Sunday, December 5, 2010

Here's Why I Don't Post As Often!

Here's why I never post! This is baby Savannah all bundled up for her first snow on her way to WalMart! Our life has really changed since she was born in April. We are so thankful that she's healthy, happy and fun! Her mommy and daddy let us keep her once a week or so for an overnight. I can just sit and watch her and be perfectly happy. She may be number 5, but we're still enamored with our babies! She is the first one that we've had when neither of us are working and she's only 45 miles away! If our house ever sells, we'll move even closer. While I
would love to have our other grandkids closer, they live where state income taxes are too high!
Now where to start? We went to Florida for a while in early November since Libby was determined that we would stay here for Christmas this year! We're also planning a Bowl trip to see Mississippi State play...even though Notre Dame is also playing in a Bowl this year (will wonders ever cease!) it's Woody's turn since we've been to more ND bowls and only one MSU bowl game. Wouldn't it be great if they would play each other and save us some money? TOG has some jobs where they may use me in January so now I'm not sure what we're going to do about heading south! We bought new tires for the RV and still have to get some new batteries as we're having starting issues! It will be ready to roll fairly quickly if we can ever figure out when and where! Our house is still for sale by owner as the real estate agents just wanted to drop the price way down to try to unload it! We don't have to sell as long as we're healthy enough to drive back and forth to Lib and Led's to get the kiddo. I love H'ville and love my "retirement" house, but I want somewhere I don't have as much to clean and a smaller yard preferably with someone else doing the yard work! I plan to eventually get lazy in retirement! Not sure when that will happen but I've heard it's fun!
Oh and most exciting! I get to sign up for Social Security this coming week!!! I will be 62 in March...we plan to save the money but are afraid not to take it with all the changes being discussed. As I understand, I can pay it back when I reach full retirement age of 66 and then refile to get my full benefits. Certainly hope the Stock Market continues it's little mini rebound. It's nice to look at my 401K going back up. I don't plan on touching it for a long time, but I like it better fat! Otherwise we become a burden on the kiddos.
So now that I've primed the pump, maybe I'll keep the blog more up to date!
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!! May you and your families have lots of blessings in the coming years. Be sure you do at least one nice thing over the holidays. We made a little donation to the Nashville Rescue Mission in honor of our blessings! They do such good work for the homeless...we forget that there are so many children facing homelessness as our economy continues to decline. For those of us with many blessings, we need to figure out how to pay them forward! To whom many blessings are given.....

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Back from Alaska and Canada!

We had a wonderful time in Alaska and Canada on our cruise of the inside passage on Norweigan Cruise Line...there were a few glitches that detracted from our experience but all in all it was a wonderful trip for our 26th anniversary. Woody went on the longest zip line in North America, I took so many pictures of eagles, we ate tons of salmon, and then the whale watching excursion in Prince Rupert, Canada was the best. Pictures are on facebook!

We're trying to get the yard "laid by" for the winter and for our possible trip to Hawaii...we're waiting to hear if I'll be working in Hawaii for a while this fall and winter...tough job but someone has to do it. This part time, occasional work is wonderful. I could never go back to full time!!

We're still trying to sell the house by owner but so far no luck. We talked to three real estate agents but all wanted us to drop the price way below what we wanted to do...we don't have to sell it but we really want to move closer to Savannah! On the 18th, Miss Savannah Elizabeth Ledwell was baptized at St. Edward's Catholic was a wonderful time with Father Breen. She is the love of our life and we are having a blast especially when she spends the night.
Not sure what to share with you other than life is good.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

End of the Summer!

I can not believe it is already the end of the summer!!! We leave on Thursday for a trip to Seattle and then hop the Norweigan Star for our Alaska Cruise. We just love Noweigan Cruise Line! Casual, casual, casual...jeans all the way. I dressed up too many years while working...jeans are my new uniform. Thank heaven for wonderful house and pet sitters! I'm so ready for cooler climes! Even if they are rainy.

