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Baby Boomers Blog on Stage of Life

Share Empty Nest Story and Retirement Stories.  Enter our Baby Boomer Writing Contests...

Stage of Life® is a free writing community for Baby Boomers in the Empty Nest and Retirement stages of life.  Get involved with our educational mission:  Share a life experience about your empty nest experience or retirement planning, explore our retirement and empty nest resources, such as information about the Baby Boomer generation, quotes about Retirement, statistics about Baby Boomers, and more.  Plus, save money with our coupons for Baby Boomers.  Whether you're a retiree (or soon-to-be retiree) or "Empty Nester" - we look forward to reading your essays about and helping you save money during the empty nest and retirement years.

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Recent Writing Contest Winners

Winning Essay WritersWinning Writing Contest EssaysBefore you scroll down to read the essays, stories, and blogs being submitted to StageofLife.com, let's celebrate the recent writing contest winners.  We select one essay each month from across all of the non-student life stages to win our monthly blogging contests

Basically...these winning essays are selected from all of you "grown-ups" out there writing on Stage of Life...

Past Writing Contest Winners

Empty Nest & Retirement Stories

There’s An APP for that: Why Not Getting Lost Is A Good Thing I love technology, and have many APPS on my phone and other devices. So technology is not particularly a problem for me at my age. I taught school for many years so I retired ahead of the game with a comfortable appreciation of the Internet and the all powerful APPS. I love the game, information and productivity APPS I use, but there was no hesitation when I thought about which APP was my favorite. Google Map...
I recently had a group of 10 family members from out of state stay with us for a week. FOUR of them stayed in our garage apartment while the others stayed in our guests room in the main house. When they left the garage apartment was left in a horrible state. Is it wrong to expect guests to clean up after themselves before leaving especially when they were given free room and board for a week?...
The lights are dimmer. The print is smaller. The sewing needle manufacturers no longer put thread eyes in needles. I have my prescription glasses for driving but now I have dollar store glasses for print (and threading needles) along with magnifying glasses. I even found a magnifying glass that has a built-in light. I hold things under my chair side lamp, under my overhead light then under my halogen lamp. I need all of these in an effort to compensate for the consp...
Week 1 For months M has been nagging me to attend ballet classes with her. I have a plethora of valid excuses: it’s dinner time, it’s carpool time, it’s TV time, it’s snack time, etc. The truth is; I really don’t have a single legit excuse. So with substantial ambivalence, I anxiously agree to give it a try. Actually, I have pretty much convinced myself I am doing M a friendly favour. After an extended nearly 30 year hiatus, I find myself surrounded by mirrors, standing at...
I first met my favorite teacher when she was nine years old. I was dating her brother, who eventually became my husband. We had been dating awhile and we had to stop by his house for some reason. We entered through the back door into the kitchen and she was wearing an oven mitt and was taking something out of the oven. I was amazed that her mother thought she was old enough to assume a baking task. In retrospect, I now realize the relegation was a matter of necessity ...
Her name is Emily Moxey, and she inspired and transformed the lives of the children in her Life Skills Class. Her students were in the 5th – 8th grade, and all were diagnosed with severe intellectual disabilities. Often, students in her class also had serious physical disabilities. Ms. Moxey opened her classroom door – and the door to the outside world – wide for them.She worked down the hall from me, and I tried to visit her classroom whenever I could. When the challenge...
Fight or Flight******************The love story of Jeb and Suzy.On the first day of kindergarten Jeb & Suzy were seated at the same table when she leaned over, whispered into Jeb’s ear, and said. We are going to be married one day.After school, Suzy told her mother, who she was going to marry and her mother laughed, just as Jeb’s mother laughed when she was told the news. What they didn’t know is that Suzy was serious about her prediction and she told her mother...
I am no longer working, and living with renal dialysis. I need to work out what to do with the rest of my life....
One day as I sat reading a book on my comfy couch, I happened to look up and see my three cats growling at each other. Buffy, my long haired grey and white male, sat on the window sill in the living room. He growled and hissed at Terra and Abbey. As I watched them yowling at each other, I could imagine the conversation they were having. Abbey, who was a regal looking Persian, had a rather commanding demeanour; after all she’d been with me for fifteen years. Buffy had...
