Sunday, April 18, 2010

Wish of a Lifetime

Jeremy Bloom, two-time Olympic Skier and former NFL football player, founded Wish of a Lifetime in honor of his grandmother, Donna Wheeler, who at 83 still works in a bank.

He launched this charitable organization with a vision to initiate a cultural change by granting the wish of a lifetime to deserving, low-income seniors throughout the United States. In Europe, older people are more-respected with many families building apartments in their homes so they can take care of their family members as they age.

But here in the States, we Boomers are often pushed aside by a youth-obsessed media and society. So, it was very refreshing last night to work the 2nd annual fund-raising dinner with so many young volunteers.

Award recipients ranging from a Pearl Harbor survivor to your everyday grandmother were honored. Currently, the organization is active in Colorado and a chapter is being sponsored by Google in California.

If you know a worthy senior or would like to volunteer or donate, check it out at:

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Enjoy Life!

One of my favorite books is "Life is Uncertain, Eat Dessert First". It's an oldie, but goodie having been first published 20 years ago.

I've had my copy for 17 years and still pick it up during life's trying times like when a friend recently died unexpectedly.

It's a simple reminder to enjoy life before it's too late -- something we hard-working Boomers need to do on a daily basis!

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Retiring Mind

It's not all about the money!

Have you saved $2,000,000?

Is your IRA protected?

Do you have enough money to live another 30 years?

Most of the books about retirement planning deal with the financial aspects of transitioning to retirement and totally ignore the critical psychological and emotional problems that we face as we leave our professional life.

Don't get me wrong
-- you've got to have the money to cover your basic needs as having financial peace of mind is wonderful in retirement. But, many of us have trouble dealing with the psychological let down of not working and not having to deal on a daily basis with the 'thrill' of working....that addictive charge we got when we met a deadline or created a new product.

Yes, I'm one of those weird retirees.......a highly-charged Type A, achievement junkie who freely admits that sometimes I still miss working. What makes it even more difficult to discuss our emotions regarding our loss, is that most workers are envious of us having escaped the daily 9 to 5 prison.

I liked this book "The Retiring Mind" because Dr. Delamontagne highlights several examples which helped me better understand the loss I've felt since not working. His discussion of personality type and achievement addiction really hit home with me. There's a short quiz which helps you determine which E-personality you are.

While it's a little heavier reading than retirement books which suggest more golf or volunteer work to fill that hole left by not working, it's definitely worth your time.

For additional info:

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Why are you still smoking?

As we age, the two most important things we can do to improve our health are lose weight and quit smoking. I'm working on the weight and luckily, I've never smoked....never even tried one.

I won't allow smoking in my home. In my foyer is a sign "If you're smoking, we will take appropriate action and put out the fire."

It's always been a pet peeve of mine as I grew up in a household with 6 smokers! It was disgusting. Even though I didn't smoke, everything I owned still smelled like I did. The worse part was that my body and hair stunk. I hated it.

Smoking took my father at an early age - 58. Not cancer, but heart disease. Yet, 4 of my 5 brothers continued to smoke. Now, one of my brothers has been diagnosed with Buerger's Disease which is directly caused by smoking. He is going to lose the tips of 6 fingers. So, while he's finally forced to give it up 3 of my brothers continue to smoke even though they have seen the illness firsthand

So, what about you?
What has to happen to you personally before you quit? If you can't do it for yourself, please think about your loved ones. I would've loved to have had my father around longer.

Just check out this link for more info on yet another disease that is directly caused by smoking. It literally occurs overnight without warning and by that time it's too late to do anything other than surgery.

P.S. Yes, his fingers look as bad as on the link.

Call to Action

Are you as tired as I am of the Federal Government taking so much of your money?

It's never more evident than now during "tax time".

And what irks me every year is that I have more than $60,000 of stock loss carryforward of which I get to deduct only $3,000 a year!

What a joke
-- because if I made $60,000 from stock sales in one year, then I would have to report all of it and pay income taxes on my gain. I'll have to live at least 20 more years just to take those losses.