We're leaving in just a bit to pick up Savannah for an overnight with Mimi and Grandad. She is such a treat. Libby did say they she slept all night the last few nights so it will be fun to see what she does for us. It has been such a blessing to be able to see her so much this summer. Now that Lib is back to work, we still are averaging once or twice a week. If this dratted house would sell we could be closer and then it wouldn't be so hard.

I am thinking about changing the scope of my blog as Ready for Retirement has about lived it's life...I'm full blown in retirement. So I'm thinking about how to provide tips for survival within retirement. What do you think? All these other people are making tons of money on blogs...not me! I'm going to "study" on that for a while as my granny would say!

Woody is still under the weather but not contagious so hopefully we'll head off to Alaska healthy. We'll send pictures!!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Wonderful fun times with granddaughter!

I just love having one of my grandchildren close enough I can see her every week! It would be fabulous if all of my grands were so close. The best part of retirement may be playing with the grands...but I am starting to get a bit discombobulated again! That seems to be my favorite word the last few months.

My friend Jane and I were talking last week about our lives...we both decided that we missed the work world but weren't sure if we wanted to go back or were just at another crossroads in our retirement journey. Not sure what all this means...for me, it may just be that our consulting this summer has been slow...if it picks up again, I'll probably be fine! I am still writing and editing, but that's really not the same. I miss the challenge of work, but not work if that makes any sense.

Saturday night Lou and Cindy and Woody and I went to Roller Derby...yes...drag out your old memories...that Roller Derby!! Apparently Nashville has a Roller Girls All Star team that competes flat track! Last night we played Ft. Wayne and won! As we were leaving the game (?), we drove by the weekend art gallery crawl gallery vs. roller contest for the crazy retired ones.
Can you believe our daughter turns 34 on the 16th? Let's see, my sister is 29 which makes me 43 since I'm 14 years older than Dana. How can a 43 year old have a 34 year old...the math is beginning to get complicated and it's all Dana's fault!
Still still on market with plans to move to Del Webb...although it is cooler in Destin this summer than here....if it weren't for Miss S, I might be moving to Destin instead of Mt. Juliet! But there is started today which must mean that cool weather is coming soon! and we're going to Alaska since I can't stand the heat anymore! Talk to you soon!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

July is too darn hot!!

In case you haven't noticed, I've not been good about keeping things up to date on our blog. With a little work, a lot of play, facebook, and other stuff...I've just been so busy.

This month we've celebrated Eddie's 50th birthday in Jackson with a surprise funeral for his youth hosted by the drama queen, Dana! We had a blast seeing lots of old friends and my guidance counselor from high school who started my healthcare career...Miss Frances Crossen. When I was a senior at Jackson High School, my mom and dad wanted me to stay home, go to Union and marry a nice boy from Jackson...this was 1967 you know. I went in to Miss C's office and asked her where could I go without any money in case my parents wouldn't pay? While I had a tennis scholarship, it didn't cover everything and it was at a frou frou private school...couldn't even afford the clothes! So Miss C came up with Baptist School of Nursing, now Baptist College for the Health Sciences. That started me down the road to where I am today! So thanks Miss C and it was great to see you. On the way home from Jackson we took a 150 mile detour to Harrah's in Metropolis, IL for lunch...well and to gamble a bit!

Then off to NC to see the grands. We had an absolute ball this trip! Seeing Riley and Will was divine. We did split up the kids a bit with the boys going to the NASCAR museum and go kart racing and the girls going shopping and then spending extra time at the barn doing a photo shoot for Miss Riley and Jennifer! Then the grands took their old grandparents to see our first REAL 3-D movie, Despicable Me. It was fabulous. The fun really started when we got sort of lost on the way home! I-40 west from Asheville is finally open but down to one lane resulting in hours of we scooted off I-40 and took a short cut through Cherokee, NC. Oh, did I say we had lunch at Harrah's...and did a little gambling of course. Still lost but it took longer! On the way out of Cherokee, we bypassed Gatlinburg and then went to Pigeon Forge where the adventure begins. Following maps, no we don't have a GPS, we meandered around for a while until eventually getting home about 9:30PM after leaving NC at 8:30A Eastern time! Told you it took a while longer to lose in the casino!

