Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year!

Time for Sunday Musings! Wishing you and your loved ones Happy New Year on the first day of the rest of our lives! Let's make 2017 a year of kindness and good works. We must overcome the negativity of our world. We must compensate for divisiveness in our country. Let's focus on simplicity. Be a part of love and life.

Ethnicity, race, religion, gender and sexual orientation should never dictate how others are treated. Yes, I get "love one another" as taught by my God even if some people seem unlovable. We need to take a deep breath and work to restore our country. We must learn to value life and cease killing each other. We must feed the hungry. We have to houses the homeless. We have to address mental illness, addiction, and health care for all. We must walk the walk if we profess to be Christian or any religion or even just as a good person. Whether directly through individual actions or by funding those who provide the care.

So...don't make unrealistic resolutions; rather resolve to love one another. Resolve to treat others as you would like to be treated. Speak to those different than you. Engage your community. Feed the hungry. Be kind. Speak lovingly. Focus on positives! Love you all.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Let's Try This Again! I'm Bored!

When I first retired, I started blogging about our adventures. As you can see, I began neglecting my blog and got busy doing other things. Facebook takes up lots of free time as I post, renew and maintain friendships and over share pictures of the grandchildren. I continue to work as a Senior Consultant for The Oncology Group www.theoncologygroup.com helping cancer programs and physicians enhance their services to patients. I also write and edit for publishing houses, websites and a medical editing firm in Taiwan on occasion. We still travel but often it's to places selected for the grands like Florida and Chattanooga. The older I get, the more I wonder what's next? I officially retired from the 60 hour work week in 2007 and my work has been part time. But, hello...I am bored!! And I'm only 67. Hopefully, I have a few more good years left.

So let's look at my next chapter in retirement! I explored a full time job at a local college but quickly realized I value my freedom of schedule. Adjunct faculty also requires a consistent commitment. The advantage to these jobs is that there is no airport involved. I am tired of flying for business. Our neighbors just moved here and started substitute teaching. After the first of the year, I may consider applying. The schools only call if they need you and you can decide if you're available! I still would like to generate a little income for that occasional cruise...we did the Baltic and loved it!

There are also tons of things I could do around the house. I love blogging but we already know I let that slide! Hobbies have also been neglected but I still love to cook new things and just dug out my yarn and knitting needles. Maybe I could learn to make something besides scarves? I love photography and need to get back to exploring new venues. So what's next?

My New Year's Resolution is to blog more! I will explore this next chapter in my life by sharing my reinvention in this next decade of my retirement journey! I know it will be just as much fun but different.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

I'm Back!

One of the things I've talked about over the years is working in retirement. The last 12 months have been hectic. We moved and started renovation on our new "old" house and then my occasional consulting gig turned into an almost full time job! One perk is a wonderful lifetime cruise later this year. If you want to do fun things, working in retirement is always an option. Being in health care, consulting has been my go to for extra spending money but I've also written for publishing companies and edited research papers. I would encourage you to identify your skills that can translate to extra spending money!

So this is short and sweet...I think I am about back to embracing a bit more retirement time and a little less work time! Which means more time to post! And more time for fun! See you soon!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Tale of Two Houses


The Tale of Two Houses




There I was peacefully napping on a Sunday afternoon, as many nearly 70 year old guys will do, and all of a sudden my love little bride wakes me up somewhat aggressively which is unusual. So I lay there thinking, which of the neighbor ladies have dropped by for afternoon tea and why do I have to be involved? But, then again, she was pretty insistent so I figured I had better go see what was so important that I should be disturbed like that!



Well, I couldn’t think of anything that would call for me dressing any different than usual, so on went the boat shoes, shorts and tee shirt. I enter the living room to see three grinning faces. One was my bride Pat, and the other two belonged to a couple we vaguely knew. My first thought was just how much it’s going to cost me to get rid of this smiling couple! Even before I joined them, Pat almost shouts out that they want to buy our house. I thought that’s not anything to wake me up from a nap for because that’s just plain silly. When we decided to move off Old Hickory Lake in Hendersonville from a multi-story house, we decided to design our retirement home from the ground up with everything we could think of and then some. Let’s see now…one level, all hardwood floors, doors that could be wheelchair accessible if you want to be morbid; my man cave off the master suite so I don’t have to go far to be alone; a car wash size shower with dual shower heads…and it too is wheelchair accessible; a screened porch for me and a pool for her; and, finally pet doors for the dog and cat…low maintenance and doesn’t interfere with my sleeping! Keep in mind that this was supposed to be our last house. It has an office, guest suite, and oversized garage for my toys…you name it, we have it…so why would I want to sell it!



