Up Next?

Home from travelling and trying to recover while planning where next. My mind is not as exhausted and I am more present which is a big help. My goal now is getting into a better schedule for waking and sleeping (and cleaning). Some days I just want to stay up all night and sleep all morning, then get frustrated over how much I am missing out on. Motivation is coming in fits as I try to adjust to being home and not working. Being retired is starting to become more of a reality and I will need to figure out how to find purpose after work while being stuck between adventures and trying to not do a lot of shopping. (Unfortunately for me, shopping has become more of a boredom solver than something I truly enjoy doing, contrary to what everyone thinks.) Next up, finding ways to get out and enjoy!

The fun part, I got to babysit my grand-kitten Freya over last weekend. She is a joy and this time I was more present mentally and able to more fully enjoy my time with her. However, I did forget my cup (shown below with Freya) at my fitness club a couple days ago, not too mentally present as much as I think maybe?

For a restaurant recommendation, I suggest Big Bore BBQ in Hanover, MN. My son-in-law chose this for his birthday party and it was really, really good. I had the ribs and the fries with queso dip (yum!). They also did a great job with the birthday dessert presentation. www.bigborebarbecue.com

Stiff and Sore

This is another list, this one of what I do to help keep me moving and somewhat flexible while traveling. My body is a mess. I have scoliosis in my spine, fibromyalgia, severe tinnitus (with some hearing loss) and “extra deep” hip sockets (the surgeon said good news, no arthritis, bad news, nothing he could do to help). And why I get so paranoid about bonking my head (twice in the last couple weeks)? I had a subdural hematoma three years ago on my left side. Bonking the left side leads to a lot of anxiety and tight muscles in my neck. I try not to talk about it or complain, but I hurt all over all the time and it is a battle to move properly and easily at times. Move too much, wham, move too little, wham. So, spending a lot of time driving, or sitting, can be a challenge. Here are a few things that have helped me during this trip. And don’t get me started with physical therapists who say don’t do it if it hurts, I just want to laugh maniacally and then ask what????

  1. YouTube – Bob and Brad (www.youtube.com/c/BobBrad)
    Bob & Brad are two physical therapists who were recommended to me by a physical therapist I was seeing many years ago, when we were trying to figure out what was going on with my hips and legs. They are funny and offer a lot of quick videos on how to stretch, move, sleep and even crack your back when there isn’t a chiropractor near by. I love them!
  2. YouTube – Lynn Schuck (www.youtube.com/channel/UCZHry9AZGqHjQa22cK10fDw)
    Lynn teaches a form of yoga called Eischens Yoga. She calls it yoga “… for the tired, the desk-bound, the stiff, the injured …”. I took some classes from here a few years ago and loved it. Her focus is on balancing the pose with what your body can do, that modifications are natural and you shouldn’t force yourself into what you think is the correct way to do a pose. She also has a variety of short sessions on YouTube to help with specific body parts. And I still hear her in my mind whenever I try to do certain yoga poses.
  3. YouTube – Laura Erdman-Luntz (www.youtube.com/c/LauraErdmanLuntz/videos)
    Laura is an excellent yoga coach and she loves mixing essential oils with your practice. I haven’t kept up on using essential oils, I do use them occasionally to relax or help with my allergies, but not like I did while I was actively taking yoga classes with her and others. But long story short, she also has some nice short takes on moving with yoga and I recommend trying it out.

My goals is to find things I can do in a small area, in a hotel room, with no equipment. If you have any suggestions for others to try out please let me know! I could use them on my next road trip!

Now I am off to do some gentle movements and physical therapy exercises after sitting and resting all day! Allons-y mon ami!

UPDATE – I finally went in to the Emergency Room to get my head checked out. Good news, no sign of a new subdural hematoma or a stroke. Bad news, well it is still cranky old me. 🙂

My Dad

I left my dad one of my pictures, I couldn’t help myself. But I love the picture with the flowers most. It is so sad to have him so far away from family. I have to keep telling myself, he isn’t “there”. I loved my dad and I miss him terribly so. Definitely cried a lot on this visit.