My husband had a friend who let us use his family’s cabin for fishing weekends. The place came complete with catfish ponds, and a wonderful old rodeo house, that responded to voice commands.He was the perfect children’s horse and our two daughters were enthralled. Eventually we became owners of the horse. We didn’t have to pay anything for him; he was a gift. But, you know that old saying, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.” Well, we should have looked this one in...
Animals: My Little BuddyNiko was a Miniature Schnauzer. He wasn’t pure breed, he was a mix. But you couldn’t tell. He was silver and grey, just like the pedigreed Schnauzers. We got him from the animal shelter when he was about one year old for my daughter, Kamari. Since Kamari was a latch key child my wife and I decided that she should have a companion when she came home from middle school. With both working parents often coming home late it seemed like a good idea....
About four years before my parents' friend, Bill, passed away, I began spending weekends helping him with his beloved herd of Paso Fino horses. Bill was nearly 80, getting more frail every year and struggling to care for the herd that kept growing each year. The market for them had declined as the economy struggled. One stallion ran with the herd and fathered a dozen colts a year. Bill was no longer able to feed them all with the hay produced on his place and money got tighte...
After the children (all 6 of them) moved out, came back and moved out again with their children, I felt it was time for me to indulge myself with some specialized education that I had always wanted, but for which I had never had time.We are blessed to have a 2-year college in town (Northwest College, Powell, WY), with a top rated photo communications program. After getting my feet wet with an online introduction to digital photography, I registered as a full time student las...
If I were to write a memoir about the pets in my life, most of the book would be about cats, especially chapters covering the last 25 years. But having endured the antics of 1 to 3 at a time, distinctly different felines, from kitten to cat-hood, I don’t know which chapter to summarize for a 500 word preview. To avoid that decision, I’ll write about my wife Vicki’s tropical fish. For the most part, the fish were small. Nevertheless, because of their number, they graduated...
Is it a crime to put your loved one in assisted living?I think this is a question every person living with an older parent or relative asks themselves. We grapple with the thought we can take care of them no matter what…we would never subject anyone to those ghastly homes where all the old people are housed together. Horror stories are reported about the abuse that goes on, leaving a loved one there to rot away. No telling how bad the food is, let alone helping the person...
When people reach their Golden Years, have struggled to work to build their character and their reputation, does jealousy cause a barrage of lies, slander and cyberbulling? They have worked all of their lives, enjoyed many good life experiences, maybe been honored and now they are closer to the end of their life than they were 60 years ago, but, some person with jealousy wants to destroy everything they have worked for. Jealousy can cause the most horrible of made up lies fr...
To be retired is a wonderful thing, I can take a walk on the beach in front of my home, watch beautiful sunsets, go boating, take a cruise, go to the resort, go to dinner with my son and enjoy life without time restraints or schedules. I do not have to get up early and I can go to bed as late as I want. When you are retired you can now relax and really enjoy the blessings that God has given, life is beautiful. Sunsets are beautiful, friends are beautiful, shopping is beaut...
Having been born in California, I grew up without worrying much about weather. Now that I’m older, I wonder how we got along without air-conditioning. I don’t remember heat being a problem as a kid. However, the recent snow in California made me remember that in the fifties, when I was around ten, we had a day of light snow. I had never seen snow and it was great fun for a brief time The first house we bought didn’t have air-conditioning, but the second did; and, by tha...
Elderly auntie's been in Hospice for 2 years. All family goes to Mexico for 4 weeks every year (20 years) to get together with old friends. I'm a very close niece with auntie, and was advised she passed away just after breakfast Christmas Eve morning and would I notify relatives? Everyone thought I was phoning with Happy Holliday stuff, rather than death news. It's too late now, but if this should ever happen again, or to someone else, should I have waited till perhaps the...
