Hobbies Humor Travel

Camping With All the Comforts of Home

November 27, 2018
Camping Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

My sister and I are both working on blogs now and I just finished reading her new “About Me” page. https://tamistravelandadventures.com/index.php/about-me/ It definitely sounds like her! She is a tough cookie maybe because she grew up more around my brother than she did around me. I remember her telling me that she used to leg wrestle with him all the time, which is a crazy thing if you knew my brother because he was a football player with huge muscular legs.  I am sure he was no easy person to leg wrestle! Suffice it to say, she knows how to take care of herself and has always babied me. So what does this have to do with all the comforts of home? It’s about our different styles of vacationing. No long way around there!

Camping Supplies Photo by Alice Donovan Rouse on Unsplash

Photo by Alice Donovan Rouse on Unsplash

Hiking and Camping – My Sister’s Way

I imagine my sister’s backpack would look something like this photo. It would be sturdy, minimal with all the necessary accoutrements like food, water, matches, I don’t know! I’m guessing at this point! But it would definitely contain some type of photo taking equipment.

Camping my style Photo by Tom King on Unsplash

Photo by Tom King on Unsplash

Camping My Way

My style would be more like this photo only worse! Did I tell you I have a travel bidet that would be a must-pack for me? http://a.co/d/exsdfC8

That’s right or how about those 100 vitamins I take in their own little travel case http://a.co/d/bMezmbf Are you getting the feeling yet that you wouldn’t want to go camping with me?

Then there is the Wekapo. What brilliant person came up with this? I would sink into this thing and it would take an act of Congress to get me out. http://a.co/d/2pvNXG4

I would have one practical thing with me that would make my sister proud. Check out this hammock! I am in love with this hammock. I would like to install it in my bedroom! http://a.co/d/4IYexlP

Gentile Camping Photo by Chris Holder on Unsplash

Photo by Chris Holder on Unsplash

Do You Camp?

Now, this looks enjoyable to me as long as the chairs weren’t too low! I hope you know that I am exaggerating a little. I actually love the outdoors and would be happy to be like my sister, able to leap small forests in a single bound. I have grown soft in front of my computer and I do like my creature comforts.

Camping Compromise Photo by Blake Wisz on Unsplash

Photo by Blake Wisz on Unsplash

Camping Compromise

My sister is convinced that there is a solution to our dilemma. She and her husband have been looking at motorhomes that she can stuff us all into and take us on the road. I love my sister. She’s like me in this way. She wants to explore and have adventures, but she wants her family with her along the way, even when we are pains in the patootie (as my mother used to say!)

Off for the sunset Photo by Samuel Sianipar on Unsplash

Photo by Samuel Sianipar on Unsplash

Heading Off For the Sunset

So someday if you see a line of camping vehicles crammed to the gills with people and stuff all wobbling down the road following each other to the beach, or the forest, or the desert or who knows where you might want to wave a hello. It will probably be me and my family! You might also enjoy https://indulgentaging.com/index.php/2018/10/16/traveling-light/


Humor News

2019 – The Year of the Final Volkswagen Beetle

November 20, 2018
Volkswagon Beetle Photo by Scott Umstattd on Unsplash

I had to post this press release because really, it’s the end of an era! I learned to drive on a Volkswagen Beetle, driving in circles in a dirt field with my dad shouting instructions on how to shift. It’s not that I loved that car so much as I love the memory. I bet some of you have Beetle memories as well! You already know that I am a bit of a car lover! https://indulgentaging.com/index.php/2018/07/20/flex-your-muscle-car/

2019: The Last Year of the Volkswagen Beetle

On the heels of Volkswagen of America‘s (Volkswagen) announcement that it will cease production of the iconic Beetle in 2019, organizers of the Los Angeles Auto Show‘s (LA Auto Show®) AutoMobility LA™ today revealed that the popular brand will host its annual Motoring Invitational. This year’s event, entitled “Beetles & Breakfast,” will take place from 7:00 am – 8:00 am on Wednesday, Nov. 28, inside the Technology Pavilion located in front of the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Beetles & Breakfast, LA Based Beetle Owners Invited to Join

Beetles & Breakfast welcomes media and industry professionals from around the world attending AutoMobility LA. The commemorative showcase, which will kick-off a packed day of vehicle unveilings, will have nearly 30 Beetles on display, including the 2019 Beetle Final Edition models. Registered attendees will also be able to enjoy complimentary food and entertainment. Volkswagen will display a number of heritage Beetles dating as far back as 1946, as well as the Americas Rallycross-winning Beetle racecar. Los Angeles-based Beetle owners have also been invited to join the festivities.

