Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all! It's Christmas Eve and we just finished a fabulous dinner at Buster's...compliments of our favorite son and daughter-in-law! Chris and Jen gave us a gift certificate to Buster's, one of our favorite restaurants in Destin, along with KOA gift certificates. Food, camping, gas and Walmart! Our kids know us well! We have a huge Christmas dinner tomorrow at the Activity Center here at Camping on the Gulf. Would love to be with all of you, but our crazy bunch down here isn't bad! and then we walk on the beach! Andy and Harley join us in wishing you love, lots of hugs, prosperity, happiness, weight loss, success and tons of other good wishes!
Woody and Pat

Saturday, December 22, 2007

I have a confession!

Harley got upset that Andy's picture was on the blog and his wasn't! Here's Harley's "Make the world go away" nap!

Those of you who know me well know I'm addicted to Dancing with the Stars! It's one of the few shows I've watched over the past few years that is sacrosanct. I don't answer the phone! It used to be that way with ND football...well you know what happened this year! I still search for Helio and Julianne gossip almost daily! I'm crushed that Julianne Hough is in Nashville and I'm in Destin! I've always loved racing...just not Nascar racing. Now in addition to Danica Patrick, I've got Helio Castroneves ! I used to pull for Dario Franchitti because I love Ashley Judd, who's also a neighbor in Tennessee, but he's moved to Nascar! So now I've got my IRL favorites and Tony Stewart, Jimmy Sauter (who I hope wins something this year!) and of course, you know one of my deep secrets. I'm a dancing, racing junkie! I even bought a web site, just not sure what I want to do with it yet! Yeah!!!

We went to see National Treasure yesterday for a 3:45 p was packed. I think it's a hit. It's not quite as good as the first one, but it's still a great popcorn and chocolate escapist fantasy! I love movies with action and suspense. We still want to see about 10 others that are out or coming's a shame it costs so much but now that we are both "senior" and go to matinees it's reasonable unless the movies bad! Wouldn't it be nice if there was a money back guarantee? We usually just look at what the critics hate and know we'll love it.

We're still walking a lot, eating too much, and having a great time. It's overcast and a bit cool today so we'll probably stay close to home. As you know "home is where we park it"! We love getting the Christmas cards many of you are sending. Libby and Led sent us a WalMart giftcard and a Shell giftcard for Christmas! WalMart is my new Chicos and, of course, what RVer doesn't need gas! I have a little work to do over the next week or so before Estelle and David come...we have a whole list of new restaurants for them to try!

I'm still having a bit of trauma with work---no-work. Had two consulting jobs offered this week that would have been quite profitable I'm sure, but I gave them away! I just don't want to fly unless it's out of the country! It would have been great fun, but I'm still a bit tired and not ready to really do much more than edit, and an occasional consulting gig for The Oncology Group and Dawn! I guess that's what retirement is all about!

Hope you all have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year! I miss you all and will see you in March! Big hugs!
Woody and Pat

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A $550,000 Ceiling

We went to McGuire's Irish Pub tonight for dinner! They have $550,000 in $1 bills stapled to the ceilings and walls! They have a Notre Dame room and my dollar went right below the 1988 National Champion banner...ahhh, fond memories! Woody was mushy and did a Woody loves Pat dollar! McGuire's Irish Pub is a blast!

We've been really busy the last week or so! I feel bad that I haven't written much, but I've been editing like crazy and doing a little consulting. I do love that mailbox money! We're planning on lots of movies this weekend as three are coming out that we want to see.

My BFF Jane wanted more you go!

Here we are on the's cool here hence the sweatshirt and shorts combo! The Christmas tree is at Destin Commons, our favorite shopping and theater area. Well second to the Outlet Mall for shopping! This sunset is right off our beach at Camping on the Gulf.
We've seen lots of people from last year and are getting ready for our Christmas Day Dinner! As usual I will bring two key lime pies from, I'm really not cooking much down here either! Friday at 4P we have a dog tricks contest and a hot dog roast on the patio! Andy doesn't have any tricks, except he'll win the hot dog eating contest if we let him! There are even more activities for us old folks and snow birds! I never thought I'd enjoy retirement so much!
Big hugs to everyone! Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Happy Holidays!
Love, Woody and Pat

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Fun on the Beach!

I just love being a snowbird. We've had a great week. I'm walking, eating lots of seafood at Dewey Destin ( , working a bit, shopping and going to the movies. We saw Hitman yesterday and it was fabulous! Lots of action and blood and gore! We went to Destin Commons to walk around and found ourselves right in the middle of a dog Christmas fashion show. We should have entered Andy! He has his snowflake sweater here and would have looked great! We're going to have to start watching the paper to see all the fun events in Destin. Did a bit of shopping, but didn't buy anything. The sad part of being retired is you don't need anything that you can't get at WalMart! I did talk to some of the salespeople who said they were really hurting this Christmas season. There are so few people around that its almost spooky! I can see how some of the RV contingent might not come due to gas prices, but there's just no one here. The high rises on the beach with thousands of condos have one or two windows lighted! Where are the people?

I did miss a reception in Nashville to benefit Hillary's campaign and I was a host! I'm so hopeful that she will be able to fix health care, get us out of Iraq, and approach our country's budget in a more realistic manner. I always think about the joke if the Wise Men had been women, they would have cleaned the stable, made a casserole, and brought useful gifts! The good old boy network has just about run this country into the ground. It's time a strong woman took a shot at straightening us out! I just hope people can get past the b___ word! It's amazing that Bill gets impeached for lying about an extramarital affair, and the Bush contingent gets away with just about everything from outing a CIA operative to going to war on suspicious grounds to lying to a grand jury and getting a presidential pardon! Hullloooo....where is the justice? I am concerned that the democrats will kill each other and weaken our chances at beating the republicans!

I just got a wonderful gift for Christmas from MedCom, my company I edit for in Taiwan. They sent the best selection of tea! Woody and I are so excited to try it. The Jasmine tea is probably going to be my favorite.

Hope you all have a wonderful week!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

We're in Destin!

We arrived in Destin last night! Here are pictures! We spent all day decorating for Christmas! Wanted to share our campground, the beach (that's our RV window so we're close), our Christmas trees, Woody and Andy resting after working, and our great neighborhood! Million dollar+ houses just out our back door...if we had a back door!

Jan and Holly...check out the chairs! very jealous...we're done with our Christmas shopping and it's been mailed, and the trees ( 3 of them) are up! I don't know if you can see it but the Welcome Flamingo you gave us is holding the wreath and the sign that says "home is where you park it"!
The blue screen room is Harley and Andy's. Harley prefers the one in Hendersonville but will take what he can get right now. There are dogs everywhere, but Harley is the only cat walking on a leash!
We've already hit Buster's and Pompano Joe's! Our two favorite restaurants! Tomorrow we rest, watch football, and then I have to work a bit. Cathy and Dawn and Taiwan are keeping me busy!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Happy Birthday Woody!

