Monday, May 31, 2010

Red, White, and Blue

After a great supper complete with grilled chicken, potato salad, corn on the cob, fresh tomatoes, baked squash, and apple cider. Only thing missing? Well, maybe something red.
Like a red velvet cake
Ahhh, yes, that's quite a Southern dessert
And mint tea
What a holiday meal!
Red, White, and Blue
But mostly RED

Sunday, May 30, 2010


Today was gorgeous. Ok, except for the extreme heat, but it didn't last - already the thermometer is down to 82*. Yep, it was a hot one today. After church and lunch at the local feeding trough, we came home and changed clothes. The county was having a Memorial Day tribute at 2pm and we barely made it on time. There was quite a crowd and I was pleased to see the attendance growing each year. I'm so glad to see so many there to honor our fallen soldiers. Several people sang patriotic songs, most I'd never heard before but beautiful words. I think today they held the talks short so that the people wouldn't be fainting in the heat. The oldest soldier there was 99 years old. How's that for longevity! He even had a suit on! He must have been hot but didn't look it. Looked cool as a cucumber. Many had died since last year and each name was read aloud to honor each one for their service.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

And Afterward There Was Sun

Yesterday, Mom and I went out for pizza and met a friend I have known for years. She has a fantastic sense of humor in spite of several setbacks in her life. I had a great time talking and sharing with her. And hopefully some of her fun spirit will inspire me to rekindle my humor.

Wow, we had a whammmmmmdinger of a storm last night. Two large storms collided over our county and we had a thunder/lightning show that I hadn't experienced in quite a while. Hit all around us continuously. In fact, when I looked outside (which the TV meteorologist highly advised against) it was nearly light all the time. The house shook and groaned, items on shelves rattled, winds roared, even wall hangings/frames vibrated loudly against the walls. It was like a scene from a horror movie. The storm was a slow mover and wasn't in any hurry to move out of our area. We got 3.5in of rain in that 1.5 hours. Whew, but we survived and the lights didn't even blink. Must admit I unplugged my computers though. Must take care of my prized possessions.

I walked around the yard this morning checking for damage and took a few pictures of the wet yard. The golf-themed rain gauge tells the story of the rainfall last night in a bit over an hour. We probably had some fog this morning and that might have been a lovely theme for a picture or two, but I got up too late to see it if indeed we had fog. Oh well, another time. At least I have plenty of time.

I'm home today and a bit on the bored side at the moment. Hate to admit it, but it's there just as some said it would occur occasionally. But there's so much I can be doing. With an unemployed future, there's no rush to get anything done today because I'll have next week to do something productive. The sun is out now and hopefully drying up some of this water. Ummm, what to do? What to do? Sweetz's going to mow the yard now but where does that leave me? Could help, couldn't I... But what fun would that be when I could enjoy it so much more just watching him have fun? Vroom, Vroooom.

It's Memorial Day weekend and I've read many emails and blogs with that theme. I am thankful today and every day for the sacrifice of the military preserving our freedom. Many gave the supreme sacrifice and we owe each one our supreme gratitude.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Sure was a pretty day today - but hot. I got out ALONE for the first time since my last day at work. Was most strange to be driving and it felt funny to be alone. My mom and husband have been quite protective and today I needed to run away. Headed into town to visit the library. It's a little one but has enough to satisfy me. I picked out 5 hardback novels. Was a bit leery of the paperbacks since they looked like fantasy, romance, or mystery gone awry. I need something peaceful but not too difficult in order to give my poor brain some exercise. Ran a few errands and then decided to skip the last stop on my list in order to drive out in the country a bit to enjoy the cows, the trees, and the newly mowed lawns.

At one point I passed a walking trail but decided today wasn't a good day because I was wearing sandals - not conducive to walk, plus I didn't tell Sweetz I was going. Can't have the man worrying about me slipping on a path or plopping into the lake. One day I need to make the effort and grab my sneakers and walk. I got back home then helped Sweetz plant herbs and tomatoes we bought at the farmers market yesterday. He has the energy of 3 teens so I had to take regular rests to look like I was keeping up with him.