Tonight it's off to Donna's for our July birthday dinner! Our dinner club celebrates 4 birthdays a year at least! Sometimes we even celebrate the boys. As I sit here watching the Food Network, I'm planning my appetizer to take tonight...Cajun Crab dip from Publix with wheat request! Why do I watch the Food Network?

So July has been, but fun! From yesterday it sounds like I'll be working more in August.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

This is not working for me!

This is absolutely why I've been neglecting you! Woody and I have had the most wonderful time with our new baby Savannah Elizabeth! If we aren't playing with her, we're thinking about her and missing her! Consequently, we're not updating the blog or we're over on facebook. This is Savannah's first pool party...she's 8 weeks old and already in the pool...the screaming is because we told her she had to get out and eat and take a nap. That sounds so familiar with all our kids. Her daddy and granddaddy had a good time passing her around. Libby and I also had our time, but if you think I'm going to put a picture of either of us in a bathing are really out of your mind.
My friend Janet said when Libby had a baby that I would just go ga ga...she was so right. Between Riley and Savannah my life is complete...the boys are wonderful too, but two little girls are too much to believe. I can shop and do pedicures and have lots of fun stuff.
We have decided to put our house on the market and try to sell it to move closer to Libby and Led, and oh of course, Savannah! We've found just the thing at the Del Webb property at Providence. I don't have a clue how long it will take to sell this wonderful home we have now, but the area we want to move in to probably won't be available til next summer anyway.
I'm working some for Marsha and The Oncology Group this week and next. It's always fun but this time we're not working together. I'm going to miss having her with me. It's been a long time since I've had to travel alone. I think I remember how!
Hope you're having a wonderful's already moving way too fast for us. We're still trying to find somewhere to go on vacation! Any suggestions? We thought about Michigan or Las Vegas or another cruise. About the time we think we have it figured out, something moves on the calendar and we have to start over.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I'm so sorry!

I have just been so busy with my baby Savannah that I have not been able to keep up with our blog! We just love being with her...she's been to the mall and out to lunch with us several times already. She is going to love to shop...particularly Dilliard's...wonder where she gets that (Libby and Mimi)? Our Libby is a wonderful mom and Led is a great dad. I'm really surprised that Lib is so maternal..a bit casual in her approach to motherhood...just like me. She turned out ok so I guess Savannah will too! Her aunt Estelle gave her the bunny, and we had a wonderful Mother's Day brunch!
I'm sure many of you have experienced or know of the horrific floods we had in Tennessee two weeks ago. These are just two of our as we tried to head down Main Street and one of what was a very vibrant volleyball court and park where lots of people played. Hopefully we'll soon be back to normal.

Consulting has been slow lately, but the medical writing and editing has kept me hopping. I'm really enjoying writing for LiveStrong Health! It's a challenge to change from writing and editing for medical journals to writing for the public on the Web! This being semi-retired and working part time is wonderful...lots of free time, no pressure unless self imposed and getting to pick and choose what you do! I'm still selling photos on line and occasionally at Buffalo Trading Company in West Yellowstone, MT! If I had to go back to a full time job, I think I'd scream. Let's hope the market recovers so I never have to go back to "real" work! But just March I get to draw social security! Can you believe I'm so old?

We are still movie junkies...saw Letters to Juliet this weekend. I don't care what the critics's a wonderful, feel good movie. The scenery is wonderful and having been to Italy, we loved seeing some of the same sights that we saw when we traveled there. Last week we saw The Losers...again, the critics panned it and we loved it.

