I am turning to you for some input and ideas.
In June, this blog will mark its 13th birthday. After a dozen of these years writing strictly about retirement topics, I was like the big fellow above: I pulled out the stake to include more personal thoughts about experiences we all share as we age. Posts centered on retirement are indeed still here; after all, the Satisfying Retirement name carries with it a certain promise.
Even so, increased readership tells me branching out has been a wise move. There are new names popping up in the comment section, and I have felt more emboldened to tackle things like book banning or the Secret O' Life, for example.
So, now the request: What subjects would you enjoy reading about and possibly commenting on? As some thought-starters, what about these?
* What parts of contemporary life interest, confuse, delight, or upset you?
* How about topics, both good and not-so-good, that deal with family or friends?
* Vacations..are they still a major draw for you, or are you finding that itch has been scratched, and you are content to stick closer to home?
* Reading and movies: would you find an exchange of favorite new books and authors or recently released movies of interest, either in the theater or on one of the streaming services?
* Speaking of streaming, which channels do you love, which ones do you regret signing up for, and what streaming options are on your wish list?
* I just had expensive problems with a thermostat and a sprinkler head. In my younger days, I would have tackled them on my own. Now, I know my limits; I call someone. Is that where you find yourself?
OK, your turn. These are not the only topics you might want to read about on this blog; they are just some random ideas Add things you think would be worth exploring or commenting on.
I've appreciated reading your blog. Your prompt "How about topics, both good and not-so-good, that deal with family or friends?" triggered a question regarding obligations to siblings. Between us, my spouse and I have six siblings -- all of whom have planned poorly for retirement and some of whom have no spouse or children to support them. To what extent should my spouse and I feel responsible for helping them financially? I feel badly for them, but we aren't rich.Thank you!ReplyDelete
That is a subject heavy with emotion and how far family responsibility extends. It is also a very good suggestion.Delete
Expect to see a post on this in the near future. Thank you!
Honestly Anonymous, NO! is a complete sentence. Are you being asked or is this coming from within? If it is coming from within, time for some soulsearching on why you worked so hard for your own retirement. Was it take care of others or enjoy the fruits of your labor? I always think of the story of the starfish being placed back in the ocean. Can't save them all but it made a difference for that one. Follow your soul and do only what serves you. Know that you deserve the retirement you worked and saved up to enjoy this part of life. (we have 6 siblings as well and we have no children).Delete
Ah yes. I can really, really enjoy my retirement while knowing that my brothers and sisters are struggling. What kind of a world have we now entered where we don't help our family? We're all they got!Delete
You asked what your responsibility was to support them. I answered and then your response is this?Delete
Your perception that we don't and won't help is intriguing. What we won't do? We won't sacrifice our plans to fund the wants of others. When SIL needs help feeding her 3 kids so MIL gives her $500/month for several years and then SIL buys a brand new car even though the one she has is in great shape and running well? Not a basic need. What we will do? My nephew is starting Nursing school. We gave him $1500 to help with costs and prevent a portion of loans. My grand-nephew was robbed at gunpoint (Dominoes Delivery was his first job out of HS). I asked him how much he had on him and handed him the money.
Hi Bob, this is Chris. I like your list of topics. Would like to also see anything helpful about aging parents. So many people my age I know (early 60s-early 70s) going through this with parents mid 80s and up. My personal situation is dad has passed, mom had a stroke 2 years ago. We live out of town. One sister in town has burden of care. So many posts you could do about this, from POA, how to know what to do if they can’t stay in their home, elder care attorney info, and many other topics. It is difficult.ReplyDelete
Would also like to see thoughts about both members of the couple being home all day together when one has been home and the other one retires. We will be going through this in the next year. I like my routine and wonder how it will change when spouse retires at the end of this year.
If I think of anything else, I will come back and comment. Thanks for asking us for suggestions. I am one of the new commenters, even though I have read your blog for awhile.
Both those suggestions are perfect for exploring. I will add them to my future post ideas.Delete
The legal aspects are confusing to say the least. Let's see if together we can make some sense of it all.