The house was perfect…EXCEPT as my lovely bride pointed out…Savannah lives 55 miles away. She is our lovely little granddaughter who lives one town below Nashville and we live one town above Nashville. She is the only grandchild near enough to see weekly…the others moved off and left us! We go for visits as often as possible, but distance is a great factor.



So as any strong southern male with generations of strong southern males behind him, I said with great charity…that will be fine dear…or as I learned to say long ago…yes, dear we will sell the house. One hour later we had hammered out the details of the purchase. Well, the women had hammered out the details of the purchase. We all know they run the world! This was on Sunday afternoon. Monday morning I went to our attorney, had the contract drawn up, and it was signed on Tuesday! Now some men who are closing in on 70 might be concerned that they were now homeless, but not me. I married a little human dynamo Irish woman with an MBA in finance from the University of Notre Dame…yes we are a divided family…MS State and the SEC vs. Notre Dame. While watching the evening news on Sunday night, Pat was on the computer looking for a house in Murfreesboro, TN, the home of one Savannah Elizabeth Ledwell!



On Monday morning as Pat brings me my coffee, which is no big deal as she does that every morning, she said we were driving to Murfreesboro after breakfast. I thought it wouldn’t hurt to look around since we were homeless and she had promised me pancakes. We drove down the familiar 55 miles after pancakes at IHOP, and only then did I realize we had a specific destination in mind. Keep in mind she is Irish, red haired and runs my life. So we drove up to a lovely home in a gated community of cluster homes and there sits a real estate waiting to show us around. Remember I told you she runs my life and she’s Irish. We go in, look around, designate the room for my man cave and her office, note that it already has a screened porch and a separate deck, there is a swimming pool and tennis court, a beautiful creek running through a park like area just below the house that the Association maintains, and just a little cosmetic fixing up (like a new kitchen!) she says…so, she turns to me with those big blue eyes after all of 15 minutes and says “it’s perfect, daddy can I have it?”…or at least that’s how I recall it…she says in her direct way to the real estate agent, we’ll take it but given the amount of work, we are going to give you a very aggressive price, much lower than asking…told you she was the brains of this operation!



I have to stand on principle, after all we had only looked at one house for all of 15 minutes so of course I said, “yes, dear”. So within 24 hours we had sold and bought two homes. Stay tuned this only makes 13 homes in 30 years…she promises this is the last one…stay tuned.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Ms. Klutz 2013

Where to begin? As you know, in December of 2011, I broke my wrist. In February, I broke my arm. On July 3rd, I fell down a wet hill and broke my left wrist and left ankle! And I don't have osteoporosis so go figure! Either I have a crush on my orthopedic doc, Dr Haslam, or I am a certifiable klutz! While Dr H is precious, I think I am just a klutz! I have teased my friends about wearing "flippy" shoes...remember when Donna fell into a plane and broke her nose? Flippy shoes! I had on Born flip flops but in my defense, it was wet grass and a 45 degree slope! I guess as we get older we should be more careful. I always wondered why old women wore orthopedic shoes...now I know...it is to avoid orthopedic doctors!

Soooo....I guess I will try to be less klutzy and wear sensible shoes. But I will still keep Dr H on speed dial.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

I'm baaaaack!

I am absolutely mortified that I have not posted since last September! This being retired is tough! I had been working a bit more for The Oncology Group but things seem to be slowing down...of course the fact that I also broke my arm falling over my briefcase in a hotel room while checking out a snow storm has kept me a bit limited in my computer skills. And then of course, a major adverse event at my favorite hospital which caused me to have a second surgery to correct their error didn't help my mood much! Sooooo...I think I should start posting again if I can come up with some fun things to write.

We are heading to Florida soon with one of the grands and her parental units. We do this every year. Now that our son and his family are moving back to Tennessee, we are going to drag them down next year. It will be great to have everyone within just a few hours of us, but I will miss stopping off at Harrah's Cherokee on the way to NC...I could always rationalize that Woody couldn't drive all the way to Chapel Hill in one day...now I have to make a special trip to gamble and can't pretend it's just a way stop!

