Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Work Less, Enjoy More: Retirement With a Side of Work

Often, people think about work and retirement as two opposite sides of a coin. It does not need to be one or the other. Sometimes, people wish to continue earning money in retirement. This can be a helpful way to assist with your growing needs at this stage. About Aging Parents has plenty of great advice and tips to help people better navigate the golden years. 

There are many different types of work that you can pursue in retirement, from consulting to entrepreneurship. The best type of position for you depends on how much time, energy, and resources you want to devote to it. 

Determine Your Interests and Availability  

There are many factors to consider as you think about taking on a job during retirement. One of the first things to consider is how many hours you wish to devote to working. Do you want a full- or part-time job? The type of job you want is another point of consideration, as well as where you want to work — some seniors appreciate the social aspects of working, so a public setting is best, but those who prefer to work independently may wish to take on a work-from-home or freelance position. 

Image link: https://pixabay.com/photos/elders-retired-people-old-elderly-401296/ Image credit: Pixabay.com

 If you have expertise in a certain subject, it may be lucrative to take on a position as a consultant or advisor. You could also set up a home-based business in which you can use these skills to earn money. An example could be a retired teacher offering consultation for curriculum planning. 

Hobbies can also make a great sideline business — maybe your passion for baking can become an income-earner for your retirement years. There are endless ways to earn money during retirement, so be sure to choose something that you enjoy. If you are setting up a business, it may be wise to think about its structure and create a plan that works with your lifestyle. 

Structure and Formation 

The way you arrange your work schedule, the type of work you choose to do, and how you function in this new role are important factors, whether you work for someone else or opt to start your own business. Working during retirement looks quite different than it did when you were working in a full-time career, and it is important to maintain boundaries to prevent you from taking on too much. 

New business owners may find it practical to consider filing as a Limited Liability Company or LLC. With this type of formation, you can keep your personal assets safe, as well as enjoy a great deal of flexibility. There are different regulations for business owners, depending on what state you live in, but you can work with a formation company like Zenbusiness to take care of the process for you. It may be tempting, as a new business owner, to devote excess time and energy to tasks like this but be sure to set limits to prevent burnout. 

Make Your Work Sustainable 

Whether you opt to work for someone else or start your own business, keep in mind that sustainability is crucial. Seniors who are working need to make sure they are taking time for themselves. Participate in self-care daily. Remember, you cannot give water from an empty well — your physical and emotional resources need to be replenished. 

Retirement can be scary, especially when you have financial concerns to think about. Working in your golden years is more than possible and can even be a viable part of your master plan in your senior years. But rather than stretch yourself too thin, consider how to develop a business or work schedule that takes your entire life and needs into account.

This is a guest post from Annabelle Harris.

Annabelle Harris is a 67-year-old writer, wife, mother, and grandmother. She started blogging nearly a decade ago when she was still facing the prospect of retirement and old age. She was terrified and needed an outlet for her thoughts, fears, and uncertainties. It was through her first blog that she found the support of a community that truly helped her through the process of aging.

Thank you Annabelle


Monday, January 25, 2021

Navigating the COVID-19 Vaccine Process

The COVID-19 vaccine is now becoming available to others outside the healthcare industry, but it can seem like a dangling carrot with no real access. So how can you navigate the COVID-19 vaccine process? It won't be available from you primary care provider (PCP) because of the strict cold storage requirements. But some large healthcare organizations such as Kaiser Permanente, CVS, and Walgreens are able to safely store and provide it. Sites such as Disneyland or sports stadiums are allowing use of their parking lots for drive-up inoculations.

COVID Vaccine

Find Information Online

The best possible means of getting truthful and transparent information is through your county public health department. Trying to reach them by phone may be almost impossible, so you will likely need to access them online and it may be a slow process because literally millions are trying to access as well. Be patient but persistent!!  You may need a family member or friend to do this for you. Your local Senior Center also may be able to assist you.

A Google search for your specific county health dept. would look like: XXX county public health department. And then search for COVID-19 vaccine information. It might be front and center. Or you may need to start with your state health department website. Go directly to the government websites and please don't fall for any scams!!!!!  DO NOT pay anyone to help you access a vaccine! You can sign up to receive emails with updated information.

