2012 – A Year of Expected and Unexpected Change

So in a few days, we’ll leave 2012 behind and start a new year. At the risk of being a little clichéd, it’s probably time for a little reflection, then a look to the future. I’ve had some major events in my life this past year, and I have a lot to look forward to.

To kick the reflections off, three major changes for me this year were:

  1. The loss of my mom
  2. My retirement
  3. Starting my blog

These events have all affected me in very different ways.

The passing of my mother, while not entirely unexpected, was still difficult. It has already changed the celebration of our holidays, and will continue to color my world for the rest of my life. I find myself thinking I need to ask her about details while I’m archiving photos or working on my family tree. And I wish I could share so many little things with her. I’ve even, unthinking, set things aside to take to her the next time I visit. It will be a long time before her absence seems real, and of course so many wonderful memories will always be with me.

My retirement was a more expected, and happily anticipated, milestone. But it has still also been a difficult paradigm shift sometimes! After so many years of having someplace to go, and clear expectations for each day, I have been confronted with the need to structure my own days to accomplish my new goals – many involving future planning for my beloved’s and my future together. I’m getting there… and am increasingly excited about the next part of our adventure.

My blog has been a revelation.  This really wasn’t something I initially expected to do, but when I decided to try it, I hoped it would help me record my retirement journey and planning. I’ve had a lot of fun setting it up, and I have had a blast digressing with photo challenges and meeting other bloggers. Now my challenge is to focus a little more on my original objectives, to help get my beloved retired as well. Stay tuned to see how we make the next few decisions to make that happen…

So, now for our top three 2013 goals:

  1. Find our retirement destination
  2. Plan the financing of a home there
  3. Plan and take a great vacation

We’ve started visiting possible retirement places, and are beginning to focus on one or two places.  Figuring out the financing and timing will be the next keys, and will undoubtedly be blog topics in the coming months.

One of our goals all along has been to continue travelling while our health allows. So, we’re looking at Central or South America and Alaska as possible venues this year – we’ve never been to any of those places.  I’m looking forward to doing that research (and welcome recommendations).

Of course, the new year will certainly bring many other events, both expected and unexpected. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s in store.

As we look forward, I’m hopeful that my beloved and I will meet our 2013 goals, and I wish each of you an unexpectedly wonderful 2013, blessed with health, family, and good friends.

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23 Responses to 2012 – A Year of Expected and Unexpected Change

  1. 2012 was a year of big change for us too and I’m hoping 2013 will be slightly less fraught with ups and downs. Even though I’m nowhere close, self-employment brought similar challenges with it as far as lack of structure and places to go. I have a lot of retired friends, and they all wonder how they ever had time to have a full time job! Enjoy your planning and traveling! And thanks for the regular following of my own blog. 😀 – Suzan –


  2. Angeline M says:

    I’m so glad you stopped in to visit with me. I look forward to following along with you on your journey through retirement. I’ll be embarking on that trip myself next year. Wishing you the best in the years to come.


  3. I love the way you are structuring up your life, making it work even in times of trouble. You are such a well organized person – good luck with your future goals! I’m sure they will turn out well. All the best for you and yours!


  4. I lost my Dad this year and I totally understand, Christmas was difficult. Change hurts and frankly 2012 sucked! I know 2013 will be better…There is one good thing about the year is that you started blogging…answers will come… (hugs to you)


  5. Best of luck with all three goals. Looking forward to photos and fantasies fulfilled :-). Enjoy the journey, RT.


  6. sharechair says:

    I’ll be anxious to read about your decisions, and the process you go through to arrive at them. We have a big trip planned in 2013 to the Baltics. Alaska is still on my to-do list, as well. 🙂


  7. Amy says:

    I look forward to read more about your next few decisions… Thanks for sharing!


  8. friendlytm says:

    It is nice to connect with you this year. I just came back from a vacation to South America ( Brazil, Argentina and Chile). It was one of the most enjoyable trips I ever had. You may like to check out my two recent posts on my blog “my notebook”. More to come later.
    I wish you luck in identifying a good place to retire and settle down.
    Sorry about the loss of your mother. Tomorrow is the anniversary of my mother’s passing 3 years ago. I understand the feeling of the loss.
    Take care, and wish Yiu a happy new year!


    • Thanks so much for your visit and lovely comments… I am so sorry for your loss as well. Those anniversaries are always hard. I will definitely spend some time with your travel posts, and wish you a wonderful New Year too! 😉


      • friendlytm says:

        I forgot to comment about Alaska. I had been to Alaska twice via cruise ship. I think it is very economical and relaxing. The scenery and glaciers, waterfalls, etc, were nice before I went to South America, which is more expensive, more attractive and beautiful. I suggest that you start with Alaska first if you want to go to both places. If it is the other way round, It is hard to compare Alaska with S America. It is still worth your time and money if you go to Alaska. The world is so big with so many attractions….Why not try out everything if you can?


  9. losing a parent it hard, and yes it sometimes takes years. i pause and reflect – my mother died in the 1980’s, and i still have quiet early-morning moments when i still have the urge to reach for the phone and call her.

    there’s a big world out there with so much to offer! part of finding that special place is the journey itself. you’ll have a great experience!
    good luck!


  10. Pingback: Future Challenge – 2013 Steps to Dream Fulfulment | The Retiring Sort

  11. adinparadise says:

    It’s certainly been an eventful year for you, with many adjustments. I hope that 2013 will be a really happy and prosperous one for you and your husband. Mine had been retired for 13 years already, so we’re quite old hands at it. 😀 Your travel plans sound exciting. We’ve done South America as part of a round-the-world trip, but not Alaska. We plan to go to Belize in January. Very exciting. Happy New Year to you. Love your blog, so keep at it. xx


    • Thanks so much, AD, for your encouragement and support. 😉 I’ll look forward to hearing all about your trip to Belize! I always love your travel posts… All the best to you and yours for a wonderful New Year as well!


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