Vintage Beetles

Dune Buggy Wikimedia

Dune Buggy Wikimedia

Additional vintage vehicles slated to participate in Beetles & Breakfast include, but are not limited to:

  • 1949 Beetle
  • 1949 Hebmueller roadster
  • 1952 Karmann Cabriolet
  • 1964 Beetle
  • 1969 Beetle rally car
  • 1969 Wedding Car
  • 1971 Meyers Manx
  • 1979 Super Beetle Convertible

“We are pleased to be hosting Beetles & Breakfast at AutoMobility LA,” said Derrick Hatami, executive vice president of sales, Volkswagen of America. “This is a great opportunity to highlight the heritage of the Beetle brand and to introduce the 2019 Beetle Final Edition coupe and convertible to the media. Los Angeles is a perfect place to celebrate the Beetle thanks to the long and lasting relationship between Californians and the brand.”

Volkswagen Beetle Photo by Tom Arrowsmith on Unsplash

Photo by Tom Arrowsmith on Unsplash

For nearly 70 years, the Beetle brand has been a mainstay for Volkswagen in the U.S. Over the lifespan of the Type 1 or Beetle, nearly 5 million were sold in the U.S. out of a worldwide total of 21.5 million. In 1998, the new Beetle reintroduced the familiar shape to a new generation of drivers and in 2011, the third-generation version went on sale in the U.S. as a 2012 model. Over its lifetime, the Beetle has been sold as a two-door coupe or two-door convertible. Volkswagen recently announced that production of the third-generation Beetle will end in 2019.

2019 VW Beetle

2019 VW Beetle

The brand will produce a limited number of Final Edition models, which are inspired by the 2003 Ultima Edicion. There will be two versions, the SE and SEL trims for the coupe and convertible, both of which will make their debut at Beetles & Breakfast during AutoMobility LA.

“To have Volkswagen choose AutoMobility LA for gathering some of the rarest Beetles around is significant,” said Terri Toennies, executive vice president and general manager of the LA Auto Show and AutoMobility LA. “Beetles & Breakfast is a fitting platform for Volkswagen to introduce its 2019 Final Edition models and start its farewell tour for one of the most beloved vehicles of our time.”

To register for AutoMobility LA, please visit AutoMobilityLA.com/register.

For additional information on Beetles & Breakfast and AutoMobility LA, please visit AutoMobilityLA.com.

Health News

Top Five Reasons for Consumers to Compare Their 2019 Health Coverage Options

November 13, 2018
Health Coverage Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Recently eHealth, Inc. released data from an analysis of trends in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) market that shed light on figures from the federal government suggesting that enrollment in ACA health coverage during the current open enrollment period may be lagging behind enrollment figures from last year.

eHealth’s analysis of its own 2018 and 2019 health insurance products offerings shows:

Fewer enrollees are being bumped from their old plans – The number of eHealth customers forced to shop for new 2019 plans because their current health plan will not be available in the new year is down 98 percent compared to last year.
Fewer insurers are departing the market – The number of eHealth customers forced to look for new coverage because their current health insurer is exiting their local market is down 100 percent compared to last year.
Fewer customers are seeing rate increases – The number of eHealth customers getting a rate increase of 10 percent or more for the 2019 plan year is down 59 percent compared to last year.
“On the one hand, this is great news for health insurance consumers, since it suggests a more stable ACA market,” said eHealth CEO Scott Flanders. “More people may be holding onto their 2018 plans into the new year. However, there’s a trade-off: With fewer changes to their coverage and moderated premiums, fewer people are being actively reminded to get out there and shop during the current open enrollment period. In fact, this may be a particularly good year for people to shop for a new plan that will better meet their needs in 2019.”

Top Five Reasons Consumers Should Compare their 2019 Coverage Options

Prescription Health Options Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Many consumers will find lower prices than last year – According to an eHealth analysis of plans available to 45-year-olds in 38 metropolitan areas through the federal health insurance marketplace, the premium for the lowest-cost bronze plan has decreased an average of 3 percent compared with last year’s open enrollment period. Some markets show double-digit premium reductions: the premium for the lowest cost bronze plan decreased 26 percent in Raleigh, NC; 18 percent in Phoenix, AZ; 15 percent in Atlanta, GA; and 13 percent in Trenton, NJ.

