Freedom Friday: Transform Your Hobbies Into New Opportunities

Sunflower in the Sunshine

In the Next Avenue article, Transform Your Hobbies Into New Opportunities, author Debbie Swanson suggests that “adding to your skills can help you make money and friends.”:

“If being in a classroom brings back memories of snoozing in a lecture hall, think again. The world of learning has exploded, with online and in-person classes available for many recreational pursuits. Several hobbies have measured levels of skill and proficiency: the martial arts belt system, certifications in scuba diving, achieving a master level in a pursuit such as gardening, beekeeping or — if you live in Wisconsin — cheesemaking. Adding formal training to your hobbies is not only fun, but may create avenues for side income, enhance your volunteer potential or expand your social circle.”

Here’s how one retiree in South Carolina honed his hobby skills into a new business:

“After retiring at 67 from his career managing textile and equipment manufacturing companies, Buddy May, of Greenville, S.C., delved into his interest in beekeeping. He became a Master Beekeeper with the South Carolina Beekeepers Association, as well as the only EAS (Eastern Apicultural Society) Certified Master Beekeeper in his home state. In 2017, May reached the Master Craftsman level, the highest level of the South Carolina program.

May’s farm produces honey, pollen and blueberries, and he’s active with a weekly farmers’ market. But May is especially stung by the chance to meet people and share his knowledge.

‘I lecture locally, and in other states,’ says May, who has also taught classes at Furman University’s OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) program. ‘It keeps my mind active, and learning more about the gracious insect.’

He’s also been published; May’s buzzy research appeared in the American Bee Journal in 2017 and he has an article coming out in Bee Culture magazine.”

Read more at Transform Your Hobbies Into New Opportunities.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – Serving and Portion Sizes: How Much Should I Eat?

Group of fresh fruits and vegetablesIn the National Institute on Aging article Serving and Portion Sizes: How Much Should I Eat?, emphasizes the importance of eating a variety of foods from each food group that will help you get the nutrients you need. What about portion and serving sizes? Here is an explanation:

“The word ‘serving’ can have different meanings depending on how it is used. A Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension Plan serving is how much of each food you should eat to meet the plan’s daily recommendation. (Learn more about serving sizes on the Nutrition Facts label.)

The term ‘portion’ means how much of a single food is actually on your dish—a portion size can vary from meal to meal. For example, one restaurant might serve larger portions than another.”

EXAMPLES OF PORTION SIZES

One cup cooked vegetables, salad, baked potato = baseball

1 to 1½ ounces cheese = four dice

Three ounces of meat or poultry = palm of hand

Read the rest: Serving and Portion Sizes: How Much Should I Eat?.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Freedom Friday: How Senior Couples Can Retire Without Drama

Baby Boomer Couple in Retirement

In the U.S. News & World Report article, How Senior Couples Can Retire Without Drama, author Maryalene LaPonsie writes that worlds collide when senior couples retire and are suddenly together 24/7:

“You’ve clocked out of work for the final time and are heading home to your spouse. The kids have left the nest, which means it will be just the two of you. Sounds like the beginning of a second honeymoon, right?

However, the reality can be much different. A 2017 report from the Pew Research Center found gray divorce – that is, divorce after age 50 – increased 109 percent from 1990 to 2015. Even couples who stay together may find their remaining years marked by conflict.”

Fortunately, spousal conflict after retirement is not a given. Couples can head off trouble by being proactive and open-minded about their next stage of life.

Start the discussion early. Spouses can become resentful if they have plans for retirement that don’t align with those of their husband or wife. Clear communication is essential to creating realistic expectations about what life will be like post-work. Unfortunately, many couples wait too long to have these talks.

Have a purpose for retirement. Exploring new interests before retirement can help couples determine the goals or pursuits they will have after leaving the workforce. Jared Snider, senior wealth advisor at Exencial Wealth Advisors in Oklahoma City, says his most successful retired couples have clearly defined purposes for both themselves and their relationship. ‘They have thought it out ahead of time,’ he says.

Have a budget for retirement. Money issues can be the cause of significant strife in some marriages. ‘You’ll have one spouse that lives for the moment, and the other that doesn’t want to throw a nickel around,’ says Chris Heerlein, investment advisor representative and partner at REAP Financial in Austin, Texas.”