Tomorrow is Woodrow's 63rd birthday! A bunch of his friends are meeting us for dinner at Shane's in Hendersonville and then back home for cake and ice cream! No present from me...he got a new motor for his truck!

We drove all the way to Chattanooga to pick up our luck. All the things that were broken, that they said were fixed, are all still broken! Maybe it's Gremlins! Woody just told them to deliver the coach when they got it fixed and we left. We're supposed to head to Florida in the next few weeks! It had better show up soon! I need beach!
Yeah!!!! I may have sold a web site! Just got an email from someone who's interested. A few months back, I sat and thought up web sites to speculate. The one that's of interest is which would be great for Nascar, IRL and...well, you get the picture. I also own a few sites with health and business names. Who knows what I'll get into in to next! Between medical editing, working for Cathy on a project, selling stuff on eBay, and selling photgraphs on Yessy and BigStockPhoto, and now this...I'm going to have to go back to work to rest up!
We're heading to Libby's for Thanksgiving...I'm doing the dressing. Molly also is doing my dressing recipe for oyster dressing! Yuck...but she and her dad can eat a ton of it! I also have to make sweet potato pies! Such a gourmet cook. I'm ready for some good turkey.
Watched the debates last night! Hillary did well. I keep thinking about the joke about the three wise men...if they had been three wise women, they would have cleaned the stable, made a casserole, brought realistic presents...well you get the picture. We've had the good old boys in more! I just read today that close to 20% of children in the U.S. are at risk for hunger. That's horrid. No healthcare for almost 50 million people. A war that doesn't make sense, and is costing us trillions of dollars and we can't feed and care for our children. The one concern I have is that we look like idiots on the debate...we're so busy fighting amongst ourselves, that people are going to get fed up. Here's the deal....elect Hillary president and get on with fixing the mess our country's in right now! Otherwise it's Rudy; his kids don't even like him! Mitt Romney...I don't think so! and while I'm from Tennessee, Fred Thompson can't decide what he wants to be when he grows, senator, ? president? Hillary wants the job and will do it incredibly well! Get over the fact that she stayed with Bill...he's a charmer. We all love him! The country was so much better off with the Clinton's in the White House. Go look at her web page...just keep an open mind!
Life in retirement is good!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Chairs Chairs and More Chairs!

Woody's been on a project binge lately! Not too long ago we went to dinner at Donna and Mike's house. Donna is Miss Designer! Woody fell in love with her Adirondack chairs that were lime green...guess what we did this week? These are the chairs that our neighbor on Hidden Lake built for us! They had weathered to a dull gray, and I had considered painting them red or blue like everyone else! Once Woody saw Donna's....well, you know what we did! This view doesn't show the roses, but the chairs are in my little rose garden with yellow, pink, lavender and red roses! He did a beautiful job! Thanks Donna for the inspiration, and thanks to Valspar and Lowes for the paint colors. Just so you'll know, Donna's was custom color...we had to make do with generic paint off a paint chip!!
We're also trying to get the yard ready for winter. This has been gardening week! We replaced a few shrubs, weeded...I don't think I like our neighbor with bermuda grass! It's everywhere, but with global warming maybe it's the best grass as it's heat tolerant! It also thrives on Round-up!
We thought about moving to a condo...even put down a little deposit. Now, I think we're back to staying here. I just don't want to give up all this room. With Janet moving out, it will be tough but we'll see what happens. Our Montana trip will be difficult next summer, but as long as Elroy is willing to mow, we'll be cool! Worst case, we get a lawn service. Like Woody says....I have no clue what I want to do. I love the RV most, but it's good to have a home base!
Went to a comedy dinner last night! We had dinner with our friends, and Chuck and Bill went on a comedy and joke binge! I've never laughed so hard in my life. If you need therapy, go to dinner with Chuck and Bill! Laughter certainly is the best medicine. We went to Blue Sky in Goodlettsville. It was great. We're also going out to Green Hills tonight to the Cheese Cake Factory...we're nothing if not versatile in our dining choices. I'm trying to talk Woody into going early so we can do a bit of Christmas shopping!
Go Titans and Go Colts! Sunday is football day!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Road Trip!

Our friends Jane and Bill kidnapped us from Mickey D's last week for an impromptu road trip. We went to their son's house to see 2 day old Yorkies! It's a good thing they look like rats right now, or I might have been tempted to buy one! I can't go a few weeks they will be so cute! Andy and Harley would be jealous if I brought another baby home! I did say it was a road trip...their son lives in White House. We also went to Thomas Drugs for's in Cross Plains I think...or maybe Greenbrier. I got so lost! was Cross Plains! We also went to a great antique store where Holly's elephant lives! Holly lives in Ashland City, but someone stole her elephant! We found it somewhere in the boonies!

We also went to Home Sweet Home in White House. It's owned by Cinda Petty, Jane and Bill's daughter-in-law! Cool stuff. I bought a candle that I love...guava mango! Just a tropical gal at heart. If you're in White House you should go!
I'm continuing to work on photography, haiku into haiga, and trying to be creative! I'm still editing tons of articles. I did have a new article of mine published in the Healthcare Executive, the journal for the American College of Healthcare Executives. It was only a page, but it's a big deal to get in that journal! I still have two other articles that I need to polish and then send off...just busy busy busy. I don't know why I don't have more time! I'm retired for goodness sakes!
Went to the Titan's game today. The offense should buy the defense dinner! At least we won!
Just four more weeks til we're off to Florida! Can't's getting cold here!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Heading to East Tennessee!

"Closed for the Season" is the blue boat house at Percy Priest Lake where you usually can rent boats!
We're heading to East Tennessee soon to visit Woody's uncles! They are all 80+ years old and rocking! I hope that means Woody has good genes...I know he has good jeans! His back is yucky though...he keeps throwing it out! Or maybe it's just when I told him we were going to do yard work. We're trying to get the house ready in anticipation of putting it on the market again. We've found a condo in Gallatin that looks interesting. We went to the Del Webb community in Mt. Juliet, but they seem to have a high opinion of their property! It would be great if the pricing wasn't ridiculous! For what they want in just maintenance fees, I can hire a full time gardener! My roses, however, are doing smashing! It's amazing what a little water and Bayer rose food can do!

We're planning an exciting night out with Lou and Cindy Saturday....heading to the Italian Grill here in Hendersonville. Their food is great, and....they have a band! We don't know who's playing or if we'll go, but we may check it out.