There are more plans to choose from compared to last year – According to eHealth’s analysis, there are 31 percent more plans to choose from across all states served by the federal health insurance marketplace. Consumers can also enroll in these plans through certain licensed brokers like eHealth.com, where additional ACA-compliant plans that are not available through government marketplaces can also be found.

Provider networks can change from one year to the next – Health insurance consumers who are pleased with their 2018 coverage should make sure that their preferred doctors and hospitals are still covered next year. Many health insurance plans change their list of network health care providers annually. At eHealth, consumers can sort available plans to see which are accepted by their preferred doctor.

Coverage for prescription drugs can also change – Consumers who are otherwise satisfied with their current plan may also wish to shop for new 2019 coverage if the insurance company has changed its list of covered medications or increased copays associated with prescription drugs. At eHealth, consumers can sort plans based on those that provide them with the greatest savings for their prescription drug needs.

There are more alternatives this time for those who can’t afford ACA coverage – People who earn too much money to qualify for government subsidies under the ACA may not always be able to afford ACA-compliant coverage on their own. This year, many will have access to short-term health insurance products with coverage periods of up to one year in most states (90 days was the federal limit last year), and they will not face a tax penalty for going without ACA-compliant coverage in 2019. ACA alternatives like short-term plans do not have the same benefits and protections as ACA plans (they do not cover the ACA’s ten minimum essential benefits or coverage for pre-existing conditions, for example), but ACA alternatives can provide meaningful protection from medical costs in many cases of unexpected illness or injury.

About eHealth

eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) owns eHealth.com, a leading private online health insurance exchange where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from brand-name insurers side by side and purchase and enroll in coverage online and over the phone. eHealth offers thousands of individual, family and small business health plans underwritten by many of the nation’s leading health insurance companies. eHealth (through its subsidiaries) is licensed to sell health insurance in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. eHealth also offers educational resources, exceptional telephonic support, and powerful online and pharmacy-based tools to help Medicare beneficiaries navigate Medicare health insurance options, choose the right plan and enroll in select plans online or over the phone through Medicare.com (www.Medicare.com), eHealthMedicare.com (www.eHealthMedicare.com), GoMedigap (www.goMedigap.com) and PlanPrescriber.com (www.PlanPrescriber.com).

Practicalities of Living

Veterans, Charity and Innovation

November 6, 2018
Panther Button Lamp Charity

This is what I love about having a site that allows me to write about interesting things that I find. I was searching press releases for another site I have and I ran across this one from Panther Vision:

Panther Vision and Innovation

LED lighting innovator, Panther Vision, is providing its unique, versatile lighting solutions to assist in disaster relief efforts. Panther Vision believes in supporting both communities in need as well that those who’ve served; that’s why they’re partnering with Team Rubicon. As such, the company will donate a portion of Button Lamps purchases up to $10,000 to Team Rubicon over the next three months. (Note that this is for Button Lamp purchases only.)

“Everyone should be able to enjoy the safety of well-lit spaces… even after a disaster,” said Panther Vision Founder and Chief Inventor Michael Waters. “That’s why I made the Button Lamp, a LED light that could be used literally anywhere.”

Veterans and Team Rubicon

Members of the 103rd Civil Engineer Squadron and Team Rubicon work together to set up a tent, Sunday, July 15, 2018, during the PATRIOT North 18 Exercise, at Volk Field Air National Guard Base, Wis. The tent was used as a dining facility during the exercise. (Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Tamara R. Dabney)

Members of the 103rd Civil Engineer Squadron and Team Rubicon work together to set up a tent, Sunday, July 15, 2018, during the PATRIOT North 18 Exercise, at Volk Field Air National Guard Base, Wis. The tent was used as a dining facility during the exercise. (Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Tamara R. Dabney)

Panther Vision supports Team Rubicon’s mission of restoring communities building by building, room by room. That belief is at the core of its creation, the Button Lamp. The Button Lamp is an adhesive LED lamp about the size of a quarter yet boasts a light output of 13 Lumens. It is a versatile, wireless lighting solution for both indoor and outdoor use, making it the perfect lighting tool to use during disaster relief efforts.

As of October, 2018, Panther Vision has donated over $17,000 worth of products to members of Team Rubicon. Panther Vision would like to build on this support by raising donations at a grassroots level.

