Privilege Blog

Once More Out Of The Breach, Dear Friends, Once More;* Or, Saturday Morning at 9:45am

Well, my friends, I am retired. Again..

It has taken about 4 weeks for the high job tide of adrenaline, cortisol, and testosterone to roll out. By the way, here’s a fascinating TED talk about leadership, body language, and the hormonal accompaniment.

It turns out that one does not move directly from full-tilt job to full-tilt recreation. At least not in my case. One lies for quite some time on the sofa. By the way, I like Sean Saves The World more than The Crazy Ones. Robin Williams seems to be phoning it in.

But I digress.

For future planning, I prefer small steps and incremental certainty to grand plans with 5-year, and thus invisible, horizons. I find the question of “What is the future?” best answered by a series of “And what about today?”s. So far, here’s what I know:

  1. I need looser pants. My sofa insists.
  2. The Internet says that one can grow vegetables in the California winter. Radishes, prepare yourselves.
  3. This whole Linkshare/monetization process is complex, but I will figure it out and plans to donate to Dress for Success are on track.
  4. I’m not as good a cook as I was in my heyday but can still make meals worth eating.
  5. My camellia sasanqua came back from its hard prune.

Here’s what I have yet to figure out:

  1. How to exercise when it isn’t required?
  2. Will software and its wiles pull me back in, ever again?
  3. Where will Significant Husband and I go for our belated honeymoon?
  4. What will be the point of me, in this second half? What cause will I serve?
  5. What color should I paint the house?
  6. Does arthritis ever get better once it manifests? (See thumbs, feet.)
  7. Will PG&E trim my tree that’s tangled up in their power lines? For free?

As you can see, I have more questions than answers. That may never change.

The blog persists. Does it change? Not in intent, not in frequency, I imagine inevitably outfits will shift – over time. Looser pants, as I said. And more playful shoes. But I still have a set of work getups to show you, and the streets of San Francisco aren’t going anywhere.

Feel free to speak up, make suggestions or requests, boss me around. I respond well to benign authority and am never happier than when I prove useful.

Have a wonderful weekend.

*Title adapted from Henry V

94 Responses

  1. Unencumbered by a medical degree, but with keen observational skills, it has been my experience that arthritis will not improve. Celebrex is a flawed drug, as are all NSAIDS, but it can be very effective at holding deterioration at bay. Talk to your doctor, if you’re going to take it, start before things get worse.
    Let us know about the exercise issue. After I retired I lost my routine and pushups/situps/squats went by the wayside. I’m pretty annoyed with myself.
    Congratulations on your status change.

    1. I’m hoping that yoga and Pilates classes will play a role. I’m also medication-averse. But I may have to change my mind.

  2. Not sure if your status change was your idea or the company’s. However, my husband recently sold his business and is in a similar position. He has a two year commitment to help the new owner get comfortable. This is probably different from your situation. For him, this has been wonderful. We are able to enjoy morning coffee in the living room AND he still feels needed and useful. You have an adjustment period of new marriage and now retirement. Give yourself time to get used to all this. There, consider yourself admonished. We are all here for you, to support and give you “helpful hints”.

  3. A new chapter and it sounds like a good one. I find the arthritis upsetting. I do have a suggestion, which addresses the arthritis and The Exercise Question. Try Classical Stretch, I believe it’s on PBS in the mornings, developed by a Canadian former ballerina who now trains Olympic athletes, hockey players etc. I do it every day and I swear by it, it keeps me pain free, bendy and is great for toning everything. 23 minutes!!
    If you don’t get it on PBS email me and I’ll send you a DVD. It sure is nice NOT to have to go to a gym.
    And where will you go for your honeymoon?!

    1. Seems that we don’t get that show here. Mulling over many honeymoon locations, planning is half the fun:).

    2. I thought I was the only one who watches Classical Stretch. It is, in my
      humble opinion, the most sensible way to exercise…regardless of age.

      You can google “Classical Stretch, the Esmonde Technique” and get an idea of what it’s about.

      I wish more people were trained in this wonderful form of exercise.

