, Harleen and I are going to Sisters, Oregon so I can take a class in fabric painting from a teacher I really like. All of this started from a series of fiction books I read about Elm Creek Quilt Camp. Author is Jennifer Chiaverini.

And Harleen came into our lives as a tiny 11 pound golden lab puppy. Due to bad hips, she washed out of the Canine Companions for Independence program. So in a way she retired too and is now part of our life.

I've learned that you never know where life will lead you; just listen to your soul and follow your heart. It worked for me.
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