I taking a few days off from brain cells are frazzled. The latest was a case report on a complex chromosomal abnormality! Yee gads! I had to look up every other word. I'm learning tons though...who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? I need time to write creatively and take photos and do fun things!

Hope you all have a great weekend....

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Too much work!

This week has made me remember why I was glad to retire! I've worked all week! Four manuscripts, a trip to Emory, and cleaning house! I think I'll take this next week off...or at least some of it! We have to mail a bunch of things we sold on eBay...didn't make much, but it probably paid for tonight's pizza! Libby and Led went to Tunica...hope she didn't lose all her money! Haven't heard...which probably means she's lost! Usually when she wins we get 47 phone calls! Hope you have a great week!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Off to work I go!

Just had another Haiku published online!

Global warming
rain provides hope
drought is over

This one is on a Japanese web site! By the way, I'm Tranquility Found!

Off to see Mary at Emory in Atlanta today! I'm doing a presentation for the nursing leadership on Transformational Leadership. It's based on my chapter in her book, Nursing Management Principles and Practice, which by the can order at ! And, the most exciting thing! I have a brief article coming out in the November/December issue of Healthcare Executive, the journal of the American College of Healthcare Executives, on Transformational Leadership ! It's interesting that 25 years ago, I implemented a shared governance model at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and today, it's just as vital! Involving people, in this case staff, in the decision making process sounds so simple. If we can just convince managers that they don't have all the answers!

We're trying to decide if we want to sell the house (or at least try to sell the house) and move back into a condo! With Janet heading back south, we just hate to leave the house vacant six or seven months out of the year...we're traveling a bunch! We leave for Florida the first of December...we're snowbirds! That sounds so old!! Decisions..decisions..decisions. Feel free to weigh in on what you think we should do! We're so confused!

My poor Cubbies were swept! I had so hoped that Led could see the Cubs in the World Series in his lifetime! He's young...maybe there's hope! I love to aggravate him, but for those of you who know me...I'm not a big fan of baseball, but I love going to Cubs games! It's an event!

This week has been busy with tons of medical editing from Japan and Taiwan, but did take time out to put lots of Ellen Tracy stuff on eBay! We just love selling on eBay. We get to shop, antique, and junk, buy, and then clutter at home but still have the fun of the chase!'s always at least a meal or three out in profit! I feel like my dad, Bill Hudson! He always had a scheme to make a buck! Between editing and eBay, I'll never go hungry again! As if.....

Hope all of you have a great week!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Busy! Busy! Busy!

Had a great week, but spent tons of time editing manuscripts from Japan and Taiwan! I have to remind myself that I'm retired! Janet and I took Friday off for a girls' day at the mall. She's lost lots of weight and had to have some new clothes...she hates to shop so I had to drag her kicking and screaming until she realized how small she was! Then I had to drag her out to the car to go home! Great sales at Macy's, but I'm just a Dillards kind of girl. Doing some great selling on eBay this week too! Still have one black blazer that no one wants! Libby or may be getting a new blazer! Janet's home to Tupelo for a week...we have Bob the Builder cat! He's wandering the house looking for his Mom...finally gave up and jumped up in Woody's lap for his nightly love! He's so affectionate...Harley should learn from him. Today, Woody, Andy and I went to the TACA Arts Fair! Saw Mary, not THE Mary Martin! Belle Meade Plantation was having a children's event. Also saw my friend from high school, Rombye. She said the reunion was fun. We missed it, but after looking at the pictures, I didn't recognize but two or three people! Andy was the hit of the Fair in his Titan's visor. Hope you have a great week!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

A Fabulous Night at the Weber's!

When was the last time you got home after midnight? We had our dinner party group's latest event at Donna and Mike's last night. As always, Donna's house was divine and the new kitchen just tops it off. She's missed her calling....she should be a decorator! The food was great, but the fellowship was better! It was great to catch up with everyone. The only glitch was Dennis was slow to get Jack there! Mike and I'll forgive you this time, Dennis! Mary Martin...and no, not the Peter Pan one...was telling us about her role at Belle Meade Plantation! I think it sounds almost as fun as what I'm doing. Woody and I might have to do a visit to Martha' is great and I love the gift shop. If you haven't been in a's worth a visit. I prefer spring and Christmas!

Just order a book...100 miles around Yellowstone! We're starting to prepare for our four months in Montana next summer! Today starts the diet and the walking. We can handle 4-6 miles flat or about a mile straight up if we plod! We need to improve our stamina as some of the trails are much longer than the ones we did on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Not sure how I'm going to sneak Woody into walking...he's getting smarter!

Have a great weekend...we're going to watch Notre least long enough to either be ecstatic or depressed. We're 0-3! Boo hoo!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Fabulous Launch Party for Bill Petty

We had an incredible experience last night! Our friends, Bill and Jane Petty, have an incredibly talented son, Bill Petty, Jr, who is the Worship Pastor at NorthPointe Church and a Christian singer. Bill Jr had a launch party for his new CD last night at Ri'chard's Cafe in Whites Creek, TN! It was such an uplifting experience and reminded me of my old "First Baptist" church days in Jackson, TN. You can hear one of his songs at the link above. Some of you may even find a little gift in the mail! I planned on Christmas presents, but like Woody, this is just too good not to get into circulation now! If you want more copies for your friends, just let me know! I'm sure Momma Jane will hook us up at $15 per CD! Bill self produced this you know how hard it is for me to not say album!

The launch part was at Ri'chard's Cafe at Whites Creek, TN - A New Orleans/Cajun Style restaurant and live music venue a few minutes from Music Row and Downtown Nashville. Richard Trest, the owner, was so gracious to all of us...and is a talented singer and song writer in his own right! He's a transplant from New's my new favorite place! It's like the Blue Bird Cafe but with great food! We're going to watch his web site for nights we want to go...but get ready Dinner Club...we're heading to Whites Creek in October if we can all get together on a date! Check out for more on the restaurant.

Have a great week! and remember my favorite little prayer that I pray for all my friends, family, and a few people I'm not too fond of...ok...I'm not that good of a person!

Father, God bless all my family and friends in whatever it is that You know they may be needing this day! And may their life be full of your peace, prosperity and power as they seek to have a closer relationship with you. Amen.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

We're Back!

We're finally back in Nashville to see the damage of global warming! Our yard is burned to a crisp but Janet saved our shrubs and my roses. It may be time for a high rise condo with a balcony and one potted plant! We worked all day yesterday in the yard and only got the front and side done! We shaped and weeded and pruned...and, of course, I managed to hack up another extension cord with the hedge trimmer. Thank heaven for ground fault interrupter outlets! I could be a crispy critter without them! It is raining a tiny bit as we speak...don't know that it will help much!

