Preparing for Full Retirement

When my husband was offered a job here four years ago, we decided to take the leap to move from San Antonio to Virginia Beach.  It meant I had to give up my well-paying job as an academic dean.  Since I had enough years in at the school district, I was able to retire and receive my teacher retirement pension.  Yes, I could have looked for work here, but one of the things we were looking forward to was for us to be able to see our children more and for me to go on business trips with my husband. Getting another job would have meant I could do neither.

Giving up my paycheck, though, has meant we have had to be a little more creative with our cash flow since there isn’t as much flowing. My husband takes care of most of the bills and the mortgage, and I buy all our groceries, presents for all the children and grandchildren, the quarterly bug spraying service, my piano tuning, our membership to the YMCA, and other miscellaneous items. Many miscellaneous items. In fact, my little teacher retirement deposit gets stretched more and more, but, thankfully, it always seems to make it until the next one gets deposited.

The other day my husband asked if I could pick up the payment for something this month, and I said I should be able to afford it. Then, on Saturday we went to lunch at a little gourmet food market and sandwich shop, one where you place your order at the counter and they buzz you when your order is ready. We were sitting outside, enjoying our iced tea, when the pager went off. As my husband got up to get our food, I handed him my credit card and said, “Lunch is on me, since I’m the only one who ever seems to have any money. In fact, I think you stay with me because of my money.” He leaned over and whispered in my ear. I laughed. “Yes, there’s that, too.”

Looking forward to the day when we’re both retired

About Coming East

I am a writer, wife, mother, and grandmother who thinks you're never too old until you're dead. My inspiration is Grandma Moses who became a successful artist in her late 70's. If I don't do something pretty soon, though, I'll have to find someone older for inspiration.
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60 Responses to Preparing for Full Retirement

  1. Love this, CE! Such an amazing photo of your life story. My husband grew up outside of Detroit, and is a huge car buff, and Formula 1 spectator!

    • Coming East says:

      My son-in-law had to reluctantly give up racing and his little Miada when he got married, Reeling. The racing was too dangerous, and the Miada was too small because there were three of them. Now that my granddaughter is nearing driving age, he wants to get her a Miada (so he can drive it, too!), but my daughter won’t hear of it.

  2. Robin says:

    You have put together a beautiful portrait of love in words and image. 🙂

    I gave up my paycheck too, after my husband took a sabbatical in 2006-2007, and didn’t go back to work for similar reasons. I don’t miss the job (much), but the extra money was kind of nice. That said, learning to stretch what we have has been a good experience, especially the gardening and the preserving of the harvest. It’s a lot of work, but very satisfying in the end.

  3. I loved this post and photo so much. You inspire me!

  4. What a lovely picture of a loving couple!

  5. love this post, I so relate to this. Hope you are having a great weekend. DAF

  6. You have a beautiful relationship. 🙂

  7. Val says:

    Lovely to see a photo of you both, and loved your post. 🙂

  8. yen says:

    Beautiful picture, Susan! Honeymooners! 😉 I’ve always loved your pics with your husband. The love and the “sweetness” always shines through them. 🙂

  9. Seriously, that photo needs to be on a brochure selling the idea of retirement. Absolutely beautiful and happy! Dean of a school? Put your feet up, you earned that and more. My daughter’s school was in search of a new head. The hiring process was long and exhausting, so I can not imagine what the actual position entails.

  10. dorannrule says:

    I have been trying to comment all day but WordPress was having hiccups. Hope it works this time because I wanted to tell you what a handsome couple you are!

  11. pattisj says:

    I love the picture of the two of you. That’s a great love. I was wondering which of you played the piano, but we never got around to talking about that! We joke about marrying each other for the money.

  12. Another enjoyable post! Hey if want to see if it’s possible to save some money on your monthly pest service, call my husband we own a pest control business – let me know I’ll give you his number 🙂 Will you be at the Show & Grow tomorrow?

  13. Ohhh…this is just a beautiful portrait of you and your husband. You deserve to be so very comfortable in every aspect of your life. Cheers! May those retirement years continue to bless you.

  14. Amy says:

    Happy, beautiful smiles! Love the picture,Susan. It’s a good move to be close to your children. I’d miss the house you had in San Antonio if I were you…

  15. Beautiful picture of you two lovebirds!

  16. Books in the Burbs says:

    I absolutely loved your post today! I didn’t know you were a fellow Texan 😀 Of course, Virginia Beach is beautiful and it seems that being near a gorgeous ocean has done wonders for you and your husband. What an added bonus to spend more time with your children,too. I love that you both are finding your balance and that you can enjoy this phase in your life with your husband 😀

    • Coming East says:

      Thanks, BB. I guess I didn’t realize you were a Texan either. What part? I will always miss my San Antonio and Austin. And sometimes I get a hankering for a bean and cheese taco from Taco Cabana. What’s wrong with me? Nearly everything I write has some mention of food in it!

  17. What a beautiful photo! I look forward to us being retired soon too (although my husband says at this rate we’ll be that couple working side by side at McDonalds into our 80s).

  18. Huffygirl says:

    Aww, I bet he likes you for more than just the free lunch. Great couple photo of you.

    • Coming East says:

      I don’t know, HG. I think he married me for my money, too. My father gave me spending money at college, and my husband’s parents weren’t able to. As long as he stuck with me, he could eat on the weekends. I’m still buying his food. Nothing’s changed.

  19. winsomebella says:

    Beautiful and loving picture and words 🙂

  20. E.C. says:

    Awww what a fun loving and happy couple you two are. Your picture is charming and glows with your love. 🙂

  21. Al says:

    Love this picture of you both. Have fun in Philadelphia.

  22. gaycarboys says:

    It’s nice not to really worry too much about money. I looked up Virginia beach as I’d never heard of it. The location looks wonderful. I’d say you made a wise move. Travel would be fabulous once your commitments are reduced. Maybe we can show you both around Sydney one day. A seafood buffet on a harbour cruise can not be beaten.

  23. Lenore Diane says:

    I’m blushing. 🙂 This is lovely. And the picture of the two of you is magnificent. It’s as if it is a photo for a commercial. Gracious, I love this.

  24. Dianna says:

    Oh, I love that picture of you two! My hubby is semi-retired, but he goes to our business everyday. (And that’s good for BOTH of us!)

    • Coming East says:

      What kind of business is it, Dianna? My honey would go stir-crazy if he wasn’t working. I think he’ll do consulting when he leaves this job, but that won’t be for quite awhile yet. He likes what he’s doing, stress and all.

      • Dianna says:

        My husband builds race engnes for cars and hydroplane race boats. But he just has a few select customers. We also own commercial rental property (that keeps ME busy keeping track of all that). But hubby can choose his own hours to work and doesn’t have to deal with the public. (He had enough headaches for years when he had a full service automotive machine shop and had 24 employees!) Life is a little easier for him now. 🙂

      • Coming East says:

        Your husband and my son-in-law would get along well. My son-in-law is an engineer with GM, and in his younger days, he used to race Formula 1 cars. He gave it up when he married my daughter.

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