Some of my SparkFriends have asked what I was doing while I was away from SparkPeople these past few months.
I did retire -- well, semi-retire. I have been able to work out a temporary arrangement with my employer that allows me to work part-time, online, from home until they can figure out what to do with this part of my old job. Originally, that was supposed to be until the end of August, but now that's been extended until the end of December (we'll see what happens after that). This arrangement is perfect for me because I no longer have a long commute up the PA turnpike to get to work, fighting tons of traffic every day. That's a big stress reducer and money saver right there! And, although I'm not making anywhere near my old salary, I am still able to make regular contributions to my 403b. Since we can comfortably live on my DH's pension, I don't have to draw anything down on my 403b either, so that continues to grow (unless the idiots in Washington do something stupid like shut down the gov't --oops, they already did that! -- and not raise the debt ceiling and tank our economy AGAIN!).
But, I digress.
The other thing that took up A LOT of my time was a course on how to become a dog obedience trainer. I started at the end of last January and was supposed to finish in early November. Happily, I was really able to concentrate my time and effort and finished that in late August, with a GPA of 98%. Once my current employment gig is up, I plan to seek part-time employment (either volunteer or paid) with an animal shelter or a veterinarian's office near me.
In May, we had a new patio installed in our backyard. We trouble growing grass in that area and every Winter and Spring, we had the dogs trailing mud into the house. The new patio should alleviate that issue and give us a nice new place to barbecue once we get the new grass well established (The stuff the patio guy put back there just didn't take. The new stuff Dottie and I planted is growing very well now).
My Belgian Sheepdog puppy, Justice, was a combination retirement/graduation gift from me to me. He's been a GREAT dog so far. VERY smart and easy to train. He very much learns by watching and, right now, I think he's trying to teach himself to drive my car!
Many of you may remember that I have a grown son who has Autism. He had some minor health issues that needed to be worked out while I was away, but he is doing VERY well now and (knock wood) should stay that way. The picture above was taken at his birthday celebration in August. That lad DOES LOVE a party!
So, those are the highlights of my past several months. Now, moving forward, the focus is back on my health and weight. I don't anticipate any distractions or detours. But, life can sometimes take you in directions other than what you originally intend. My job will be to keep my eye on the prize and be flexible when those potential distractions and detours arise.
With your help, I WILL do this!