  4. when one believes one has more answers than questions, one must reexamine one’s certainties. and get lost in a few foreign cities, i think, for good measure.

    i think that you should go to iceland, of course, and that you should paint your house green.

    1. i’m a big believer in warm greys. i also love the light touch of heather in farrow & ball’s calluna (i recommend f&b across the board; their paint is magnificent.)

  5. The twists and turns of careers – even ones we may not wish to choose again – leave us breathless and anxious at any age. You are a talented writer and societal observer and do not for a minute suspect that your “sofa time” will last long. The arthritis onslaught ebbs and flows, I find. Right now I just rail against it and take OTC ibuprofen or naprosyn. Less computer time, I find, benefits the hands.

  6. Lisa, do I need to tell you that the arthritis will never go away, but you can reduce the symptoms greatly by avoiding grains, soy, and industrial seed oils?

    Oh, and we’re on for the pickled jalapeno carrots. You should see the recipe late this coming week or early the next.

    1. Going gluten free helped my painful knees immensely. Udi’s brand makes tasty breads if you like something to have with butter…. or a sandwich.

    2. Don’t do industrial oils, must eat my toast in the morning:). Can’t WAIT for the jalapeno carrots.

  7. Your retirement is good news for me and that’s what’s important, right?

    I will be going to SF in mid-Dec and would love to meet up for coffee or a walk or lunch or whatever. I will email you.

  8. I have to say that I’ve been stricken by arthritis also (and it shows up on xrays and is pointed out to me by medical professionals.) For unknown reasons, it is painful at times and then seems to go away–at least in terms of pain. I would hate to give up my whole wheat toast at breakfast.

    I predict that this retirement will be different from the last one–and I, for one, am looking forward to its manifestations. I hope that it means more blogging entries from you!

    You will always be useful.

  9. Happy Retirement!
    Happy Marriage!

    PG&E will probably trim that tree but maybe
    not artistically … so watch ’em!

    1. I was going to say the same, only I would describe it as “butchering.”

      Hope you enjoy your retirement.

  10. I can’t answer for you, but I found some personal resolutions for #1 and #4: Exercise tends to find me when I need it most. And working with the American Red Cross on disaster relief has been amazingly rewarding. Being in the pool of those who help at large disasters (hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, etc.) means travel with a purpose. Your software background would make you an excellent candidate to work in the Disaster Services Technology group. Just a thought.

  11. To question #7, yes! They would love to trim your tree if it’s encroaching on their power lines. Be warned, though, they are not into the aesthetics of tree trimming.

    You may want to offer these workers some bottles of water and friendly chatter. I strongly recommend this technique. It may help sway their opinion, if you offer your opinion in getting your tree cut. You probably don’t want a hack job.

    Enjoy solving your retirement dilemmas. They sound like lovely ‘problems’ and thoughts to have. Best wishes and congratulations on your nuptuals!

  12. Hi Lisa!

    I couldn’t resist following up on your mention of the most beautiful flower in the world — the Camillia Sasanqua. In the sunny South, my winters are filled with their colorful, delicate blooms. I’m glad to hear that you are the caretaker of one.

    I will be in the Bay area during the first part of November and I would love to meet you for coffee or dessert.

    Unexpected or not, congratulations anyway on your retirement. You are entering one of the best periods of life IMHO.

    Best regards,


  13. Your future is filled with opportunities, the dilemma being which ones to go with. Where are your talents, what gives you great satisfaction when doing, and what have you always wanted to try? How about sharing your incredible software knowledge with college students by teaching – many more options today with extension and online courses, homework graded from your sofa. What far away places are on your bucket list? You can learn to cook in France or Italy!
    I see the second half as our most influential and productive, as a time to give to those who are starting their journey behind us, mentoring, coaching, imparting our experience and building legacy. You don’t have to give loads of money to join a philanthropic group – local university or wherever.
    Maybe it’s time to write those books you have inside of you, learn something completely different or start your own business(es). The couch is relaxing for a time, but there are places to go and people to meet! How about a Privilege Tour?
    Whatever you decide, we look forward to hearing about your adventures and are your greatest fans. Your future is bright! xoxo

  14. Wondering what led to this; went back to check the past month’s posts, nary a hint. (My curiosity is evoked b/c you seemed to be engrossed in the work, not by any sense of what you “should” be doing!)