FREE Vaccine

The vaccine is free of charge, and you should NOT be asked for insurance information. Vaccines are provided on an APPOINTMENT ONLY basis. Don't just show up!

Some counties or vaccine sites are charging a fee to administer the vaccine and charging your insurance for this fee. This is questionable as to whether it should be allowed. But you might have to provide your insurance info or pay a small fee - be prepared. Hopefully this is not the case in your county. 

Why Delays?

There is a shortage of vaccine in many areas. The health department or other providers will only take appointments that they can fulfill. This is why it may appear that there are no appointments. Keep checking daily. More vaccine arrives each week and appointments will open up. You can also sign up for updates or alerts to notify you of available appointments. Understand that this process is under construction and evolving as quickly as possible to be efficient and get everyone vaccinated. It was not a well though out plan and in many cases dumped on the local health departments just a couple of weeks ago with little to no notice!

President Biden will also enact the Defense Production Act to ramp up production of the vaccine to meet the need for all Americans needing/wanting the vaccine. 

Is it Safe & Effective?

Multiple pharmaceutical companies and independent research agencies have been focused on corona viruses for years. The common cold is caused by a corona virus and for YEARS researchers have been trying to cure the common cold.

nurse with COVID vaccine

The COVID-19 vaccine is not like your typical vaccine. It does NOT contain COVID-19 virus!!! It will NOT give you COVID!! It's basically an immunity booster. It contains a protein that hates COVID and will kill it off if your body becomes infected. 

You will need two doses to become 95% protected. The second dose is given 21-28 days after the first dose depending on the manufacturer. When you receive your first dose you'll be notified how and when to get your second dose. Register for any website they tell you to follow. Some will make daily check ups for the first week.

Getting Your Vaccine

Once you have your appointment, arrive on time and allow yourself time to get into line. This will vary depending on your own habits. Running late will possibly lose you your appointment so be prepared to arrive early. Your appointment time will likely have a group of people assigned the same time and you'll be ushered to check in and then wait in another line, or possible be seated. Pharmacies and clinics offering the vaccine may have fewer people at each appointment to avoid crowding issues.

Once you receive your vaccine, you'll be directed to a waiting area to sit for at least 15 minutes to ensure you have no adverse reaction. You'll be dismissed once they are sure you're OK. You will receive a card with your vaccine information including the manufacturer (i.e. Pfizer or Moderna), lot number, date, dose, and person administering the vaccine. KEEP this card and take with you for your second vaccine. And the next time you see your PCP, take the card with you so they can enter it into your medical records. Keep this card with your important papers. If the entire process is efficient, it will take about an hour.  Watch your local news and newspapers for information to glean how well the process is running in your area and what glitches to expect.

Be Prepared to WAIT

The important factor is to be prepared to wait! Some sites may not be amenable to wheelchairs and you'll likely have to do a lot of standing.  Take weather in to account when going to your appointment. Dress accordingly. And be sure to wear clothing you can easily expose your upper arm in as there likely will not be privacy to undress.  Drive through locations may be preferred for the elderly.

What to Expect After the Vaccine

The main side effects include pain or itching at the injection site. This varies with the recipient and the administrator. Tylenol and warm compresses can alleviate discomfort. If it worsens or lingers, consult your PCP.

Of course, any major reactions should be reported and immediate emergency medical care sought  such as trouble breathing or sense of your throat closing up.  These are rare, but should not be ignored. 

Some are reporting more symptoms after the 2nd injection such as body aches and fatigue in addition to pain or itching at the injection site. It's suggested that you limit or avoid other activities on the day of and at least 1 day after the vaccine in case you do experience mild reactions. 

Continue to Protect Yourself

Continue to wear a mask, socially distance, wash you hands frequently and avoid any crowds or exposure. It will take 2-3 weeks to completely build your immunity. The vaccine will REDUCE your chances of infection, but not 100% protect you. It's important to get as many people vaccinated as quickly as possible to reduce the spread of the virus, lower infection rates, and prevent massive numbers of deaths. 

As with any virus, there are and will be mutations, and it will continue to mutate. The vaccine is thought to be effective against the new strains known to be present, but the effectiveness may be reduce. This should not deter you from getting the vaccine. As with any medical treatments or procedures, ALWAYS check with your PCP for recommendations and instructions. 

