Drawing is my new blog

This semester at the U of M I am taking Intro to Drawing. In addition to drawing in class and homework assignments I am drawing in my sketchbook whenever I can. Watching the chicken soup simmer for tomorrow’s Rosh Hashana’s dinner is giving me lots of thoughts about the past and the future. It feels so satisfying to enjoy my class and combine the drawing with the writing.

TAKEAWAY: Onward and upward in retirement in year # 2.

TAKEAWAY # 2 – A sweet and Happy New Year to all who celebrate Rosh Hashana 🍎🍯

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Lessons from GENJA

The juxtaposition of the blocks speaks to the delicate balance of life. It takes thoughtfulness, dexterity, patience and fun of figuring out puzzles. The game is filled with plenty of fun and laughs. It is followed by the skill to get all the pieces to fit back in the container. When you figure out you can build the block and then put the tin over the block,  the pleasure of logic feels very satisfying. 

TAKEAWAY: Being thoughtful can improve our options. 

Garage/Estate Sales

Like my parents in retirement I find the sport of garage sale shopping to be quite fun. Nowadays all neighborhoods have them. You never know what you’ll find in them – family with kids to downsizing to changing sizes are all reasons to have them.  There are lots of “finds” that are timeless or just from a good time in the buyer’s memory.  It’s also a way to do something “green” by trying to re-use and the reward for this effort is price. And if I errored in my purchase it was worth the fun of it and you just donate it. 

TAKEAWAY: This is a guilty pleasure of mine that I may not be able break for a while. I can live with this flaw. 

Luggage and life

As I was strategically packing my very full suitcase for a family visit to Brooklyn I got to thinking how much people are different and so is the way they pack. I came to the conclusion that how we pack is so reflective of who we are. My carry on luggage is filled with gifts for the family plus items to make the time together fun for the whole family. Then of course there’s reading material. I have also done some baking which will qualify for my smaller carry on. Others might bring a bigger bag and check it or they might bring less but this is a successful mode for me and I currently prefer not to change it. Too much time as a road warrior says keep it close to you and minimize the stress. So I stress out in advance and breathe a sigh of relief once the plane touches down and once the carry-on bag returns to it normal (not overstuffed) size. Life can get over-stuffed but I try to keep in a carry-on bag. 

What’s in a name?

As I was waiting for my coffee drink I was asked my name. I got to thinking that this is an opportunity, if desired, to be creative or anonymous. On a springlike day I could choose Daisy, on a feel-good day I could Merry, on a day in Brooklyn I could be Bobbie (my grandma name) or on a anti-social day I could say Mary (so no one ask me to spell Marilyn). The truth is that for me that before I have my coffee I choose to keep my reply simple and go with the person and personality that being Marilyn requires. 

Welcome Spring

The first day of Spring at the U of M has students sitting outside on the Starbucks patio sipping ice coffee in cloudy and 45 degree weather AND FEELING CONTENT.  I realize that I could have written a similar post last year in my first year of retirement. The high level of contentment I feel is kind of surprising to me and I hope I can continue to feel this positive for many years to come. I’m turning into a believer. 

100

My friend Marj recently celebrated her 100th birthday. This is the first time I had a friend reach this impressive milestone. It takes a little luck and a lot of determination, tenacity and good relationships. When I think of the other rare situation of this kind of longevity I think of cities, companies, trees, wine, literature and music. All take the right combination of opportunities. I’m so pleased to have such a wonderful model to strive for.