Be Like Mother Fran

Many of the people I work with in the nursing home don’t seem to have much going on in their old age. They sit and stare into space or at the television screen until it is time for bed or their next meal. Whatever leisure activities they enjoyed in the past either cannot be completed in the nursing home setting or they have lost the interest or ability to participate.

I have worked with some elderly patients in their home as well and some of them are in the same position. They wait for the phone to ring, for their favorite game show or for a visitor to stop by.  I want more in my old age! I want to be more like Mother Fran and other seniors who still know how to live life with a purpose.

I want to do more in my old age

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Creating New Traditions

When I was a kid we celebrated Thanksgiving in the traditional American way. Our family got together and prepared a delicious turkey dinner with all of the fixings.   It doesn’t sound like a big deal but thinking back it was a complicated process that all of us engaged in. Think of an orchestra where every musician brings their special talents; knows what to play and when to play it in order to create a masterpiece!

Everyone had a part to play

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What Do You Hate to Spend Money On?

I had some friends visiting from Massachusetts last week and we had a wonderful time! These are the kind of friends who have been in my life for what seems like forever and no matter how mad we get at each other, all is forgiven over a glass of wine or a really good meal.

This friend of mine has a pet peeve bigger then Big Papi’s ability to score a home run in clinch situation. My friend refuses, absolutely refuses to pay for parking. He would rather walk across a bridge, 2 miles in the rain than fork over $5 bucks to park his car.

We jokingly talked about this while driving to go on a  hike last week. My honey and I were trying to figure out how to get to a hiking spot we have done many times but we wanted to park at the summit of the hike (where parking is free) vs at the base where parking cost  $7.00. Somehow I knew my friend would understand.

I hate shelling out good money on poopy bags for Fenway. It seems such a silly thing but why spend money on squirling away poop? I hit the jack pot over the winter when my honey and I were doing some clean up at her parents and we scored 2 boxes of unused bags that are the perfect size to take care of Fenway’s business. I think I even did a happy dance when I tucked them into the car. I should have plenty of bags on hand to get me through 2017. Yeah!

Then again, it beats buying cat litter!

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Schedule It!

The long winter of 2017 is over and spring has been pretty wonderful, although a bit rainy.  I managed to plant my small garden several weeks ago which is pretty early for this area. I have tomatoes, basil, parsley, scallions, and peppers. I have been doing lots raking, weeding and planting in my own yard and with others.

Not my house, not my garden!

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$43,000 Bucks Is Not Enough!

For the last few years, I have been reading several early retirement and financial blogs for inspiration. As I have already passed the BIG 50 milestone, extreme early retirement is not really feasible at this point but I love the concept nonetheless.

The blogs I read are written by people who maximized their income, minimized their expenses and saved like crazy. They worked incredibly hard for a period of time and socked away their money so they could retire in their 30’s. Go Google “early retirement blogs” and spend some time reading for inspiration!

Unfortunately, I do not walk in their shoes!

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Waste Not, Want Not

Did you know:

According to the USDA, the average American throws away over 200 pounds of edible food every year. Yes, I said 200 pounds.

The USDA also reports that over 13 million children under the age of 18 live in households where they are unable to consistently have access to nutritious food.

Think about those numbers for a minute. 13 million children in the US have difficulty obtaining healthy food.  13 million. After contemplating that statistic for a minute, I literally teared up. If you have even 1 drop of empathy in you, I imagine you did too.

Don’t tell anyone but I cry really easily!

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Luck Has Nothing To Do With It!

At this exact moment in time, I am grateful.

I am grateful for my honey, for my mom, for my sisters and brothers. I am grateful for my nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews. I am grateful for my amazing friends that I have known forever as well as for the news ones that I have only met recently. I am grateful for the unconditional love of my dog without whom life would be blah.

I don’t believe I have amazing people in my life because I am lucky. They are in my life because we have been there for each other through good times and bad. When life gets complicated and sticky; I don’t run.  I compromise, I offer my assistance, I reach out for help; but I don’t run. Having people you can count on and who can count on you is critical for maximizing health.

We are better together

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Traveling With Mother Fran

Winter is in full force here in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate, NY and that means it is time to make a plan to get the hell out of Dodge. I woke up at 3AM and the wind was blowing hard, as if Mother Nature herself was knocking at my window. The days have been cold and blowy and every time I turn around more of the white stuff seems to be flying around me.  I don’t mind snow but dealing with the ice is no fun.

So my honey and I are planning a trip to Florida  in February to visit Mother Fran and Child #7. It is nice to have something fun (and warm) to look forward to.

Can’t wait

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Family Fun with Mother Fran

Family Fun – Mother Fran Style

In previous posts I have written about being raised in a household with 8 siblings and amazing parents. My friend likes to joke that we were like the Brady Bunch. My parents were raised during the depression and nothing was wasted or squandered. There was never an excess of income in my house, but there was never a shortage of fun either. My parents were raising 9 kids on 1 income and making ends meet the best they could. We  didn’t have play dates, fancy vacations, summer camp or ski trips. Honestly I don’t even remember ever having a friend stay over night.

Not us...
Not us…

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Mother Fran’s Tips to Stretch The Food Budget

A few weeks ago I posted Money Lessons From Mother Fran and that got me thinking how much of my personality and how I approach life is rooted in lessons I learned as a kid. My parents grew up during the depression and saving, scrimping, re-using, and repurposing are second nature to them. I know I inherited this mindset as did my siblings although we don’t all apply the lessons in the same way. Continue reading “Mother Fran’s Tips to Stretch The Food Budget”