Since we worked hard today, I fixed supper on a grand scale - well grand in the fresh department for sure. I pan seared ham slices and then had a fresh salad, corn on the cob, and asparagus. Most of the ingredients I bought at the farmers market and wow were they ever delicious. Nothing quite like fresh produce. Oh, and of course a pinch of my fresh herbs put everything over the top. I should have charged him for supper. When I cleaned up, there wasn't even a tip under the plate. Bummer. And I'm unemployed too!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Freedom Walk

Another day in the life of the unemployed...sure was nice to have the freedom to enjoy the outdoors today. Sweetz and I spent the day in the big city. We checked out CampingWorld again to buy a plumbing gadget for something or other. That's Sweetz' realm so I stayed away from the little gadget aisles to look at the camping books, storage items, and hitches. They didn't have the size he wanted but a nice sales clerk said Ace hardware would carry that piece. There's an AH in our little town, so he'll head there one day.

At that point we were free as little birds so we enjoyed looking in Home Depot and Target. He was quite gracious and sat in the car and read the paper while I shopped in Michaels for a few beading supplies. We ate a delicious lunch at at Japanese restaurant and then after some more shopping, we had cheesecake at another restaurant. Nothing like spreading the wealth. We went back to the farmers market and found some cherry tomato plants. I picked out one LARGE plant which already has tomatoes on it. I'm thrilled to know that this one will reward us faster than the others. In this depressed housing/economy, we don't know how long we'll stay here, so might as well have a bit of fun along the way.

We went to an American Revolution park and museum. We enjoyed walking the trails and reading the markers. I was dying to take some pictures to try out some settings on my new camera but sunny mid-day is not the best time to take pictures. But I clicked away regardless of the less than optimal lighting.

I finished the scarf for mom yesterday and started another one today. Idle hands must stay busy.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Came to Terms

Must admit, this situation of quitting work is beginning to agree with me. So many things to choose to do each day - or nothing. Can't say that I've gotten to the do nothing stage yet. But it's refreshing to know the choices are ultimately mine. Barely made it out the door today - and what is so bad about that, I say.

I finally made the decision that I would not be at rest until I came to some sort of reconciliation with the dreaded "budget". But today was the day. I procrastinated, I avoided the desk, I ignored the papers on the desk, I cleaned, I washed, I organized, I swept, I cooked, but finally the task had to be attacked head on. Yes, today was the day I needed to figure the figures. So, attack I did. Me? Attack? Well, truthfully I only did one step and hopped up to find something else to do. After a bit, I returned to the desk and completed another step. Pretty soon, I was knee deep and things weren't as bad as I had imagined. Should have done this a week ago.

Even with all the planning I did for years, until this situation arrived, I wasn't SURE it would really work. But, I think we will do fine for a couple of years until a few more dollars trickle in. By then, costs will be up, Medicare will (hopefully) be cheaper than buying private medical/supplemental insurance and life will have settled down to predictable. Ahhh, it's good to plan to plan, create a plan, work the plan, then let go and watch the plan.

I'm an organized person, a methodical person, a minimalist. So, planning the past few years paid off - I'm a free woman and I will be calmer and easier to live with. The finances fell to my shoulder many moons ago and Sweetz loved the freedom of that. With the internet and bill pay - wow, life is predictable, plannable, and freeing for me too. Now, if things will stay predictable, I predict I can enjoy this life.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


It's been a nice weekend. Hey, what's a weekend? Saw a nifty clock the other day - guess it's for retirees giving all Saturdays and one Sunday and the times were all messed up. Had to have a nice chuckle over that. I woke up during the night and couldn't go back to sleep so tossed a long time then decided it was my life now and I could get up and sleep late if I wanted to. So I did just that with no guilt about it either. Picked up a book I wanted to read - and 4 chapters later, I had to make myself go back to bed.

Notice the orange bookmark? I saw this idea on the internet one day: cut the corner off from an envelope and slip it on the page to mark the spot. Thought it was a nifty idea, so grabbed the first envelope I saw -- a geezer envelope (SS mail) and put it to a new use. The youth would call that "green" I suppose.

The mauve knitting project is a scarf for my mom that she hinted about. Yep, I'm trying to keep it a secret, but I think she saw it on the piano one day last week. Oh well, so much for keeping this nifty gift idea a secret. Maybe she will forget it by Christmas. Hardly. She's 88 but is still sharper than any tack I ever encountered.

