Monday, September 17, 2012

But What Do You DO All Day?

A friend once told me, post retirement, that she did not know how she ever found time to actually have a job.  With apologies to Tamara, whose blog I have shamelessly piggybacked off of here..................I can relate.

Yesterday I went to church and an extra long time (I'm the volunteer coordinator for our Habitat Build), in order to facilitate getting more volunteers. When I arrived home I took a leisurely walk, one that honestly probably qualified as relaxation rather than exercise, but at least I moved. After gathering my sketchbook and some swatches, I sat down to watch the NFL in action.  Sunday there is probably more TV watching in the house than the rest of the week.  That said, I defy you to visit me and call watching football a mindless no energy event.  For dinner we cheated and had a rotisserie chicken, biscuits and all of the accompaniments. As always, I get into bed well before I plan on going to sleep. In this case in addition to reading, I actually was trying and tearing fabric for while to see the end result.

This morning I forced myself out of bed at the last minute and ran to art class (have I mentioned not being a morning person?). The class I am taking is printing. It's different than anything I have taken before and I think my multi media perspective blows the instructors mind. After making mono prints, I'm talking to myself about attaching jewels here and painting there. I'm enjoying my class and this we've moved on to linoleum cutting.  After art class I went to the library for a brief while-to research a paper on a conceptual artist for another class.

After art class I grabbed some lunch (not a frugal choice, I forgot to bring food with me) and made a quick trip to our local Barnes and Noble.  I love any of these magazines for ideas and unfortunately (from what I can tell) none of them have online websites with ideas. On the other hand this magazine does, and I figured I will work with that first. While I do try and limit my web browsing, the web is a huge resource for recipes, patterns and ideas. Hello, pinterest!

This afternoon has been spent sewing modern pop art place mats and working on my Denver broncos quilt. I've also  been doing some writing, working on the habitat schedule for the next week, reading on the patio. Finally, as I write this I've been wresting with the dog who has decided that sitting on my lap (laptop or no laptop) is of course, the most important event  in all our lives right now. When you have a coon and beagle puppy mix, that's a bunch ofof dog in the lap.

This evening I intent to partake of leftovers (we rarely eat leftovers the next day, choosing instead to reform into a different meal or freeze), sit on the patio  and read my kindle book on how to promote your business on Pinterest, watch the Broncos football game and read in bed. I really need to be walking daily but the weather is such that it will probably be tomorrow and I will try a little yoga.

Tomorrow's day is much different. In addition to a much longer walk, I have a major sewing project planned for part of the day. I want to get some fall flowers in my pots (although I don't know what the best fall flowers for Texas are as of yet). I've decided it's time to pull out the slow cooker (hey, the high eighties is considered cool in Texas!), bake and put out my fall decorations and quilts. In the evening I'm meeting friends. Somehow I think some of these activities will fall onto other days.

The rest of the week includes going to the real movies at least one day (an early matinee). I've decided I think both Arbitrage and The Master are worthy of a discount admission price. On Saturday, I will spend half the day at the opening of our Habitat for Humanity house build. I want to get one thing canned (cranberry walnut conserve this time). This weekend there is an Octoberfest locally. Sometime at the end of the weekend I will head to Denver. While my end goal is visiting family I intend to go out of my way onto old route 66 and up through the Turquoise Trail.  At some point in the week I have a dinner planned.

What's unique about all of the above?  On some level, perhaps not much. What jumps out are many pretty normal activities, alternated by some more special events  and a bit of travel and exploration. I generally plan my week rather than my day because I am a moderate energy gal and require a fair amount of sitting on the patio (reading, contemplating my muse, or watching the dogs) time. This day and week are just examples.  While the schedule of my days are fairly similar when I am at home, the activities I choose are not (with the exception of scheduled classes) . Some of my involvements stem from hobbies developed pre retirement, some are new interests I just picked up. Most are fairly frugal. My nature is such that other than travel and some volunteer activities most of the things I do are home or church based-it just works out that way I guess. Not that I am a "homebody", just that somewhere along the line I developed a group of activities that can be done home or anywhere.
What's important about all this is that my life is busy-as busy as I want it to be and sometimes busier. My choices may not be the same as someone else-I am not a sportswoman and never was (so you wont find golf, skiing or mountain climbing on my checklist).  We all fill our days differently. Some folks hate to travel and fill their time other ways. Most importantly though, I don't know any retiree who is bored in the long term, and I'm talking about the "older generation" as well.  Three years ago my eighty something father in law decided to redo his kitchen floors. Note that I did not say decided to hire someone. He still walks around the treadmill at the rec center, and he and my mother in law are considering a small river cruise.

That's what I do all day. What you do all day will depend


  1. How did I ever have time to work?

    I say that a lot. Isn't it wonderful that our time is our own?

  2. Bravo! A life very, very well lived, and I enjoyed every bit of your share.

    I also continue to appreciate and admire your positive attitude even as you share your struggles with some of the curves life inevitably throws out.

    And coincidentally, I have a post already written and ready to go, also detailing how I spent last week. Great minds and all that it appears!

  3. I so agree, who has time to work!! I left the workplace 4 years ago and have NEVER regreted it for a day. Even with less money coming in it is worth the time that is now free to do the important things

  4. Personally, I'm jealous, LOL! I have a very long list of things that I want to do .. and frankly, work is getting in the way ;)

    I think having a lot of interests .. or the willingness to explore interests is the key. I have a relative, also a single early retiree, who seems to be floundering in that respect.

  5. Barbara, don't I remember that you have a kindle? Have you tried uploading the magazines to it. I love that function on my ipad.


  6. Barbara, I do have akindle although I prefer "tactile" books. That said, very few craft or artists magazines are available on kindle.

    And frankly, I LOVE wandering through a real bookstore.


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