Read more tips at How Senior Couples Can Retire Without Drama.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – How to Use Exercise As Medicine

Baby Boomer Couple on BicyclesIn the article Exercise As Medicine, author Jennifer Van Pelt, MA recommends fitness programs to boomers for their preventive qualities against disease, as well as socialization opportunities:

“According to U.S. Census data, there are currently more than 78 million baby boomers, and 58 million will still be alive in 2030. Such numbers indicate that current trends in older adult fitness driven by boomers will continue to evolve. While the size of the boomer population contributes to older adult fitness trends, recently published studies reporting the health and cost benefits of regular exercise for older adults are also spurring the development of new programs by care providers and reimbursement for exercise activities offered by insurance companies. And new technologies are providing new options to make older adult exercise both fun and functional.

‘There are many trends occurring in older adult fitness; however, probably the most significant one is the repackaging of exercise as a disease solution,’ says Colin Milner, CEO of the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA). Viewing exercise as medicine, as a tool to not only manage but also to prevent the health issues elders face, is becoming a commonplace way to promote regular exercise. The ICAA believes health plans will continue to pay for prevention because the fear of rising healthcare costs has forced health insurance companies to investigate the dollar value of exercise for prevention.

‘Many eyes opened when HealthPartners Research Foundation announced their study that showed adults aged 50-plus years who started exercising just 90 minutes a week saved, on average, $2,200 per year in medical costs,’ Milner says. According to Tricia Grayson, director of communications for Healthways’ SilverSneakers Fitness Program, Medicare claims costs in this study for SilverSneakers members were 30% lower than for nonparticipants.

Another study recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that Medicare recipients who participated for two years in the SilverSneakers health club exercise program had significantly lower healthcare costs overall, and older adults who visited health clubs at least twice per week had $1,252 less in healthcare costs than those who visited less than once per week. Combining those cost savings with baby boomers’ knowledge of the benefits of physical activity, health insurers take notice, Milner says.

In another nationwide study of more than 9,000 SilverSneakers members, 41% of members with diabetes reported having improved health after one or more years of participation and 46% reported improved body weight. High-risk sedentary behavior was reduced by 59% with SilverSneakers participation, Grayson notes.”

Read the rest: Exercise As Medicine.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Freedom Friday: 16 Tips to Keep You Free from Colds and Flu

Flu Season Title Appearing on Mobile Tablet

The cold and flu season is upon us again. Unfortunately, seniors and caregivers are two of the most likely groups of people to get sick.

Here are some tips to help you stay clear of colds and flu, according to the article, 16 Cold and Flu Prevention Tips for Seniors and Caregivers:

Get the flu vaccine. Getting a flu shot reduces the risk of getting the flu. It also reduces the severity of the illness and protects against complications – both especially important for seniors. And when you get a flu shot, you reduce the risk that you’ll get sick and infect your older adult. The best time to get a flu shot is from October through November, but it’s still useful to get one even if it’s later in the flu season.

Wash or sanitize hands thoroughly and often. Frequently washing hands with regular soap is an effective way to get rid of cold and flu germs. Plain soap is fine because rubbing the hands together for at least 20 seconds is what eliminates germs – long enough to sing the Happy Birthday song twice. Make sure to clean under the nails, backs of hands, between fingers, and wrists. If you can’t get to soap and water often enough, use hand sanitizer to kill cold and flu germs. This may be a good option for older adults who can’t easily get up to wash their hands.

Exercise regularly. Moderate exercise boosts the immune system and could reduce risk of a cold by a third. Even though caregiving doesn’t leave a lot of time for exercise and older adults may not have a lot of endurance, any amount of regular exercise will still benefit the body and immune system.

Sanitize your mobile devices. Something that many people forget is how dirty and germ-filled their mobile device is. Clean it regularly with sanitizing wipes or rubbing alcohol – being careful not to wet the electronics.

Avoid crowds and unnecessary travel. Try to avoid being in large groups of people, especially in poorly-ventilated spaces. That increases the chance of catching a cold or flu from an infected person.”