Last night we went to the new California Pizza Kitchen! The only problem is that it's in Green Hills and the traffic is a killer! It's in the new Hill Center which will be cool once its finished. Food was great...service great...and it was fun watching all the Green Hills group! I don't think I've ever been that trendy! Saw a colleague from Memphis that Janet and I hadn't seen in 25 years! That was a hoot!

I'm still an editing fool...have lots working...and can't wait to get a check! I'm not sure I like the lag time on payment as I've already spent the money! But, all things considered, I work from home or the RV, when I want, and in some lovely outfits! Donna, I have on your purple socks as we speak! Between Taiwan and Tokyo, I'm staying a bit more busy than I like, but the manuscripts are fascinating. The last one I did was Diapause in the Silkworms of Japan and China! I sent the author a picture of silkworms on mulberry leaves I took in Shanghai to use in his presentation! I think I have an article accepted to the ACHE journal, Healthcare Executive! Waiting to hear. I edited it down from one that I had written related to Transformational Leadership. Hopefully I'll know in the next few weeks! I'm also writing original content for Salem Press's new Cancer the Merck Manual but only on Cancer. So far I've done 16 topics! Still selling photographs and entering contests. I've been selected for a few Anthologies, but no money...just the "honor" of selection....I'd rather have money!

We're going to watch football all day today! Yeah! Has to be better than Notre Dame!!!! We're 0-2! and you know how that bums me out.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

The Old Florida...Apalachicola

We're finishing up our two months in Florida by spending a few days in Apalachicola, Florida It's marvelous. For those of you who remember Destin just after it started to evolve...that's where Apalachicola is now. It's main industry is fishing/oysters...with an increasing number of tourists. The historic downtown is full of antique shops and shops with unique gifts that you just can't live without. One of my favorite places is Lane Autrey's Photography Gallery. She has some incredible images and several made me really jealous! We bought Ginny a cast iron skillet so she can learn to make southern cornbread! Libby is finally getting a deviled egg old one...I found a great dark green carnival glass one that matches my Portmerion! I also picked up a blue carnival glass bowl that may go on eBay...I really like it though! Also got two little three leaf clover bowls...the shamrocks didn't help the Irish today! We got crushed by GA Tech! Oh well...watched the game at Papa Joe's on the river...fabulous oysters, shrimp and the best key lime pie north of Terry's in Davie, FL!

It's incredible to be retired and free to roam! I thank God daily for my many blessings...not sure what I did to deserve such a great life! I guess our random acts of kindness continue to pay off...we may not be churchy, but we try to walk the walk!

Riley, our granddaughter, caught a foot long fish today with her fishing wand from Wal-Mart that Mimi bought her! Unfortunately, Dad decided he needed bait more than having it mounted for her bedroom wall! At least he told her she had to send it back to the sea...glad she didn't realize what he meant! Jen caught a hammerhead shark! Should have told her to filet it and saute it in real butter and lemon pepper...tasty! Our fishmonger from Florida told us that on any fish. I guess shark is shark, hammerhead or otherwise!

Libby is off riding her four wheeler that Led gave her for her birthday...I'm not sure what happened...four wheeler, bass fisherperson, cubs least she still likes to shop! She's happier than I've ever seen her! Molly is moving this weekend...she got a big promotion at work and is really excited about commissions! Yeah...she's the new material girl and I'm the hippie now!!! Talk about role reversal! You go girl!

We should be home in a few days unless we find someplace fun to stop and visit! We do love this lifestyle but really miss all of you!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Disney World!

Well...we're at Disney World. Just spent a really hot day in the Magic Kingdom! Even got Janet on a roller coaster. A really big disappointment though...after spending over $70 a ticket, two of the major rides were not operating...Haunted Mansion and Space Mountain. The park is quick to get you in the gift shops but can't deliver on the rides. The second thing I noticed was that some of the people were bordering on rude. We extended our stay at Ft. Wilderness RV Resort one more day and you would have thought the concierage was doing us a favor! We've been coming to Disney for years and this is the first disappointing time we've had. We have two more days of tickets...let's hope Epcot and the Animal Kingdom are better than the Magic Kingdom!!! Between the three of us, we've got 8 grandchildren and were talking about bringing all of them but we may rethink's just not as good as it used to be for the money! My last trip was only two years ago and it's gone downhill since then. The funniest thing is that I made the reservation, paid for the vacation with my credit card, and they put everything in Janet's name....hopefully they will not kick us out when she leaves on Wednesday and we're here til Friday!!! If you book, use and don't call and make the reservations over the phone...they aren't too with it! Especially when they don't ask about slides and awnings and pets for the site assignment!

We'll let you know if it gets better!!!

Friday, August 17, 2007

No, I don't want to go back to work!

For all of you who worry that I'm bored....I'm not! Yesterday Woody took me into the woods in a golf cart where we found the butterfly above! It's a Zebra Longwing, the state butterfly of Florida.

I don't think that anyone can accept the fact that I'm really retired! and, no, I don't want to go back to work! From the recruiters who keep calling to well-intentioned friends, I keep getting queried about what I want to do. Well, surprise...I'm doing it. I love the travel in our RV, photography, writing Haiku and turning them into Haiga, medical editing, seeking out stuff to sell on eBay, and occasional consulting. The only drawback I've seen thus far is that when I go shopping, I don't really need anything! If it's not shorts or jeans and t-shirts or sweaters, I don't need it! I still have the requisite black suit for work and at the rate I'm going, it will never wear out!
We'll be in Ocala one more week and then on to Disney. Today, we went to Miconopy...a darling antique center just north of Ocala. I got ruby and silver candle sticks that I adore so no eBay for them! Not sure what's on the agenda for the weekend...we'll see!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Time to Haiku

I'm finally having a bit of time to explore some of my images and to reflect on their meaning! Enjoy!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Cedar Key--My New Favorite Place

Woody and Pat's new beach house! Well house, no beach. Well, not exactly house! A reminder that in Florida there are hurricanes!
Woody and I spent an absolutely marvelous day in Cedar Key, Florida! is the Chamber of Commerce site with directions and good information, but basically it's due west of Ocala, SW of Gainesville, and north of Spring Hill! The Cedar Keyhole Gallery and Artist's Cooperative , Haven Isle Gift and Glass Shop, an antique shop that was closed but looked great through the window, and tons of gift shops are divine! We ate at the Seabreeze Restaurant and the view and food were fabulous. Definitely try the Palm Salad with Ice Cream Dressing. It's also on the migratory path of white pelicans, but of course, not right now! I would have loved to have a picture of a white pelican!