I'm just before giving up on's getting boring but it still allows me to keep up with lots of friends, acquaintances and people I have no idea who they are! What are you thinking about the time you spend there? Is it worth it?

Hope you all have a wonderful week and I'll try to be a bit better at keeping this up to's about time to start traveling again, but we're struggling about where to go. Any ideas?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Welcome Baby Savannah!

Where to begin? What an exciting week with the arrival of baby Savannah Elizabeth on Monday, April 12th at 4:43 PM. She weighed 7 lbs 4 oz and was 20 inches long! What a tiny little thing. She has a full head of black hair and dark blue eyes at the moment. As we all know, eyes and hair color at birth are not necessarily what goes forward. Granddad and Mimi stayed at the hospital during the day and then came home and stayed with her til Friday afternoon. We send Dad out to work to pay for future shopping...she will definitely be a fashionista. All said she is absolutely beautiful and I'm not the least bit prejudiced!
Since the past week has been monopolized by Savannah, there isn't much more to chat about unless I go on and on about every smile (gas of course), diaper change, feeding...well, you get the idea. My world was all wrapped up in her last week. There are tons of pictures on facebook! I'll write more later.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

What a Wonderful Easter!

We had a wonderful weekend with family to celebrate Easter. At a time when strife is rampant across the world, isn't it wonderful that you can still get together, play putt-putt and silly games and feel such a sense of peace and calm and love? Libby is very due, Riley is very smart, Jennifer is wonderful to put up with my son, and Led is very wonderful to put up with my daughter! Oh...and Woody isn't so bad either! We did over indulge...way too much food! I actually cooked two nights in a row which may be a record since the kids left home!

The Easter bunny hopped right through our home and it was such fun...holidays are always more fun with little ones. I can't wait til Savannah gets here on or before (if you think Libby's right) April 17th! She will be the first grandchild to live close enough to see often. Marilyn and I will have to share time with baby sitting! Her first grandchild and my first close one!

Just watched Andy Roddick win at the Sony in Miami. Made me miss tennis but I don't think the knees would hold out longer than a few games. It's rough getting old. Speaking of may be nap time as we had to get up early to see if the Easter bunny came! More later dudes and dudettes!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Happy Spring!

I am so badddd...I thought I'd pop a little note on my blog and I can't believe I have not written since February! I guess facebook is taking lots more time than I thought. So...where to begin?

Libby is very pregnant and due April 17th. I love being home so we can see her grow. We went with her to have a 3D ultrasound which was incredible. You can see all of Miss Savannah's features so when she arrives, we'll already feel like we know what she looks like. Libby has had so many baby showers and received so many wonderful gifts. The thing I find most interesting is that so many of her clients have given her parties and gifts! She must be a really good sales rep like her dad...she certainly didn't get it from me. Our fence is gorgeous that Led put in for us while we were in Florida. It's black, looks like wrought iron and has spindles? pickets? that are close enough together that Harley can play out back to his hearts' content. Andy likes it if I can just get him to go behind the pool to poop rather than right by the sidewalk!

I celebrated my birthday at Lib's couples' shower...fabulous cake. Woody got me two river birch trees which are wonderful. Just one more year for Social Security!!

Work has been slow this first quarter and I find myself liking it that way! I am writing for pay (really low pay but I enjoy writing more than editing) but haven't even been editing much...I find myself quoting articles pretty high so they find someone cheaper. Does this mean I've finally embraced retirement? I will continue to work for Marsha if she needs me, but after talking to our accountant and doing our taxes, I may not be able to afford to work as much as last year!

We have just about got the yard ready for the summer. Our jonquils and hyacinths are absolutely gorgeous. We are enlarging one flower bed in front, but took out all the flower beds in the back that were around the old fence. We're trying to go more maintenance free so riding and edging is about the extent of yard work once we get the front beds planted each spring with petunias and impatiens. I have two tomato plants, the little tommy toes ones, on the screened porch which was all we really ate last year. I like fried green tomatos but Ed said he'd give me some so I don't have to plant any big ones.