Read more tips at 16 Cold and Flu Prevention Tips for Seniors and Caregivers.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – From Baby Boomers to Senior Boomers: 10 Tips to Keep You Healthy and Fit

Baby Boomer Couple on BicyclesIn the article From Baby Boomers to Senior Boomers: 10 Tips to Keep You Healthy and Fit, 65-year-old Arthur Hayward, MD, a geriatrician and the clinical lead physician for elder care with Kaiser Permanente’s Care Management Institute suggests that baby boomers and senior boomers “become activists in promoting healthful behaviors.” Dr. Hayward recommends 10 easy tips to help baby boomers live long and thrive:

1. Quit smoking. Take this critical step to improve your health and combat aging. Smoking kills by causing cancer, strokes and heart failure. Smoking leads to erectile dysfunction in men due to atherosclerosis and to excessive wrinkling by attacking skin elasticity. Many resources are available to help you quit.

2. Keep active. Do something to keep fit each day — something you enjoy that maintains strength, balance, flexibility, and promotes cardiovascular health. Physical activity helps you stay at a healthy weight, prevent or control illness, sleep better, reduce stress, avoid falls, and look and feel better too.

3. Eat well. Combined with physical activity, eating nutritious foods in the right amounts can help keep you healthy. Many illnesses — such as heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis — can be prevented or controlled with dietary changes and exercise. Calcium and vitamin D supplements can help women prevent osteoporosis.

4. Maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight increases your risk for heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. Use our BMI (body mass index) calculator to find out what you should weigh for your height. Get to your healthy weight and stay there by eating right and keeping active. Replace sugary drinks with water. Water is calorie free!

5. Prevent falls. We become vulnerable to falls as we age. Prevent falls and injury by removing loose carpet or throw rugs. Keep paths clear of electrical cords and clutter, and use night-lights in hallways and bathrooms. Did you know that people who walk barefoot fall more frequently? Wear shoes with good support to reduce the risk of falling.”

Read more at: From Baby Boomers to Senior Boomers: 10 Tips to Keep You Healthy and Fit

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Freedom Friday: New Baby Boomer ‘Retirement’ Plan…Start a Business

Smiling Baby Boomer Couple

In her article, The Hot New ‘Retirement’ Plan for Baby Boomers: Starting a Business, author Leigh Buchanan explains how older entrepreneurs are happy to keep thing small and trade material benefits for a more comfortable schedule:

“Characterizing a Boomer business as a retirement hobby is as misleading as saying all 20-somethings launch app companies. Still, startups by people over age 50 tend to skew small. Gallup reports that 80 percent are lifestyle businesses meant to supplement retirement income and keep the mind engaged.

Jeff Williams, founder of BizStarters, a service that coaches older entrepreneurs, says roughly 60 percent of the clients he’s worked with in the course of 20 years ‘are much more interested in schedule flexibility than making a ton of money. They want the feeling that, after they have been in business for six months, they can take three weeks off to go visit their grandkids.’ Very few older founders are trying to replace corporate salaries, says Williams. Instead, average earnings expectations are between $50,000 and $75,000 a year.

The majority also prefer to be soloists, drawing on contract help when necessary. “I get these guys who come to me–they are 57 years old–and they say, ‘Been there, done that, already managed people,'” says Williams. ”I would like to grow a company without employees.””

Read the rest at Inc..

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – Baby Boomers, Are You Fit for Everyday Life?

Baby Boomer Couple on BicyclesIn the Chicago Tribune article Baby boomers, are you fit for everyday life?, author Cheryl Stritzel McCarthy suggests ways that can help you make your later years robust and independent:

Exercise. Find activities you love, and do them several times per week. Incorporate strength-training and cardio.

Low-impact activity is kind to joints and promotes longevity, says Robin Robertson, a USA Cycling Coach and author of ‘Healthy & Fit Body.’ ‘We can beef up our joints through muscle and ligament strengthening. Cycling does this without impact or lateral movement.

Lose excess weight. An overweight woman who drops as little as 11 pounds reduces the chance of getting arthritis in her knees by 50 percent. Ten pounds of excess body weight delivers an extra 20 to 30 pounds of stress to your knees with every step.

Change your view of aging. Aging isn’t bad; it’s natural. Think of the positives, says Dan Ritchie, co-founder of the Functional Aging Institute: You don’t do the stupid stuff you did when you were 25; you can enjoy grandchildren; and you can focus on what’s important to you, such as charities or volunteering.

Take responsibility. You control exercise, eating, stress, sleep. Is your trajectory of aging leading to frailty or independence?”

Read the rest: Baby boomers, are you fit for everyday life?