It is also important to stop the spread of false and misleading information. Please fact check your sources! 

Read more....

CDC answers Frequently Asked Questions





Monday, October 19, 2020

Avoid Fake Ballot Boxes - Make Sure Your Ballot Gets Counted!

I live in California and here the Republican Party admittedly has placed fake ballot boxes all over the place. The intention is not clear, but at all costs you want YOUR ballot to COUNT. 

There are options with mail in and absentee ballots. For instance they come with a postage paid bulk mail permit attached. This has been reported to be an OK method to return your ballot, but suggest you drop it off at the post office if possible. The newly appointed Post Master General waffles on whether the ballot mail will be treated as First Class or Bulk mail. Don't take a chance!

A better way is to attach first class postage (2 stamps is best) and then it must be treated as first class mail and not just bulk mail. The best option is to deposit your ballot in a secure ballot box in your county. Your ballot should have contained a list of the the possible official drop boxes. These are often located at your local City Hall or library.

You can always check with your state or county registrar of voting. And should you be declined as a voter, be sure to ask for a Provisional Ballot and then check with your registrar. Know your voter RIGHTS!  Report suspicious voter suppression!!!


There are also ways to track your unique ballot to make sure it was received and counted. 

If you vote in person, be sure to try to vote early to avoid the longest lines. Election Day is officially
Tuesday, Nov. 3. Take water, a snack and maybe a camping stool. Also take your mask and hand sanitizer. Understand that campaigning is illegal at polling places. That means don't wear your political hats, shirts, button, etc! You can be turned away. There should be NO military or militia guards present either!! Voting is YOUR RIGHT and it should be a private affair and devoid of fraudulent and illegal issues!!

Be sure to send your mail-in ballots in time. They must be postmarked no later than 17 days after the election (Nov. 20) to count!! With the expected number of mail in ballots this year, expect delays in counting and knowing who wins each election. The absentee/ mail-in ballots are often the LAST to be counted.




Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Helping Seniors VOTE

In a few short weeks America will elect its next President, a few governors, and some major legislators. In addition, state and local elections include a multitude of local propositions and candidates that can have far reaching affects on the regions and the country as a whole. Voting is a right, and with rights come responsibilities. It is therefore the responsibility of every single citizen to VOTE. 

Seniors may need assistance

Seniors may have the most difficult and complicated issues when it comes to voting. Just getting a ballot or making it to the polls can seem an insurmountable task. And if they do receive a mail in ballot, they may need help getting it safely returned to be counted. If returning it by mail, it is recommended to add postage (1-2 stamps depending on the size) so that it become a 1st class mail piece and MUST be handled as such by the post office.  Otherwise it might be delayed.

Some, including President Trump, are using every option and excuse to make voting more difficult this year. Absentee and mail in ballots are being bashed as possibly fraudulent even though some states like Oregon have had total mail in voting for years without any more issues than can happen in any election process. We are humans and nothing will ever work perfectly. Two years ago, Los Angeles county had sever issues with electronic ballots and this time around they have a backup paper ballot option for those who don't want to deal with possible technology sues.

In California, there are rumors of ballots being delivered without the presidential options. However, I have yet to actually see these so called errors. Mine arrived intact yesterday.

COVID-19 issues and voting

COVID-19 presents barriers and obstacles for voting especially in person. During the primary elections we saw people standing in line for hours huddled without social distancing and many without masks. This is extremely dangerous and not recommended for anyone, especially not the elderly!

Please check in with your elderly loved ones and neighbors to ensure they have a ride to the polls or help with their mail in ballots.  They might need postage, or help delivering it to a ballot drop box or to the polls for safe delivery. Take advantage of early voting dates to access polls when less in demand.

Track your ballot

There are apps online to ensure registration, notification of ballots sent out, ballots received and ballots counted. This is electronic tracking and your loved ones or neighbors may need your assistance in tracking their ballots. The Washington Post offers this information. Ballots have Intelligent Barcodes which are unique to each ballot.

