Wednesday, January 13, 2010

New On the Retirement Life Matters Website

New On the Retirement Life Matters Website
As someone who is moving, as well as has an aging parent surrounded with too much, Vickie Dellaquillas’ book
Don’t Toss My Memories in the Trash is a treasure trove of information about how to get started, move through the daunting process to downsizing and moving.

Who doesn’t want to be healthy? Jim Donovan thinks we should take responsibility for our health. Read how he builds his own
health team.

As the New Year begins, many look for a place to volunteer or donate money. Read how researchers have documented that
Heifer International is changing the face of hunger in the world.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Create A Great Retirement Teleseries Begins

The Internet is an amazing place, especially in retirement life. There is a wealth of information to access. Sometimes we need more.
You Are Invited to the...

"The Myths and Realities of Retirement"

with Cathy Severson
Wednesday, January 13, 2010 - 8 pm Eastern/5 pm Pacific

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

One Man's Trash is JUST Trash

As I mentioned before, I hate sending stuff to the dump unless I absolutely have to. Case in point. We have an old sofa we'd like to get rid of. There's a guy in our neighborhood that drives by on trash day going through looking for the good junk to take. We put the sofa out for him and he didn't want it. So, I decided to give it to the local transitional housing nonprofit. I've been calling different numbers for over a week, leaving my phone number, but no one returned my call. I was going to be in the area yesterday, so I drove by specifically to see if they can use it. Yes, they can. But, she wouldn’t give me a number to call. They have to call me. A man phoned, said he was coming today to get the sofa and then called to say he’d come get it tomorrow. I hope he comes to get it. I spend a lot of time to get rid of this couch. I don’t want to put in the dump, but I don’t have the time to research and work this hard to get rid of the things I don’t want.

Now, I’m faced with a new challenge. My father had the complete set of Horizon Magazines, a wonderfully bound set that dealt with culture, history, arts, etc. I’d love to give them to the local jail or school, but I have no idea who to contact. I called a local used bookstore to see if they wanted them. He said there wasn’t a market for them. Are there schools that could use them? Maybe. The problem is I once again don’t have the time to find a new home for them.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Clearing Clutter

It had been my intention to update this blog with daily tips of preparing a home to sell and the process involved in moving as a part of retirement life. Unfortunately, it seemed like I had a choice to either write about packing or actually pack.

Having watched my eighty-three year old mother struggle with downsizing and observing neighbors who have lived in their homes in excess of thirty years, it occurred to me that people should go through this purging process whether they plan on moving or not. One week plus into this endeavor, I’ve concluded no one with half a brain would subject themselves to this unless they absolutely have to. Every room is in disarray as we sort, discard (toss or put aside to give away or sell) and pack. I've received great suggestions from Don't Toss My Memories in the Trash, by Vicky Dellaquila. The purging feels good, but we’re currently in that place where it doesn’t feel like we’ll ever be done.

Here’s my suggestion on day nine of a major move. If you’re not moving, but want to free yourself from some of your possessions, start with one thing.

I hate throwing anything in the trash, so yesterday I gathered all the old pairs of glasses and put them in an envelop to:

Lions Club International
Attention: Receiving Dept
300 W. 22nd St.
Oak Brook, IL 60523

Put all you photos in one location. Even if you don’t put them in albums, having them all together will feel great.

Give something you cherish away. This is tough. I have wonderful antique furniture pieces that we can’t take with us. My husband made a solid roll top desk that is too big to fit in our new home. The thought of giving these items away that have been a part of my life seemed impossible. Once we did a floor plan of the new house and we realized we couldn’t take them with us, I took photos and thought about what they have meant to me. Somehow, it all came into perspective. It’s just stuff. It’s stuff that I’ve loved and has been an important part of my life, but it’s still just stuff.

I’d love to hear about your move or declutter projects.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Moving to Arizona

A quick trip to Prescott, Arizona the second week of December led to a significant life change. After almost thirty years in southern California, we’re moving. A house has been purchased and it’s time to begin our new retirement life.

Well, almost. It was hard to get excited about moving when there is a home full of possession that need to be sorted, discarded, sold and packed for the movers. At first, it felt overwhelming, but a random phone call started the process.

I had lots of coats, winter clothes and blankets that I wanted to give to the homeless. A call from the local rescue mission informing me they’d have a truck in the neighborhood on Dec. 30 started the process. Consolidating the items to be donated didn’t feel too overwhelming and we both jumped into the process. In a few hours, we had three huge garbage bags full of items for the homeless. There was a sense of accomplishment at completing the task. We both felt the job ahead of us was manageable. We can do this!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

What Did You Talk About at Thanksgiving?

Recently, I heard a story about a newly retired woman exclaiming to her financial planner that completing a will was not only morbid, but something to do when you were ‘old.” It is an important step in creating a satisfying retirement life.

I don’t know of anyone who is excited about estate planning (except lawyers, of course). Similar to getting a colonoscopy, it needs to be done.

Estate planning isn’t just for you. It’s for the people you care about. It forces you to look at the final phase of your life. While that can be scary, it can also be very liberating. It is also lets you control your life and your legacy.

My mother doesn’t have an up-to-date will. A number of years ago, we encouraged her to get a trust, but she didn’t understand it and ultimately refused to sign the papers. She now has a new will, but so far hasn’t gotten it notarized. I think she believes that signing the will eliminates her choices. In reality, not signing the will passes control to the state and hospitals that don’t know her and don’t care about following her wishes.

Estate planning can be confusing. There are a lot of decisions to make. Attorneys Michael and Danielle Mayoras have written a great book,
Trials and Heirs to help you through the process. By using stories of the rich and celebrated, they describe what can happen if you don’t plan adequately. In addition, they offer easy to understand information to help you learn about estate planning for you and your family.

One of the most confusing aspects of estate planning is whether or not you need a living trust. Attorney Michael Pancheri from The Living Trust Network contributed a six-part series about the
Reasons for a Living Trust.

Along with planning all the wonderful things you want to do with your retirement, take the time to talk to an attorney and plan for the end of your life. You’ll be glad you did.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

New on the RLM Website

There are some wonderful things happening on the Retirement Life Matters website.

We recently returned from a Mediterranean Cruise. Without a doubt Mediterranean Cruises was the most help in preparing for time onshore.

Have you had to overcome obstacles in your life? Author Lynne Klippel share tales of tragedy and redemption in her new book
Overcomers, Inc: True Stories of Hope, Courage and Inspiration.

I was born and raised in Colorado. My son is named Zebulon after the man who discovered Pike’s Peak. It’s no surprise that
Colorado Springs has become a top retirement destination.