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Retirement Routine

ELDERS FOR HEALTH CARE REFORM Calling all elderbloggers. I hope you are planning to join us next Thursday 20 August in posting for health care reform. Let's not let those old people disrupting town halls with shouted inanities speak for the rest of us. Find out more here.

category_bug_journal2.gif Before I was forced to retire four years ago (sorry, readers, I'm going to rag on the stupidity of young hiring managers who refused to see me as useful until the day I die), my morning routine hardly varied.

Whether my job required me to wake at 4:30AM or 7:30AM, I moved in lockstep through the schedule:

  1. Start the coffee water
  2. Feed the cat
  3. Make the bed
  4. Pour the water into the coffee maker
  5. Shower
  6. Dress
  7. Breakfast
  8. Makeup and hair
  9. Check email with coffee
  10. Wash up the few dishes and cup
  11. Give the cat a pet
  12. Leave for work

Since rushing rattles me, I gave myself 75 minutes or so to do this which is about how long it takes for my brain to reach its full functionality after a night's sleep. Any disruptions to the routine could throw the timing off because it all took place in my lizard brain - no thinking required.

When I stopped looking for work and put the plan in place to sell my home and leave Manhattan, the schedule remained the same for about a year. Then I began slacking off. I'd skip bed making until later. Then I put off showering to read and answer email first which soon extended to the morning online news which easily added an hour, even two to sitting butt-still in the desk chair.

I am never hungry until four or five hours after I waken. I had forced a meal for years knowing there would be no time to eat until noon or later, but now I realized I could stop doing that and eat whenever I feel like it.

You know how this progressed. It became common for me to still be sitting at the computer in my flannel granny gown at 11AM – even noon - with nothing changed but having switched from coffee to green tea. Maybe I was researching a future blog post. Or writing tomorrow's post. Or organizing items for the Saturday Elder News. Or just dinking around.

On days that it was noon before I became mobile, showering seemed almost decadent or, at least, beside the point, and I'll admit that if I had no one to see, I skipped it some days although never two days in a row because that is just too icky.

For six months of the year, I shop at the farmers' market on Wednesday mornings which opens at 7AM. It is good to be there early before the best stuff is sold, but this season I found myself resenting the routine necessary to be presentable and even stayed home a couple of times.

All this sloth came to a head a few weeks ago when the UPS man arrived at around 11AM and I was forced to answer the door in my favorite but rattiest, old, granny gown, long, gray hair flying in all directions. It's an old line, but he must have asked himself if it was Halloween.

So I took myself in hand, gave myself a talking to and for about the past six weeks, I have been following a retired routine that is similar to my work-years routine with extra time slotted for internet reading before moving on to chores, shopping, blog work or whatever else is planned by 8AM.

It's harder to enforce than I would have thought. Although I'm quite pleased with myself to be in and out of the shower within an hour of waking; although I think my lizard brain retreats more quickly this way so my mind is sharper at an earlier time; and although no matter how late I sleep (for me, 5:30AM is the goal, but I often wake earlier) lizard brain returns by mid-afternoon when I can no longer do any useful thinking, I am still forcing the routine.

Which means that at some point I will back slide. In fact, the longer I spend writing this post, the more familiar it seems and it may be that I've been through all this before - a couple of years or so ago.

So I wonder, all you other retired people, how you organize your time now, particularly your mornings. Do we inevitably become slothful as our working years retreat further into our pasts? If left unchecked, how far can it go? Does it matter?


At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Lyn Burnstine: The Band Teacher


Comments

Ronni: yes, I have a morning routine, but not quite as rigid as it once was when I had to be on duty at 7am, & I'm aware that I need it so that I don't spend my mornings "...just dinking around" which is my favorite thing to do:)Hope you have a great day since you've just made mine! Dee

Great post, great questions. Whether it's my Type A personality or the genes of my maternal grandfather who, in his retirement, returned to annotating medieval Hebrew liturgical poetry then publishing volumes of his work, I am no less busy today as five, ten, more years ago. A morning person, I continue to knock out my A-list items first thing and keep going. The death of one of my closest friends three years ago, some "misspent" years, and betrayal by a close family member, reinforce my resolve to live now, die later. During my work for pay years, I always worked pro bono. So nothing has really changed except for the absence of a W-2 or a 1099 form. Like you, I love coffee, and that starts and fuels next projects, tasks, and activities.

