Retirement is not what it used to was!

December 30 – So the year is fast coming to an end with just one more day to do some catching up and to do a little planning for 2015! Have you noticed that the older you get, the faster days move on? Or at least it seems to be that way. Out of bed, then breakfast, and then supper while I’m still trying to figure out what I did with the hours in between.

Former location of the school where I taught in Erie

Former location of the school where I taught in Erie

How did I have time to work away from home every day and still manage to take care of the necessary jobs at home? Not an eight-hour day at work, either. I arrived at school an hour before the kids did, stayed another two hours after they went home, went back to our home to get supper, do the laundry and dishes, with another hour or so grading papers, and checking out lesson plans before bedtime. Same routine as I was up around six to start all over again the next day.

Good thing Dale pitched in to help clean house, etc. He never did any cooking, though. Usually when I arrived home in the late afternoon, I would find the table set, but no food anywhere. Jokingly, I would ask, “What are we having for supper, dear?” His answer was always the same. “Well, you know that better than I do. If I were planning supper, we’d have cereal, fruit, and toast. I don’t know how to make anything from scratch!”

Old flower stalks ready for burning

Old flower stalks ready for burning

When I retired 27 years ago, I thought I would be able to keep up with everything: all of the home jobs, writing letters (we had no computer then), cooking special dishes for Dale, taking our parents to the doctor, driving them to the stores to get groceries and other necessities, even stopping by garage sales so they could find a treasure or two, taking care of the lawn and spending time in the garden, and so much more. And also since I was retired, some of the church officers often said to me, “Well, I’m glad you can do this job–or this one–or that one, because YOU don’t work any more, so you have lots of extra time on your hands.”

I was tempted to say, “Well you just wait! I thought I would have lots of extra time too, but it seems to be just the opposite!” Is it just because I don’t have a schedule of work that I have to do at a certain time, or is it because I can’t pack as many tasks into an hour as I used to? I hate to admit it, but maybe (well, probably), that’s the answer! Just as Matthew and Mark both point out that “the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” I know this has to do with spiritual matters, but it’s also true of those like me who are getting just a little older each day. However, I will never be OLD, just old(er)! – CHRIS

Chris-n-Dale raking leaves

Chris-n-Dale raking leaves in the back yard

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