Now...what else do you need to know to catch up on our crazy life? We are not selling our house since the market hasn't quite returned enough to make it worth it so I've added granite in our master bath, redone the kitchen cabinets, subtracted and added some furniture and am trying to figure out what more I want to do. Now we really won't recoup our investment, but it sure looks pretty! Woody wrecked the RV in October when he blacked out...still don't have it back but we've been promised it soon. None of the doctors can figure out what happened so we're just hoping it was a one time event. Christmas was uneventful in 2012...as you recall in 2011 the entire family got sick! This time we just ate and had a ball with Savannah opening presents. We've also been to almost every Boomerangs' concert...and gleefully call ourselves groupies. Throw in lots of movies, a trip to the Egg Bowl in November (that's Ole MS vs. MS State and State lost and Woody was bummed and Jennifer was ecstatic since she's an Ole MS grad) followed by a long postponed trip to New Orleans...of course, there is a Harrah's Casino there! Oh and Woody had to drive me to work in South Bend, IN after the broken arm and before they would let me fly and we stopped at Harrah's Horseshoe Casino in Elizabeth, Indiana so we had a great trip. We've also had Savannah almost every weekend and have lots of fun memories with her, including planting flowers since she loves to garden! It's so much fun to have a grand close and we can't wait to get Riley closer too!

I'm sure there are tons of other things you should know to catch up on everything, but it's late and I'm tired! I'm still rehabbing the arm and shoulder...water aerobics and swimming....so now I'm tired AND sore but am regaining range of motion rapidly! I will try to do better...so my tip for this long delayed post is Don't get so caught up in day to day stuff, that you forget to do what you like to do...in my case, it's to write this blog!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Wonderful Afternoon at the Track!

Woody and I spent a wonderful afternoon at Kentucky Downs in Franklin, KY watching and betting (a little) on the races! We sat on the 2nd floor porch of the clubhouse with lots of other "old" people, had a light lunch (hot dogs, chips and M&M's) and bet on the ponies! It was tons of fun and not really that expensive since you could bet as little as $2 per race or not at all! We, of course, that would really be me, bet a little more than that and even won a little! So your tip for the day is think outside the box, keep up with activities at local venues and head out for a fun day or evening rather than sitting home!

Tonight we head out to Cheekwood for an event hosted by Belle Meade Vacations. Tons of travel and cruise vendors are in one place so we can pick our next "excellent adventure". The very best travel agent in the world is Cindy Farringer who is one of the owners of Belle Meade Vacations and my dearest friend! She has arranged some fabulous trips for us so give her a call when you need a great trip!
Cindy Farringer at cfarringer@bellemeadevacations.com  or 615-386-9876
Cindy Farringer, Travel Specialist

This is Cindy in Costa Rica I think! She personally checks out so many of the trips or cruises that she recommends so she knows what is great or not...at least that's the excuse she gives for lots of good travel!

On Saturday, Woody heads out to a free car show in Lebanon, TN and I'm heading to shop and do lunch. Too many retired folks sit around and don't make the effort to get out. We have a friend who knows entirely too much about daytime TV! He needs to get out more. When you are still healthy enough to try new things, don't waste your life....sitting at home may come soon enough as we age. Socializing through groups or with friends is important. Most senior citizen centers sponsor bus trips to local events or even longer trips. Golden Circle Travel specializes in trips for older adults. You don't have to hibernate for the rest of your life after you retire! Sit down with a map and see what is a reasonable day trip drive from your home...back roads are great because you can go slow and leave your blinker on and no one cares!!

Have fun...get out and about...don't vegetate!

Friday, September 14, 2012

A New Endeavor

You know me by now...always trying to reinvent myself! I've started another blog...Making Health Care Work available at www.makinghealthcarework.blogspot.com . When you go to the hospital, you need to know what is going to happen to you and also how to make health care work better for you. Starting with your own personal health behaviors...watching your weight (I'm working on that too!), not smoking, getting some type of regular exercise such as walking or swimming, and eating a healthy diet..you may be able to head off many illnesses by being healthy and taking care of yourself. Staying out of the hospital is the best way to avoid hospital acquired infections and to protect yourself from accidental errors in care. Hospitals don't intend to do harm, but they are only as good as their weakest employee. With the increasing complexity of care needed and the increasing workloads placed on doctors, nurses and staff, it's no wonder that problems happen. Having worked in and with hospitals for over 40 years, I know that they are doing the best they can with shrinking reimbursements, fewer dollars, and increasing numbers of patients. So your tips for today...practice healthy habits, wash your hands lots, ask your healthcare providers if they have washed their hands, don't hesitate to ask questions of your doctor and staff, and, most importantly, do what your doctors tell you!! Take your prescribed medicines correctly and consider supplements and vitamins after discussing them with your doctor.