We drove around and saw some fabulous old houses and a few new ones! The town reminds me of old Florida when I was growing up. The fishing must be great as we saw everything from airboats to kayaks to pontoon boats with fishing equipment. Several guides offered tours and fishing in the "flats" which to landlubbers means that it's really shallow! So no big boats! Driving out to Cedar Key, the land looks a lot like the marsh land of the Carolinas and certainly isn't for beach lovers in the truest sense! But...if you want to get away to something a bit funky and laid back...I'd recommend Cedar Key!
I think we brought rain to Florida! It's still raining every afternoon...I think we're going to have to change lots in the RV park as we flood where we are! Have a great week!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Silver Springs, Florida

We spent the day at Silver Springs and had a great time! It's like old Florida ! I took well over 150 shots and this was the best! I didn't know what I had until I got home and pulled it up on the computer. These monkeys are wild and were put on an island in the early 1920's...the man was going to do tours so people could see the monkeys but he didn't realize they could swim! Currently there are 100's of them and they've gone from Central Florida to Jacksonville , Tampa and points south! This was as we were coming off one of the river tours. Lunch time with momma monkey! Still selling pictures online so I just keep taking them! We have a black snake here, but I haven't had my camera when he was up and about! I'm becoming quite the naturalist! Finally got my Blue Heron shot!!!
Lots of excitement in Ocala! We were hit by lightening on Saturday and lost two major electrical boards! Thankfully it only took out the back air conditioner and electric to the refrigerator. In an RV, you have redundent systems! Our refrigerator is running on propane and the front AC is cooling the back quite nicely! Not a meat locker, but certainly ok even for me!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

What moron picked Ocala in July=Pat

What moron picked Ocala in July? That would be me! It's in the mid 90's and realllly hot! We went to see the new Bruce Willis movie...Live Free or Die one ever! It had just a bit of computers for me and lots of mayhem for both of us! We're having a good time, but next year it's Maine in the summer!!!!! Libby and Led went to the race last night in Daytona...they've had a week in Daytona and said they had a blast! It did rain some but didn't seem to bother them. Chris and Jen are at the beach house with Will and Riley. Watched a bit of Wimbledon this weekend and so glad Venus and Roger won! I still love tennis...we have our racquets with us but it's too hot to play! About the only think I do is head to the pool. We're still talking about Disney the end of August...I think we're going to leave the coach here and find a pet friendly hotel...or maybe fly down in November! The boys are having an ok time, but we had to put up sun screens on the front windows of the RV so they are relagated to the side windows because of our position and the sun. We've taken Harley out several times on his leash and he does well until a car or loud people come by and then he heads for home! Better that than running away! He told me he misses Billy Bob.

I have an editing job starting's for the company from Tokyo. We'll see how it goes! Should be a little gas money! I have another one pending, but it's going to be quite complex. We'll see. I work M, Tu, and Fri 9-12 in the office here and then Woody works the afternoons so I should have time to get most of the work done while he's out and about the park! I love retirement!

I'm writing a song right now so my haiga's are suffering. I did take a few shots of a cool hawk here in the park but just haven't seen much to shoot as of yet. We are going to Silver Springs on Wed when we're both off...hopefully I'll see some good shots! I need to get some more pictures on Big Stock Photo as my sales are dropping! Busy Busy Busy!!!

We miss you all!

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Woody and Pat are Working!

We're here in Ocala, Florida at the Ocala RV Camp and Resort! Our first Workamping job! For the uninitiated, workamping is where we work free and the park gives us a free site for the RV! We work 20 hours a week and don't get paid but the site is worth about $500-900 a month depending on location and time of year! plus no taxes! The fun part is that they needed Woody an additional 10 hours so he gets money!!!! He's making $6.75 an hour!!! He's the pool boy and yesterday was the ant boy! He rode around in the golf cart and put chemicals on ant hills! Some are fire ants so there is much danger! I work in the office but my danger is having to wear green! You know I rarely wear green! I learned a new computer program, Campground Manager! Now I have a skill! That should keep me in the office and in the air conditioning.

We got to leave on Sunday thanks to a great mobile RV service! Once we got the battery fixed, we got to a KOA camp in Forsyth, GA in a blinding rain storm on an unlevel lot and the leveling jacks wouldn't work! We found RVMedic, another mobile service in Ocala, and Ray fixed us on the 4th of July! Now I have to struggle with Winnebago to get reimbursed...even if I can't, it's worth it not to have to take this thing and the boys and all my food in the refrig which would spoil, to a dealer and wait to get fixed...I do so love life on the road!

Today is the 4th of July and Woody is working and I'm off! This is absolutely wonderful! I slept late...had coffee...checked email...and later, we're going to the pool and cook out! Enjoy your holiday!

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Confusion! Confusion!

All loaded up and ready to go to Florida! Unfortunately major problems with the RV! We have a battery that is boiling over and the electric system seems to be screwy! Now we have to unload! Oh well...must be a reason that we weren't meant to leave today! I finished all my outstanding work and just wanted to play for a while! At least there are tons of great movies on this weekend. I know where we'll be! Will keep you posted on our repairs and leave date!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Working Once Again

Just took on a new assignment for eight entries in a Health Encyclopedia so I've been a bit busy. I'm trying to finish them before we head off for two months in Ocala, FL. Janet the housesitter has settled in, so all is well! We also did a copper colored tin backsplash over the stove. Would have loved the glass mosaic tile but just too pricey for us old folks! Woody did an amazing job and didn't even resort to screaming at inanimate objects! Remember this is the guy that ripped a toilet out of the floor with his bare hands when a bolt broke! We learned how to replace subflooring on that job!

Libby starts her new job soon and is so excited! Molly is starting a catering business! Didn't realize she could cook! Chris and Jen are doing great and have Will for the summer. Life is Good!

I just haven't had much time for my photography! We went to RoseMont, a plantation home in Gallatin, on Sunday and I talked to several photographers who were complaining about the set up and take down of doing festivals and fairs. Just wish I had time to get ready to do one! The printing alone will cost a fortune! I'm so desperate to shoot that this orchid was from Lowe's!

We're finally getting some rain but my roses look like...well use your imagination! Hopefully we won't lose everything. Maybe gardening in a world of global warming may not be a good hobby! Tomorrow we work the Parade of Homes's fun. Maybe I'll just do volunteer work! There is a lamp I'm going to buy tomorrow if it hasn't already sold! The Parade has inspired me a bit...I've fluffed and moved things around but just can't decide what to do next! My friend Donna should come help me!

Hugs to all and here's a new picture for you!

Friday, June 8, 2007

Anthology Times Two

Not only was a photo of mine selected by Photo Laureates for their 2007 Anthology, but I've been asked to submit a short story that describes the culture of the South for An Anthology of the South for High School Students. I wrote about beans! Beans and Egalitarianism! As soo as I hear whether the submission was accepted, I'll let you know! I think I'd rather write and do photos than consult. Still selling photos on Big Stock Photo but not enough to make a financial impact! I'm hopeful that things will shake out so that I can write, photograph and not consult! I did field a few job queries and passed them off to my friends. Hopefully I'll get a finder's fee!