Speaking of mom, she and I went to "town" yesterday morning and checked out a few antique and craft shops. There was a nifty coffee shop which served sandwiches, soup, and loads of coffee and tea selections. I chose a half grilled cheese pinini sandwich and small soup and plain tea but next time I'll branch out with some of their other nifty tea selections. The owners had a big black dog which slept on the dining area floor - didn't know the Health Dept condoned dogs in a restaurant, but he/she was quiet and docile so I wasn't bothered. Must admit I watched the owners though as they went past the dog several times and petted it, but each time they washed their hands. And their Healthy Dept rating was 101. Nifty lunch in a nifty internet cafe.

Just noticed my laptop is unplugged and running on the battery. Now, how in the world did I unplug it? Ohhhh yeah, I swept the floor a bit ago and must have accidentally shifted the plug. I think that's my contribution to housework today. After all, it's Sunday, the day of rest and I don't want to overdo! It's cloudy again and thundering all around. Seems God doesn't think we got enough rain - so even though it was sunny just a few minutes ago, it's going to rain soon. How nifty is that?

Friday, May 21, 2010


Sweetz and I had a nice day together. We headed to CampingWorld where we looked at campers but really didn't see anything that wanted us. The drivables, that is. Lots of TTs, but we have no truck to pull one of those, so we'll stick to choices with an engine in the front. Saw two possibilities but guess it wasn't the right time for us. We'll continue to look. CW had a cookout today for all their customers so we were treated to a free lunch while there. George teased me that as retirees we'd do ok if we could find one of these free meals every day. They had chairs sitting around so everyone had a comfy seat and food for the belly. I do believe that was the best hot dog I have eaten in a long time, and all the extras. Nice staff too. Sweetz bought a new water pump which should provide better pressure. Also a HWH attachment and a few other things. It was nice to leisurely browse the store with no rush to be somewhere at any particular time. I found I kept looking at my watch. That's definitely a habit I need to break.

There's a farmer's market nearby so we spent the afternoon there. So many choices. With several buildings, it was a given that several hours could be spent browsing the plants, the flowers, the trees, the water features, the produce, etc. While there we saw a couple that we've known for years. Actually I worked with Debbie for 7 years, then we both left for other positions but we keep running into each other several times a year. It was nice to spend some time chatting with them. Sweetz, who has a love for ice cream, found a booth selling several flavor choices. He bought me peach. So we indulged and licked. Yummy. We bought a few plants and we'll find holes for them so they can grow and treat us to their beauty. It's hard not to buy plants in the spring. With them, there's a promise of new tomorrows.

On down the road toward home is a seafood restaurant. After looking at all the menu choices, Sweetz and I shared a broiled seafood combo dinner. Even after sharing, there was still some to bring home. Nice staff and the food was really good. I'd love to go back if we're ever in that area. There's a working mill on the way home which still grinds cornmeal and several flour varieties. I've been several times over the past 30 years but thought today that it would make a great day trip. And some bags of flour from the gift shop would make the memories last. Not to mention some pictures.

Nearing home, we pass a walking trail that's open to the public. It is about 1.5miles long and there are many interesting things to see as you wind your way past a small lake, a pasture complete with contented cows, bridges, walkways, another much larger lake, a natural waterfall, plus some of the remains of several buildings on the estate. I think it's wonderful they allow us to walk it and it's such a treat to get away and feel the cares of the world ebb out the body. Plus it's another great place to take pictures. The old estate home is open to the public but since I've been in it several times, I'll skip that tour and enjoy the walking trail. I need to go. I need to take more pictures. Like a little plaque I now have hanging in my kitchen which reads "Live Begins at Retirement", I must get busy enjoying my new life.

I just finished a book I started yesterday. Nicholas Sparks' "The Choice". Whew, what a sweet and compelling book with a 3 tissue ending. I have one more book, then it's off to the library. Probably do that next week. I used to love to read, hopefully I can rekindle that love again. There are many choices in this life, but have to admit, some are just more fun than others.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

...Or Go Camping

Sweetz was out of town again today so I was queen of the house. I treated myself to having the stereo cranked up LOUD. Makes me smile and enjoy life that way. He prefers the TV, but I tire of that after awhile. We might need some marriage counseling sessions to solve our differences. Or we could just go camping.