This month I finally took what Carol did on the Haynes/Hurt family genealogy and the Boyd family from the North Henderson/South Carroll County The Watcher's website and found out that I am eligible for the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Daughters of the Confederacy, am English through and through on my mother's side and Irish by way of Scotland on the Boyd side! It just validated what I knew on the Irish side, but our clan did come from Scotland originally...I was able to track back to 1730 on the Boyd side in the U.S. and by clan name way back, and Carol had it back to the 1500's or so on our mothers' side! I think I'll stop now before I find out something I'd rather not far all the family has been on the up and up!

As we approach Easter, please know that I keep all of you in my prayers so please return the favor! and enjoy my Irish prayer from Saint Patrick:

May the strength of God pilot us.
May the power of God preserve us.
May the wisdom of God instruct us.
May the hand of God protect us.
May the way of God direct us.
May the shield of God defend us.

Happy Spring!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Heading Home to Tennessee!

I can't believe that our winter stay in Destin is ending! We just got here. One of the problems with getting older is that everything moves so much faster. Saturday night we went to Ruth's Chris Steakhouse to hear Michael who is one of the best horn men on the planet and to have lots of fun!
At least the weather has been fabulous and has provided much time to walk on the beach. Saturday was so beautiful that we just sat on the beach after our walk and talked to each other and to everyone that meandered by...we have some great friends here.
I'm now writing for Demand Studios who provide content for a variety of web sites. Whenever I have an hour or two, I can go online and claim a topic, write it, submit it and then they put money in my PayPal account! Since I still can't write dialog, at least I'm getting paid for writing original content! I'll let you know how it goes.
I'm also watching entirely too much Olympics and NASCAR!! Gotta go watch!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Daytona 500!

Just a few pictures of our wonderful weekend at Daytona! The Saturday Nationwide Race was great...Tony Stewart won and Danica and Junior did ok until someone wrecked each of them. The 88 car is Junior's and the 14 is Tony! We had fan zone passes that got us right on the track before both of the races...Saturday, and of course, the Daytona 500 on Sunday. The Sunday race was a pain because of track problems. Hours of delay! You would think that if you were having the "Super Bowl" of racing, you'd check the track DAILY...obviously, they didn't, leading to a pot hole that had to be fixed mid race.
We've had fun too in Saint Augustine. Drank tons of water from the Fountain of Youth and bought 10 bottles to bring home! Ate dinner at Harry's which is the best meal we've had in a while. Also checked out the Oasis and Conch House restaurants. All the meals were great! We're at the KOA in Saint Augustine Beach and it's been superb. Highly recommend it. Great location. We spent all day in Old Town Saint Augustine which was wonderful. Bought some fun things...and Cindy's birthday present! We'll head back to Destin in the morning. And then, try to figure out when we can head back to Nashville so we don't get caught in snow.
Miss you all!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

I'm discombobulated!

I just love this means a state of confusion or a feeling of being unsettled. I have now officially been at this retirement thing for a little over three years and this is the first time that I've felt a sense of unease. I'm not sure what I want anymore. While I've enjoyed the RV and the experience of working at Buffalo Trading Company in West Yellowstone and traveling out west for 6 months, the four winters in Destin, the trip up the eastern seaboard, and meeting great people in Ocala, I'm beginning to think this isn't me. The opportunity to work for The Oncology Group, LLC took some of the pressure of lack of intellectual stimulation off, and it also showed me that I missed work but not enough to take a full time job. Hence the word discombobulated! So.....what to do?

Usually in the spring I buy something as it feels like a re-awakening. This year I had my wonderful son-in-law put in a wrought iron fence around the backyard of the house I'd love to sell to buy a loft downtown!! I also put a for sale sign on the RV and started looking at rental condos in Destin..but wait, if I'm renting I can go anywhere!! I love my Volvo so that's safe. I may paint some of the inside of my house, although it's really perfect. See..I am definitely discombobulated!

