Category Archives: Retirement Guides

Helping Your Dog Cope with Fireworks

The 4th of July is quintessential Americana with backyard BBQs, flip-flops, and spectacular fireworks show. I love to participate in the festivities, but my dog? Not so much. Fireworks were a four-letter word in our household, and while everyone else was enjoying a warm summer evening watching the night sky come alive with sparkles… my girl was camped out in the bathtub praying for daylight. Independence Day? It was more like Co-dependence day. Over the years, I found ways to get both of us through the holiday that I hope you’ll find helpful as well.

Reassurance and coddling are instinctual when it comes to curbing fear, and anxiety. I learned that the more I paid attention, the more clingy, and frantic she became. I started ignoring the behavior and would act casually like it was no big deal. The result? She wasn’t cured by any means, but I noticed rather than coming to me, she would find her own comfort zone to ride out the storm whether it was the tub, her crate, etc.

Herbal supplements such as Valerian Root, or Bach’s Rescue Remedy are good over the counter remedies for mild cases of anxiety. Severe stress may require treatment with a sedative, but should always be discussed with your veterinarian to ensure the proper dosage. It’s a good idea to make an appointment prior to the holiday to discuss the best options for managing a meltdown. I found rubbing a bit of lavender essential oil onto her ears, and paws had a soothing effect, and it worked well for her mom too!

Stuff hollow toys with peanut butter or cheese for a tasty distraction, or engage your dog in an indoor game of fetch or impromptu training session. If your dog is reluctant to participate don’t force them, as this can cause more anxiety.

Please don’t leave your pets outdoors unattended where they may escape. Animal shelters take in many lost dogs this time of year, so make sure they are properly licensed with ID tags, and keep them safe inside.

To you, and your fur kids, I wish you a happy, and safe 4th!

Home Designs That Don’t Show Their Age

Sometimes blending in with the crowd is a good thing, and when it comes to 55+ living, today’s home designs have changed the way buyers view “retirement” communities. While 55+ communities do provide aging with grace home features, they’re designed in such a seamless, and modern way that they just become part of the home, rather than a glaring reminder of getting older. A major factor when marketing to active adult homebuyers is providing the accommodations, and technology they may need down the road while offering ageless functionality.

The advantage to choosing an active lifestyle community versus embarking on a future renovation product is the builder has already done the homework. They know what boomers and retirees need now, and in the years ahead incorporating these features into the home’s framework. Outside of the cost saving aspect of purchasing a home already equipped with everything the homeowner needs, many communities also provide exterior maintenance services allowing for a carefree lifestyle without labor intensive yard-work.

The Health Trend You Won’t Find In a Bottle

An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but could the key to good health be where you live? Feeling your best in everything you do extends beyond the hours you’re putting in at the gym. Longevity and vitality is a lifestyle rather than a health fad, and while juice cleanses, and superfoods are fabulous, experiencing mind-body health is one that 55+ communities have made their core focus. Anyone who’s researched this neighborhood turned “wellness retreats” has probably noticed a common thread of buzzwords like active, socially engaged, and connected. From the simplistic to the most opulent communities, most would agree that retirement isn’t being done sitting down.

Time, and time again, studies have proven the healing benefits of healthy social relationships, and how they improve everything from cardiovascular health to depression. Active adult communities are specifically designed to bring neighbors together through social clubs, events, and competitive games. The peer community atmosphere is ideal for singles to meet new people, and reduce feelings of loneliness. One resident said that since her move, life had become more socially enhanced, and she even became a cookie delivering member of the welcoming committee. These communities foster a no-pressure approach to getting out there by offering activities to suit any lifestyle.

Home on the Great Plains

“Home is where your heart is,” and as many would agree, the place that defines home is in America’s Heartland. Over the years, Nebraska’s capital city of Lincoln has seen an extraordinary amount of economic growth, and urban development but what folks love most about this town, is no matter how many corporate giants set up shop, it’s never strayed from being an approachable, mid-west town that tugs at the heartstrings. With its vast open skies, and rolling farmland, Lincoln tends to take a backseat to powerhouse retirement havens like California, and Florida, but what it lacks in coastal glamour, it makes up for in rich heritage, a highly educated population, and also happens to be a Forbes best cities to retire contender.

