Wednesday, August 19, 2015


"What's good living to be old if I can't be having fun." response to an email. 

 The reason I am saying this is that "DonnerBlitzen" just emailed me and was concerned that I was taking time off because I'm exhausting myself creating my homestead farm. Well, to tell it truthfully, I am exhausted, but NOT because of the farm. And bit can be attributed to my age, a bit to the busy aspects of my life, a bit because I don't like to slow down. Now for the spoiler......the reason for taking the past two weeks off from the blog is that my mother got hurt. I was devoting much of my precious time to taking care of her needs.....visiting, talking with doctors and nurse, meeting with with a myriad of social worker types, filing out forms, acquiring documents, meeting with PT people, attempting to have mom moved closer to where I live, dealing with medical insurances and money, etc. In this day and age when things should be electronic and digital, way too many offices still are dealing with paper and in-person meetings thus causing me mucho hours of work. Many of these official offices are 1 1/2 to 2 hours away, which means many hours wasted driving. Not that I'm whining or am expecting pity. This is just a bump in life, a hurdle to be dealt with. 

But lets get back to DonnerBlitzen's suggestion that I take it easy, sell the farm, move into an apartment, and retire. DB told me that I could put the farm sale money into a diversified retirement fund, and live in an apartment where I could save even more money for retirement. Then I'd have more time to relax, take it easy. 

Thanks for the advice, but no thanks. That's not for me! Having spent many hours these past days in hospitals and extended care facilities, I have zero interest in amassing every extra penny that I can just to put it into a retirement fund so that I can live as long as possible in some care facility sitting in a wheelchair and wearing a diaper as I drool onto a bib. Not for me! I'd rather die while shoveling a truckload of mulch or manure. 

And that fat retirement fund? I fully intend to be poor. Yes. How's that for a shocker. Poor as in no investment retirement fund managed by some fiscal business entity someplace. I'd rather use my money to have this farm.

On top of that, I plan to enjoy every week and have fun. What's good getting old if I don't have fun? So what's fun to me?.......
...growing a new vegetable I haven't tried before. Next on my addenda is amaranth. 
...raising livestock I haven't had before, like my pigs. Boy, I'm learning lots about pigs. 
...devising new ways to use old pallets. I'm fiddling with some right now to make a new chicken pen. 
...making creative trellises......and funky crazy yard art. 
...creating a secret garden, a place to express my artistic side. 
...experimenting how to prepare some new veggie I've never seen before. 

And it's not only farming that I classify as having fun. 
...creating my own home and learning building techniques along the way.
...exploring new beaches and snorkeling.
...spending time with friends.
...exploring the other Hawaiian islands.
...making blocks for my block printing efforts.
...seeing places outside of Hawaii.

Plus there are dozens a little 'funs" I do every day....I live! 
...check on my orchids and rejoice with awe if I find one blooming. on making friends with my donkeys.
...hand feed my chickens some grain out of my hand. the rabbits enjoy cucumbers or pipinolas.
...spread some bird seed and watch the wild birds.
...look for the little things growing and living, like tiny mushrooms, dwarf plants in corners here and there, interesting looking bugs, little lizards.

I aim live each and every day. 

Yes, I see no fun in living as long as possible when that living has no fun. I believe in quality of life, not quantity. And no, I won't change my mind on this. Possibly due to my veterinary experiences, I've decided that life is all about enjoying it. Quality over quantity. 

So here I sit, listening to a cane toad singing down in the front field. While I'm not fond of hosting a big cane toad, that doesn't mean that I can't enjoy hearing it sing. As it sings I'm aware that a barn owl is cruising over the pasture hunting mice. Seeing our resident owl at work is a joy. Glancing skyward I see stars......or at other times a full moon.  I still love gazing at a full moon even if it means that sleeping may be difficult due to its brightness. How beautiful it is. With a full moon, our half grown kittens are active. I'll entice them indoors and offer them fresh catnip mice toys. Yes, it's fun watching them play. 

Every day there are good things around me and fun & enjoyment to be had. Even on "bad days" I can look for and  find good stuff. I'll never fit the stereotype of the old lady sitting in her rocking chair watching the world go by. Nor do I hope to die wealthy. 


  1. Actually the system is set up better for you to be poor. It's an all or nothing system and I speak from experience. I had better health care when i was flat broke. I also had better health care when I was a corporate slave. When you're in between you're S.K.Rewed. So be poor or super rich and you'll be OK. If you're not, fuggeddaboudit.

    I am about to go into the Medicare system. Don't get me started. I was doing better on Managed Health Care and I sure would like to stay there but I can't and now I will have to pay 3X as much as I was paying. Terrible awful very bad no good system.

    I say amen to doing what you want and Quality Over Quantity. Nearly dying turned that light bulb on for me. So my parting words to you are Amen Sister!

  2. Su Ba, I think I can speak for all of us who enjoy your posts - so please, no need to apologize for taking time off whenever you need. A simple "Time Out" would work, I think, to be resumed whenever you wish. Family comes first - at all times. But you already know that.

    I have already ascended to the top rung of the ladder, but it came all too soon. I'd much rather still have the elders on the top rungs, teaching the rest of us what they've learned through their lives. I'm painfully aware that my children are still much too busy in their own worlds to particularly want to avail themselves of my life experiences. I am so grateful that I made time to learn from my folks, and to thank them for their love as I pursued my career. I'm sure you can recognize those elements in your life as well. The wealth of one's life does not accrue solely in a bank account. I retired to enjoy the wealth of my personal life experiences, and to happily invest in many more.

  3. Fineartgourds said, "To decide to wear out rather than rust out? "

    Right! As the old westerns say, I wanna die with my boots on.