    Dear Lisa, there is so much to discover and do, and you will doubtless go forth with verve, discernment, a dash of quirk and an abundance of heart.

    1. Yes, I’ve been careful all along to say pretty much nothing about work on the blog. They were very tolerant of my sort of, as you say, quirky blog, and so I made sure to keep work to work. No need to change that now.

  15. I’ve found that exercise is the best medicine for so much that ails us, physically and mentally. Try “The Bar Method” — locations in and around S.F. I started it at 49 (four years ago) and have never looked back. It kicks your butt every single time but the results are amazing. You will be stronger than you’ve ever been and feel great!

  16. Sorry about the work status. My fate is in the hands of 435 people, all of whom care more about their future work status than mine.

    My mother, who picked paint colors for many rental homes, offered me up the following when it was time for us to paint our home. She said, “Go to the paint store, pick up a brochure and choose one of the combinations that their color professional put together, then drive around your area and look at houses that are painted similarly.”

    You can express yourself with the garden or the porch furnishings, they’re easily changed. Exterior painting is such a big mess, every time I’ve had it done my yard is trashed for the season, you don’t want to have re-dos.

  17. Congratulations. I suspect that you currently feel at loose ends but, trust me, that will change. I’m truly happy for you, even if you aren’t (yet) quite there, yet.

  18. I’m “newish” to your blog so not quite sure what your day job was except for some reference to working with ‘software’. But, assuming you didn’t just leave the literary world, I think you should write a book. You have a wonderful style with words with just enough humor that it doesn’t feel forced, but “real”. Just a thought.

    1. I ran a group of product managers and user experience people (i.e. designers) for an internet company. But thank you. I appreciate your words very much.

  19. Congrats on your retirement! No advice to give, but I’m sure that with your talents and energy, you will find that a deserving project calls to you soon.

  20. Congrats on the retirement. Arthritis never “gets better: per se, but there is a LOT you can do in the diet and exercise arena that can alleviate symptoms. Strength training is really important (for all women, but especially those with bone issues). You just have to find what works, whether it be yoga, the gym….whatever. I cannot wait to see the shoes develop over time :)

    1. I already have a new pair of sneakers. Ha! I hear they are trending but I imagine in New York they are worn quite differently:).

  21. Congratulations on the exciting new chapter…marriage, retirement and so many things to do and lots to explore as a couple.

    I take glucosamine with chondroitin for my arthritic hips and it works for me. It does take about a month to 6 weeks before you’ll notice a difference. I also take salmon oil for brain and heart function…just thought I’d throw that in :-)

    I do hope you take advantage of the off season rates and take that honeymoon!

    1. I’d heard of G&C. Time to try it out. And fish oil keeps me functioning in so many ways.

  22. Perhaps the exercise and arthritis questions go hand in hand. Regular exercise is a key to managing my bad back, and when that slips by the wayside I find my body acts up more. Perhaps your arthritis might react similarly?

  23. Oh my. I hope you view your retirement as a good development.
    What works for me on exercise is to put on my exercise clothes on right after I get up. That way I in effect shame myself into exercising (but only 3 days a week, so it’s not too onerous). I also try to start as soon as I can – I have a glass of juice so I won’t faint and start my run before I have time to have time to think twice. Then I do weight lifting after I come back and eat breakfast. It all takes a while, but I’m finally at a point in my life where I have time. On alternate days I just go out for a pretty purposeful walk, which is enough of a pleasure that I can leave it until whatever time of day is most convenient; I view it as my “palate cleanser” from any household tasks.

  24. I think it would be a great blog project to show us the inside of your house incrementally. The interior designers and artists among us would love to help you out with those paint choices.

    1. I’ve always avoided showing you my house, it’s just so unexceptional. But I could certainly use some help. Does it matter that to me color is usually just a shade of white?

