Practicing for Retirement Makes Perfect

[Editor’s Note: The following post is from Susan – yes, the very same Susan who is the new woman in my life. Although she is a baby boomer, she is new to the world of baby boomer blogging so please welcome her (and be nice!). For future posts you will know that Susan is the author because her name will appear in the author byline.  Thanks and enjoy]

Hi everybody! I’m very pleased to be a new contributor to this site. Thanks to Mark for inviting my perspectives on this journey!

Retirement!?! Really?! Mark has been contemplating this journey far longer than I. Although an avid saver, I only recently allowed myself to consider what life in retirement might look like. [Read more…]

A Lucky Healthy Baby Boomer at 64

I’m a very fortunate 64 year old, particularly in the health department. I need to keep reminding myself of that.  Moreover, I need to express gratitude to friends, family and the world at large for making it so. Do you ever feel this way? Let’s talk about it for a minute.

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Predictable Retirement Income from Target Date Bond Funds

This past fall and winter I added some new investments to my retirement portfolio. The investments are known as target date bond exchange traded funds. Sometimes they are referred to as “target maturity” bond funds.  This type of investment is new.  The target date bond ETF category shows great promise for providing bond-like retirement income with little or no interest rate risk.

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Valuing Experiences Over Things in Retirement

While I have been delivering most of the stuff I own to the dump and Goodwill, I have also been thinking about my recent travels and dance classes – alone and particularly with Susan. This has reminded me of a simple principle of sustained happiness: experiences rate higher than things.  This is not an idea that I made up.  There is lots of science to support it.  Although I am not yet retired, I suspect that the “experiences over things” equation applies as well to retirement life.

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First Quarter Net Worth Analysis

Although I have been slow posting in recent months (now being remedied), I have continued to track my net worth as I move ever closer to retirement. (I say “ever closer” despite not having selected a retirement target date.) I have also made some recent changes in my investments with others planned in the coming weeks. The objectives for these changes are to a (a) increase certainty of income in future years and (b) simplify.  I will write more about these changes next week.

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Downsizing Goal Line: The House is on the Market

I have been writing about my continuing downsizing efforts. It’s all come down to this: My house is being listed on MLS today and is officially on the market. My Realtor put a “coming soon” sign in the front yard last weekend. Following that, and before it was listed today, she showed the house five times to different buyers. One seemed very interested but no offer so now the house is open to all lookers. I just received my first text message requesting a showing this afternoon. (Scheduling is automated now.)

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Life in the Baby Boomer Fast Lane

Recently I saw the movie “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.” I was anxious to see this movie because it was a sequel to one of my all time favorites, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.  All baby boomers should put this on their movie watch lists. I continue to identify with the concerns, feelings and joys experienced by the characters in the movie.

A lot has happened since my last post. I have so much to write about but for now, a summary. [Read more…]

Dancing Back from Blogging Hibernation

I haven’t posted here since early October, when I wrote about my very rewarding trip to Italy.  The effects of that trip continue to ripple through my life in a variety of ways, all of them good. I honestly don’t know where to begin in explaining them and I certainly can’t cover all of it in a single post. I am determined to become more regular in my writing here. I enjoy it so there is no reason for me to go silent for such a long period.

Did I tell you I have been attending dance classes? Yep, that’s one of the new things in my life triggered by my trip.

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A Single Boomer’s Successful Trip to Italy

On October 3 I returned to the U.S. from my trip to Italy – my first vacation as a single baby boomer traveling with people that I did not know.

I am still smiling inside. The trip was better than I could have imagined. I am still missing Italy and the people I traveled with. Going to work has become somewhat more difficult.

Where do I begin trying to explain this? [Read more…]