Along the lines of the first comment, how about kids and inheritance. Have 6 kids, 3 are married with children and two income earners. One is self employed, one is at a startup company and one does God's work. The last one listed has a very low income, the one at the startup isn't good with money and the self employed one has ups and downs with his work. Should all be given the same eventual inheritance. Husband thinks so but I'm not really sure. deeReplyDelete
Well, that is a large group of offsprings for you to think about. I have some opinions that i will share on a post about this subject. Thanks, Dee, for your question. Looking over the comments, there seem to be solid interest of family side of things.Delete
Hi Bob, We are just retired and read your blog from Australia. You have such good advice in the years leading up to our retirement. Changing family dynamics is also an area we would be interested in reading about. This would include aging parents, poor health of a spouse, children moving in middle age and grandkids you don’t see but want to see.ReplyDelete
Another check in the family-oriented subject column. I sense a trend! Thanks to you, and a fair number of readers from Down Under. I have several solid post ideas so far to address these concerns.Delete
I especially like it when you use your personal experiences -- about family, friends, faith, finances, etc. -- to offer insights about the things we all share in retirement.ReplyDelete
I do like the expanded topic subjects, too. How many times can someone write about RMDs and not go cross-eyed!Delete
The topic of family & friends is very interesting to me lately. Aging parents, siblings we're close and not-so-close to (we have six between us) and adult children and grandchildren. Also the ways Covid changed us are really noticeable to me -- both as individuals and as a society. I hear more and more people say travel has changed, inflation and labor shortages have changed eating out habits, etc.ReplyDelete
I really appreciate the discussions you have with your posts and the commenters!
Covid has had impacts more wide-ranging than just existing with a deadly virus. I believe it has shaken up several pillars of our economic foundation and our own habits. You've given me several avenues to explore, Hope.Delete
I think you have a good mix on your blog now. Most retirement blogs are all on how to save money for retirement not on living in retirement.ReplyDelete
It seems all the younger generation is either an influencer or a rapper that’s in the news. Doesn’t anyone have a real job?
I had Peacock TV, Prime, Paramount Plus and HBOMax I receive free from my AT&T internet subscription. Peacock has movies while they are still in the theaters. I’ve noticed all the new movies make the rounds of Peacock TV first then they are usually a month or two later on Amazon Prime & Paramount Plus. I cancelled the Peacock TV as I can wait a month to see new movies on the other streaming services. I’ll keep Paramount Plus as they have many of the TV Series I like to watch.
I watch 5 movies a month on Kanopy for free. I receive Kanopy through our local library along with unlimited Great Courses on many subjects. I also use Plex TV, Tubi TV apps for ad supported movies along with the Roku TV app. Plex TV, Tubi TV, Roku TV and Pluto TV all have ad supported movies on demand and Live TV Streaming.
I no longer do a lot of repairs as I find it faster and easier to hire someone to make those repairs.
Wow..I thought I had a lot of streaming choices! We do receive Kanopy free with an arrangement with the Phoenix library system. The movies and documentaries on Kanopy are very different from more mainstream services but that can be a good thing. I have though about Peacock and Paramount. Maybe I will give them another look. It is about time to take a break from Disney+ so maybe i will swap one for the other.Delete
The younger people we see and read about who make a living as influencers or YouTube entrepreneurs are likely a very small percentage of that population. On one hand i salute their ability to make a living that way. But, I wish they didn't have as much sway over others who may attempt to copy their approach.
Hi Jack,good news! A LOT of young people have great jobs. I have nieces and nephews in their 20’s and 30’s who are in chemical engineering, personal banking, accounting,nursing,social work, and police force. My best friend’s daughter is an EMT. Another friend’s daughter is a realtor. Some other young acquaintances of ours are learning to take over the Dad’s commercial air conditioning business, and another young man we know opened his own auto detailing company and now specializes in only “high end” cars and is making a fortune! A young woman I know has a business in horseback riding training. I think we need to continue, as a society , to promote education and mentoring , for our young folks, as well as offering training in the trades. Our young people are our future!ReplyDelete
Madeline: you could start a blog about all the interesting younger people you know! Seriously, it might be instructive to feature a post about younger people who are succeeding in these turbulent times.Delete
Without sharing names, if you have the time and interest I would love to receive an email from you that fleshes out the examples you list above.
What I enjoy the most is conversation about enjoying life after retirement. Travel, daily activities, relaxation, hobbies, making new friends/enjoying old friends....... There are have been some, not many, discussions on the different stages of retirement. I'm at the beginning and I would love to hear from readers also at the beginning. I have plenty of energy, fitness and cash to GO-GO as you recently described this first stage.ReplyDelete
Honestly, I enjoy all of your blog posts regardless of application to my life or not. Thanks Bob :-)
I have written about the various stages of retirement. Your comment tells me it is time to revisit some of those older posts and help the "newbies" understand what lies ahead.Delete
You have become a regular and very supportive commeter, Elle. Thank you.