Monday, June 4, 2007

A Fun Day with Libby

I had a blast today! Woody and I met Libby for lunch and a bit of shopping! You know you've done well when the daughter buys lunch and her own clothes and brings presents for her old parents! We were with Chris for Mother's Day so today we got Mother's Day and Father's Day presents! Starbucks card and a Frommer's RV Book! Then she bought her own clothes! She had never shopped Chicos! Almost a thousand dollars later, she's a fan! Back to eBay again...thought I'd try two luck and when I started looking at the discussion list...most photographers say nothing is selling on eBay. Darn! Now I guess it's on to finding a gallery!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

A Bit of Reorientation

As I head on down this retirement road, I find myself moving in many directions. I'm still enamoured with Haiga, the merge of my photgraphic images with my haiku. I may be writing less and adding more images! Now if I can just continue to earn a little money along the way! I used to say for that I'm digital, it's for gas to get to where I take the cool pictures...and no, I don't drive the RV to St. Lucia! That's for Carnival Cruise Lines! my favorite cruise line! We're looking at some options for our next adventure...after the fiasco on Holland America and the toilet never working, we're back to the red necks and fun rather than snooty and old! We may be old, but we're not dead yet!

Friday, June 1, 2007

Soft Cherry Blossoms in the Spring

My first submission to our list...your comments are appreciated!
Yessy.Com has more of my images!
Yessy Online Art Gallery

Friday, May 25, 2007

Busy! Busy! Busy!

Haven't had two minutes to write! We've, of course, been traveling constantly since we left Williamsburg! We've hiked to the falls at the Natural Bridge outside of Roanoke, VA; spent hours exploring Roanoke Rapids and the surrounding community, river and canal! After driving all the way across VA to get to the Blue Ridge Parkway, we drove all the way back to the coast to stay in Ocean Isle, NC at Chrittopher's new beach house! For a boy who couldn't keep a job, he's finally at 35 got his act together it seems! Now if we can keep his little sister headed in the right far so good, but she's paying for the lifestyle she chose between 18-30 right now, especially with her son. Libby is like Chris...soon a new job with UPS, great house, good significant other who works constantly, and having a ball fishing, four wheeling and being a good all around kid! Just not sure where the redneck tomboy came from...well, I know where the tomboy came from, just not the bass fishing, four wheeling side of things!

We stayed at lots of KOA camps on Woody and Pat's excellent adventure and were quite pleased, especially with the KOA in Wytheville, VA. It was fabulous. We did however hit the KOA in Shallotte/Brunswick at the beginning of Bike Week in Myrtle Beach just down the road! Never saw so many Harley's in my life! Amazingly quiet though...think Wild Hogs! A bit fact was the most expensive campground we stayed in the whole trip. We did get one night free because we were camping during a "special" promotion! It was really nice. The KOA in Myrtle Beach was nice, but we only stayed one night on the way north. It didn't appear to be too close to the beach either! The only campground that was a bit iffy was a Jellystone in Emporia, VA...just out in the boonies but close to Roanoke Rapids which was one of Woody's favorites. I now have to add up all my KOA nights and see if I qualify for the gold card to get 15% off!!! I have to admit the hotel points plans are better. KOA should consider letting you earn free nights! And no...I'm not getting paid to say nice things about KOA's but it's a thought!

One of the best parts of our trip was Bear Den Campground in Spruce Pine, NC! Fabulous setting up on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Just don't ever take an RV up NC Hwy 226! It was horrid! We came back on 19E to Asheville and it was much better. We love Blowing Rock, NC and I'd love to live there! Great little artist colony. We stayed over two more days to go to the Blowing Rock Art Fair. Andy and Harley were the hit of the Fair in their pink stroller! We hiked miles at Linville Falls and loved every minute of it. I think I'm a mountain girl...boy when I got home to the heat...I know I'm a mountain girl now! Mountains in the summer, Florida in the winter and spring and fall in Hendersonville! Maybe that would work.

Did come home and start looking at doing a little work. Mostly writing, but we'll see what else shakes out. We aren't planning any trips until later this summer and then maybe to Gatlinburg. Haven't really spent any time there in almost 30 years! Life is good and retirement is better!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Loved Williamsburg!

Tomorrow we leave Williamsburg! We loved it here and now we must clean and get ready to leave. When you're living in the RV, it does need "coachwork" housework but smaller! We're heading to the Shenandoah Valley for a week before heading to see the grandkids. I've added lots of good pictures to my Gallery, Tranquility Found, at including fun close ups of hot rods! I've now discovered how to go to Woody's car shows profitably! We've met lots of fun people, including some from my high school! We'll definitely stay in touch. Jim's interested in publishing and I'm still working on my book of Haiga...I may try to invite submissions from my colleagues at World Haiga Club. I'm not having much free time as we're always on the go! Hopefuly I'll have more time in the Valley!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Williamsburg, VA and "Cry Witch"

We're having a great time in Williamsburg! Saturday night we went to see "Cry Witch", a witch trial where we got to judge the witch! we acquitted her 42 to 41! I sat right next to the Judge! he's the one in the red in the picture...and no, I'm not the's the other woman! We had a blast. Today we drove over to VA Beach...beautiful beach and ocean and not quite as tacky as Myrtle Beach! We're here until May 2nd...we're going to go to MD via the Chesapeake Bay and see if it's somewhere we want to go after we leave here! Not sure when we'll be home! I may never get in a plane again! unless it's to go to Ireland except now I've discovered that I'm Scotch-Irish, maybe it's Scotland and Ireland! The Boyd's came from Scotland to Ireland so I'm a bit of a mutt on my biological dad's side! I even have a tartan! Andy and Harley are having fun...Andy has two girlfriends and Harley is getting jealous! There are lots of us old retired people here who stay for longer than a weekend! Still haven't found anyone to play canasta Estelle! This week we're going to spend more time at Williamsburg and do the museums. Thanks goodness for a permanent housesitter!

If you want to be CEO of a company getting ready to set up diagnostic and cancer centers in China, let me know! ...a little strange to turn down opportunities! Woody says I'm finally getting the hang of saying I'm retired!

Hope you all have a great week!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Savannah and Hilton Head and Beyond!

We've had a delightful week in Savannah with a side trip to Hilton Head. My friend Donna always raves about Hilton Head and she's right. It's second to Destin in my book! When I win the lottery, we'll consider it among our favorite places! We saw all the sites of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and had dinner at some fabulous restaurants! We highly recommend Pearl's Saltwater Grill. Thanks to Holly the Park Ranger for the recommendation! We're staying at Skidaway Island State Park and it's fabulous. The setting is serene and wooded...however, the RV is covered with pollen! We're having bad storms tonight so if we don't blow away, it will be washed off we hope! Tomorrow we head to Myrtle Beach!

