Monday, May 15, 2017

The Move to Lynchburg is Complete

I am amazed that my move to Lynchburg is now over.  I have been living in my new apartment for almost 3 weeks.  Wow!  All my stuff is here, and I have been spending a lot of time and money setting things up as Bed, Bath, and Beyond will attest. The setting up part is still ongoing as I have to buy some furniture to fill up my family room with probably another recliner and a sofa so that guests have a place to sit when visiting.  Exactly what furniture I will buy seems to change every other day as I am not sure what I will end up getting.  That is part of the fun, speculating on what I should get.  This week I just might start going around different furniture stores to get some ideas of what will work in my new home.

I did get a new toy for my place, that being Google Home.  By voice command, I can listen to music from Pandora or Google Play.  I can play YouTube videos on my TV.  I can listen to news on NPR or other news outlets.  I have also bought some Philips Hue LED light bulbs and installed them in my family room.  By Google Home voice command, I can turn the Philips lights off and on, and I can also dim them as well.  Cool!  In other light fixtures, I have been installing various LED light bulbs so that I can save money on my electric bill.  Later on I will be putting in Philips Hue LED light bulbs in my bedroom ceiling fan and Philips Hue LED light bulbs for track lighting in my kitchen.  There are other Google Home capabilities that I haven't tried yet, and Google will be adding more of them.  I sure am enjoying using Google Home.

I have met some of my neighbors here, and my ex-wife and I have done somethings together.  Yesterday we went to Peaks of Otter with some of my ex-wife's family members for a picnic on a beautiful day.  We did a lot of walking around on some trails as well.  Without question, it was a great day.  Retirement is starting out a good note.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

A Small Hiccup in my Apartment Setup

As I mentioned in my previous posting for this blog, I have to buy a cable modem/router to be able to access the Internet from my new abode.  This past Saturday I went on the Amazon Web site and bought an Arris cable modem/router model SBG7580-AC (I am sure everyone knows what that is).  It was delivered to me on the following Monday afternoon.  To my chagrin, I noticed right away that there two dents in the box as well as a small cut.  Oh, oh!  Not a good sign.  I opened the box and carefully took out the modem/router.  Yes, it was indeed damaged.  There was a dent on one of the sides.  I don't know if the dent would cause the unit not to work properly, but I did not wait around to find out.  I went on Amazon's Web site and looked up their return procedure.  I then printed the return postage label and took it and the unit, which I put back into the box it came in, to UPS for shipment back to Amazon.  The unit was reordered, and I received a new, unblemished unit yesterday afternoon, at no additional cost.  The hiccup is gone, and I can hardly wait to set it up and use it next month in my new place.

My next task is to start collecting boxes and store my junk in them.  I have gotten rid of my fake tree, my worn out office chair, and my bicycle, which I have not used in a very long time.   I put those 3 items out on the curb, 2 one day and the third one on another day, and I don't think the garbage men took those items.  I think someone else took them, and that is fine with me.  There are probably some other items which I will get of the same way before I move.  I will save a little money on the move as a result (I hope).

I bought a new office chair from Staples last Saturday, so my office furniture is set except for one thing.  Right now my printer sits on a TV tray.  I would like to place that on a table that goes with my desk.  I'll do that after the move.  It can wait.  Move preparation is slowly progressing.  Yes!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Lease on the New Apartment Has Been Signed

Another milestone has been made in my quest to retire and move to Lynchburg.  The link to the lease for my new apartment was sent to me today via email.  I read it, initialed the four sections, and signed it at the bottom of the lease.  I then submitted it.  Technology at its best.

I then called Appalachian Power to apply to have my electricity put in my name for my apartment on April 21.  My application was accepted, and I have an account there now.  I am all set for electricity in my new abode.

Both TV and internet are provided by Willowbrook, my apartment, for a price.  Twenty-four channels are free, and that is what I will start with.  I am going to use Sling TV and other apps to watch other TV channels (breaking the cord).  I have been experimenting with that here, so I know I can do that.  Hopefully it will work as well in Lynchburg.  I will have to buy a combo cable modem and router to use to access the internet.  It shouldn't be too hard to set that up since I have done so in the past.  I guess this old man remembers how to do it.