  25. Hope you’re happy about retiring, I did it 2 years ago and am enjoying my life very much. Exercise? walking, which I know you do, stretching classes, Alexander technique lessons and shiatsu massage keep me ticking over. Something with a regular structure.

    As for your house – shades of green are very nice to live with and look wonderful touched up with yellow or turquoise or coral. And lots of wood. Feels like bringing the garden inside.

    I’ll be very interested to watch your progress in this new phase….style wise and other wise. Enjoy!

  26. Please look into the CASA program in your state. A court appointed special advocate is assigned a foster child and reports to the judge the needs of the child as seen by the average person. You are supremely qualified for this, as a successful parent.

    1. I have often thought of foster parenthood, even nannying, because I so love children. But I feel too old for the type of daily care that feels right. This program is to help children in foster care, not do the care yourself? Sounds wonderful.

      Don’t know if I have been a successful parent, so much is luck. My children have taught me more than I have taught them to date.

  27. Celery seeds can be good for arthritis. My mother swears by theme, but said it takes about a month to properly kick in. I’ve been taking flaxseed oil for some time (allergic to seafood, so fish oil isn’t an option) and recently started on the celery seeds and they have helped. Thumb flexing is once again comfortable.

    One of the plans I have for When I Retire is taking up Latin again. Which means a tiny collection of books that I want to translate. This is amongst the usual garden/sew/cook/READ/play with dogs. And restore a somewhat battered harmonium.

    Which is a very long winded way of saying do what appeals. Exercise becomes easy because there is time for leisurely walking and gardening. Enjoy yourself!

  28. I also take double strength glucosamine-chondroitin with MSM (analgesic) and it helps my thumbs. I enjoy exercising at Curves (resistance machines) and enjoy chatting with the other women there. Have been working out at Curves for 8 years. Now Curves also has Zumba classes at some locations.

  29. Wow!Retirement? As an over 55 woman who has just lost her job for the fourth time in five years, my situation is different because I need and want to go back to work. However, I’d like to share a phrase I read recently and that makes me feel powerful: “Change is the new normal, resilience is the new talent.”
    I always check your dress for work options before an interview!

    1. So sorry – the economy just keeps bumping along. Resilience is the thing – and I’m more than happy to help with job interview outfit counseling:).

    2. “job interview outfit counseling”


      Got it!

      An online mentoring “magazine” [with ads up and down the margins] featuring…you!…with topics ranging from outfits at the loweer levels, to godknowswhat heady upper levels that only you would be able to discern/scale.

      The desert sounds great. Even if it was a typo, dessert sounds great too.

  30. You never fail to surprise.

    I go to Zumba once a week and lift weights twice a week.

    Plus the walking to work…

    Exercise is addicting. The more I do it, the more I want to do it. Kind of like smoking but healthier.

    I have no suggestions for your future. I just hope the retirement was a conscious decision and you are reveling in your newfound freedom.

    I will be reveling in an increase of posts from you.

    I love C2 paints. Check them out.

    xo Jane

  31. With any kind of arthritis (I have osteo-arthritis in one knee) the best advice is to keep moving. I think personally that applies to life as well. Yoga and pilates are brilliant and I now have time for both.

  32. You know, back a while ago you’d mentioned the name of your company in a reply to one of your reader comments, I don’t know why but I remembered the name well enough to recognize it again some time later in the pages of WSJ as having been sold. At the time I had a throwaway thought whether the shift in ownership would impact your position, perhaps this is the case but whatever it is, I do not see you sitting on a sofa for very long. No, not long at all.

    The house: if you’re painting it to sell, stick with a color combo that sharpens the curb appeal, yet settles it comfortably into the surrounding neighborhood, first impressions stick. If you’re painting it for you and your husband, just put your combined heads together like you did for the wedding because, judging from your wedding photos, your combined efforts created a flawless visual result.

    Paris and Provence.

    Sending all best to you and your lucky husband, F.