My morning routine begins very early...sometimes before 5:00. I blog, surf and drink coffee. I am a morning person and would be cleaning or sorting or other jobs, but hubby sleeps until just before 8:00 and since I am such a light sleeper, I keep thinking I need to be respectful of his schedule. This morning I looked for the Pleiades (unsuccessfully), watched CNN, watered container plants, started the sprinkler for the lawn and am still in my PJs. Oh well.

Wow great post, you read my thoughts! ;-)

When I worked I had a morning routine but I hated it, I dearly wanted to just wake up when I felt like it and drift through the day however I wanted whenever I wanted. Now I do and it's unsettling.

My morning "routine" now is, wake up (whenever), put on coffee and toast (still in jammies), fire up the computer and CBC radio, and settle in to read email and favourite blogs for sometimes hours on end. Were it not for the current 10am commitment to accompany a neighbour on her morning dogwalk, I don't think I would ever get properly dressed before noon.

So Ronni, you're ahead of some of us when it comes to morning productivity!

I am generally most productive in the afternoon, would dearly love to extend that into the morning hours, and know I will never have the stamina or brain power to do anything useful in the evening other than knit. I don't know if my narrow window of opportunity is a failure of energy or of will power.

You have captured my post-"making-a-difference-in-the-world who-was-I-kidding life" and I recognize the vanity of vanities in it. Who misses me? No one. Who do I miss? No one.

Now what? I ask myself what will extend my life healthily and happily and it doesn't include following the slave-like habits of a working person. Freedom is tough but I hope to learn how to live with it! I'll watch your progress for ideas but my alarm clock silently blinks 12:00.

I have become the worst "who cares" person. I have used all kind of excuses not to be organized and a person with purpose. Determined to rethink things and come up with a better plan. I liked what Dee said, live now, die later.

MissDazey

Note:I am a new comer to this site, I feel like I have come to the right place. A place I've been looking for the longest time.

Routine? Routine? Routine? World, hear this...I am retired. I don't need no stinkin' routine!

I have never liked sitting around in anyway that I couldn't face someone at the door which having a farm, living off a highway, can happen at any hour. Because emergencies arise out there without much warning, I am generally ready for them if I am up at all. Plus I don't like eating breakfast and not being fully dressed. Because I have always been my own taskmaster for my routine, I like having the house and me ready for whatever might come at an early hour. When I was a girl, I slept in and stayed up late but having children changed that and it's pretty much first light-- whatever time that comes-- when my day begins.

Retirement has given us the freedom to choose. If my husband decides to explore some new backroads with me instead of mowing the yard, the grass will be a bit taller tomorrow. If I decide to read a book instead of doing laundry, that laundry will be there tomorrow. Our "schedule" is changeable, but having a very loose schedule gives me a bit of routine which keeps me centered.

Unfortunately the dog and cats don't have a handle on this retirement thing. They insist on arising between 5-6 a.m. and being let out/fed.

I have tried going back to bed, but it's not the same.

When I have a freelance job that requires me to be up-and-out early [i.e. the same time I used to go out to work] I feel confused and (sometimes) resentful and wonder what difference all those years getting up and working specified hours made.

OH, how the truth hurts!

Your post was wonderfully written and I laughed and blushed all at the same time...mostly because I am living that same experience! I felt like you were peeking into my life a bit...as I sit here in my raggedly pj's reading through my favorite blogs, etc. etc.

Thanks for starting my day with a smile...

Oh dear, Ronni, have you been spying on me. That could have been my routine: up early (the cats see to that), slobbing around in nightwear, fiddlin' on the PC, getting lost in it. The only fixed point is coffee for the man at 9 a.m., without which and without a call, would be there until noon.

And it's true, whenever the necessity arrives to be out early for an appointment, I'm full of resentment.

I don't want a routine, but pets and a garden force one, so try to make it as flexible as I can. And, of course, routines change with the seasons with winter darker mornings and evenings and fluctuating temperatures.

Good topic for retirees, Ronni.

I've had the awfulest time allowing myself to be sidetracked by the net, until I realize that it is the middle of the day and I am still not dressed!

But I like to get up at 7 am. If I have slept well, that is when I want to be up. We have always eaten breakfast in this house, and that has not changed.

2 or 3 Fridays a month I go to a volunteer job, which I find agrees with my schedule.

