house lights turned on

Visiting back home, after you move

When I moved to Florida, I bargained with myself that I would spend some time every summer “back home.” For me, that is Long Island, New York. I knew Florida would be hot and I felt I would miss my friends and family and all the fun we had.

I didn’t really miss New York yet, but Christmas had been a bit different. Palm trees wrapped in white lights, golf cart parades and time in the pool didn’t remind me of the holidays of the past. So, feeling nostalgic on New Years Day, I booked our Airbnbs for the month of June.

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Which Famous Highlights to see in Seattle this Spring?

The best part about my stay in Seattle was the Airbnb I found located in the West Queen Anne section of the city. The 100 year old, beautifully renovated home on the hill overlooking Elliott Bay was the best place I have ever stayed in. We had 2 large bedrooms with amazing views, a kitchen, living area and large bathroom as well as all in the modern appliances including a washer and dryer.

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9 Amazing Reasons to Visit Alaska in Spring

No one ever suggests visiting Alaska in the spring. I searched and searched for information to no avail. Is summer the only time to go? Sure it’s dark and cold in winter, but what about spring!?!

My son went to Alaska last summer to work at a fishery as a seafood processor. He stayed for the winter and was planning to return to the lower 48 in the spring, so I felt compelled to visit before he left. But what do we do in the spring in Alaska? Is everything fun closed? I found out one of Alaska’s biggest secrets. March is a great time to visit Alaska!

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Florida house

The new Florida house at Christmas

It’s been a bit of a challenge to decorate my new Florida house for Christmas when it reaches 85 degrees outside some days. So, I turned down the air-conditioner, put the fireplace channel on the TV and told Alexa to play holiday music and opened the green Rubbermaid bins.

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retirement Florida

What do you do in the First Year of Retirement?

“Anything I want”

Haha. That’s the smartass answer, but what do you really do in retirement?

For someone like me who worked steadily out of the home 40 hours per week, all this time at home is a significant change. Back when I had a busy family and house to run, I felt like I was never home. In retirement, you spend more time around the house. This is only my first year, so I am not an expert on anything. This is just what I’ve done so far.

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9 Happy Surprises in Moving to Florida!

One month, and it’s beginning to feel like home. We definitely kept too much stuff from both our homes in New York and still need to purge, but I have faith it will happen. We unpacked most of the 106 cardboard boxes, and found interested parties on the internet to take the empty boxes, thus keeping them from landfills. Signing up for the Next Door app has been helpful. People recommend nail salons, pet sitters, appliance repair services and post photos of random creatures like bugs and bobcats.

We knew it would be hot in Florida in August, but I have some positive revelations from our first month here as well:

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My New York Beach Wedding

As a 55 year old widow I never thought I was going to have so much fun getting married again. Today I celebrate my ONE YEAR anniversary! It has sure thrown us lots to deal with: retirement for one of us, a global pandemic, a home sale, the death of my mom,  a kitchen and bath renovation and both my kids coming home to live with us for a while during it all. Moving forward every day has been my motto.

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Surprising Lioness and cubs on Safari in South Africa

“Now I know that we must always build space around real grief. We need to allow the pain to carve within us a deep knowing of what it means to live, to shape us as innocence never can.” This quote is from Boyd Varty in his book Cathedral of the Wild: his autobiography about growing up on the Londolozi game reserve has resonated with me on this trip to Africa.

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3 days Johannesburg SOUTH AFRICA

Johannesburg, South Africa

Watching the sunrise over the foothills of the valley in South Africa in a hot air balloon should have always been on my bucket list. Who knew what an amazing and awe inspiring experience that would be. All I could do was look around at the land and the sky and my good friends and count my blessings in life.

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