Like Madeline, I have a wide group of friends and many of them are much much younger than I and often professionals. I firmly believe that having friends of all ages keeps us young and aware and makes it current. And I have a sibling who falls under the first poster's question or criteria and the short answer is yes, of course we help her as we are able. But I'll answer that one more fully if you take it as a topic. Not much help idea wise there I guess. I do think you have some younger, recently retired readers that could do with some suggestions on how to start planning their lives post retirement.ReplyDelete
You have given your support for some topics that I should address from a fresh perspective. The one about support for grown children is fascinating to me, because the answers and rationals are so varied.Delete
After over twenty years of health issues, my husband passed away in November 2022. I am so thankful for his provision and foresight. Is preparation for the loss of a spouse or partner a potential topic? Perhaps, you’ve already covered this and I should search your past blogs…ReplyDelete
I have, but it has been awhile. It is an important topic to address again. Watch for it. Thanks, Charlene.Delete
This probably isn't all that helpful, but I enjoy just about anything you write about. New people are nearing retirement age all the time so I imagine that will remain a hot topic (even though you may think you've exhausted the subject). I also like your insights on contemporary topics (including politics and the environment), even though I know not everyone does. Personal stories and relationship insights are great too.ReplyDelete
While I have a lot to say in the political arena, that is one place it is not productive for me to put my toes in the water. Past experience has made that clear!Delete
Thanks for the support most everything else, Janis. There are been some solid suggestions so far that I will tackle.
Hi Bob !! I enjoy all your posts but in order to help with your idea of sharing new topics I would like you to write about how to face the fears and uncertainty that today overwhelms us so much. Everyday folks look like lost for the fast changes we face around us. Many things to write about this I think.....ReplyDelete
Fears and uncertainty Well, that might be interesting. I will certainly learn something in the research I would want to do before taking on such an important topic. But, I like a challenge. :Let's see where that takes us.Delete
I really enjoyed your first post evaluating the books you’ve read so far on the banned books list, it gave me a lot to think about! I’d like to see more of those, and more discussions about what folks are reading and watching, especially new literature and movies/shows. Another topic - how do you navigate the minefield of being an ally for kids and grandkids who are LGBTQA and watching these horrific laws being passed all over our country? What can we do to support the kids we love?ReplyDelete
Oh, I love all these suggestions. The LGBTQA debate is a subject that really sets me off. I just can't understand the hate and fear that permeates this discussion. And, anything to do with books and movies are right up my alley.Delete
I just started reading your blog and am enjoying it very much. I am not familiar with topics you have covered in the past and maybe some of the guidance I am looking for may have been covered (both in your blog and suggested in the comments above). I have been retired 10 years and moved recently from Wisconsin where we have lived our lives to be closer to family. That has been wonderful but meeting new friends has been impossible at my age. That would be a subject I would like to discuss, particularly if someone has moved into a new location where you have no connections except family (that is younger). Also, I would be interested in estate planning if you have no children. Books, TV and movies are always a fun topic for lighter reading. Travel - solo travel in particular - is interesting. Dealing with loss - not just parents but friends is a difficult topic but one so many of us are dealing with. And of course, there is an endless need for those of us still trying to figure out what we want to do "when we grow up". Keep up the great work! Thanks for taking the time.ReplyDelete
Ruth, welcome to our community and thank you for some excellent topics ideas. Most of us have to deal with one or more of these at some point. Let's see how others have found some solutions or solice.Delete
All of your proposed topics and those of others sound great. We had talked before about the epidemic of loneliness that is sweeping the world, greatly impacting the elder population.
I remembered sharing with you the story of the elderly lady in Italy, whose mummified body was found sitting at her kitchen table, where it was estimated she died two years previously. No one had missed her. With the fragmentation of families over the recent decades, this could get worse. I was told by one of my late father's care facility's caregivers that 60% of their residents never receive visitors. I think a discussion of ways to remain connected might be a good topic.
Rick In Oregon
Absolutely, and I certainly remember that sad story. 60% is a high figure but I would have guessed it was an even higher percentage.Delete
Sad story indeed Rick. Mom used to say, "I hope I die at home and no one finds me for at least 3 days. But I hope they find me in 7". (She died at 84y and my sister and I cared for her in-home the final 7weeks of her life with no heroic treatment so indeed, her hope was filled).Delete
It would be a great discussion topic. We are 61 and don't necessarily talk to any family member for a week or 2 at a time. And no children. I have actually thought about this now and then since I retired at 58.
I currently have a niece living with me, otherwise I would be on my own. I have several friends who have lost their partners and are living solo, with no close relatives. I offered, and they agreed that we would have contact every day, in person or on the phone. Someone needs to care.Delete
Rick in Oregon
I am late, so I won't respond to much. I will say that book reports don't grab my attention much because I probably won't get around to reading them for various reasons.ReplyDelete
As for tv, we mostly watch British tv, particularly mysteries, on Acorn and Britbox.
Britbox is one of our favorites, too. The crime shows are especially enjoyable because there is more intelligence and less violence.Delete
I would appreciate commenting on any books or movies relating to aging, and tips for surviving my silver years and beyond. I love PBS videos, Prime and Britbox.Delete
Those topics will be featured in upcoming posts!Delete