Twice a week, I hop on treadmill and also do a little free weight work. I am supposed to work in a third weekly session of walking, but I have trouble with that.

We buy groceries on Thursdays, usually.

I learned long ago that I am a "project" person. I have trouble with routine if I don't have a project. A little routine helps me plan what I want to do, but if I don't have something I want to accomplish, the routine falls apart and I am at loose ends. Which I hate!

I was laid off in December, and since I'm not looking for another job, I find myself retired, too. It is definitely an adjustment. I stay up later, and "sleep in" until 7 am. But I can find myself immobilized in front of the computer at 11 am too. Sounds like I'm not alone!

I have a solution to the problem of "meeting the UPS in my flannel nightie"....I sleep in Land's End tee shirt and sports pants. If I have to go to the door, who will be the wiser?
Gladys

The older I get the less I stick to a schedule. I am up whenever my eyes will no longer stay shut. If I take a sleeping aid I may still be in bed at 9 am (rare) or, without one I sometimes wake up at 2 or 3 am and get up and boot up the PC.

No matter when I get up I have a routine which is somewhat like yours, Ronni. I make my bed before leaving the bedroom, then make coffee, check my e-mail, eat breakfast, and read the news on the computer. I never get dressed until that is done.

Later I do the things that don't require thinking like laundry, etc. After that I shower because I don't feel yucky until I have done some physical labor. Do to age and living in Arizona I have very dry skin and do not shower every day.

Part of the fun of retirement was no longer having to follow a routine and I am happy being a slob if I feel like it. No guilt here. :-)

Ronni,

I have been reading your blog for about 3yrs after reading about it in the NY Times but this is the first time I've posted a comment.

I have been retired for 5 yrs and like you I am not hungry in am for several hours. Until early this year in the dead of winter I would eat around 7am as part of my morning routine. This winter I began getting out of bed later and starting to eat breakfast around 9am. As a result all of my meals were later, I did not need a midmorning or afternoon snack and before I knew it I had lost 10lbs! and have maintained the loss.

I am so pleased about this I had to tell you and your readers. Maybe this will work for someone else.

My morning routine has hardly varied at all in the last ten years.
1. Wash and dress (since I sleep naked, staying in my nightwear is not really an option)
2. Drink three glasses of water while the computer is booting up
3. read the news online and check email
4. take morning walk (usually about 3 miles)
5. (see below)
6. eat breakfast
7. drink two cups of green tea and read the mail/latest magazine/library book
... and then start the day.
But there's a big problem with this routine. I love to walk in the early morning and I really enjoy my walks. And I know that if I don't take the walk before breakfast, I most likely will get caught up in my day's activities and finish up not taking the walk at all. Trouble is, there's something else that is supposed to be in there and often it is not. Item #5 is 'do my exercises.' But I DETEST doing exercises. They need to be done just after the walk, while my muscles are warm and my stomach's still empty. But after walking for an hour I come home so hungry that I just can't bear to delay breakfast even a minute longer. So at least five days out of seven, I skip Item #5. Then I am cross with myself for my lack of willpower and for neglecting those all-important stretches. Can't seem to solve this one!!

Oh yes, I think it matters to our self esteem. I admired my friend Duck for the dignity of his life for years. He read and ate, showered and dressed, made his bed, and after lunch he undressed and had a nap then remade his bed. He even vacuumed every day until he forgot where his vacuum was. In the nursing home later, he dressed and made his bed every day....which of course left him with dirty sheets every day.

Me? On days I swim at the Y, first I dress in a baggy dress or sweats, do toast, coffee and a newspaper before I blog. Then I pop my suit on, swim, shower, dress for the day...about 0900, and pick up the house. I haven't used my own bathtub for a year. I work at the computer until lunch or workshop or thrift store work time, and I take my lunch with me when I go.

After hand surgery this year, I stopped making my bed. I pull the covers up, but no more making it unless state visitors are expected. I have a cleaning lady who does the tough stuff twice a month.....thank you.

Food: The only thing I keep careful track of: Breakfast around 0530. I have IBS, and regular meals keep my stomach and bowels happy. Lunch around 1030 or 11ish, and dinner 1600 or 1700 hundred depending on what's happening that evening.

Retirement is heaven.