Sooooo...what to do? Wonder what the next chapter will be? I don't have a clue! I've tried meditating on the beach and asking for divine guidance, but I haven't heard yet what I need to consider. I guess I'll just keep on keepin' on and see what evolves. If you have any ideas...let me know!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Bye Bye RV!

It's been a great ride but I think we're going to sell the RV and buy a boat! The cost of the slip for next year is going up and I can rent a condo for what they are charging...all that being said, who knows if in this economy it will sell! The weather has also been yucky this year, so I may talk to my friends Denny and Randi and see where they stay in Ft. Meyers (way further south). I would really buy down here if it weren't for hurricanes. Going through Hurricane Andrew makes one storm shy, if you know what I mean! We'll still winter in Florida...just who knows where! So if you want a 2005 Itasca Sunrise 35D built by Winnebago, let me know!!! We can get two for winter wherever we land and one for Hendersonville! But Woody thinks I'm crazy!

The picture of us is from Acme Oyster House in Sandestin where we ate with Estelle and David, my favorite place for grilled oysters...shuck the oysters and then put garlic butter and romano cheese on them and throw them on the grill till the cheese sort of melts and crusts! May try that myself if the rain ever quits! The other is from my morning of the first days in 2010 it has been warm enough to get out!

Next week we're going to Ruth's Chris with the trailer park gang for dinner for our Christmas Party! Private dinner in the wine cellar....wonder if they serve boxed wine? Otherwise it's Jack for me! You'd never know we're so upscale in the trailer park! The difference is some of these rigs cost more than a house in Sandestin resorts! Hmmmm.

Had an interesting week trying to reconnect with an old high school acquaintance. We're right next door to her development and just can't get together....I'm retired, and I was the problem! Busy, busy. Got contacts yesterday but with my dry eyes, not sure if they are going to work. It's a trial pair but I've already picked out some new glasses in case they don't work. Any tips appreciated as they are soft lens..already had one trauma...couldn't get them out! Finally just popped them out like my gas perms which you shouldn't be able to do! I'll put them in later today and see how it goes. Just not willing to be uncomfortable for vanity...since I'm no longer tall, thin and blonde! Well I was never tall and thin, but I was blonde once! and brown! and red! and frosted!
Just got a book offer to write a reference book on healthcare and healthcare careers for high school and college kids from a publisher I've been writing for the last few years. Unfortunately, it didn't pay enough to write an entire book! I need to write mushy books and get a million dollar advance! Except I can't write dialogue. I know I've done well in far I've turned down a chance to compete for a Washington Post (yes, that newspaper!) blog based on my editorial comments over the past few years and now the book offer! Thank you stock options!
Well...I'm rambling so you can tell I'm bored! Think I'll go make muffins. We bought a portable convection oven which is fabulous. An upgrade from the toaster oven! If we were going to keep the motor home, we'd replace our microwave with a dual micro/convection oven. I have an oven but it runs on propane which is a hassle. When you run out you have to unhook and go buy more!
Football tonight!!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Happy New Year! a bit tardy however!

Well we've had an eventful holiday season if you like going to doctors and living on Nyquil, etc! Just before Christmas, I got sick and then as soon as I was semi-human, Woody got sick...and we all know how Woody is when he gets sick. Yes, I am officially going crazy.

David and Estelle came just after New Year's so we have had fun running and dining with them. Of course, before they leave I will have gained a ton of weight. We have had incredible meals...Tommy Bahama's Tropical Cafe is our new favorite restaurant! Coconut encrusted snapper or Savannah Shrimp. The canasta tournament is getting brutal. It's now 7-5 in favor of the boys! With the cold weather, we're just eating, shopping and playing canasta! Next week is supposed to be better weather wise.

In lieu of writing...please allow me to post some pics...gotta go eat and get ready for the big game tonight! Rough weather, 2 beautiful sunsets and Woody, David and Estelle at the motorhome.