    1. We’ve decided to save Europe for a time when Significant Husband will have at least 2 weeks to spare. I suffer horribly from jet lag, so short trips in that direction are not worth the travel for me.

      How do you feel about Arizona? Craving desert.

    2. If you and SH are both desert “craving” people, then by all means, book it!

      Then again, maybe you watched CBS Sunday Morning today. Maybe one of the essays struck a chord. Maybe it could have been this one:

      Maybe you wondered where you’d stay if you were to strike out for such a Guilded Age destination. Hint:

      Maybe you’d need a local reference who’d been there countless times and could attest. [GO THERE!]

      Maybe not.

    3. Night AND day!

      But Sturdies know how to pack and wear a hat, yes?

      Best not visit Litchfield County NY without a hat either [swells capital AND lyme disease capital of the world].

      I’m a stone’s throw from Cumberland, have lived on the next island just south for 30 years, galaxies apart they are.

      Happy Honeymoon….

  33. Sounds as if the curve you’ve been thrown will be handled gracefully, with you making the most of new horizons. Also sounds as if you’re taking time, taking stock, sitting enough, just being. Seems so wise to me, and I look forward to seeing what directions you strike. As for the arthritis, I’ve had mild manifestations for years, following a genetic pathway, but exercise does seem to hold at bay, for now. And, occasionally, over-the-counter anti-inflammatories or simply Aspirin/Tylenol. . .
    Take care . . .

  34. Sorry if your “retirement” is unwanted. Congrats if it is welcomed. I opted for an early buy out in the face of a downsizing and find ( as I hope for you too) there is no shortage of good activities to keep busy. On the bright side…you may plan your delayed honeymoon unencumbered by job schedules and vacation accruals.
    Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory substance and readily available in the spice section of any supermarket or (more cheaply) in Asian markets. It can be mixed into a little warm water. Also veggies from the deadly nightshade family-tomatoes, eggplant, and peppers can aggravate arthritis. Of course if you love Italian food, this is bad news. However, some find relief in restricting consumption of these items.
    May the future bring you new discoveries and opportunities professional and otherwise.

    1. Second Voltaren gel and pills. It is somewhat hard to find in the States and you need and Rx to get it. But it does work a charm. I stock up on it when I am in the UK where it’s OTC.

  35. Wow. Being retired, going back to work and being retired again in short order can be stressful, even if all of it was entirely your decision. My husband has been on a similar roller coaster for the past 4 years, and it has been a best of times, worst of times scenario. While in his case, he has remained in his job, some months have been so slow he was living the retired life. On the good side, he has discovered talents he didn’t know he had, and is developing wonderful new interests. I hope it turns out wonderfully for you, too.
    Also, you are such a talented writer, maybe a book? Just an idea :)

    1. In my last retired phase, I did a book proposal on High WASPs. The one agent to which I sent it said, “Huh?” This was right before I took the job. I’ve been considering dusting it off, but it’s funny, I now feel less invested in my heritage. I think the blog has performed a sort of exorcism.

      And I use the term “retired” because the last job fell in my lap, and for me to return this time, the same thing would have to happen again. “Unemployed” in the US implies active job searching. And it is hard work in and of itself, job searching, I would not trivialize that effort.

  36. I want to chime in on the g&c thread. My doctor suggested I start taking this a few years ago. Have been and it seems to help.

  37. Full of surprises, as ever!

    May I recommend regular thermal hot spring visits? When last winter drew on and on in Europe I found our local hot (salt) in/outdoors pool the ultimate soul saver. Additionally it helped with my knee and rarer knuckle inflammations. Ibuprofen gel can also help.

    This “water therapy” did me so much good that instead of jogging I now swim 1000 m twice a week in a normal sports pool which is easy on my joints.

    The change in your activity level must take some getting used to, I’m sure. Might take some time to figure out what makes sense for you now. My guess is you will always enjoy response and like to see results (radishes might be almost too easy, though …)

    I am now embarking on some intercultural ventures, among them singing in an interreligious choir (Jews, Muslims and Christians) in hopes of getting a better understanding of how integration might or might not work and how others make sense of the world.