If you would like to donate $1 of your Button Lamps purchase to Team Rubicon, visit www.PantherVision.com/button-lamp/ and use the TEAMRUBICON promo code at checkout.

About Panther Vision

Panther Vision is an Illinois based company that designs, manufactures and distributes advanced engineered LED lighting solutions. Our more than 25 patented designs offer consumers unparalleled performance and provide them uncommon solutions to common everyday problems. Panther Vision products are sold all over the world but can be found in the U.S. in selected Home Depots, Lowes, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Gander Outdoors stores.

About Team Rubicon

Director’s Cut – “Meet Team Rubicon” / The American Veteran from Mel Soria on Vimeo.

I went to Panther Vision’s website to see what they had going on and was impressed with their products. Then I decided to Google Team Rubicon since I didn’t know who they were. I was even more impressed. According to Wikipedia “Team Rubicon is an International non-government organization founded by U.S. Marines William McNulty and Jacob “Jake” Wood. Team Rubicon identifies itself as a veteran service organization that uses disaster response to help reintegrate veterans back into civilian life.” Now I was really interested.

There is so much negative news everywhere that it is nice to run across people who are doing things that are positive and innovative. We should celebrate these things all the time! Check out both companies and see if you are as impressed as I am.


Regrets…I Have A Few

October 30, 2018
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

I would like to be able to say that I look back at my life and have no regrets but that would not be a true statement. I doubt if it would be for most people. So what regrets do I have and do I still have time to rectify those?

Regrets Number One: Fakers

I wish I had spent less time loving people who were not capable of giving the same kind of love in return. It’s not that I think love should be selfish, but I don’t think there is anything wrong with having expectations of the people that you are in acknowledged relationships with. And sometimes people just don’t have the capacities that you think they should.

Regrets and Stripes Photo by Bas de Korte on Unsplash

Photo by Bas de Korte on Unsplash

I remember someone telling me one time that the best thing he ever learned was at a seminar on relationships. The teacher said that there are three different types of people in life, the givers, the takers, and the fakers and the most dangerous ones were the fakers because they made you think they were givers. I have run into several fakers in my life (ironically one of them was the guy that told me this story) and I knew it, but kept thinking that they would grow out of it and into genuine givers or maybe I just wanted to delude myself. Anyway, just so you know, I have let them all loose from my life over the years and not one of them have changed their stripes into genuine givers. So let the fakers go!

Regrets Number Two: Enjoyable Work

Business Regrets rawpixel-574844-unsplash

Business Regrets rawpixel-574844-unsplash

I wish I had known and pursued what I wanted to do professionally much earlier in my life. Unfortunately, wisdom and courage do not always hit you at the same time. I spent much of my life very competently running other people’s businesses all the while wanting to be running my own. It took my 60th birthday to kickstart that process. Both of my parents died in their early 60’s and that birthday pushed me into panic mode when I realized that I might have very little time left to accomplish the things I had always wanted to do. Don’t wait to do what you love!

Regrets Number Three: Get Healthy Younger

No Regrets Photo by Alora Griffiths on Unsplash

Photo by Alora Griffiths on Unsplash

I know. No one wants to think about healthy eating and exercise when they are twenty! Maybe not at any age. But it gets harder as you age. Not to say it is impossible, but it is more painful!. If you train your body to be somewhat athletic when you are younger I would think it would be easier to continue the tradition as you age. What was optional when you are young becomes mandatory when you are older. So do it now! At whatever age you are, if you stop moving you die. The personal trainer that comes to our building twice a month has assured me that you can become fit at any age and I believe that to be true. Now I just need to do it!

Humor Life

Headbanging, Imagine Dragons, and Pot, Now That’s Indulgent Aging!

October 23, 2018
Photo by Rick Proctor on Unsplash
Indulgent Music Photo by Hector Bermudez on Unsplash

Photo by Hector Bermudez on Unsplash

About 15 years ago I was at a gas station pumping gas and a very good-looking “older” man pulled up to the pump on the opposite side of me. He was gray-haired and driving a convertible Mercedes and I could hear his Rolling Stones music blaring all the way over on my side of the pump.

I remember my first thought was, “How cute! He likes rock and roll at his age!” (Okay, I was younger and dumber then!) My second thought was, “Duh! How old do you think Mick Jagger is!” (I learn quickly!)

Photo by Janko Ferlič on Unsplash

Indulgent Misconceptions or…..

My point is that we can have such misconceptions of others based on their looks, clothes, and age. It’s sad really because it can keep us from connecting with other human beings who might actually light up our lives.

I must confess I have had the opposite experience as well. I once went on a date with a guy who at first glance did not look like my type.  I would not want someone to judge me that way so I  gave myself time to talk to him. He did not improve with exposure and there was no second date but at least I gave him a chance.

Indulgent Look
Photo by Nathan Fertig on Unsplash

The Indulgent Little Old Lady Look

But back to my title. I am now 62 years old. I think I look a little younger, but not much. I haven’t quite reached the white-haired old lady look and really, I’m not sure I ever will.

Holy jeans rock! I like my holy jeans. I wear whatever feels comfortable to me. I carry my “luggage” in a backpack and the coolest roll-up bag ever and I have a tendency to cuss like a foul-mouthed sailor.

Indulgent Living
Photo by Kevin Grieve on Unsplash

Not Anyone’s Stereotype

This weekend I went out of town, and as I sat at a light waiting for the longest, slowest train I have ever experienced I was doing a gentle headbang to an Imagine Dragon song and happened to look to my right and saw an interesting medical marijuana place that I wanted to visit.

And I laughed. I am not anyone’s stereotype of an old lady. I doubt very much that I ever will be and I am so happy about that! So what do you do that breaks your stereotype?


Traveling Light

October 16, 2018
Traveling Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash
Backpack Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

I’m not sure exactly when I became obsessed with the idea of traveling light but I think it had something to do with trying to sling a huge suitcase filled with Christmas presents and a laptop up into an Amtrak train. It was so heavy! So I decided to get with the program and find a way to travel more comfortably. The first thing I did was get rid of the suitcase. I bought a nice, rugged backpack which I use for two-day trips and added a Rollo Travel Bag for longer trips. http://a.co/d/dEZpWrn

Traveling With Tech

Traveling Tech Photo by Grzegorz Walczak on Unsplash

Photo by Grzegorz Walczak on Unsplash

Then I had to take a close look at all the tech crap that I carry with me.

I would like to tell you that I love my Mac Book Pro for traveling but I would be lying. Oh, I liked it well enough when I first bought it, although I had only worked on a Mac a few times before so there was a learning curve for me. I bought it refurbished because I generally have good luck with such things on eBay.

My first disillusionment came on a trip that I took to Ventura. You might have read about it here: https://indulgentaging.com/index.php/2018/09/19/a-small-taste-of-karma/ First of all, I paid more for this thing used than I did for brand new laptops of the “other” persuasion. To add to my disgruntlement on this occasion the charger disintegrated and to replace it would have cost me well over $75.00.

I hauled the damn thing home along with the new shiny Acer Chromebook I purchased (and happily used on my trip) and scoured Amazon until I found a relatively inexpensive charger. I was bound and determined to use this thing even though it weighs a lot more than my (now two) Chromebooks.

Tech Trial And Error

Traveling Tech Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

Next trip, it goes in the car, gets hauled up the stairs to my room and promptly shuts down with an error message that means my hard drive is bad. Grrr! I don’t even know why I brought the extra Chromebook with me. Maybe I’m psychic and don’t know it? I mean who needs two computers on a road trip? Anyway, the Mac went back down the stairs and into the car to be filed in my mind as a task that I will take care of much later in my life, along with the malfunctioning iPhone that also needs repair.

I think you are catching my drift here and I am sorry to you Apple product users out there who are screaming at me that your stuff is the best. I have pretty much made up my mind at this point that I am sticking with my Dell Desktop (refurbished and cost me $169.00), my LG V20 phone, my Acer Chromebook 11 and yes, I admit it, my Apple iPad Mini, which I love.

It took me a while to get it right but I can now travel light with all of the above (minus the desktop PC) in my purse.

Enter The Purse

Traveling Purse Photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash

Photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash

Ah, the purse. That holy grail of getting your travel stuff right. I have been a purse hoarder for years. I love to buy them, always looking for just the right size and usability for every occasion. (And no, the one in this photo is not what I am using!)

I used to go for the designer bags at Ross and Nordstrom Rack but I have now graduated to practical over frou-frou. What happened? I discovered that leather bags are heavy especially if you are looking for one to carry a lot of stuff.  So now I mostly stick to lightweight canvas or nylon ones with lots of pockets.

This one is great. It has plenty of pockets. I can fit my iPad mini, my phone and my Chromebook in it along with other assorted stuff. http://a.co/d/8vaOgI7

However, I can’t deny that I still want to have one that looks like this photo. A magic one like a Mary Poppins bag would be a dream come true! Maybe for Christmas???

Life Practicalities of Living

So You Won The Lotto. Now What?

October 9, 2018
Driving and Lotto Dreaming

Yesterday I was driving home from one of my chillax trips to Ventura and letting my thoughts tumble all over the place in my head. I started thinking about what I would do if I won the Lotto, which would be a total miracle since I don’t even but the tickets. I realized that I didn’t have even the haziest idea of what I would do if money were no object. That worried me because it seemed to me that showed a lamentable lack of imagination! How could I focus on getting what I want if I don’t know what that is?

Can you see why I don’t spend a lot of time driving? A loosed brain is a scary brain! Just kidding. I actually love my driving time between here and Ventura because I do think of wild things that I don’t have time to think of while I am working.

Hitting the Lotto Target


The Wonders of Creative Lotto Thinking

Back to the topic. Do you know what you would do if you won the lotto? Besides buy a bunch of toys? When you think about winning does it make you happy? I know these sound like silly questions especially when you don’t buy a lotto ticket but to me, they went to the heart of what I want to do with my life in the next 25 years. If I can’t see the target clearly how do I get what I want?

Creative Lotto Thinking

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

I really believe that clearly defining what you want can enable you to plan how to get there, whether you win the lotto or not. This is a technique that I have used in my own life many times. It helps me focus, plan and then nimbly side-step all of the above if something else terrific opens up along the way.

Perfect Lotto Home


What Do You Dream Of?

The good news for me on my drive home was that what I am doing on the work front still made sense and made me happy even with the lotto win. The bad news is the personal stuff was a lot murkier. First instinct, buy a house. But where and do I want to live alone or drag my roommate along with me? Do I move closer to my family? But they are in flux as well. Where DO I want to live? What does that look like? Big house, small house? Beach, forest or city? Maybe a Hobbit House would be the perfect place. Ha! I just realized that I need more than one place to live and I can do that since I WON the lotto 🙂

Lotto Journey

Photo by Miss Zhang on Unsplash

Who Do You Dream Of?

Who will be with you on your Lotto journey through life? Do you have friends around you? Family? A travel companion? A lover, husband, significant other? And if you have a limited number of the above what do you do to expand that?

Tasting Life

Photo by Icons8 team on Unsplash

What Does Your Life Taste Like?

What do you do every day in your new life? Do you travel? Remember you are free to do whatever you want now. What is that? What is the flavor to your days? Do you work? Do you lay on the beach and get burned, oops I mean tanned?

Lotto Living

Photo by Bruno Wolff on Unsplash

Completely Crazed (Thanks Lotto!)

Have I made you completely crazy yet? Welcome to my brain on drive! But there is a method to my madness. I really believe that life can open up wonderful adventures for us if we take the time to look for them. If we find some idea that is wild and wacky that makes us smile and sigh, we can have those things, even without winning the lotto. Dream, taste, feel the things you want and then look for them by putting one foot in front of the other!

Health Life Practicalities of Living

Are You Age Caged?

October 2, 2018
Bird in a cage. Photo by Kira auf der Heide on Unsplash

Sometimes we put birds and animals in cages for their own safety. Have you been doing the same thing to yourself?

Life & Death

I was talking to a neighbor of mine the other day. She is a fun-loving lady in her 70’s who has had three boyfriends since I moved here. She loved to go out with them and dance and socialize.

She also loves to drive and would get in the car with them and drive them all over the place, to Northern California, Idaho, Palm Springs, whatever place took their fancy.

She had a great time with each of them, the only problem is that they were all in their late 80s and 90s and they all died on her.

After the last gentleman passed away, I noticed that she was kind of depressed and not going out as she used to, so I asked her when she was going to find another boyfriend.

She was emphatic when she said, “Never!” Now, I’m not stupid and I understand that she liked these men and was sad when they died, but I told her the problem is that she is caging herself in to save herself from suffering and in the meantime, she is still not a happy camper. I have watched while she not only suffers but her health has declined as well.

Safe cage or prison?

Photo by Jose Fontano on Unsplash

Engagement or Safety

My question is, don’t you think it’s better to keep engaging and having fun where you can instead of dying slowly and carefully alone and “safe” in your apartment?

