Sunday, January 23, 2011

Retro Retirement

There has been talk on some of my favorite blogs about how hard retirement is financially for many people, with the future looking even darker.  I do agree with all of this, Ron and I have been caught up in this trap, BUT, we all need to think about Retro Retirement.

Retro seems to be a style statement, in clothing, furniture, design, movies, etc. etc.  Why are we all so caught up in having to have everything new and changing constantly?  I know, I know, media excites us about new granite counter tops, top of the line stoves, cars that make us sexy, and vacations to exotic places, shoes that double as stilts and dangerous weapons, clothes that look great on teens, but hey, my legs haven't seen the light of day in years and aren't about to now.

As Ron's illness progressed (before Medicare) our bankbook got smaller and smaller.  We've tightened our retirement belts and somehow have managed. In the meantime I've planted container gardens, (yummy salads and herbs) invested in a bird book for our area (so our backyard becomes our exotic place), inviting friends over for pot lucks, music and the written word have become my entertainment of choice, and playing gin rummy with Ron every day helps keep our minds sharp (it takes a lot of brain work to keep up with him).  In other words, we've slowed down our lifestyle and as the saying goes, we've stopped to smell the roses and SURPRISE, we are enjoying ourselves more in our "retro" lifestyle than we ever did in the old rat race.

So to my children I say, why do you think you need four bedrooms when you only have one or two children, why do you need three bathrooms and a kitchen covered in chrome and granite? Yes, you can work and strive toward those things after you've started out slowly, but for goodness sakes a simple place will do just fine in the beginning.

Oh well, I'm beginning to sound just like my folks, I must be getting old.  OH I AM GETTING OLD!


  1. You have discovered the secret of making ends meet, living within your means, enjoying the simple things. We all need this kind of thinking, this examination of circumstances, this adjustment.

    Tell us about your boat house living.

  2. Hi rosaria, yes, Ron and I live simply compared to our lives during our working years, but for some reason we are busier than ever, even though we stay closer to home now. Like you, we are blessed to live in a beautiful part of the Country, a place with lots of farms (95% of US raspberries), wonderful fresh dairy (lot's of cheese-makers, both cow and goat), lots of fishermen (salmon, clams, crab, halibut), and Ron created a wonderful salad/herb garden that fits on our deck, so lots of fresh produce. We are lucky to have some fruit trees that give us and our friends and neighbors an abundance of cherries and plums. We create art with a group called the TAG (Tuesday Art Group), attend a local church (our pastor is Japanese, his wife is Dutch and they both live in Canada and commute to the US to tend to their flock), so a place full of diverse and interesting people. I love writing short stories (see some on my blog site) and feel blessed to be in this spot at this time. Our children and grandchildren are spread out all over the US, as are other family, we miss them, but they love to visit us here.

    Anyway, that's my life in a nutshell (maybe a seashell since we live near a Pacific Ocean Bay.)

    Hope to hear some other life stories.