    Personally, I have always liked your more politically/socially minded posts and would enjoy seeing more of your photography, if wishes are permitted.

    1. I would LOVE to do thermal baths:). Your intercultural ventures speak to both your intelligence and your compassion. And I’d be more than happy to write political/social posts, and take pictures. I’m just happy you’re asking.

  38. Oh goodness!

    I’ve loved hearing the whispers of what SF work + life is like from an older seasoned product manager perspective (although I could never put my finger on it until you said something!) – I’m so glad you came back into the fray, at least for a short time.

    The value of what you in the ‘software industry’ (coming from a fellow ‘software industry person’) has a lot more to do with showing up and showing off the fact that you have harmony in all of your ‘spheres’. Shipping product + delivering projects is our job, but our real job is also grace under fire. I’ll be watching for where you go next, but also eagerly awaiting your next writings here.

  39. Wonderful to hear your Camilla survived.

    You may want to use some time to lobby the power corporation for an underground solution.

    Could you give advice to women about how to deliver more than we promise?

  40. Close readers will recall that LPC met someone Significant through work. As time passed, he transitioned from grin-inspiring Significant Other to white-dress-inspiring Significant Husband. Lisa left her job as the nuptials approached. You do the math.

    I am also 56, and am retired in the sense of . I have time to think about these things.

    Has anyone found paraffin treatments helpful for arthritic fingers?

  41. Lisa, I’m really happy for all the changes that have happened to you this year. the change in work status is obviously the door opening for something you were meant to do. I am leaving tasteful grays behind for stark white (my idea of nesting apparently) and don’t have answers for anything except maybe #7, which I am pretty sure is yes.

  42. I hope your retirement was something you wanted, and are happy to not have such a hectic schedule now that you’re married.

    You haven’t said if your arthritis is rheumatoid or osteo, so I’m hesitant to recommend anything – not that you’ve asked for it either.

    I wish you all the best in this new chapter of your life.

  43. I do hope the recreational shift was all your idea, and I wish you the best. As for the questions: Exercise – a body in motion tends to stay in motion. Find something you love. Or at least walk walk walk. Software – perhaps, if it something that engages you. Honeymoon – it’s a lovely time of year for the Greek Islands. The tourists are gone and it is still warm. Purpose – I have no fear that it will be interesting. I see some sort of philanthropic efforts perhaps? Color – I’m funny this way, as I love all white and lots of color as well. It really depends on the house.
    Arthritis – I’m sorry to hear this. I see a lot on line about the benefits of honey and certain spices, such as cinnamon and others with anti-inflammatory properties. I think it falls into the “can’t hurt to try” Category. PG&E trimming – one can only ask. Best of luck to you!

  44. Hi Lisa, I’m just coming on my 60th BD in December, but remember turning 50 as the most life-changing of times in my life. I developed an overall arthritis condition as was even tested for RH. Turns out, this (arthritis due to ovarian failure) is hereditary for the women in my family. What worked–dramatically–was natural progesterone. Almost instantly. In the past 10 years I’ve gone off the progesterone, but get a lot of benefit from apple cider vinegar–I buy it in tablets, and it’s cheap. And when I stick with taking fish oil regularly it makes a difference. I shy away from Advil, etc because they are antiinflamatories. My logic is that I need to deal with the things in my diet that create inflamation–alcohol, beef, sugar, etc. For a good website check out “The Alkaline Sisters”. Now my question: how is it that you are so slim and don’t need the exercise? Are you just so naturally active, but with a high metabolism? I was 5’5″, 125 lbs until menopause and then gained 10 pounds. And I’m an energizer bunny!!! BTW, I love your blog. Allegra

    1. Very interesting on the progesterone and cider vinegar. As for the weight, I guess it’s genetic, and maybe a capacity to be happy with small portions?

  45. My thoughts on your incredibly thoughtful questions – that so many of us could easily use to reflect on our own lives!

    1. How to exercise when it isn’t required?
    Just enjoy more of your walks with your free time! Do you have a pedometer? Setting a goal always keeps my retired Mother motivated.

