I have now been retired after 37 years in education for a little over one year and I will have to say that I have not regretted my decision for one instant. As my sister who is also retired told me, I am probably busier than I ever have been but I am doing the things I choose and what I truly love to do. This includes things that I haven’t been able to do for years.
It has been rather hot and dry here for that past couple of weeks (at least for Appalachian Mountain Standards) and I was enjoying a walk with my dog this morning wearing a light jacket – in the upper 50’s now, but a 30 degree rise in temperatures expected during the day. It is a crystal clear morning, no wildfire smoke today, the birds are singing, the chickens are singing their egg songs and the dog is exploring. Can’t get better than this.
I will have to say that retirement along with this damned pandemic has made me a lot more a recluse, but really I am ok with that. Much of that is my choosing anyway. I try to limit myself to 15 minutes or less of the news a day, looking at both sides and wondering how anyone calls this news or journalism anymore, but will have to say getting away from it has done wonders for my stress level and overall happiness.
My wife still is working, so I spend many of the weekdays by myself here and will have to admit part of me writing this post is to make her jealous. She so wants to retire too, but with the cost of insurance these days, it is not a financially sound decision for a year or two. We do dinners together each evening and many times I join her for an evening walk or bike ride.
Retirement and summers in the country do really go together! Yes, for several years I did not have a daily employment routine during the summers until I became an administrator, but this is different. I don’t have to think about all the things I will have to do at work and can just concentrate on what I want to do here. Right now that for the most part includes my grandkids, gardening, and working in the woodshop.
I will argue with anyone that I have the cutest grandkids in the world, and when my wife and I have a chance to be with them, we pretty well drop everything else. In the past week we have enjoyed watching them while the parents are busy, celebrating a birthday, and spending other time with them. During the next week, my granddaughter and her parents from South Carolina will be visiting, we will be celebrating two of them getting baptized, and spending time with them at our annual County Fair!
I have really enjoyed the garden this year. In between battling the pests and animals trying to take more than their share, we have been harvesting cabbage, squash, zucchini, cucumbers (one of my favorites) lettuce, radishes, apples, and blueberries. We will soon be enjoying green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, and sweet corn (by far my favorite.) For the past few weeks we have been able to enjoy 75% or more of our evening dinner from our garden. Can’t get better than that!
The woodshop has been fun! With the cost of lumber I have cut down on making things where it have to buy lumber, so I have been working mostly with my lathe making bowls and other items from wood I have around the house. Right now I am working on an acorn shaped birdhouse and a picnic table we can use at the baptism reception this weekend. I am also finishing up some bowls, a rolling pin, and some candle holders.
Yes, retirement is a busy time, but that busy is so much fun!!!!!
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