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Stop! Just - STOP!

I do understand that furniture designers have to make a living, but - this is just wrong.

I've tried "ergonomic" furniture. I've sat in those hard-seated chairs and couches. They are NOT comfortable. They are NOT conducive to working on for extended time periods.

They are NOT what I want.

Apple LOVES them - well, yeah, they would. 20-somethings can sit anywhere comfortably. What I want is furniture that fits a senior, with a bad back and aching knees, and a need to get to her feet INSTANTLY, when the call of nature sings out.

I don't need a seat so hard that my butt goes numb. I've seen seats like the ones shown, and a LOG has more 'give' to it.

I don't need a couch for "two" that can only fit MAYBE 1-1/2 - IF they are on the 1 meal a day, semi-starvation diet (SO healthy!).

I don't need a fixed table that encroaches on my already-diminished seating space. That "table" won't allow more than a small laptop/tablet to fit …
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What Retirement Looks like for Me

Last spring, after my husband had to travel to Cleveland to deal with a medical situation, he requested that I start substitute teaching in a local school. As he would be missing some time at school, he wanted to make sure that our budget was covered.

It was a reasonable request, and I agreed. I ended up subbing about 2-4 times a week. I have to admit, I found it actually easier to keep up on housework and other things, due to the need to plan ahead. I could no longer procrastinate endlessly - I had to schedule tasks and writing, and meet my goals.

I was able to put out two short stories, and make a lot of progress on a new book.  In addition, I improved my physical well-being (all that walking around the schools and in the classrooms), and got away from the fridge.

This fall, I went back, primarily to get sufficient days in to get a qualifying year in Social Security. If I teach more than 53 days in a year, at $100/day, it meets the minimum requirement. Which does 3 things:

Gives me a…

Social Security Increase Next Year

That's good news, generally. The increase in the CoL (Cost of Living) means somewhere around $39 a month for the average recipient, less for those earning less than $1400/month.

Those whose medical bills or rent has increased will not see as much in their pockets.

I'm one of those who don't fit the standard advice. I receive pensions from teachers systems (one that actually reduces my Social Security check), still work part-time subbing (mostly to boost my SS by eliminating zero years), and have savings in annuities - both variable and fixed.

When the experts suggest you stockpile half-a-million to a million dollars in savings/investments, pensions are not considered. I used one of the many retirement calculators to determine that, if I were retiring one year from now, to receive an income equal to my current pension, I'd need to have $370,000 in savings/investment.


I just checked again, and to replace my husband's pension (both current, and what he will be ta…

Retirement is NOT Always Forever - Nor Complete

My husband and I have differing ideas about what it means to retire. My idea is that it should be a real change, not just changing jobs.

Now, our ideas were formed, in part, from our different experiences. My dad retired - for good - at 60. He had just received a diagnosis of cancer, and he wanted to take advantage of the freedom of retirement.

He never did much travel. My mother's ill health made that difficult, at best. She was resistant to getting a motor home, and using that as a base for their life. Even after her death, 12 years later, he seldom was able to see other sights. He died four years later, never having been far from home.

Den's father died before he could retire, at 52. Even when he was in the hospital, dying, he was planning to oversee building and operation of the new plant in Bradford. After his death, the new structure was never built, and the original plant eventually closed.

Den has already retired, once, from his job in Cleveland. Even before the retire…

How to Stop Phone Solicitations - Cold

I now answer my landline phone (where 90% of the calls happen) with:

Fraud division, Sheriff's Dept.
Stops them in their tracks. Cold.

15 Months Into This, How is It Going?

Mostly, very well.

The Good:

My stress levels have plummeted. My skin is clear, my respiratory system is vastly improved, and my overall physical condition is healthier. Some of that is having time to visit the doctor BEFORE I get run-down and sick, but some is just having the freedom to take care of myself.For example, a recent cold sidelined me for nearly a week, but I'm back to normal now, rather than dragging myself around for weeks of back & forth to the doctor's.When I am more tired than usual, I have the freedom to take a nap when it's needed.I found that I got more done when I added in some substitute teaching, 2-3 times a week or so. It's actually easier to tackle the household tasks when I have the opportunity to get out of the house a few times a week.The money is sufficient. I like the extra money from subbing, and if I make more than $5,000 in a single calendar year, I can wipe out one of those zero years in Social Security, making my eventual check hig…