Oct 26, 2016

10 Best Gifts for a Retiree's Christmas chosen by a Retiree

Need to begin thinking about gifts for the retiree on your list? Here is the best that I could find. Let me know what you think.

It seems to me that grandparents are getting younger all the time! I find it true in our RV resort and here in our 55+ neighborhood in Oregon.  And since Christmas is on the way I think you need to keep in mind that what you want they want too. Crocheting has long since gone out of style and lifelong learning is in. Keep that in mind when you buy gift!
Fitbit from Amazon
  1. A pedometer would be fun. A Fitbit is a wonderful device. If your parents or grandparents or are walking, why not give them a Fitbit so they can keep track of the miles they go each month. Walking made fun is good.
  2. I cannot tell you how many women I talk to regret the fact that their spouse cannot waltz or tango. How about dance lesson as a couples gift.  Even a dance lesson video might be fun. I think my husband and I would be more willing to try this first.
  3. I would love a gift card from Amazon or a book store. Better yet give the gift that gives all year...Amazon prime is one of the best gifts around.
    Runner headlamp from Amazon
  4. I think one of those little headlamps that runners and bicycle riders use is just quirky enough for the man on your list. My husband received one for Christmas several years ago. We like to walk after dark when we are in the RV resort but in the fall and springs we watch for snakes. When my husband is trying to work in a dark place like under the sink it has saved us a lot of quarrels. (Can't you shine the light where I want it? he says.) You may have to convince the man to actually use it but once he does, he will love it. NOTE: Your grandchildren will love these too!
  5. Does your favorite senior love to eat but have special needs like a gluten free diet, diabetic safe restrictions or no fat. Find that special treat online for them. Order meal through one of the many services that provide food ordered online. I have a friend that uses them and loves it a lot.
  6. I think a mini iPad or something like it is a wonderful gift.  
    Mini from Amazon
  7. If you senior owns an Kindle or a similar device, give them a gift certificate for some apps or publication on the device.
  8. Rent a wheel chair so you can take your less mobile parents out for the day. If they have such a thing, make it a beautiful ride. Seniors like cool just as well as the next guy. Just because they are having a hard time getting around temporarily does not mean they should live in a cave.
  9. Provide a service. Window washing (you can pay someone else to do this), a room painted, general cleaning (hire a housekeeper for a day), some yard work, spreading of bark dust...you add your own idea.  Be sure you can fulfill your promises though. If you plan to provide the service yourself, set a date for the offer and don't forget.  Your parents/grandparents can be disappointed too. If you are hiring someone, include a gift card for the service.
  10. Wrapped presents...serious Grandparents/parents love gifts. If they say they don't, they are liars!  Even a small gift from a department store can be very special if the wrapping or container is beautiful. Your senior will actually find a way to recycle the box!  Make the container part of the gift.
So what would be your favorite? I personally liked the iPad mini. I can see me using it a lot.

Have a wonderful week end. Remember, shop early and avoid the stress. Who needs that?


Oct 25, 2016

The Plastic Bag Conudrum

Isn't it funny how little experiences can change your whole approach to life? That time you were almost slammed into on the street making a left hand turn has you never turning left again. See what I mean?

The first time my husband and I visited Mexico many years ago, we were in Puerto Penasco. Even though the gulf was blue and people were lovely, the 10,000 plastic bags and Styrofoam boxes that were hiding under the cactus and hanging from every bush and telephone line had us wondering about plastic in general. We came home fearful for how the landscape everywhere in the world was going to look if we continued to waste everything we lay our hands on.

Then the recycle/reuse became a way of life. Plastic bags were replaced by market bags and styrofoam was banned.

But, as hard as we tried to avoid bringing bags home, we would still end up with plastic bags that we couldn't in good conscience throw away. So we started in saving them, bags inside bags hung over more bags inside more bags. We vowed to take them back to the grocery so the grocery chain could throw them away. But we never did. We have so many bags I have designated a corner of the laundry room for their storage.

Then I received this poster in an email the other day:

From Starts at 60
Evidently little old ladies (like me) are crossing over the line between being sensible a citizens and hoarding plastic bags. I promise to be better in the future...in meantime does anyone else have a plastic bag full of other plastic bags somewhere in the house? I am just wondering!


Oct 20, 2016

The Rumor of my Death are greatly Overblown!

No, I am not gone forever...maybe you didn't even notice my absence. In that case ignore this post if you like.