PS: Thanks Ronnie......I do like this topic a lot. Sweeps away the cobwebs and makes me look at myself anew. If you don't mind, I'll write about this myself later in the month. :)

Wow!!!! This post really hit me where I live! LOL Since I was forced out of my part-time job that I loved and assorted other nonsense keeps hitting me, I have become incredibly neglectful of my time et al. It bugs the hell outta me sometimes but mostly my attitude is 'manana'!

Cat nudges me awake when she feels like it, could be 5:30 a.m. even, so, since my bladder by then is the size of Texas, and she's butting my body with her head, I get up.

Go undo the alarm, turn off outside light, pick up the cat & horse around with her. Wash face, go sit at computer, read all news, write some stuff. Go to kitchen and eat. Cat wants food. I feed her. Sometimes find a bulbous bug in her water bowl. Something she played hockey with all night, before waking me. Bug has one leg missing, and is circling the bowl like mad, thinking he's going somewhere. That he is, all right, as I take the whole bowl upstairs, open the front door and spin the little %^&^% as far as my arm can throw. Let the birds get him.

Go back in, still dressed in my bathrobe. Feel like walking to the end of my driveway, like Tony Soprano, just to dust up this quiet street, but nah. I'll stay inside and write on my blog.

Open blinds, walk around staring at my garden through windows, I ponder life. Turn on the radio, listen to news.

Wait for my husband to get up, then shower and get dressed. If it's a job (gardening) day, I do all that, then put on my gardening clothes, grab a water bottle, open door, put on my clod hopping garden shoes, but shake them first, in case ear wigs have invaded, check my tools, and take off.

The end.

After a lifetime of being ruled by the clock, I'm now the one who decides if and when I do something. Once I retired, I changed my priorities so that now there are just a few things that I let require me to be somewhere at a specific time; doctors' appointments, my shift as a volunteer twice a week at the local SPCA animal shelter, and the occasional school play or other event involving my grandkids. Everything else happens according to my very flexible (almost nonexistent) schedule; everything, that is, except for walking my dog. He sets that schedule.

Each day I list what I'd like to accomplish that day but set no time limits. What doesn't get done that day can wait 'til the next.

Like Dee, my attitude is "live today, die tomorrow." Someday I may change my attitude to "Never put off until tomorrow what you can put off indefinitely." ;-) But that may be a little too extreme.

When my boss of twenty years was once asked what she could say about me that was negative, she (told me that she) said that I don't like to get up in the morning and my desk is always messy. The same things are true in my retirement.

Since I've developed a kind of insomnia, I've programmed a full spectrum light to go on and wake me at 8:30 a.m. and I usually roll out of bed around 9. If I'm not up by 10, my 7 year old grandson knocks on my door at 10 and reminds me that I should get out of bed.

I have no routine, except to get up and feed the cat when she wakes me around 7 a.m. And then I go back to sleep.

My day is filled with whatever I feel like filling it with -- which includes eating when I'm hungry (except for dinner, which I have with the family, since I live with my daughter, son-in-law, and grandson). If it's not too hot, I garden or walk. I read while I eat lunch, sit in my vibrating massage chair for a half-hour each afternoon, and catch up with internet stuff when the spirit moves me. We go to the Farmer's Market on Tuesday afternoons and take off for beaches or zoos or other fun places on the spur of the moment. I shower before I go anywhere, otherwise, I don't bother.

Obviously, I am not a Type A.

After 8 months of no schedule whatsoever, I have realized that I have to make some effort for both mental and physical health reasons, so I've enrolled in a writers' workshop and a water aerobics class. Both happen after 10 in the morning. I will always NOT be a morning person.

Chores first, time-black-holes (like the computer) later! Otherwise it's noon, and I still haven't taken the trash out.

On days when I'm not working away from home, I can often be found on the computer at 11 am or even noon, in my nightgown. I feel guilty, but I also relish doing it!

My approach is to flow! I figure out what needs doing and what the relative priorities are, and then I flow myself there - i.e., I use my changing energy and interest levels to move me in the directions I need to go. And most day it works out very well.

I'm a night owl who has a hard time getting to sleep and then wakes up slowly in the morning, and none too early. I prefer to do morning chores before bathing and dressing, so if anyone comes to my door in the morning they'll find me wearing a housecoat. If that bothers them, too bad.

Often go out and do errands, etc., in the afternoon.

Any work (or fun) at the computer comes in the evening after supper--otherwise other necessary things might never get done.

