Tag Archives: inspiration

Encore Quotes ~ Find Time for Reading

Hey there voyagers!  I’ve spent a great deal of time this week thinking about books and reading.  For myself, I’ve been staying up waaaaay too late reading, and I’ve just finished my 6th book of the new year.

I also spent time talking with a young friend whose 4th grade son does not like to read.  I put together a grade level appropriate list of some of the best children’s books I could think of.  A child who is not motivated to read is either struggling, or has not experienced the right book!  What fourth grade boy would not be enthralled by the idea of owning a pet Grizzly bear (Gentle Ben by Walt Morey), or by the thought of living alone in a hollowed out tree and training a falcon! (My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George)

The best advice I could give her for developing a young reader is to read TO him!  Aloud, and snuggled up in the most comfortable place she could find!  I always told the parents of my students that their job was to keep the love of the book alive! Reading aloud to children helps them develop the imagination necessary for independent comprehension.  And the right books will get them hooked!

And then I got to thinking about my fellow retirees.  Are there any young people in your lives to whom you could read aloud?  To whom you could give the very special gift of your time and reading expertise?  Is there someone for whom you could light the reading fire?

Have a great weekend, and enjoy reading a wonderful book!  I know I will!

Lynn

By the way, can find me on Goodreads here.

The New Year’s Paper Work Flood!

Some people start diets, some people make resolutions to get fit, to eat right, to save more money.  I don’t know what happens to me, but I become a paperwork fiend!

I must admit that I am an organizational guru!  If you were to blindfold me, stand me at my front door, and ask me to put my hands on pretty much anything in my home, I’d be able to find it…unless it is made of paper.

I think it happens as a result of preparing for the next tax year.  Time to file the remainder of the last year’s bill statements, and purge the files to prepare for 2018.  But one thing always leads to another.  I start filing one thing, and then end up cleaning out another storage box.  That, in turn, leads to cleaning out the top drawer of my desk – gotta organize those paper clips, ya know – which leads to cleaning out the other desk drawers.

Wait…what is on all of these flash drives?  I certainly don’t need to keep student data from 10 years ago, and hey – this one is full of photographs!  Yikes – They need to be backed up to the cloud!  Guess what I’m doing right this minute!

And now that I think about it, what is in all of these computer files?  Time to do some deleting…and what about Dropbox – there’s lots of stuff in Dropbox that I surely no longer need, just taking up space…and One Note – what about that?!!!

By the time I’m done, I’ll have this place will be ship-shape.  But did I mention that I have not yet taken my Christmas decorations down?

Lynn

My Retirement Yoga Journey

Anyone who knows me, or hopefully reads Encore Voyage, should have figured out by now that I am one of the most snarky, sarcastic chicks you’ll ever meet.  I am most emphatically NOT the type of person who comes to mind when you consider the practice of yoga.  But as we headed down this road in retirement, I began to notice that getting up off of the floor isn’t as easy as it once was!  I was losing core strength and stamina, and I didn’t like it ONE BIT!

Even I couldn’t imagine myself sitting in a room acting all zen-like.  Heck, most people can’t even imaging me being quiet for that long!  That said, about two years ago, when my brand new gym opened, I started one of the gym-based yoga classes.  I figured I wouldn’t feel too stupid if I started out new like everyone else.

At the time, my thinking was that this might be a nice gentle type of workout. (I’m not a big fan of feeling my heartbeat in my ears!)  I ended up attending two classes a week for the better part of a year.

What I didn’t realize is that

Yoga sneaks up on you, and quietly changes
the person you are, from the inside out.

  • Slowly, steadily, your body becomes stronger, through the many asanas or poses.  Anyone who thinks that yoga is just a bunch of stretches has been misled.  Yoga is not for wimps!  I can work up quite a sweat in a yoga practice.
  • Your balance is improved from attempting balancing poses.  As we age, lack of balance is one of the most common causes of falls.  I figured it couldn’t hurt to be able to stand confidently on one foot while putting on my jammies, right?
  • You do not need to be flexible to practice yoga!  Flexibility is a benefit of yoga!  I heard someone say, “You are only as young as your spine is flexible.”  I have found that my lower back pain has disappeared as a result of my practice.
  • Yoga is about self-acceptance!  One of my favorite aspects of the yoga journey is that it is not about competition – not even with yourself!  It’s about listening to your body and finding what feels good and right in that moment.
  • There are many different types of yoga for many different purposes.  Some move quite quickly, and others are more restorative.   Certain yoga poses accomplish different things, and with a little training, you can pick and choose what is best for you.  (As for me, hot yoga…two words – never.again!)
  • Attending to the breath in a yoga practice yields a mindfulness and a quality of meditation that surprised me.  This is where my snarkiness got tamed.  I wasn’t expecting it.  The more I practiced, the more I was able to see the carry-over into the rest of my day.  I don’t get crazy in traffic.  I don’t feel rushed.  I am generally more peaceful, appreciative, and balanced than I was before. Crazy – I know!