Key issues for older voters

There are several key issues at stake for our elderly loved ones in this election. Among them is the status of Social Security, SSI and other disability income, Medicare and healthcare options. Voting is not an option this year it is essential for every voter to VOTE and every vote to be counted! It's not about political party- it's about all of us! Please VOTE and help others if they need assistance! Thank you!!!💞


Monday, July 13, 2020

How To Help Your Aging Parents Manage Their Fixed Income

We are all taking care of our aging parents. Unfortunately, some of them are living on such a fixed income that it feels almost impossible to help them meet their needs and cater to some of their wants. Fortunately, with a bit of financial rearranging, they can have it all. Here are a few things you might suggest that can put them on the right track.

Home refinancing

Interest rates are historically low. And if one of your parents is a veteran, they may be able to refinance with a VA IRRRL (Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan), which typically has fewer out-of-pocket costs and flexible eligibility. It is essentially a streamlined loan for those who already have a VA mortgage. The biggest benefit is that they are quick to close and, depending on the amount of equity your parent has in their home, can give them a lower mortgage payment so that they have extra cash available at the end of each month.

Medicare upgrade

If your parents worked the majority of their adult lives and they’ve already reached 65, they have Medicare. But traditional Medicare, despite low cost, may actually be the wrong plan for your parents’ medical needs. Start looking into Medicare Advantage plans; open enrollment, which is when your senior loved ones can make changes, begins in October. An Advantage plan is similar to private insurance, may cost the same as what they have now, and can give them access to a wide range of medical professionals at a potentially lower rate.

Getting cozy with coupons

Coupons are like cash you don’t have to earn, and they can help your aging parents save a pretty significant chunk if they don’t mind doing their research. Many of their favorite stores, including Walgreens, offer great prices online on everything from beauty products to health supplements. Not only can they find great deals directly on the website, but deal sites often offer cash back when a purchase is made via a special link.

Budgeting fun

Many seniors don’t have the cash to take an extended vacation. But, one of the greatest freedoms that come along with retirement is having the time to see the world. Talk to your parents about what they would like to do, and then look at their budget to see what kind of funds they have available. They may not be able to travel abroad, but they can visit US National Parks, which rank #1 on The Senior List’s best senior travel destinations this year. For the more adventure-minded seniors, a home exchange is another budget-friendly way to experience different parts of the country (or world) at a much lower cost.

Show them the money

For some, it might not be enough to simply talk about ways to save. It’s not uncommon for older folks to want to live the way they did when they had a regular income. You may need to create a monthly expense spreadsheet to show them exactly how much money they have and where it’s going. This can give them a new perspective on their spending habits. Something else you can do is open a bank account just for discretionary spending. You might, for example, deposit $100 per month into it for dining out or other nonessential entertainment.

Budgeting when you get older is different than when you’re in your 20s, 30s, and 40s. When you are living off Social Security and savings, you have to be intentional with the way you spend. As the adult child of seniors in this situation, you can help your aging parents get a grip on their income without sacrificing quality in the best years of their life.

Image from Pexels

Andrea Needham created Elders Day to remind everyone that getting older isn’t synonymous with slowing down. Everyone has their own pace, but age shouldn’t be what stops you from fulfilling dreams, goals, and desires.

Great points Andrea
Thank you!

For more information about caring for your aging parents, please consider purchasing my course, Caring for Your Aging Parents, from Teachable.com. It takes a couple of hours to go through, however, you can just hit play and listen while you go about other business.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

5 Services and Tools to Help Care for Seniors While Social-Distancing

We all want to spend more time with aging parents and loved ones. So, when forces outside of your control force you to keep your distance, you may feel afraid, anxious, and guilty. While these feelings are completely normal, you should know that distance doesn’t have to mean sacrificing care or connection for your loved one. It just means you may have to get creative to ensure that your senior feels safe, loved, and protected.




One device that every senior should have is a user-friendly and reliable smartphone. You can find senior-friendly cell phones that will work with most carriers. Look for smartphones that are designed to be more accessible and efficient for seniors, with larger displays, durable screens, and long-lasting battery life. That way you won’t have to worry about your loved one dropping their phone or forgetting to charge it throughout the day. If you prefer iPhones, you can also use accessibility settings to make their phone easier to use. A smartphone can help keep seniors connected to loved ones and essential services during the pandemic.