Soon I will have to start getting boxes to pack up for my move (April 25).  I have some stuff already in boxes, so hopefully I will not need too many more.  I will have to get some newspapers to wrap the dishes for packing into boxes as well.  Getting the boxes and packing is not much fun, but it has to be done.

Progress has been made this week, and that has been exciting.  Another step has been made.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Moving to Lynchburg Is Almost a Reality

I have made a big step in my retirement to Lynchburg, VA.  I have found an apartment with two bedrooms and 2 baths off of Timberlake Road.  I will be taking possession of it on April 22, and my move date is April 25.  Wow, it is happening!  I am quite excited about it, and I can hardly wait for the six weeks to go by.

Now, what to keep and what to let go of?  I have been downsizing over the years, so I don't have a great deal to take with me.  However, I still can get rid of some stuff.  Today I put into the garbage bin a candle holder of sorts that was on my dresser.  I also will be departing with a fake tree with a string of white lights on it.  It was left in a condo I bought a few years ago, and I have been dragging it around ever since.  It is time to let go of it.  My office chair is on its last legs as well.  The next garbage pickup day is Friday, so I will put both the tree and the chair in the street next to the garbage bin Thursday evening as someone in my development will probably come by and take one or both items.

Now I have a decision to make.  I was dusting my wooden desk this afternoon (Amazing, I was doing house work!), and a thought occurred to me.  Do I want to keep this desk and buy a different desk after I move to Lynchburg?  I think I would like a more modern looking desk, maybe one of glass.  I don't think I will need all the storage space of my current desk.  For one thing, one of my desk drawers contains GED "Blue Sheets" that I use to record student attendance for my GED classes at the Adult Detention Center in Manassas.  I will obviously not be working there anymore, my last day being April 14.  Either I will take the sheets to the Adult Learning Center once my classes are done, or I will just throw them out.  There is probably other stuff in this desk I know longer need as well. For the other stuff that I will be keeping, I will use other storage methods.  If I do decide to get rid of the desk, how do I do so?  I should probably sell it, maybe on Craigslist.  I should get something for it after all.

The next 6 weeks will be full of more decisions as well.  That is part of the fun and excitement, too.  There also will be plenty of work.  I am looking forward to this big change in my life.  The golden years are now upon me!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Starting My Transition to Retirement

I am now 67 years old, and of course, thoughts of retirement are constantly in my mind.  I currently have a part time job with the Prince William County School System as a GED teacher.  I have held this position off and on for over 10 years, and it will be hard to leave it as I have enjoyed it very much and hopefully have made a difference in my student's lives.  However, to quote an expression, "all good things must come to an end."  It is time to move to another chapter in my life.

I am not just now thinking about what I need to do for my retirement.  I signed up for Social Security and Medicare in 2014.  I have already decided to live in Lynchburg, VA, for two main reasons.  The cost of living is lower in Lynchburg than in northern Virginia.  I also know some people there, especially my ex-wife.  We are still good friends even though we have been divorced for over 10 years.  I will rent a place in Lynchburg instead of buying one since it is easier to move out of a place that you rent.  I will be moving to Lynchburg in June 2017.

Currently I have 4 sources of income: my GED job, Social Security, IBM pension fund, and rent income from a drive-in theater in Ocala, FL, which I co-own with my brother.  Just last week I decided to transfer my GED paycheck to my savings account and live off the other three sources of income.  If I can do that without any problems in northern Virginia, I certainly can do that in Lynchburg.  I am optimistic that this grand experiment will work.

There are still things I must do to continually prepare for this transition.  I need to start downsizing.  I must draw up a living will and decide on an executor for my estate.  I also must continue saving for the actual move, but hopefully that will be easy if my grand experiment works.  I should have a nice nest egg by putting my GED paycheck in my savings account.

As I continue my preparations for my retirement, I will make updates to this blog.  Hopefully writing this blog will help me crystallize what I need to do to make this major change in my life.  I am excited about this transition, but I know some unexpected problems may come up as well.  That is part of the fun of change.  It would be boring if everything about change is smooth.