    2. Will software and its wiles pull me back in, ever again?
    Probably. It clearly was a career mixed with a passion. Maybe you’ll find a neat fashion-oriented start-up you could consult on?

    3. Where will Significant Husband and I go for our belated honeymoon?
    So many options. Why not someplace domestic that neither of you have been. Or somewhere in Canada? I’ve always thought a train trip across Canada with stops in luxe locales such as Banff would be incredibly romantic to do in the winter.

    4. What will be the point of me, in this second half? What cause will I serve?
    I can only hope you will continue with your gifts – your writing and supporting your children – as well as finding something with a broader impact that is well worthwhile. Maybe something in the arts – like the Legion of Honor or de Young (their textiles collection, amazing!!)?

    5. What color should I paint the house?
    Blue. A soft blue that would age well. I always love a house in that shade. :)

    6. Does arthritis ever get better once it manifests? (See thumbs, feet.)
    Only with good PT exercises (tennis balls and foam rollers help!).

    7. Will PG&E trim my tree that’s tangled up in their power lines? For free?
    Pfffft. Don’t we all wish that?


  46. Well, if it helps, I’m 44, working, and still wonder what the point of me is all the time. At one point (that I have clearly outgrown) it was to satisfy all of the family’s vicarious goals and dreams, and I’ve done that, and darned if it left me a bit worn out for coming up with plans for myself. But we endure. You figure out your point and I’ll figure out mine!

  47. Nuts – commented with a link to my old blog – I don’t supose you’d delete and replace with this one?

    Best wishes on this new stage in your life. I’m sure as forminable a lady as yourself can find something(s)worthwhile to do (and a wonderful honeymoon destination).

  48. We are just the same age, but my 16-year-old prevents any thoughts of retirement (and after 32 years of work, it sure looks good some days!) I hope you enjoy every minute, and I look forward to your words of wisdom. Struggling with arthritic toes vs. nice work shoes just now. Am also intrigued by your thought of not being too thin for your wedding…have recently lost weight (deliberately), but am now wondering about what is “too thin” in mid-50s.
    Wishing you every good thing, and looking forward to reading along with your adventures.

  49. Lisa, I would have commented sooner but the last few days have been crazy. Job changes are always incredibly stressful when you are fully invested so it sounds smart to me to take time to adjust as you are doing.

    Managing osteo arthritis is an ongoing process in my experience. What works best for me is regular exercise. I’m not sure if there are exercises that help thumbs and feet though. I’m not having those symptoms. My areas of concern are hips and knees.

    I like lighter colors for the exterior of homes, and darker colors with light trim contrast inside. The Benjamin Moore palette is very nice, and you can always cut the tones with white to go lighter.

    As for purpose, I would revisit the book proposal, but if you’re not as invested in the heritage topic as you once were, maybe try out topics on the blog to gauge interest? You can play a bit and see what falls out.

  50. Sending you best wishes on this retirement redux! I think part of the key of retirement and arthritis (but what do I know, I’ve a ways to go to experience either), is to keep moving. Moving keeps one’s joints limber. The arthritis might not get “better” but I’ve heard it’s far less painful when one is active every day.

    And to the point of being useful, don’t push yourself, but do seek out activities that make one feel satisfied. The blog, maybe volunteering here and there, some amazing trips. Of course, take some more time on the couch, but don’t let the dent in it get too big. ;)

  51. I’m planning to retire at the end of this school year and, although I enjoy my work, I believe it is time to try new things. I look forward to being open to whatever comes along. I relish having the time to do those things I had put aside while raising my children and working at my job. Good luck with finding your point :)!

  52. Congratulations on your free time! I’m sure that you’ll find a way to balance your new home life with exercise (for both body and mind!), and some for of involvement with/for others. Only a few more yearsyears til I retire and can do something without regard for its paycheck &fringes options. Yea! New England is great for honeymoons, but so are most places with a moderate pace so you can enjoy being there together. Arthritis is a bummer. Mine comes and goes. It moderates if I avoid alcohol :-( and glucosamine, chondroitin and cherry extract pills do help. Swimming and water aerobics are my best ways to exercize and keep everything moving more smoothly. Vey best wishes for all facets of your new life! Glad you’re back blogging…I’ve missed you.