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Freedom Friday: 5 Simple Tips for Finding Financial Freedom after 60 from a Former Stockbroker

Piggy Bank Sitting on Stack of Money

In the article 5 Simple Tips for Finding Financial Freedom after 60 from a Former Stockbroker, author Pam Krueger writes:

“I wasn’t old enough to rent a car, but in my early 20s a major brokerage firm recruited me to become a stockbroker. I was excited until I figured out that I’d just committed to a career of telemarketing.

This big, respected Wall Street brokerage firm expected me to smile and dial until I had built up a hefty list of wealthy clients who could generate endless commissions from the investment products they’d continue buying from me.

Did I know more about investing and risk management than 99% of the general public? Maybe. I probably knew a little something about a few things but not enough to make my living posing as an expert.

In 2005, I left the commission world and the financial services business entirely to become an investor advocate and created my public television series MoneyTrack, which ran on 255 PBS stations weekly. My mission became educating everyday investors by sharing stories of real people combined with advice from nationally recognized experts.

Now I’m sharing five very simple lessons that will help you get closer to financial freedom:

Keep Your Investing Strategy Simple Investing doesn’t have to be overly complicated – in fact, a simple and consistent approach to investing works best, and especially over time. Retirees want investments that are both safe and yet still want their savings to grow. There are time-tested approaches to investing in the stock market and for generating retirement income.

What works best is to not constantly second-guess yourself. A solid investment strategy just needs a good review once or twice a year. Then, when the economy falters, interest rates rise, or inflation heats up, any adjustments to your investment portfolio tend to be minor tactical tweaks versus a complete portfolio overhaul, or worse, panic selling.

Learn from How Women Tend to Invest. According to Vanguard Funds, men are 25% more likely to lose money than women. I think of men as warriors when they invest. For men, it’s often all about chasing returns, while women tend to be worriers.

We’re careful to make sure our money will last the rest of our lives, so we invest with that goal in mind. That means women are less likely to trade – and since you pay a fee or commission for every transaction, all those unnecessary costs eat away your returns. Women also tend to ask for help and genuinely want to understand how an investment really works.”

Read the rest at 5 Simple Tips for Finding Financial Freedom after 60 from a Former Stockbroker.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – Exercise As Medicine

Baby Boomer Couple on BicyclesIn the article Exercise As Medicine, author Jennifer Van Pelt, MA recommends fitness programs to boomers for their preventive qualities against disease, as well as socialization opportunities:

“According to U.S. Census data, there are currently more than 78 million baby boomers, and 58 million will still be alive in 2030. Such numbers indicate that current trends in older adult fitness driven by boomers will continue to evolve. While the size of the boomer population contributes to older adult fitness trends, recently published studies reporting the health and cost benefits of regular exercise for older adults are also spurring the development of new programs by care providers and reimbursement for exercise activities offered by insurance companies. And new technologies are providing new options to make older adult exercise both fun and functional.

‘There are many trends occurring in older adult fitness; however, probably the most significant one is the repackaging of exercise as a disease solution,’ says Colin Milner, CEO of the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA). Viewing exercise as medicine, as a tool to not only manage but also to prevent the health issues elders face, is becoming a commonplace way to promote regular exercise. The ICAA believes health plans will continue to pay for prevention because the fear of rising healthcare costs has forced health insurance companies to investigate the dollar value of exercise for prevention.

‘Many eyes opened when HealthPartners Research Foundation announced their study that showed adults aged 50-plus years who started exercising just 90 minutes a week saved, on average, $2,200 per year in medical costs,’ Milner says. According to Tricia Grayson, director of communications for Healthways’ SilverSneakers Fitness Program, Medicare claims costs in this study for SilverSneakers members were 30% lower than for nonparticipants.

Another study recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that Medicare recipients who participated for two years in the SilverSneakers health club exercise program had significantly lower healthcare costs overall, and older adults who visited health clubs at least twice per week had $1,252 less in healthcare costs than those who visited less than once per week. Combining those cost savings with baby boomers’ knowledge of the benefits of physical activity, health insurers take notice, Milner says.

In another nationwide study of more than 9,000 SilverSneakers members, 41% of members with diabetes reported having improved health after one or more years of participation and 46% reported improved body weight. High-risk sedentary behavior was reduced by 59% with SilverSneakers participation, Grayson notes.”

Read the rest: Exercise As Medicine.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582