Veterans Cemetery

April???

Here it is April, what happened to March? I am now starting my fourth week of retirement and I have no idea where the time went. I have been so busy! Bringing home all my stuff from work, trying to fit it all in at home, purging work clothes, planning parties, writing and illustrating thank you cards, cleaning, going to The Marsh to work out again, having lunch with friends, READING, travel planning, financial planning, SLEEPING, and on and on! So far though, I am loving retirement.

My to-do list last week was long, and not all of it was done. I still have some thank you cards to finish. Unfortunately, if you ignored the no-gifts comment, and you haven’t received a thank you card by next week you might not get one anytime soon as this week I will be focusing on closing up the house, getting my house sitter on board, and packing for my trip down the Mississippi River road. I am very excited to visit all the cultural sites and museums along the way, as well as to try out all the new foods! Yummmm… Talk soon!

Retired Chick

It’s done. I have retired from the City of Eden Prairie. I am overwhelmed and in a state of denial right now. I am just on a long vacation, right? The switch to Daylight Savings didn’t help much either.

Had two wonderful parties. The one for work was last week Wednesday at Champp’s. Good turnout and fun, but also sad that I will miss them all so much. Tuesday night was my “Water Geeks, Friends and Family” party at Pizza Luce. A mix of everyone! I was a little worried, being a work night, but quite a few people came by and I had a fun time going from group to group to talk and reminisce. I did get a few gifts, after my “no gifts please” invitation. 🙂 I also got lots of wonderful Happy Birthday and Happy Retirement cards, and some beautiful flowers. I would never say no to cards! Sadly, I was so busy chatting with everyone that I forgot to take pictures! For me, that is very strange as I always have my phone out to take pictures.

Yesterday I didn’t do much of anything, other than get an extremely crazy high quote for painting my den. Maybe my next post will be all about my “beautiful” den that I want to paint over. Looks like I will have to buy some paint and start working on it myself, maybe one wall at a time? I also started to purge work clothes that I have no need to hang onto. Keeping enough to have nice clothes for traveling, dinner or events and the rest is all comfy clothes. Next is to box them up to take to Goodwill.

Today, I did something I have never done before. This may sound strange, but I am not one to just go to a bar in the middle of the afternoon on a St. Patrick’s Day. But after lunch I thought I would duck into McCormick’s and have a drink and watch the bagpiper, who was scheduled for 1:15 p.m. Turned out a good friend was there and I ended up staying for al little over 3 hours! Met a lot of really nice people and had a good time all in all. I would have stayed longer, but the bar was very crowded and the noise was really starting to get to me.

Update!

I did it! My plans for Amsterdam are one step closer as I have rented a room for the week before my cruise. I am getting so excited! Now to set dates and places for all the rest. Arghhh!!!

Art Experience

Took the time to go to the Van Gogh Art Experience last weekend, and I enjoyed it very much. I read some reviews (afterwards thankfully) that weren’t all positive, that you didn’t learn anything about Van Gogh or his art, that the museum would be a better way to spend your money. But I don’t agree. This isn’t meant to be a museum, or even necessarily educational. It is an “experience”. A place to relax and watch the art blend from one piece to another, to listen to the music, to be captivated. They did a good job bringing in one piece of art and slowly blending that one out while bringing another one in, so that they merged, then came apart. The animation, pages turning in the book, cicadas running over the screen, etc. I thought it was interesting, but I love Van Gogh’s work so I wasn’t there for an education. I say, if curious just go ahead and go.

Outdoor Trekking

Today I was out assisting with a wetland delineation review. Although in town, it felt like the middle of nowhere. But I ended up a little overheated and dehydrated. Not good! Took myself to Peoples Organic afterwards and had a lemonade and chocolate donut. Yum!

Glad to be outside
Hungry butterfly
Looking over a wetland