It's such a pleasure to be retired so I can stick to my own, very loose, schedule instead of trying to fit into somebody else's tight and uncomfortable one. That's like trying to squeeze into shoes two sizes too small. Been there, done that.



Haven't been by in a while and your post really hit home with me. I still work 3 days a week and, of course, my routine is tighter on those days. Like Medical Alert, I'm a night person by nature, however, and on the other 4 days I get up about 8:30. I'm not hungry in the morning either, but I'm trying to force myself to eat as I have a night-time snacking problem and I need more food structure.

Like you, Ronni, I live alone, so my time choices are largely my own on non-work days. I love being partially retired, but another part of me knows that work was what kept me in a healthier routine than I am in now.

I seem to have gone back to childhood since I retired. When I was a kid, I used to time myself in the summer to see how fast I could get dressed and out of the house in the morning. I didn't like breakfast, so unless my mother caught me and made me eat something, I could be up, dressed, and out of the house in TWO minutes!

I'm not that speedy now, but I generally bathe at night--I read somewhere that the Jewish day begins the night before, and that was a revelation. Looking at it that way, the first part of the day belongs to you and not to some effing job. I wake up with the sun (haven't used an alarm clock for almost 20 years--always hated it, so I trained myself to wake up on my own), take my drops (weird remedy that keeps my arteries clear) in 2 oz of fruit juice, and most of the time go back to bed for another 40 winks or so. Then I get up, make a green smoothie--fresh fruit, lettuce or kale, flax oil, packet of EmergenC, scoop of soy powder (though when that's gone, i'm going back to whey powder...like it better). I haul a big glass of this out to the living room and read news, blogs, e-mail. I skip the meditation and yoga I did for years. I feel bad, but the major stumbling block that I don't quite understand is that I just don't like to do it any more.

About 8:30 or 9, I call my BFF to plan our day. Sometimes I go with her when she takes her dog for an off-leash run in the cemetery, sometimes we meet at a Wifi spot to work (she corrects papers or writes, I write or edit or read), sometimes she comes here to work, sometimes I go there. Most days we either walk or ride our bikes for several hours.

As Rachel Maddow describes her wardrobe, I go for the "kindergarten look": shorts or jeans, T-shirt, sneakers. This time seems like a transition from working in a difficult, mostly unrewarding (other than monetarily) environment to very different kind of life.

Today we rode our bikes along the river and along the mall to see "Julia and Julie." On the way back, I felt filled with joy that we live in such a beautiful place. When we stopped for a drink of water, I said, choking a bit in surprising emotion, "This is our Paris."

This getting choked up embarrasses me, but it's happening lots. My heart and eyes just spill over. A Monarch butterfly flew beside me today for quite a ways, and I said, "Hi, there" and got choked up again.

At a red light, I waited next to a pedicab driver, and I asked him how he liked his job--was it fun or was it gruelling and hard? The light changed, and as he pushed off up the hill on Constitution Ave, he said, "I love every single thing about it."

We had a situation Saturday that reminded me to get dressed earlier than noon. Also know where my shoes and billfold is at the least. Hubby had heat exhaustion, thought at first it was a heat stroke. My first thought was "oh,no I'm not dressed." He's fine, but did make me think.

I could have written that! I live alone (well, with my cat) and go to bed around 1 or 2 and sleep until around 9:00 unless I have to be somewhere too early. Eventually I eat breakfast at the computer while I read email and blogs. I need to take a shower as soon as I get up but often don't. I know that feeling of waiting until it seems too late and not doing it. And yes never two days!

There needs to be a readjustment of my schedule, but here I am at the computer at almost 2:00 AM not sleepy yet.

Another thought-provoking and affirming post!

I like this post, Ronni. I go along with Sunny...my daily efforts include e-mails, solitaire and phlynx, no exercise..so I won't live to 120...coffee - a must in the am with a rice krispee bar; and I just flow through the days doing whatever needs to be done. I try to allow time to play piano, read, crochet some creation that will never we worn, watch some nice movies. In short - try to enjoy. By the way, Syd is in his artist mode and has done many paintings which are now hanging in HIS room. He seems to be enjoying his life, too.