Parental Controls

If you add your senior’s phone to your existing wireless plan, you may be able to take advantage of parental controls that can make keeping track of your loved one’s whereabouts and activities effortless. Some carriers provide these services for free, while others require a monthly subscription fee. Fees are typically affordable but check in with your provider to see if there are any specials or discounts that can help keep your bill low. If you want even more insight into your loved one’s health and well-being, you can also consider senior location or activity trackers. Then you can ensure your loved one is staying active while protecting him/her from wandering.


Smart Speakers

Another device you can use to stay connected to your elderly loved one is a smart speaker. In fact, many seniors have found Google’s smart speaker to be a welcome companion in self-isolation. A smart speaker will allow seniors to search the web, get help at home, and even find entertainment. With the speaker connected to a smartphone, your loved one can also receive and answer calls from you and other family members. Another perk of picking up a smart speaker for your senior, especially one with a display, is that they can find and follow along with recipes, which can ensure that your loved one eats healthy while at home.


Delivery Services

If you need to make sure that your loved one has ingredients for those healthy recipes, grocery delivery services from stores like Costco could be an option. Currently, Costco is offering these helpful services in most metropolitan locations, and some customers may even be able to take advantage of same-day services for fresh grocery orders of $35 or more. Your loved one can order delivery from their smartphone, or you can set up deliveries from afar. To protect your family member, just be sure to request contactless delivery of goods from service providers.


Video Doorbells

Your loved one will need to know when their groceries are delivered and having a video doorbell can make this much easier. The best video doorbells come with a variety of options, including facial recognition and voice communication services that can provide comfort and peace of mind to older folks who live alone. With a video doorbell, you and your loved one will know exactly when deliveries arrive and exactly who is coming to the front door. Installation for many of these doorbells is simple as well, but if you need to arrange for a professional installation, be sure to take the proper precautions to protect your senior family member from COVID-19 exposure.

While staying away from aging loved ones may seem cruel, it’s really the best way to protect them from the potentially deadly coronavirus. So, know that keeping your distance is the most compassionate thing you can do right now. Also know that there are services and tech tools you can use to connect with and care for your elderly relatives.

Photo Credit: Rawpixel

Claire Wentz: Claire, a former nurse, writes for caregivers who don’t live near their loved ones. Her hope is that her writing will inform them, uplift them, and give them peace of mind when they need it. Caringfromafar.com

Thanks Claire!

For more information about caring for your aging parents, please consider downloading my course, Caring for Your Aging Parents, from Teachable.com. It takes a couple of hours, and you can just hit play and listen while you go about other business.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Review: The Senior Years Master Plan

Here's hoping everyone is healthy and safe!! COVID19 has touched all of our lives in many various ways. The one things most evident is our mortality, and how life can change on a dime! Planning is an essential part of life and as we all age, taking hard looks at possibilities is essential.


Turning 60?

So while you're caring for your aging parents as well as dealing with COVID19 and all of the news restrictions on our lives, you suddenly find yourself 60!! Happy Birthday, and many returns of the day! Now it's time to take a look at your own life and begin to plan for your own aging process. Getting old is your new job.

In The Senior Years Master Plan, author Ralph Mroz lays it all out in simple terms with an easy to follow plan. No, this isn't a "how to" book. He's not taking you by the hand and telling you how to take each step, but he covers all the steps you will need to take at some point and provides information and insight you'll need to make decisions for yourself. He provides enough resources to get you started on your own path to research what you're going to need to do as you age.  At 60 you're going to begin to see signs of slowing down and aging. Making it your new job to plan and implement changes, you'll not be caught in perhaps the mess you're dealing with with your own aging parents. Learn from their successes and failures.


Don't wait until you can't

As Mroz points out throughout the book, if you wait until you have to do something, you can't. Mroz also advises that you'll need to build a team from friends and family to a variety of professionals to assist you with this plan. The Senior Years Master Plan is well written in a conversational manner that makes it very easy to read and understand. It's a great resource to refer back to often and something to share with your team as you pull it together. Available on Amazon.com in Kindle and paperback formats. This is a must have tool for your new job. Make it a birthday gift to yourself.
Stay well and be healthy and prepared!

For more information about caring for your aging parents, please consider downloading my course, Caring for Your Aging Parents, from Teachable.com. It takes a couple of hours, and you can just hit play and listen while you go about other business.