Don’t get me wrong, I am a horrible example of someone who is emotionally connected. I enjoy my own company a lot and I work like a demon for not much money. So I am not a social butterfly or even a social caterpillar.

All excuses I know, since living life to the fullest requires effort and extension. And I am tired and without patience.

However, I am also older and I feel the cage closing in on me. Things I used to be fearless about now cause me anxiety and I know if I don’t challenge those things it will only get worse.

Age Caged on the beach

Photo by James & Carol Lee on Unsplash

Challenging the Cage

How do we go about challenging the cage? I think it is different for everyone. But you can start by picking one thing that you are afraid of and then DO IT!  Or do something that is a baby step up to doing it. If you can’t set up an online dating profile maybe you can start by looking a man or woman in the eye and saying, “Hello!”

If you can’t drive on the freeway in rush hour traffic, go somewhere where the freeways are less crowded and try it there.

Or if you really want to go balls to the walls do what this lady did: http://a.co/d/8aCT94c  Jane Stern wrote this book, Ambulance Girl: How I Saved Myself by Becoming an EMT to share how becoming a volunteer EMT saved her from  being “virtually immobilized by fear and anxiety.” I have not read the book yet since I just purchased it yesterday and from the book blurb I think this option is not for everyone, but I expect to learn some good things from the reading it!

Out of the cage, free as a bird.

Photo by Wynand van Poortvliet on Unsplash

The Bottom Line

This is probably what I should have named my blog! But the bottom line is that there really is a large, exciting world out there and all of us, myself included, need to make the effort to join in, to be part of something that makes us smile, touches our heart or just gets our pulses racing. Use it or lose it, folks!

Life Practicalities of Living

New Motherhood at Any Age

September 26, 2018
Relaxed Baby

I bet you didn’t think you were going to find an article about new motherhood on an indulgent aging site, but how could I not write about this after reading about Brigette Nielsen becoming a mom at 54 after ten years of trying? https://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Culture/baby-54-brigitte-nielsen-shes-happier-life/story?id=57713068

Brigette Nielson and Mattia Dessi

Brigette Nielson and Mattia Dessi

First of all, she looks fabulous and her husband is fifteen years younger than her. She’s my hero! Secondly, where did she get the patience for motherhood at 54? Now granted, she has money (and that younger husband) which means she can afford help if he is not so inclined. She is obviously in great shape but I still think it takes a special kind of person to want to have a baby at this age.

Motherhood and Dadhood

Photo by Liane Metzler on Unsplash

Desire and Relevance

Does that mean that you shouldn’t do it if you don’t have the advantages that she has? I don’t know. I do know that desire doesn’t end at 50 or 80, desire for many things including sex, love, family and being relevant.

I was talking to one of my tenants the other day. He is a good-looking, charming man who has obviously had a good time in his life. His conversation with me though was about how he felt like he had missed the boat. His voice was filled with wistfulness and humor and he said that he watched others in the building visiting with their children and grandchildren and he wondered why he had never had any of his own.

Motherhood and Fatherhood

Photo by Fernando Pelaez Cubas on Unsplash

I told him that there were still women out there who would be interested in providing him with children and he said, “Good God, no!” but the wistfulness was still there.

Motherhood and Grandparenting

Photo by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

Lawful Parenting Age

There is no law that I know of that limits the age of when you can start (or re-start) a family. As a matter of fact, even if you are too old or physically incapable of carrying a baby you can participate in parenting through adoption and foster parenting. https://www.adoptuskids.org/adoption-and-foster-care/overview/who-can-adopt-foster

When I started doing some research for this article, I found this fascinating. You can foster a child in most places as long as you are at least 21 years of age. Some states allow it as young as 18. But there is no upper age range.  One article I read said that people in their 80’s sometimes make the best foster parents, nor do you have to be part of a couple to foster kids. You can even foster kids from the US while living in other countries. Wow! Who knew?

You also do not need to be wealthy or a stay-at-home Mom/Dad. There are options for help with childcare costs if you need to work. There is a particular need for foster parents for special needs children.

Motherhood and Passion

Photo by Ian Schneider on UnsplashPhoto

Passion and Needs

Being older does not mean being less passionate or less relevant. If you have a passion for family, if you have a passion to help others, don’t be afraid to explore your options. You may find that there is a new life just waiting for you to discover it!