Should I have to "ask" to visit?Hi:I am 55, single mom of two great adult children. My son and I seem to butte heads on several matters. Most recently, I wanted to go to VA to visit my son & daughter in law. I texted my son and "I am thinking of coming out end of March spring break". I said I didn't want them taking off work, just wanted to spend some time there and at the beach. That I wanted to get away and relax. It is their anniversary and my son's birthday that wee...
What if time were not on your side? What if you were running out of months, weeks days? What if your number was up, and you were not long for the planet? Would you reflect and regret, wish for something different; to have seen more, done more, been more? Would you have wanted to live a different truth?Many are currently quietly fighting battles for which there is no victory, other than peace. Many are living lives that are not full but diminished by illness or by sufferi...
As I look back over nearly my 75 years, there are parts of my life where I remember feeling out of step with those I thought had it all together. I was so uncoordinated that in the fourth grade I felt humiliated because I thought that I had been targeted during dodge ball. By the time I was a senior in high school, when the popular kickball captain asked me do better for her, I got mad. Her arrogance made me laugh. She wasn’t smart enough to realize that if I could have do...
I perched on the edge of the piano bench, nervously waiting while my teacher ripped open the envelope. Inside were the results from my exam. We’d been waiting for several weeks to find out if I had passed the test.After many years of lessons, and four hours of daily practice, I’d played for the examiner. He was a big man with careless personal hygiene. He smoked throughout my test. His disinterest in listening to a motley collection of young students play was obvious. He fr...
We had a problem here. No one knew where Paul went or what happened to him. If you called, his voicemail greeting wasted no words: I’m trying something different. If it doesn’t work out, I’ll be back. I wouldn’t go so far as to say his regulars panicked, but after having Paul cut your hair for years, they were a tad uneasy about offering their heads to a new barber.Finding a BarberWhen my wife Vicki’s father thought his hair couldn’t wait any longer ...
Rangitoto is the largest and most prominent volcano in the Auckland chain. It pushed up out of the sea about 600 years ago and showed signs of activity as recently as 2013, so we were excited to scale the lava fields to the rim and have a look inside. I had lived on the banks of Volcano Solfatara in Pozzuoli, Italy, so I was accustomed to dealing with active volcanoes. Solfatara is linked underground with Vesuvius, and visitors are greeted by bubbling sand, boiling molten ...
For spectacular photos check out http://www.trailexploring.com The lure of a trailhead leading into the wild is overpowering. Captivated by wanderlust and adventure, we set out for one last day surrounded by mountains, rivers, waterfalls, lakes, forests and caves. We had watched the explosion of waterfalls literally crisscrossing themselves as rain poured down the mountain the day before as the drenched and exhausted hikers found the hut one by one. We had dried ou...
I was surprised to hear my daughter comment to a colleague, at a charity dinner, that one of the reasons she became a fundraiser was because of me. I didn’t realize my volunteering had stood out to her. It was just one of the things that I did as a stay-at-home home, along with providing the sparkling white socks that she remembers so vividly (and says she can’t match). After mulling it over a bit, I realize my volunteer activities stood out against the routine of dail...
For spectacular photos check out http://www.trailexploring.comI awoke in the middle of the night, and I could hear the torrential pounding of rain on the roof of the hut – I knew we would be in for a rough day. Secretly, I longed to experience the fury of a mountain storm that gave life to the eerie rain forests we had traversed. I rolled over and went back to sleep. The morning greeted us with gale force winds and horizontal rain. We bucked up and donned o...
For spectacular photos check out http://www.trailexploring.comMatt awoke early, a testament to the life altering nature of our experience. He played Routeburn Track angel as he walked back to town to score some venison pies and muffins for the next trek. Sharon and I had a proper breakfast of eggs, bacon, toast and coffee. We were clean, rested, packed and ready for the bush as we boarded the bus for the West trail head at the Divide.Routeburn Track begins in the...
For spectacular photos check out http://www.trailexploring.comNo words can adequately describe the profound majesty and absolute grandeur of the mountains surrounding the Milford Track, carved out by glaciers that receded to the mountain peaks over 10,000 feet as a testament to the unfathomable, earth altering power inherent in a changing climate. The last day of the trek was no different. Sharon reminded me several times to turn around because the views were as breat...

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