Category: Retirement

Well-liked Medicare plan vs. higher-ranked providers

Medicare Open Enrollment ends December 7. The easy choice is to stay with all-in-one Medicare Advantage instead of switching to Traditional Medicare plus a supplement and a drug plan. The hard one is whether to switch between Medicare Advantage plans, from a well-liked one to one accepted at a so-called top-10 hospital. Humana Gold Plus,... Read more »

The aging brain: increase as well as decline

Quite a few commentators have noted the creaky ages of prominent politicians. Nancy Pelosi is 79, Bernie Sanders 78, Mitch McConnell 77, Joe Biden 76, and Donald Trump 73. I’ve tended to say that if they’re up to the task, their age is irrelevant (in Trump’s case, he’d be incompetent at any age). Two recent... Read more »

The grueling task of cleaning out parents’ home

My mother likely has never heard of Marie Kondo (Tidying Up with Marie Kondo), and they probably would find little in common. Mom comes from the Depression generation that keeps everything that you or your kids or grandkids might use someday, or that has sentimental value. She and Dad stocked enough cleaning supplies to equip... Read more »

Downsizing for parents when they move into assisted living

What a whirlwind the last nine days have been. My parents looked at an assisted living facility last Monday, signed a lease on an apartment there on Friday, and moved in on Sunday. Here’s a typical conversation from last weekend, when we were packing for their move: Me (holding a dozen or so knives in... Read more »

Avoid going into hospital as observational

If you have the misfortune to stay overnight in a hospital bed, make sure you’re admitted to the hospital. A month ago that statement would have made no sense to me. How could you occupy a hospital bed without being admitted? In the last few weeks my mother spent three postsurgery nights in Presence St.... Read more »

Reading glasses were avoidable if I’d known

You’ve probably heard people say that they don’t need glasses at all after cataract surgery. I looked forward to the surgery for that reason yet didn’t question the ophthalmologist when he said beforehand that I would still need reading glasses. In the last day I’ve done more research to write this blog post than before... Read more »

Can’t we stop having to prove ourselves?

A 60ish man among a group I’d just met dropped into the conversation that he had been a National Merit Scholar. How sad that he’s still bringing that up almost a half century later, I thought. Isn’t a bonus of mature age that you no longer have anything to prove? But then remembering that low... Read more »

Deciding what to do with the RMD (the what?)

Along with when to start social security and which Medicare plan to choose, retirees who have tax-deferred savings plans have another major decision to make: what to do with the Required Minimum Distribution.  In case you’re not old enough to be aware of the RMD, neither was I until a few years ago. When my financial... Read more »

Purpose ≠ cause (ongoing topic)

Following a post titled “Busy but still missing a purpose” two weeks ago, I’ve been pondering the topic and decided to share some thoughts that might be helpful to others as well. This post isn’t going to wrap up with a tidy conclusion; indeed, there may be future posts that contradict it. The search for... Read more »

Busy but still missing a purpose

Nancy Pelosi is 79, Bernie Sanders 77, Joe Biden 76, and Donald Trump almost 73 — all older than I. There has been plenty of commentary already about whether they’re too old for the jobs they have or want, and this isn’t going to be another one. If seventysomethings have the energy, more power to... Read more »