Friday, April 6, 2007

My Haiga's on the Web!
Check this out! The Haiga Pages! A Directory of Contemporary Haiga Artists!
I've joined a Haiga group and they've accepted and published on the web four of my efforts! We're heading out to take more pictures so I'll be inspired to write more Haiku! I've also started working with my new software, Corel Paint Shop Pro...see what I can do!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

I'm Commercial! and I've Started My Book!

I've spent the last few weeks adding photos to Big Stock Photo . These are different than the artsy photos I've posted at and are a bit more utilitarian. I'm actually selling a few pictures here and there. I've also started a book of my Haiga! That's a digital image plus a Haiku, a traditional Japanese poetry form that involves three lines of 5/7/5 syllables. I'll have to find an agent to tell me if I have any shot at getting it published! So if any of you know an agent, let me know! Just wanted you to know why I've been slow to post! Will let you know how my new career goes!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Travel and No Work!

We're trying to get ready for our great adventure that begins in April! We have a new roommate that will live with us so that we can travel. We're also looking at our summer plans. Perhaps Jackson Hole and Yellowstone? I guess after I pay my taxes I'll know how far we can go! Opryland may be looking good. Just not planning on working much after all. Had great plans to work part time but busy busy busy. And work doesn't fit! I'm really getting into retirement...far more than what I thought! I love it...even more when I talk to my friends who are still working. Last night we went to the Gallatin Senior Citizens Center...we were groupies for Jane and Bill's band. They are our breakfast buds! Will finish later!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Writing and Photography! and Hilliary!

This has been a few fun days! I've uploaded pictures to Big Stock Photo since I'm not having any luck with selling on Yessy! . Maybe I can sell more as stock photos...we'll see. Maybe people like Flamingos! I've also rewritten an article on an old house renovation that I'm going to try to get published! I just love being creative...still not making any money with my artistic endeavors but I'm not giving up yet!

Just did a phone survey on the 2008 Presidential Elections...Hilliary all the way! My dad would be so proud. Not sure when the work locally will start, but I'll sign up to help! A lot of people are closet Hilliary fans but afraid to be public due to the hassle factor. have screwed up this country for years...maybe it's time for a strong woman. I think of all the fun jokes about had the Wise Men been women, we would have made a casserole, wrapped the presents, baby sat...well, you get the picture! Same for the war on terror...just turn a bunch of us menopausal women loose and things might have been resolved sooner!

The woodman is off at a car show so I get to do my thing! But now, have to go vacuum! What an exciting life I lead in retirement...and I love it! Life is good!

Sunday, March 4, 2007


My latest thought is to write a friends know I sing constantly, and, if I had been brave, would have loved to have been a lounge singer! Just hanging out today with my piano...apparently there is software that will actually assign chords to your words! I thought you actually had to be able to play. I still play for fun but not like I used to play...I can still play a mean hymn! We'll see how this goes. Eventually I guess I'll focus, but right now it's fun to just flit from idea to idea. After being in such a structured world for so long, the freedom is overwhelming. Writing, songwriting, photography, crafts, many ideas...I just have to pick! Certainly it's a new world! Still can't get excited about consulting...I guess if I ever get bored I'll try to pick up a little more work, but right now, I just don't want too!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Don't You Love the Stock Market?

I just love the fact that I've retired and the market decides to correct! Thank heavens for diversification! Now if the Fed will leave the rates alone! When you come up on retirement, you are told by everyone to develop a plan to pay plan consists of an annuity, interest on money in money market or money manager accounts, stocks and bonds in a conservative mix! I have no plans to touch the principal of my money or my 401(k) for a while unless the Fed cuts the rate banks pay and my interest income goes down! Probably the biggest issue after figuring out what to do with all my time is to determine how to pay for life without a paycheck!

When you don't anticipate payday, you are a little more cautious about what you buy...or at least that's what I've found...that and the fact that I need absolutely nothing. Shopping for retirement clothes...t-shirts, jeans and not at all fun. Our life is so casual that Sam's Club is almost becoming more fun to shop for clothes than Chico's! and you all know how much I love Chico's! Even when I'm doing a little consulting for gas money for the RV (ha ha), leftovers from the corporate job are going to last forever! A black suit, a few blouses and some sweater coats (think Chicos!) will never be wrong and never wear out if you rarely need them!

Well I'm going to go back and watch the market! Certainly don't want to go back to real work!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Help Donate a Free Mammogram

A favor to ask, it only takes a minute....

Please tell ten friends to tell ten today! The Breast Cancer site is having trouble getting enough people to click on their site daily to meet their quota of donating at least one free mammogram a day to an underprivileged woman. It takes less than a minute to go to their site and click on "donating a mammogram" for free (pink window in the middle).
This doesn't cost you a thing. Their corporate sponsors/advertisers use the number of daily visits to donate mammogram in exchange for advertising.
Here's the web site! Pass it along to people you know.

Monday, February 26, 2007

A New Political Animal?

I grew up in a household where my Dad was a Yellow Dog Democrat! For those of you not familiar with this term, it means that he was such a good Democrat, he'd vote for a yellow dog if he was running on the Democrat ticket. I've never been very political, in part because I worked all the time, had a family and just really didn't have the time to continue to work on campaigns, go door to door and all the things my Dad had us doing as children and teens! I've always voted so don't get the wrong idea and have prided myself on voting the individual not the party! So, in my retirement, I've decided to get back into the swing of things and begin to take a stand on things I believe in, like voting for Hillary Clinton and maybe doing a bit of campaigning on her behalf.

When the Clinton's tried to "fix" healthcare, I was so excited. I've worked in the international market a bit over the past two decades, and while no national health service is perfect, at least everyone has access to some level of care. We have over 50 million people in the U.S. who are uninsured, and many more who are underinsured...and in a way, I'm one of them. Woody's entire Social Security Check is going to pay for our health insurance! Now, if I had not retired early and had worked seven more years to Medicare, then it wouldn't be a problem...but my old body couldn't take seven more years of being a road warrior and traveling constantly. I would love to have basic health coverage free of charge, and the option to buy a supplemental policy to offset out of pocket costs or upgrade access to some services or facilities. While the government health programs aren't perfect either, it's still better than the Emergency Room as a primary care provider!