  53. Congratulations! Found your blog last night and am having trouble leaving the sofa. Like you, I took time off from my tech industry career to raise my kids until a full-tilt job landed in my lap at 52. I was pleased and excited at first. And then reality kicked in. I missed my kitchen, domestic life, the smell of the earth in Marin, the sound of wind on the mountain. I couldn’t bear being cooped up in an arid office on the 32nd floor of 50 Cal bathed in stress hormones for 8 or 10 hours a day. And I couldn’t leave because I was the one providing adult supervision. Ultimately, mobile technology did me in. I felt like a slave, my mind colonized, my fingers always jabbing at a smart phone. I left my job a year ago and have been luxuriating in freedoms I once took for granted ever since. No doubt you will, too! btw, I found you because I was googling a query as to midlife women in biker jackets last night. I will now liberate my circa 1997 Donna Karan biker jacket from my hinterland closet. All the best to you in your new adventure. And by all means, go to the Greek Islands for your honeymoon! It is perfect there right now.

  54. Your utility company may trim your trees but not professionally and not the way you’d like them. My husband is a painting contractor in Palm Beach. There’s a lot more I’d need to know about your house before giving you a suggestion what color to paint your house. When you mentioned, “What color inside?” I was stymied. Why just one? Unless the layout of the house demands it? As for arthritis, I developed it in my pelvis after it was scraped to harvest bone to create the four new vertebrae molded for my neck after they crumbled after once-in-a-lifetime radiation (after 5 thyroid cancer recurrences), causing my head to fall over due to the weight of my skull and rested on my chest, covering the stoma (breathing opening). This caused me to lose consciousness without warning intermittently for over a year, forcing me to seek corrective surgery or face certain suffocation. I tried many painkillers including Lyrica, an Rx for nerve damage. For someone who enjoys alcohol, Celebrex is probably too damaging to the liver for long-term use. I found a transdermal patch, Lidoderm, which works for 12 hr. stints helpful. It is similar to Tylenol but bypasses the liver and kidney the way oral meds can’t. Ultimately, due to my twenty-plus surgeries and consequent nerve damage, I received an implanted intrathecal morphine pump. It delivers tge Rx in the intrathecal gap alongside the spine directly to the right side of the brain where most pain receptors are located. I actually take only 10% of the medication I once took orally. I rarely take any other supplemental Rx except occasionally 5mg diazepam (Valium) for sustained muscle cramping. I used to take Cymbalta which is an anti-depressant with pain-killing side-effects until I learned it caused fatigue and ran a self-test. It was the cause of my feelings of exhaustion and need for naps. Now discontinued, I have renewed vigor. OK, maybe not vigor but, more vitality. For what it’s worth, AJ

  55. My BFF went from Couch Tater to placing 8th in her Division (Women 55-60) in 8 wks. using an iPhone App, some cardio and weights w/ a private trainer at home. She was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in her 20s and was shuffling when I saw her in January at a convention of neuroscientists in Miami at which she spoke. She ran 5K for Stop Cancer in LA on 9/22/13 in :32! She is my inspiration! For a pic of her at the Finish Line, see @AJFlamingo on Twitter. It can be done!

  56. Definitely try the turmeric in warm water and black pepper. Start with a teaspoon of tumeric and a dash of black pepper. Excellent for inflammation.
    I have a homeopathic practitioner from India who gave me this remedy. It has been a lifesaver. You can research it on Dr. Weil’s site as well.

    Now, as to a Honeymoon get thee to Sedona Az and watch the fall colors. Awesome trails for hiking and the beauty is perfection. Enchantment is a stunning resort. Garland’s Lodge is quaint, no tv, no Internet,gourmet breakfasts and dinners to die for. The Grand Canyon is not far away. Hopefully it will be open if you decide to go.

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