3 Metro Hotspots For Active Living

When it comes to venturing into empty nest land or launching into retirement, the last thing the baby boomer generation has on the agenda is sitting around watching Jeopardy. This new-found freedom opens up new, and exciting opportunities particularly when it comes to deciding where to retire. According to an article by Builder, boomers are in the market for the same homes millennials are setting their sights on, and choosing hip locations from college towns, to downtown city centers. Whether it’s to be near family or begin a new career, more, and more active adults are migrating from the lull of suburban living to be near the action.

Portland, Oregon aka; the City of Roses, is diverse, culturally rich, and one of the nation’s top destinations for cyclists, and getting around on foot. Boomers make up a large part of the city’s population and for good reason. Portland is an age-friendly city with an energetic vibe, a vibrant art scene, and a health-conscious mentality from top-rated medical facilities, weekly growers markets, to the extensive infrastructure of walking, hiking, and bike trails. Exploring the city is effortless, with most neighborhoods conveniently located within walking distance of a highly efficient public transit system.

Baby Boomers Take Downsizing A Step Further

The market for tiny homes has been in the media for a while with people taking downsizing to a whole new level. These diminutive versions of their traditional counterparts almost resemble dollhouses with perfectly scaled-down baths, kitchens, and living spaces, attracting quite a following of buyers from families, to empty nesters.  With closet spaces not much bigger than a car trunk, it’s hard to believe the demand for these tiny abodes is on the rise particularly amongst baby boomers. So what’s so intriguing about residing in what’s often under 200 square feet? Many retirees are finding it’s the simpler lifestyle that enables them to stretch their nest egg, and pursue dreams of travel, or take up new hobbies.

Outside of purchasing the land if the home is stationary, or the cost of construction for a custom build, many tiny homes sell for under $100,000 which most buyers purchase outright versus having a monthly mortgage payment.  The idea of living debt-free is attractive to tiny home buyers, and they’re willing to sacrifice space for the financial peace of mind.  In a society where the idea that more is more, the tiny house trend is proving that living on much less reaps bigger rewards. Those going small realize that although they are challenged space-wise, in the end, it’s just “stuff”, and there are bigger and better things they’d rather be doing.

4 Ways To Reinvent Your Retirement

4 Ways To Reinvent Your Retirement

Somebody had the notion that once you retired, life was suddenly all about bridge games, and recliners – well, up and until they realized that today’s baby boomers have much more on their agendas than watching Jeopardy reruns. Most would agree this next chapter in life has a tendency to spark creativity, and inspire spontaneity which is why it’s the perfect time to step out and create a list of “push your limit” goals. They always say there’s no better time than the present, and these life-changing ideas will definitely challenge your comfort zone.

Try an Extreme Sport
If you thought thrill-seeking was just for kids think again. Challenging yourself physically is a serious endorphin rush especially if It’s something you’ve had on your bucket list. From skydiving, and bungee jumping to getting on a surfboard or rock climbing, the list of “extreme” sports is virtually limitless. Visit any ski resort or the NASCAR starting line, and you’ll notice a surge of 55 or better participants who are proving that active adults crave a taste of adventure over leisure.

Find Your Happy Place In Naples Florida

Tax-friendly, and health-minded, Florida’s coastal lifestyle attracts droves of baby boomers from snowbirds to empty nesters with one city, in particular, coming out on top in all its white-sanded glory. Rated the number one city by the Gallup Well-Being index, and featured by Forbes, and Kiplinger as one of the best destinations to retire, Naples is as close to paradise as it gets.

Located 40 miles south of Fort Myers, this gulf town is one of the few places where balmy tropical breezes, flip-flops, and beach days are enjoyed even in the dead of winter. Retirees are not only attracted to the flawless aesthetic of Naples with its palm-lined streets, upscale plazas, and colorful Neapolitan architecture, but the lifestyle itself is one that promotes healthy living, rich culture, and a positive perspective. With a laid-back vibe, and clear aquamarine waves brushing up against the white sand, it’s easy to understand why they call it the Paradise Coast.