I sent the minutes to the sheriff in an email last night. Would have been nice to get a thank you email reply today but it didn't happen. But why should I expect anything different from what I experienced for several years. I snipped some hydrangeas and have them in a vase. Will be nice for a few days. When they wither, I'll just go snip a few more from the hundreds that are on the plant. Or...I can leave them on the bush and go camping.

It was cloudy today, about 70* most of the day. Then a surprise!! Sun for about an hour. That hour I spent outside pruning another shrub and cleaning up the clippings. We need the rain and it is certainly rewarding to see things grow, but these shrubs and azaleas and plants which are so pretty in the spring seem to grow a foot overnight. I still need to work in the azalea bed in the front yard to try to contain those bad boys before they block the view of the entire house. Seems it was just last year that I pruned them, but from the cuts I can see way into the plant, it was about 3 years ago. Time flies when you're having fun. Probably went outside that spring and cut them down about half way as a method to vent my frustration. Might have to grab my chain saw and show them who's boss. Nope, I'll use my trusty clippers and do a pruning job where you can barely tell where they were snipped. Something my mom taught me many moons ago. Slow - but well worth the effort. Or...I can forget them for awhile and go camping.

There are so many projects I want to do. But I think I need to pace myself at retirement speed. I don't have to go at breakneck speed now to get everything done by the quitting bell. Sweetz seems quite impressed. Well, isn't that why he's smiling these days? Sure seems to enjoy the cooking too. Then there's the unending list of normal domestic chores which have been moved to my column. Yipes, I think we need to go camping!

Got a notice from SS today, seems I can get online to follow my account – just need to come up with a password. That should be easy since I've had to do that at work for years – every 90 days. Oh, you should have seen the ones I came up with! Ingenious coded messages. Oops, well, guess I need to keep those remarks to myself. Would be a good idea if I looked at our bills and financial statements to get an idea how we're doing two weeks into this retirement gig. Or hide them in a drawer and head out camping.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Baby Steps

I had a good day today, settled down alot, and actually enjoyed the day. I didn't feel like a fish out of water today, but more comfortable in my new status. My hair is still too short due to Ms. Scissor Snipper, but it will grow...eventually. My Sweetz was out of town most of the day so I had the house to myself. Peaceful solace to reward my soul. I worked on a few smallish household projects then happily spent some time in the yard doing some spring trimming on two butterfly bushes and deadheading the irises. Even transplanted a few plants to my patio garden pots. Now, we need sun. Tomorrow is predicted to be warmer and drier but then the clouds are to return for several days after that. I'll try to get outside every chance I can. Wouldn't be good to have cabin fever this early in Retirement Studies 101.

The Sheriff called me today and left a message on my cell that she wanted me to type the minutes from the last NL meeting. Wow, thought that took some nerve. Ohhhh, bite my tongue. So, I typed them from my notes and emailed them. Talking to that one is definitely not on my top priorities. Three years is enough. Duh, that's why I resigned! If I hear from that one again, I plan to email an invoice for my time and irritation. Just how much is peace worth? The rest of my life, I'd say. I'm trying to be positive, but allow me to vent occasionally.

On a positive note, the butterfly bushes are happy to be trimmed for another season. Our roses are blooming and look beautiful. The hydrangeas are bursting with blooms. We had lots of rain and more is predicted on the horizon. I must accept the showers and know they are needed. And the sun will peek through again.

What will I do tomorrow? My second week and I seem to need a list to keep me on track. Guess this comes from working as an assistant for many years. Now that it's my life now, perhaps I need to let go and relax. It's not that easy. It will come. In its own time. Baby steps to relaxation. When an uncomfortable working situation has been the norm for several years, it takes awhile to relax and learn that no beast is hiding behind doorways or creating havoc in my life. Of course, I don't want emails or cell phone messages either.

Sweetz found a robin's nest about my height today and I grabbed my camera. The pictures didn't do justice because it is in a smoke tree and well hidden in a mass of limbs and leaves. We peeked and saw 5 darling little birds with their eyes open and sitting quietly waiting for mom or dad to return with a bug burger. Of course, mom and dad weren't happy with us being that close and fluffed their feathers and spread their tail in order to look menacing. I'll head out another day to check on them and perhaps a decent picture can be taken. The little ones are taking baby steps to maturity. I will try to learn from them as they take what comes with quiet calm. I shall try again. But I'm refusing the bug burger.