I foresee something very similar to your old-gown-flying-hair experience in my future!! The recession has given me the mixed blessing of an enforced 4-day week and although I started off with plans to be tremendously productive on day 5 and push my freelance writing etc etc, last Friday I found myself at 6pm, expecting my husband's imminent arrival home from work, realising that I had not washed my face that morning or applied moisturiser! I had, however, gone to the gym, picked a punnet of wild blackberries and sat in the sun for a bit, so the day was far from a write-off :)

My father (who is now 87) has loved a routine for most of his life - used to drive my mom crazy. Unlike many of the elders who have commented here, I have noticed that he tends to get up later than ever before (09h00), then have tea and read the paper until about 11h30, then have some bran flakes and more tea, then do some chores before lunch which is seldom before 15h00 or 16h00. In the afternoon he usually reads, works in the garden and dozes before turning on the TV to catch his daily soap and the news at about 7. I often call and catch him at dinner - at 22h00 or so!!

After 21 years of working and being gone 10+ hours a day and wearing a uniform and having several cats and multiple birds to care for, as well as having raised a son, I am now retired and find myself becoming more and more lazy and enjoying wasting time, playing on the computer, reading, eating ice cream, taking walks, taking photos, and some days not caring what I look like. It's such a joy to just be, to do what I like, to read, read, read and sit on the porch. I really don't want any routine, nor any more commitments at this time in my life. Sometimes I wonder how long I can live like this - but it is glorious! I love every minute of it!

Sounds like you've learned to enjoy a loose regimen over these years since retirement.

My sked has been in a state of flux. After my husband died I was crazy for a year or so which included obsessive computer use, erratic hours for much of what I did. Had flexibility with my part time work so as long as I took care of it within a general 8 hr time period I was okay. The rest of the time I loved the release of freedom from sked and ultimately resented obligations and commitments of most kinds. Took a year to regain some semblance of sanity and evolve into a more reasonable schedule.

I still enjoy occasionally spending a day in my P.J.s, but my husband and I both did that once in a long while as we laughed that given the time of day it just was too late to get dressed.

The past six weeks or so I've been in the process of adopting a new schedule and haven't yet figured out where blogging fits into it. Key is going to bed at a decent hour most nights; making certain I eat meals at regular times (not skipping any,) drinking lots of water, completing approx. an hour of exercise (may start doing some of that before I get out of bed each morning,) with more activities to include, especially once I end this vacation from work.

After 3 years I'm finally adjusting to a retirement "schedule". Life isn't what I expected...many people/animals got sick and needed my help. I felt blessed to have the time and healthy body to help others.
Travel plans and visitors also kept me from finding a rhythm, Now things are slowing down and I'm settling in.

I go to water aerobics MWF at 10:00. If I do housework before class, my day goes better. The chores are not hanging over my head and I have enough energy in the AM.
I save afternoons for shopping errands, social contacts and hobbies.

I'm trying to "sort out" my junk. I'd like everything in the house to serve a purpose. If I can't leave my kids a fortune, I don't want to leave them a mess. I want to update the house in my 60's, so I can forget about it in my 70's+.

Once a month I have lunch with retire co-workers....I feel less connection with them. Values are becoming more pronounced and I have waning interest in small talk. Time is valuable.

When I first retired it felt wonderful to stay in PJ's and loaf. It's dawned on me that I will have that opportunity if I end up in a nursing home. I'm going to try harder to "get ready for my day"...lipstick, modern clothing and a good haircut.

I've been retired for some years now. Routine! What routine? I love getting up in time to watch news in 90 seconds on cbs with coffee in hand. Make my bed. Tidy up the house. Fix quick breakfast. Morning clean up of self and off I go. My sister and I often meet for lunch and ramble in nearby small towns, love to look in old stores and explore. Also love to get together and make a favorite dish healthier. Tasty? Sometimes. Evenings are a work in progress. Haven't come up with a late evening routine yet. Love to read invigorating books. Which just might not be the smartest thing to do late in the evening.

I've heard that one's life sometimes passes before their eyes when they are dying, but this is the first time I've seen my life pass before my eyes in a blog.
Old Tshirts and pull up pants are the dress style I prefer. I, too, have scared the UPS man with flying grey hair and wicked signs on my Tshirt.
Being retired means having to make one's own schedule instead of the job making the schedule.
I generally straighten my house before going to bed, and usually run the dishwasher if needed late at night.
But I spend far too much time on the computer or reading. The first 6 months I retired, I read about a book a day I was so greedy for reading time. Living alone allows such behavior.
Thanks for all the comments, as now I don't have a guilty feeling whenever I find myself showering in the afternoon and finally dressing.

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