Who is NanaPennypockets?
NanaPennypockets is the pseudonym for a 70+year-old-retired Christian mom of 5, Nana to 17, who’s been married 50+ years. She also is a retired RN and a former business owner of a Home Health Agency where she cared for many retired seniors who were having health problems and wished to stay at home. Since retiring, she has faced the challenges and mistakes that seem to come to most seniors. Even with knowledge of these, she made them without realizing it at the time.
Now Nana is blogging to help others from making those same mistakes. Stick around folks. She also has been a teacher and maybe you will want to learn how to do this blogging also?
Hubby took early retirement and Nana was just starting to make progress in her business. Should she join him in retirement? Or continue working? After some soul-searching, I decided to join in this new era of life. We had shared so much before and I wanted to continue growing together with him. Unfortunately, selling a Home Health Agency isn’t like selling a house. There were 9 separate state boards that had to meet and approve the buyer before the transaction could take place. So, I had another year to work while I waited for it all to get done. And then, in one short afternoon, I was suddenly free of all responsibility for the business. (And with a nice bank account to boot.)
What should we do with the house? Keep it? Sell it and move? It was very big. And old – needing constant upkeep. Attached to the house were 5 acres of land – much of it needing mowing and paths through the woods maintained. Most of the children were married and there was no one else at home but the two of us now. So, we put the house on the market. Despite its unique features, it didn’t sell. We finally changed realtors and that realtor raised the price significantly. Guess what? The house sold quite quickly after that.
Challenges and Mistakes
Sales in our state take more than a month to go through. Plenty of time to find a new home. Nope. Not a house nor a piece of property to build available. And even the apartments in the area were at 98% occupancy. Suddenly we were homeless. Yikes! There was a bit of a panic going on. Thankfully, friends from church, also retiring, decided to convert part of their house into an apartment and offered to let us stay. They were fine with the understanding that we would be looking for a house or land and would move when we found it. So, most of what we were keeping went into storage and we moved into the apartment with just the bare necessities.
The mistake we had made was not looking into the housing market and finding what was available before we put the house on the market. Thankfully, prayers were answered. Thank you, Jesus.
Daughter, with a newborn, needed to go to Georgia to find a home. Her husband was offered a job he wanted there. We went along to help her with the little one while she hunted for a house. And also, to help her decide on what to buy. Her husband was still working and stayed north to watch the older children.
Lo and behold, we found a lovely development and she found her house. We also did a bit of looking and there – is my Ideal Home just 3 doors down from her’s. Suddenly, we are faced with having to make a quick decision on leaving our home area and moving to Georgia. Should we move that far away from all our support systems? But we would have the one daughter and her family right near-by. I recommend you read “Retirees – how to decide if relocation is the best idea.”
Challenge # 4
It was 9/11. We are in the realtor’s office, getting ready to take another look at the house before we made a final decision about buying it. Watching TV while waiting for the realtor, we saw the twin towers get hit and collapse. Shock. This was our home state. I think right there, we looked at each other and made the decision. We are moving to Georgia. The weather is great. Taxes are reasonable, especially for seniors. And watching the towers come down, I didn’t want to live in NY anymore. The neighborhood was lovely and best of all, I loved the house.
Good Decision Time
Good Decision #1
Suddenly, I was about to live in the area of one of my favorite books – “Gone With the Wind” by Margaret Mitchell. (She lived very near to where I was moving.) (This is an affiliate link which means I get a small commission if you decide to purchase it.) We enjoyed 5 lovely years in that home. With the money from the sale of the business, we decided to pay down the mortgage quickly. Yeah! Our home was free and clear.
While living here, we visited hubby’s sister and husband in Florida. They lived in a 55+ community and we always had a good time when we visited. Many times they had suggested that we move there too. Hubby had a boat now, and I knew he was itching to try fishing in the Gulf. And my bad back was enjoying the daily trips to the pool when we visited. We also met lots of lovely people there and there seemed to be all sorts of activities going on all the time. It was tempting us. We had already spent a week there when they had tried to decide if they should move there and had enjoyed it.
Mistake #2 – wrong move
We sold ‘Ideal House’, near daughter, and moved to the 55+ community. The house was older and needed work, which hubby did. I had started Heirloom sewing while in Georgia, but here, there was no one to share it with, so I stopped. Yes, the pool was nice and we did enjoy some of the activities. But hubby never found anyone to go fishing with him. Golf communities aren’t good locations for fishermen.
But somehow, we didn’t make friends. We finally realized that we came into the community a little too late in life. Most came right after retirement and established friendships with others in the same boat. We were older than the newcomers now, and people our age were already in their own groups. We quickly learned that 55+ communities tend to develop cliques.
Then hubby was hospitalized and suddenly, I realized that if something happened to him, I would have no one close by. It was his sister and her husband, not mine. We realized we had made a mistake moving there.
Mistake #3 – failed to communicate with one another
Each of us, without telling the other, had made the decision to move, thinking it was good for the other. I thought he would have a chance to do lots of fishing. He thought I would get pain relief from being able to use the pool often. Our communication had broken down. We learned the sad lesson that communication in retirement must be open and honest all the time. I recommend you read the article – “How to ride the seesaw of communication when you enter retirement.”
Good Decision #2
We both admitted our failure to communicate and both agreed, we had made a bad decision. The house went on the market and sold rather quickly, thanks to all the improvements hubby had made. This time we had decided that the location in Georgia, near daughter and family, was really where we wanted to be. There were no homes for sale in the development we liked, but we did find a suitable one nearby.
We lost the ‘Ideal Home’ and a bunch of money, making the moves. But, now we have family nearby, doctors we had before are caring for us again, and we know the area and many of the people we interact with on a regular basis. Our reasons for the move were each good, but I wonder if we would have done it if we knew each other’s reasons for the move. Communication is so very important at this stage of life.
We’re in our home to stay. It’s nice having our daughter and her family nearby. With increasing age and infirmities, we find we are needing more help on a regular basis. Without them, our life would be much harder. When you decide what to do and where to go in retirement, please, please, know the importance of family. And now you know who NanaPennypockets is and the challenges she has faced and mistakes she has made in this era of aging. If I can keep you from making even one of these mistakes, this blog will be worthwhile.
Anyone wishing to know more about my life can read it in this post where I relate what happened in my life before retirement.
Though retired from nursing, it is still in my blood. When I started this blog, I came to realize what a chore it was trying to keep track of all the medical events as hubby and I aged. It was trying to find a way to simplify this that I came up with the forms that are now in what I sell as the Medical Binder. Hopefully, this will be out to share with all of you by early December – just in time for Christmas. You’ll hear more about this in Nana’s News which you can sign up for just below this post.
Love, Hugs, and Prayers,
The Scripture I live by:
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