Monday, May 17, 2010


Today was my first weekday at home under my new life phase. Started out a bit rocky, floundering, walking around like I didn't know what to do next. And I didn't. Like I was out of my element and comfort zone.

But in a bit Sweetz and I took showers and off we went to Wal-Mart. I needed a haircut and my regular lady's shop is closed, plus I had no appt since I cancelled it last week to go to the beach. Yep, I dropped to the level of Unknown and entered the WM Hair Care section at WM for the first time. This very nice young 20ish girl greeted me with smile and proceeded to feel my hair and ask me lots of questions. After a shampoo, she cut my hair and she really tried. Was quite a talker too. Sure made the time go by faster. She's new to the area and told me about her new husband, her move to this area, her loneliness with no good friends. I felt for her but the young will find friends if given a bit of time. She was raised in a large city so she will need some time to adjust to our country life. Found out I used to work at the same place as her husband's mother. Tis the thing in a small country town. Hard to hide.

Sweetz and I bought a few things we could use for our camper so maybe we can take it out again soon for a few days. Read in a recent blog where a single RV'er uses solar lights while she's boondocking and even has enough light to read inside at night. So we looked at them, but couldn't decide which was best for our needs. Something we'll think about. It would be nice to head out during the week - there are some state parks within a few hours' drive so we could do some rest and relaxation under the trees. He'll fish but I'll figure out something - there's always a book and I could make a piece of jewelry or paint on a t-shirt.

I wanted to walk today or ride my bike around the area for the first time this year but it rained. And did it rain! Started last night and rained buckets. I would imagine we got at least 4". We've been dry so it was nice except it kept me inside. I'll try to remember to look at the rain gauge tomorrow to get a more accurate reading.

Sweetz seems pleased to have me home - he talked alot today, stayed closer than usual, and was attentive. I could get spoiled and learn to like this new phase. He'll be out of town tomorrow so I will have another first - my first day home alone. What to do? What to do? Or is it what to do first? I received the statement from SS today - gives me the figure I will receive. Now, it's time to figure out how to adapt financially to my new lower "salary". Yep, we'll do it. And it will be worth everything to not be working. Bet my BP is lower for the first time in a long time. Firsts can be a good thing.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Home Safe and Sound

We made it home safely. Using Rhoda the Road Warrior TomTom, I zipped in and out of lanes and turned at all the appropriate places with her skillfully guiding the way. What a gal. Even told her several times that I loved her. When I didn't like her direction, I turned her off so I didn't have to hear, "Turn around as soon as possible". At one point there was a detour so she didn't do well in that situation so I ignored her advice and followed the signs. But I still think she is well worth her weight in gold to make the drive there and back just about as uneventful as possible. No stress, no worry. She even allowed me to stop for gas and leg stretches, waiting patiently in the hot car until I returned.

We stopped for lunch at Zaxby's somewhere between here and the coast. Was disappointed but that might have been caused by the 47 ladies who were in line in front of me fresh from some convention somewhere. They were chatty and loud and the place was so noisy I barely could hear myself think. The decibel level dramatically decreased to a bare hum when they left. Then there was the constant loud-speakers barking out "Order #86 is ready". I like solitude and peace. Hadn't I just regained some tranquility at the beach? Didn't they know I had just escaped a 3-year stance with the SHERIFF? Where was the respect for the gray-hair geezer just wanting some peace in which to dip my chicken fingers? Then there was a young couple who ordered the same meals we did and they scooped their fingers in the fingers and fries and finished in record time and rushed out the door. Why must people be in such hurry? Where do they need to go? And to watch the wife analyze each occupant in the room then see hubby turn around and look. Yep, at one point we were the object of her analysis. Think maybe she was doing some sociology research project? Welllll, I could analyze her too. Doesn't she know that game can work in reverse. All this and they still left with empty plates and soiled napkins. Another whew. There were two couples in Zaxby's dressed in some sort of Amish type dress. Didn't recognize it, but one lady talked on a cellphone at one point, so maybe they weren't Amish. They enjoyed the meal out though.

We received the May Special Rate at the resort...4 nights for the price of 3. I needed the last day too, as I could really tell I was relaxing. The walks on the beach were therapeutic, toes in the wet sand, watching tiny sand crabs burrow under the sand after being swept up and down with the waves. Simple thoughts with no associated torture. Considered buying a hermit crab as a pet but decided if we traveled this winter that Mr. Hermit might have a short lifespan. And how much would I have to pay a crabsitter if he remained at home? Nope, I wisely walked away from that purchase. Sweetz is still looking for a new mattress for the RV. That's what we get for having an unusual size. Oh well, we have time to shop online since he thinks we should wait until winter to roll out on our wheels. Sounds good to me. Snowbirds? Could that really happen?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Retirement Week @ The Beach

I'm still enjoying myself at the beach during Retirement Week. It's nice being my own boss, not under the thumb of someone controlling my thoughts and my time. Ahhh, it is great to begin to regain my worth as a human. The past 3 years were difficult and I can't even realize fully yet that those years are forever behind me. Heard today that the sheriff was seen sitting in front of my computer. Bet she was having great fun trying to find things. No, I didn't delete anything or even change the name of projects to try to hide them. Nope, I left an honest person leaving everything as it was. I deleted some obsolete stuff of course, but that was a routine task. The office will survive without me and soon a new gal will sit at the computer. Never want to willingly walk those hallways anytime soon.

This week at the beach has been great. Frustration and anger have been put away. In their place, peace and tranquility are finding a home. The waves are a constant reminder that life goes on. Life won't be perfect but at least I have learned from my recent experiences.

We had BBQ for supper. Boy, was it good. Not sure why, but appetites always seem enhanced at the beach. But I'm trying to lose some working girl fat, so less on the plate is the goal. Guess it really should be less in the stomach. When I get home I want to step on the scales. Wouldn't it be a treat to have lost a pound or two! That would be a great reward for smaller portions and walking. The beach is a great place to walk - up and down and around the resort. On the lower level there are pools everywhere. The landscaping is pretty and each place one looks is a treat. So, it is interesting to walk around winding areas and get a feast for the eyes and hopefully work off another pound. After the walk today, I sat in the hot tub and let the jets do their magic on my legs. Wow, felt wonderful.

Sure will miss all this when I get home. Sweetz will be expecting me to put down my bag of prized collected shells to wield a shovel and clippers. The bushes and shrubbery get overgrown so quickly and that's my forte, so I'll snip and prune to attempt to keep them under control. This place has a crew to do the work - all dressed in brown uniforms. Ours will be done by Sweetz and myself. But that saves on employee salaries. Like we could do that. Nope. Good thing we like to do it or we would be ripping out the pretties and sowing everything in grass. Might get to that point one day, but not there yet. Still want to travel a bit in the house on wheels so keeping things under control will be necessary to free us to head down the road. Now, that's something to look forward to.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


And where am I? Still at Myrtle Beach, SC. Awesome ocean view from the room which makes it easy to look out and enjoy the waves crashing into the sand, the dog walkers, fat ladies, bikini babes, shell pickers, slathered bodies, young and old out enjoying the warm coastal weather. There are 20 pools in this hotel but very few toes check them out. They are out in the surf though. Little kids running in and out of the waves, making sand castles, surfer dudes, skidoos, sail boats, guys ogling the gals. But plenty of retired folks getting in some sand and surf before the end of school marks the hot sand temps and high room prices. Thank you very much but I'll come in May and then again in the fall. Crowds aren't my thing.

We ate at a great restaurant, Damon's, which boasts of fall-off-the-bone ribs. And were they ever good! My, the best I've eaten in months. They gave us mini blueberry muffins to munch on before the food arrived. Then the best, and I mean the very best food around. Then to top the meal off, they gave us complimentary banana pudding - creamy and rich like grandma used to make. They have indoor and outdoor seating, but we chose the big outdoor porch complete with ceiling fans. The restaurant is right on the beach so we were entertained by sailboats and swimmers and skidoos coming and going while we ate with the natural summer breeze. I'm without work...maybe I could apply for a job to be able to stay here a bit longer. And feast my eyes on these tan muscular lifeguards. Youth seems to be wasted on the young...

I think I'll grab my sandals and head out to walk the beach again.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Retirement - What a Life!

Ahhh, now this is the life. Too bad I can't afford this lifestyle for a month or so. But a short stopover at the beach makes each day seem even more special. Definitely makes me want to come back again.

We went shopping at an outlet mall and I was able to get a few things for upcoming occasions. We got one of those big salted pretzels for lunch with a Coke so we'd be hungry at suppertime.

We came back to the hotel and walked the beach a bit, then headed out to a great seafood restaurant. Wow, was it ever good. I had Atlantic flounder stuffed with crab. Deeeeelishous. Complete with fresh hushpuppies, crisp salad, baked potato, and steamed veggies. Ahhhhhh, sooooo good. Great service too. Then back to the hotel and back to the beach for yet another stroll, then up and around the hotel, around the pools, past the restaurants and down the "glass elevator". That one has glass on one side and it moves quickly - to the point I think I left my stomach on one floor and my body made it to my destination. Wheeeeeee. We're sitting here in the room eating key lime pie and sipping hot tea. What a life! I'm thinking retirement suits me just fine...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Catching Up

Didn't mean to neglect the blog but sometimes things get in the way to make me turn internal until I can sort things out. I worked my final day of my notice this past Friday - was difficult, actually every minute of the two weeks. But I prayed and did my best to the point of doing more than was required of me. Didn't want anyone saying I shurked any of my duties. Even gave The Sheriff a Nurses Week gift, a tote bag with lots of nurses things quilted on it. She seemed pleased. I did my best and that was all I could do. That phase is over, and I need to heal.

The directors gave me a retirement dinner Thursday night at a nice Italian restaurant. The food was delicious and it was nice to be with them for the evening. They chipped in together and presented me a Visa gift card so I can use it anywhere. Still have my Verizon one too, so I need to get them activated and use them before they expire. I'm usually a cash person, so these little credit cards aren't my natural way of paying for things. I feel if you are going to give me money, then why get a debit card for that amount, just put the money in an envelope! Think I need to use it so I can relax about it.

Mom and I are heading to the beach tomorrow for some R&R. She's quite a character at 88 so we are bound to have a ball. We have reserved a ocean front room so it should be wonderful to enjoy the water all day. There are plenty of places to eat, shop and we intend to walk the beach each day. Talk about photo ops!! The weather will be nice so we should enjoy ourselves talking and laughing and relaxing.

Yesterday, we went to our son's house for a cookout. Had a terrific time. The food was delicious but what I really enjoyed was spending time with them and the kids. They gave mom and me a Mother's Day gift and the boys made me a huge banner which read "Happy Retirement" which was tacked to the kitchen wall. Happy Mother's Day, Mom.

Sunday, May 2, 2010


It's really windy here today, which is really drying everything outside. A bit cloudy every now and then but mostly blue skies dotted with puffy white clouds. And windy nearly every minute, but then it becomes blustery for a few minutes only to quieten down to gentle winds again. The spring is such a beautiful season and my favorite. And our golf rain gauge is empty. There's flooding in Nashville, but we're dry as a bone here.

Our irises are blooming now that the azaleas and other spring things are just about finished. A former coworker gave me some of his irises that he was cross-pollinating, not show stoppers but pretty. He kept the nearly perfect ones to keep dabbling for award-winning specimens. I was pleased to get his rejects which are now happily coloring my flowerbeds. The light blue one he named "Celestial" after his wife so I can only imagine the beauty of his final prize.

A couple of birds are in the bluebird nest - not bluebirds though, but just renting the place for a few weeks until their little nestlings are ready to fly solo.

Sweetz and I were sitting outside in the backyard talking about the next phase in our lives. I have one more week to work my notice so I'm trying to come to terms with my earlier than expected departure but realize it was necessary for my sanity. Never thought it would happen this way, but sometimes God puts boulders in our way so we will take the less-traveled path He's chosen. I must depend on Him for guidance each step of the way.

We went in the camper this afternoon and measured the over-the-cab mattress and think we'll order a new one so that when we head out, we'll have a softer nest. We'd really like to trade for a larger RV with more room, especially one with a bed in the back, but so far one hasn't come into our lives that we think is right for us. Sweetz thinks we can head out the first of the year so now we have a plan and can look forward to an extended trip. Hopefully our wheels will lead us west. He likes the idea of touring in Canada and that would be nice too, but certainly not in winter!

Brrrr, nesting as a snowbird sounds like a delight I can only anticipate at this time. That's ok, I'm a patient woman - the past 3 years prove that point well enough.
I need to think pleasant thoughts so I think I'll go take a peek at my irises again.