Whether you love her or hate her, at least Hillary tried! Healthcare is still the fastest growing cost in our GDP and eventually will bankrupt both the nation and the family if something isn't done. She's already surfaced the issue since everyone knows she will bring it to the forefront if elected! All of a sudden, politicians are racing to present a health plan to provide care for all! You go girl...we need someone who will put aside politics and focus on our country's needs. I know the U.S. will always be a player on the world stage, but in case anyone hasn't noticed...we've gotten sidetracked with being the world's policeman while other countries are focused on educating their children, growing their economy and working internally on their population's needs. Our country is losing ground as a world leader in a positive sense...we need to refocus! Hillary can do it! oh...Barak Obama would be a good VP! and a little nepotism won't hurt...think about the Kennedy's! and yes, I am that old!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Tales of a Nomad!

Got a fabulous response from Rita! Thought I'd share it with you....

"Pat, Hi

I'm glad you enjoyed traveling with me. Thanks so much for the terrific "review" on your blog and for the link to my site. The book is surviving on word-of-mouth at this point.I've been in Patzcuaro, Mexico, since November working on that collaborative story/cookbook. We've pretty much chosen the stories and it's going to be a fantastic book.Our main criterion was a good read and lots of real emotion. We've got it all; the stories are.exciting, unique, romantic, horrendous, funny, passionate, absurd, sad, touching, revealing. We also set out to find stories that would inspire readers to shake up their lives a bit. Most of the stories are written by people who have been willing to step outside of their comfort zones and try something new..or interact with strangers..or put themselves into " the unknown." Most of the writers were willing to expose a part of themselves to tell their stories. There's a real sense of the writer behind the story, which means there's a lot of opportunity for readers to identify with the writer..and hopefully be inspired to step outside of their own comfort zones. The next step is to cook all the recipes. We've had two cooking/tasting parties and we've tested about twenty recipes. We're only using the ones everyone loved. It's been hard work but fun.I will be in Seattle for about nine months beginning next week. I hoping to get this project finished and then take care of all the things in my life that are on teeth and PR for the Nomad book to keep it alive, and setting up a foundation so the profits from the story/cookbook go to the kids in India. I'm actually looking forward to almost sitting still.Happy journey to you, wherever it may take you. Sounds like you are about to have a lot of fun. Smile a lot and talk to strangers.

Best, Rita"

Saturday, February 17, 2007

A Snowy Saturday

Snow least an inch! and in Tennessee that shuts down the city. Hubby and I decided to chill, literally, and stay out of the madness of people who can't drive when it rains, much less snows! Spent the morning surfing the web...the new hobby for seniors! Who said you can't teach an old dog new tricks. We've explored and read all the entertainment news, went to and then to the infamous swimsuit model issue of Sports Illustrated! (Hubby can't even turn on a computer without directions, so I have to help!) I have such an exciting life since retirement...I love it! Most days!

Just finished a great book...Tales of a Female Nomad, Living at Large in the World by Rita Golden Gelman. My neighbor gave it to me...while I fantasize about really running away from home, four years in Bali might be a bit much. For anyone thinking about escape, this is a definite read! A bit scary...she did do this in the 80's and 90's it appears, but she still took some significant safety risks. I might be just a little conservative, and, perhaps even a little risk averse. is her web site and she's currently in Mexico! I'm fascinated with her book. She's a children's author and I think I'll go see if I can find some of her books for my rowdy grandchildren when the snow clears! This is the kind of book I might be able to tackle...very little dialogue and almost a narrative which I may be able to do. Random House's Three River Press published it if you're looking. She's still looking for other Nomads....go to her site and send her a note!

I'm still processing my life four months into much I want to do that it's hard to prioritize. So far, photography, writing, some crafty kinds of things, consulting, travel...all viable candidates but where is the passion. I think photography and writing, but I'm still struggling with the productivity and "give back" part of me. Some days I love being relaxed, others I think I need to do something productive for the world...hubby says I've given all my life and now it can be about me...just struggling to determine if I deserve "me" time.

I did submit a post today to Hillary Clinton's potential blog...addressed universal health care! When I retired, we went on Cobra and eventually will transition to the retiree health benefit plan of my old will take all hubby's social security to pay for coverage. I'm definitely a proponent of universal health care...and of Hillary's candidacy...full disclosure of course! My dad would be proud...he was a yellow dog Democrat. For those of you who don't know, a yellow dog Democrat would vote for a yellow dog if he, or SHE, ran for office. I can remember working on campaigns in junior high and high school with my Dad and then becoming almost apolitical...I voted, but as an Independent...which means I vote for the person not the party. Truth be known, that's the way it should be...the person who can deliver on promises that are compatible with your beliefs should be the guiding mantra! While I benefited from the tax breaks of the Republicans, I just am too concerned about the majority of Americans who don't have the same benefits of the more affluent. I guess I can't get away from working for the YMCA in high school in the projects of Jackson, TN and seeing what poverty does to children. Having been in health care, specifically cancer care, for years, I always felt I was serving a population with needs...that's why it's hard for me to focus on what I want to do in retirement. I still want to give back...

So, I'm a bit verbose's the snow! Now if I can just figure out what I want to be when I grow up!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Let's Bring You Up to Date

For those of you who didn't get a chance to read about my road to retirement, let's bring you up to date. Two years ago I decided that I wanted to consider retirement! I knew that I needed help in order to maintain what little sanity I had left! I really didn't know where to begin planning for retirement so I started my first blog. For almost two years I posted some of my progress toward retirement and I'll share a few here. My husband said I needed a hobby...I considered travel, boating, soap making, photography, writing, gardening...well you get the picture. Finally, it's photography (look at and writing ( and a little consulting ( and sold a few things on eBay. I also queried my friends about how will I know when it is time. One wise woman told me I'd just know...boy was she right! We've had a few life changing experiences the past two years. We sold our boat and bought two RV's in six months! Once we decided to retire for sure, the first RV wasn't big enough for extended trips so we traded up to a Winnebago Itasca Sunrise! ( A most fabulous RV. In fact our first extended trip was to Florida for six weeks and it was heaven.

The one thing that concerns me is that I seem to have less time in retirement than I had working! There is so much to do and so little time...I'm still not sure if I'll look back on my early retirement at some point and say I should have stayed in the workplace longer. I'm still not sure if I can keep myself entertained. Have I done the right thing? We'll just have to see!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

My new blog!

In a fit of I'm not sure what...I deleted my old blog that chronicled my journey to, before the great address got we go again with my journey through retirement! I retired on October 31, 2006 and immediately bought a new and bigger RV and hit the road. I presented a seminar at Emory Healthcare on Transformational Leadership, went to Tunica and lost a few bucks at the Grand Resort Tunica, headed to my sister-in-law's plantation, and then to Destin, Florida for six weeks. During this time I also did a business proposal for the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank, a system wide strategic plan for a major health system in Houston, and tried to gear down from a Type A personality. I don't think I'm succeeding very well...but if you read my old blog...that's the issue with me. So, here we go again. Will write more later!