I did find when I was first starting out that it was helpful to have a knowledgeable yoga instructor who could really guide me into the intention and correctness of the poses.  It’s not about just yanking yourself around, trying to get into some shape.  Yoga is much, much, more.  Now I find that I really also enjoy a home practice, and YouTube has an endless supply of yoga videos, of all lengths and styles.  A particular favorite of mine is Yoga with Adrienne.  Adrienne Mishler has just the right personality, and is not too fast or too serious.

So how about it retired yogis?  Anything else you’d like to add?

Lynn

Oh…one more thing.  If you do take up yoga, don’t cheap out on purchasing a yoga mat.  Get a nice, slightly thicker one.  Your knees will thank you!

#JusJoJan Day 4 ~ Are You “Passionate?”

I’m not sure why, but this concept of Just Jot It January has intrigued me.  Each day, there is a one-word prompt, and participants are encouraged to just jot something down in response.  Well, today’s word is “Passionate,” and when I saw it, visions of my dad came sharply to mind.  You see, my daddy had this saying:

“Find someone who is passionate about what they do,
and they’ll always do a good job for you.”

As I have grown older, I have come to understand the truth of what he said.  It doesn’t matter whether the person is your banker or the guy who shoes your horses – if he is passionate about his work, that work most likely will be of quality.

It was easy to tell that our builder was passionate about what he was doing as he lovingly rubbed his hands over the wood.  The guy who repairs our appliances is so proud of having built his family owned business with his sons.  It’s not about the money being made or the importance of position.  It’s about the love of the task.

I’m curious.  Do you tend to hire people who are passionate?  Do you surround yourselves with passionate people?  Are you passionate in your own pursuits? Leave a comment and share your thoughts!

Lynn

Encore Quotes ~ The Best Portion of Your Life

Happy Friday, Voyagers!  Today, I hope you remember that the best portions of your life have nothing to do with Christmas presents or all the other trappings of the season!  Instead, I hope you all truly enjoy those special moments gathering with those you love!  Have a wonderful weekend, and

Merry Christmas!

Lynn

Encore Quotes – Learning and Living

Happy Friday, Voyagers!  It’s been a week full of learning for me.  A little challenging, a little frustrating, a lot of fun!  One of the critical components of a successful retirement voyage is that you not stagnate.  That you always have something that will challenge you, drive you, motivate you to get out of your recliner chair.  My hope for you this weekend is that you will rekindle some interest – find some curiosity within.  So how about it – what new things will you learn next?

Lynn

Retirement Learning – I Can Take Off Your Head!

The other day my girlfriend called me with a special request.  “Don’t you have that program where you can put someone else’s head into a picture?” she asked.  Ummmm…yeah, I have Photoshop, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I know how to USE IT!

She wanted to include some friends, who had been absent from an event, into a group Christmas photo – a tongue in cheek joke that said, “We’re thinking of you, and we missed you.”

Well on the Encore Voyage I have learned a couple of very, very important rules…

I can figure out ANYTHING with YouTube

and

Google is my friend

With digital photographs in hand, along with a couple of YouTube tutorials, I was off and running on a search and destroy mission to learn some new skills.  And before you know it, our friends, Donna, Sandra, and Deb, were poking their absent little heads right outta that Christmas Tree!

I can move your head

Because I didn’t want to post a picture of all those folks without their permission, I thought I’d show you that I really can remove your head from your body!  Fun, huh?!

I am certain that a professional photographer would have done it differently, and would have done a much better job.  But for me the exercise had several benefits:

  • It barely scratched the surface of the things I could learn about Photoshop, and it piqued my interest to do so (along with a desire to get much better at it!)
  • It made me want to take and edit better photos (that, and looking at Terri Webster Schrandt’s pictures!)
  • It reminded me that there are so many other fascinating things to learn about, which require only some time and focus – all of the information in the world is available at my fingertips.  Web design, desktop publishing, even playing my saxophone – Yep, I can learn all of those things, too.

This Photoshop exercise made me realize that retirement doesn’t mean that a person stops learning and exploring new things.  In fact, I would never have had the time to play around like this during my pre-Voyage career!  So how about it – What new skills are you learning to make your Voyage an adventure?

Lynn