Does it always surprise you when the seasons change? Do you say things like "Oh my goodness there is such  a nip in the air! It can't be fall already." I do that as though fall has never come and gone before since the beginning of time.

Now that we travel back and forth to Arizona from Oregon and the back from Arizona to Oregon every year, you would think that it would be smooth sailing and not a big deal. You would think. I am here to tell you nothing could be further from the truth. It is never totally smooth.

First of all I am surprised that it is time to go and cannot remember what to do or what to take or what I left behind. Surprise surprise surprise!

Rain in Oregon as we left!
This year I woke up the morning we were leaving sick as a dog. We had reservations for three night down the road and there I was...yuck. What did we do? you ask.

Well my husband never acknowledge that there was a problem. I took the required meds and told myself that if I did not die before night, I would be fine. We got in the car and left.

So...we are here in Tucson now. That is good. I am fine and loved the trip. If I had not been fine I hope someone would let you know but I am not feeling hopeful about that.

The Belagio in Las Vegas

Boulder City Breakfast Joint

As I opened my computer that has been just set up, I found these comments on the post about the birth of our new baby Great Granddaughter:

  • Great Grandmother. Wow! Babies are such sweet miracles! Congrats!
  • That might be the most beautiful newborn I have ever seen. Congratulations Great Grandma.
  • Congrats . . . and there's no question, you're cool!
  • What a beautiful little girl! congratulations GREAT Grandma!
  • Yayy! Congratulations! :-)
  • What a sweet baby! Congrats!
  • Wow. Is that wonderful. I didn't respond because, well, life just did not allow it but, in case anyone wondered, I do love to get comments.

    Thank you Tom for agreeing that I am very cool and for the compliments and well wishes you all sent. As DJan said, "Yay". You all made me very happy.

    The baby is fine. She is very durable and not fussy about what goes on around her. I am pretty positive she will outgrow being such an angel but who knows. In the meantime her parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles (11 of them that I can think of) are oohing and ahhing. The routine will be established soon.

    They are all in good hands.

    We are flying home in the spring I think. What cannot be taken on the plane will just have to stay behind. Wish us luck!


    Oct 13, 2016

    She Liked it inside that Womb

    My granddaughter did have her baby...after 25 hours in labor. I tell you what, this little person did not want to leave the warm comfort afforded to her for nine months (going on three years) inside her mama's womb.

    Labor began early Friday morning and lasted until the next day. There was a lot of serious drama and I asked the future grandmother to keep me in the loop. Sometime early Saturday morning night she sent me this text...be sure to notice the emoji at the end:

    She had just told me that the exhausted mom and dad were sleeping for a bit. She, on the other hand, was an anxious mess waiting on the other side of the room.

    The baby was not taken until several hours later. When they decided to do a cesarean, it was less than 15 minutes until she was born.  Everyone, including Grandma and Grandpa, are doing fine. The baby is beautiful.
    Embry Jayde, 7+ lbs at birth
    We are all smitten to say the least. You can now call me Great Grandmother Barbara and my husband is GGpa. How cool is that.

    Embry is now at home with mom and dad. 


    Oct 6, 2016

    How Long Can You Stay Pregnant?

    One of my grandchildren, the 8 year old, was talking about that time he was being built in his mommy's tummy. How long do you suppose it took to build that little boy? Was it only 9 months because it sure seemed like a lot longer than that to me.

    Early July...arrow pointing at the baby being built is her tummy!
    The eight year old is the little guy with the broken arm.
    My dear granddaughter is in the last weeks of her pregnancy which I feel like may have gone on for 3 years already. That poor dear child has suffered from morning sickness for all of that time and she is not consoled when someone tells her that morning sickness makes for a healthy baby. She is not buying it right now.

    As for me I am wondering how long it takes...come one baby, we want to meet you. Don't be shy. It will be okay.

    See here is the thing for those of us that came from a time when we did not know that we were pregnant officially until a rabbit died or a doctor could feel something growing in the womb, knowing for this long is very hard. We were usually "officially" pregnant for 6 months not 9 or more months.

    Now within a couple of days or a week or so, a woman can pee on a test stick and know that she is pregnant and so do those of us that are waiting with her. Hence the feeling that she has been pregnant for 3 years! Oh my gosh!

    So, when the granddaughter posted on facebook last week that her baby had been given an eviction notice, I cheered with her. Early babies are not good but when a baby has been being built for 3 years, I think that is quite enough.

    I am still wondering, "How long can you stay pregnant?"

    I am sure all of you moms out there can tell a story of your own!


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