If you too have excessive stock losses, how about writing to President Obama and let's see if we can't start a movement to increase the annual stock loss deduction on our Federal Tax Return to $10,000.
If you agree, please send an email to President Obama and forward this info to all your friends who have suffered stock losses.

Below is an outline you can use.
Just fill in your dollar amount & # of years it will take you to use your deduction (your $ loss/$3,000).
You can cut it out below, go to the website and then just paste.

I would like the maximum stock loss deduction per year of $3000 increased to $10,000 per year in light of all the losses that we citizens have incurred over the past few years. Also that $3,000 maximum stock loss has not been increased for many years.

I still have a loss carryover of over ________________(fill in your amount) from previous stock market crashes. That loss amount coupled with my current losses means I will have to live for more than _______ years just to take my losses. How is that fair when I have had to declare the full amount of gains in one year and pay tax. If we could at least take a deduction of $10,000 per year that certainly would help us retirees.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Calling all TEXANS!!

You Texans have the opportunity to make a difference by supporting and voting for my long-time good friend, Don Schuerman, who’s running for Justice of the Peace in pct 2 in Milam County. I’ve known Don for over 45 years (yes, I know that makes us sound old, but we’re both quite fit).

Due to his excellent reputation and expertise, Judge Schuerman easily won his primary election back in March but faces a strong opponent in the upcoming Nov 2010 general election.

Having spoken to Don numerous times since he was appointed I am acutely aware of the great job he’s done for his constituents. The biggest change Don has made to the Justice Court is making sure that everyone feels heard and is treated with respect; so regardless of whether they win or lose, that person will at least feel that they’ve been treated fairly and with compassion.

While Judge Schuerman’s efforts directly impact only the citizens of Milam County, he’ll gladly accept donations from anyone who’s’ willing to support an honest politician (yes, I know that’s an oxymoron), but in this case it’s true!!

So if you’ve got a few bucks to spare, how about helping out my friend!
Every buck counts – so even if you can send $5 or $10, do it!!
Send your checks to:


It’ll be fun to follow Don’s campaign through Nov……so look for updates on this BLOG!

Monday, April 5, 2010


Since I'm a Boomer and live in an Active Adult Community, my mom recommended that I read the book "Boomsday" by Christopher Buckley. It's a humorous look at how the younger generation proposes to solve the impending social security crisis.

It's a quick read and just a riot as it starts out with them storming a retirement community and demonstrating on the golf course. Poking fun at, while bringing this serious issue to the forefront is a difficult task, but Buckley adeptly opens the door for discussion of one of the most critical issues facing both generations.

Check out other reviews at:


I had gotten into the habit of "blogging" almost daily and I loved it! I received some great feedback, had many followers....but then my computer broke, I went skiing, saw a movie, etc, etc. Oh, I've got even more excuses, but the bottom line is that I just got out of the habit of doing it....but I'm back!

And in the last few months, I've developed some really good habits that I'd like to share with you because Spring's here and we're all trying to get into shape.

While I'll never, ever again wear an itsy teeny, weeny yellow polka dot bikini, I still want to look good at the pool. So, I was determined this year to lose weight and I'm thrilled to say I'm doing quite well at it. I've lost 10 pounds since early January and I attribute it all to 2 IPOD touch and the MAYO Clinic Diet Book.

You might wonder what an IPOD Touch is, let alone how it helped me lose weight, but seriously, I give most of the credit to my IPOD Touch and the free "Lose It!" application . Using that application, I set weekly weight loss goals, but most importantly it forced me to write down everything....every bite, every M&M, every coke....that I consumed daily. I became religious about it (my best habit) and once I hit the magic number of around 1150 calories a day I knew I couldn't eat any more.

Then the MAYO Clinic Diet Book forced me to become more aware of "portion control" and measure everything I eat. It also introduced me to 5 new habits and showed me how to break some of my bad eating habits. Just go to any restaurant and you can see that we Americans are out of control when it comes to how much food is put on our plate and what we end up eating. I've become a fanatic when it comes to measuring. I'm not done yet as I'm going use my new found habits to lose that last 5 pounds.

............and how about you? What new habits would you like to form?
Just remember that it takes at least 21 days for a habit to take effect.
For additional tips on how to form good habits go to: