Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Share Your Experience and Make Money Writing Online

Earn Money When You Share
Your Knowledge on Online!
Are you looking for a way to make money from home?  If you can write short articles of about 500 - 1000 words, you can submit them to online websites such as Daily Two Cents,  InfoBarrel, Hubpages or Writedge and earn extra money from the Google and Chitika ads that will be placed on the same page as your articles.

What Should You Write About? 

In the articles, simply share some of the knowledge you have accumulated during your lifetime, or write about news stories, particularly interesting stories in the area where you live.  Most of us Baby Boomers have plenty of information we would like to share!  In addition, I am constantly hearing from my Baby Boomer friends about how they would like to earn a little money working from home.  Writing online is a good way to do it.

What are some topics that you could write about?  If you are like most Baby Boomers, you have more knowledge and experience than you realize.  You have plenty of information to pass on to others.  Here is a short list to get you started:

Tourist attractions in your area.
Vacation destinations you enjoyed.
Skills you learned on your job.
Hobbies and the equipment they require.
Reviews of products you have purchased.

What Do You Need to Get Started Writing Online?

People of all ages are discovering that they have skills and experiences that they enjoy passing on to others, and they can make money from writing sites when they do.  All you need in order to get started is a computer, and basic knowledge of how to write and submit information to a website.  You will need to open an account on InfoBarrel, Daily Two Cents, Hubpages, Writedge or the sites that interest you. Depending on the site, you may also need to open accounts on Google Adsense and Chitika, after you have submitted 10 or more articles.  Google and Chitika will pay you directly, once you begin earning money. 

You might also become an Amazon affiliate, once you start building up a library of articles.  This will allow you to promote Amazon products in your articles and you can earn a commission if someone purchases an item you promoted.

How Do You Get Started?

Once you have started writing on one site, you will begin to think of even more great topics to write about.  As you become familiar with the different sites, you will start to notice that certain types of articles do better on one site than another.

I suggest that people write at least 100 articles on one site before they move to another one.  Go back and check on your old articles regularly, however, and update them when they need it.  As you become a better writer, you will want to revise your old articles.

How Much Money Can You Earn Writing Online?

How much money can you earn?  To be honest, you won't earn very much when you first start.  It will probably take you about six to nine months to reach your first Google payout of $100 or more.  However, most writers who stick with it soon discover that those $100 payouts come more and more frequently, and the writers enjoy being able to earn money while they work at home.

Eventually you may want to spread your wings by starting your own website or writing ebooks.  However, the writing sites I mentioned here are a great way to get started.  Just keep building your online body of work, and the money will come.

The writing income from the sites listed above is residual.  That means you will keep earning money from an article for years after you submit it!  One article can gradually create a regular income stream.  Dozens of articles produce plenty of possibilities for income. The extra money can sure come in handy, too, when you need a little extra cash to pay for holiday gifts or other extras!

If you are interested in learning more about retirement planning, use the tabs or pull down menu to find links to hundreds of additional articles on where to retire, financial planning, family relationships and more.

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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wishing You The Miracles of the Holidays

Happy Holidays
(photo by
During this time of family gatherings, hectic shopping, and (let's face it) holiday stress, I hope you each are able to take a moment to sit in quiet contemplation of the past year.

Many people have suffered losses, divorces, and the deaths of loved ones.  At the same time, others have started new adventures, married, given birth to children and graduated from school.

For most of us, the year has been a combination of both good and bad; triumph and disappointment.  No matter how the year has been for you, I hope this holiday weekend is a time of caring, sharing, healing and forgiveness for you and your loved ones.

Whatever your religion, and however you celebrate, may you be blessed this season with the comfort of those you love, the laughter of people you care about, and gratitude for the gift of being alive to enjoy the present moment.
Happy Holidays
from My Family to Yours

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Danger of Fatal Holiday Heart Attacks

Heart Attacks Hit
Without Warning
(Photo by
I heard on ABC News just prior to Christmas a few years ago that deaths from heart attacks are more likely to occur around the holidays.  In particular, people seem to die more frequently from heart attacks if they occur on Christmas Day, the day after Christmas, or New Years Day.

Why Do More People Die From Heart Attacks During the Holidays?

Although the researchers did not know with absolute certainty why more people die when they have a heart attack on a holiday, the reporters hypothesized that it may be because people are reluctant to ask to be taken to the hospital on a holiday, because they don't want to interrupt all the the festivities.  

Because of this, it is especially important to keep an eye out for elderly relatives during other significant events ... family weddings, after the death of a loved one, reunions, etc.  These are also occasions when people may not want to disturb everyone else with complaints about pain or discomfort.

In addition, it is possible that people who have just eaten a heavy meal of rich food may mistake a heart attack for indigestion.  It is not an unusual confusion.

How Can You Tell the Difference Between a Heart Attack and Indigestion?

First, heart attacks are not experienced the same way by everyone.  While a woman may feel the pain in her arm or jaw, a man may feel as though is chest is being squeezed.  Later, the pain may migrate to a man's shoulder, arm or jaw, too.  Many people mistake their symptoms for indigestion.  However, if the pain is constant, rather than coming and going, and it doesn't get better when you lay down, it could very well be a heart attack.

Other Ways to Recognize a Heart Attack

There are also other clues that could indicate a heart attack.  For example, a common symptom is that the person will have trouble breathing.  They may also begin to sweat heavily, because of the stress the body is under.  They may feel as if their pulse is irregular, racing or skipping beats.

What to Do if You Suspect You or Someone Else is Having a Heart Attack

If you or someone you love experiences any of these symptoms during the holidays, or any other time of the year, do not wait to get them treated. Rush them to the hospital, or call 9-1-1. The sooner a heart attack victim is treated, the more likely they are to live.

To stay up to date with medical and retirement news affecting Baby Boomers, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of the page to find links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

Cheap and Thoughtful Last Minute Gifts

Flowers are one Thoughtful Gift!
Have you ever been in a situation when you realized that you need to quickly produce a gift, and you have very little time or money?  Most of us have been faced with this problem at some time in our lives.  If you are a new retiree on a fixed income, this can be even more of a challenge.  You really have to watch what you spend, and you don't want to go into debt just to provide gifts for others.  What are some ways to handle this situation?

Prepare Ahead

One solution is to go to garage sales and estate sales in your area, and buy inexpensive items that you can keep on hand.  Don't overdo it.  However, if you can find a few pretty vases for under $5, or some lovely mismatched plates for a dollar or two, buy them and put them aside.  Then, when you need an inexpensive gift, you can wrap up one of the vases in a pretty box, or fill it with flowers from your garden and not even bother to wrap it when you give it away!  The plates are a handy way to present gifts of a homemade cake, cookies or candy.  Simply place the baked goods on the plate and present it to a friend, telling them to keep the plate.  If you are unable to find any suitable plates or vases at local estate sales, check out the Dollar Store or .99 Cent Store in your community.  You can usually find something there.

Regifting Can Be Fun

Another idea for a thoughtful and cheap gift is to regift something that has been given to you.  I frequently attend gift exchanges around the holidays.  When I end up with something I know I will not use, I store it in a closet and re-gift it the next year.  Careful, though!  Be sure you mark down where you received the gift, so you pass it on somewhere else.  You would hate to give it to the person who gave it to you ... or their best friend!

Dinner Invitations

If you need a gift right now, and have nothing on hand, write out an invitation on a piece of personal stationery and invite your friends to dinner at your home in two or three weeks.  Be specific and do not make it some vague date.  If they have to change it, you can work it out with them; but, start with a specific date in mind.  Your friends will love being your guests ... and you probably would have invited them to dinner at some point, anyway!

Gift Donations

You can also sit down at the computer and make a donation to a friend's favorite charity.  Then, tuck the receipt into a gift card and present it to them.  If you have chosen the right charity, they will be delighted by your thoughtfulness!  Many people love to receive a donation as a gift.

Really, Really Last Minute Gifts

Are you on the way to a party right now, and you realize you desperately need to pick up a cheap gift on the way?  Don't despair!  You can pick up a bottle of wine and a gift bag at the liquor store, or a flowering plant at the grocery store.  If you need something for a white elephant gift exchange, pick up two or three funny local tourist gifts at the local convenience store.  Items like bottle openers, shot glasses and hats promoting a local sports team are perfect for those silly gift exchanges, and someone might actually like them!

Whatever you decide to take with you, stick to your budget.  All of us are very money conscious these days, and there is no need to break your budget purchasing gifts that may end up on someone else's re-gifting shelf!

For more helpful retirement ideas, use the tabs or pull down menus at the top of the page to find links to hundreds of articles about affordable places to retire, retirement planning, health issues that can arise, changing family relationships and more.

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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

New Years Holidays in Las Vegas

Spend New Years by the
Ballagio Fountains
(photo by
Why not spend New Years in Las Vegas this year? Many Baby Boomers and other retirees are looking for something fun, exciting or different to do this New Years Eve.  Now that you no longer have young children to worry about, you can make plans that are more elaborate than you could during your child rearing years.  If you are thinking about taking a trip to Las Vegas this winter, you need to start making your plans right away.

December and January are popular times to go to Las Vegas.  Hotels are available in a a wide variety of price ranges, from expensive 5 Star hotels like the Ballagio, Paris or the Venetian down to much cheaper motels, including Motel 6.  In between, there are a nice selection of moderately priced hotels, as well, including the Golden Nugget on Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas, or the Luxor and Stratosphere on the strip.  If you plan to go to Las Vegas in the winter, make your hotel reservations as soon as possible.

Unless you want to eat in a specific restaurant, you can be more casual about dinner reservations.  There are so many restaurants and buffets, it is usually possible to find one with an opening.  However, exceptional restaurants such as the one in the Eiffel Tower at the Paris Hotel, or the one at the top of the Stratosphere may require advance reservations.  The late night clubs may be more difficult to enter on New Years Eve than at other times of the year.  You may wish to talk to the concierge at your hotel for their recommendations.  They may be able locate one for you, and arrange to get you admitted. 

If you are planning to see a show, your concierge can also help you arrange tickets.  However, if you aren't picky, you may be able to get half price tickets at a kiosk owned by Tix4Tonight.  They sell the tickets that are left over for that night's shows.  Availability varies from day to day, but it is a fun way to save money on a Las Vegas show.

Check the weather forecasts carefully before you decide what clothing to bring on your trip.  My husband and I have taken frequent trips to Las Vegas during the winter, especially since we have been in our 50's and 60's, and the weather seems to be different on every trip.  We once planned a golf vacation, only to arrive to 6 inches of snow, with the valet parking attendants building a snowman in front of the hotel!  You can be almost certain that it will be quite cold in the desert after dark.  During the day, however, it could be sunny and mild, rainy and chilly, or downright freezing.

Las Vegas is a ideal place for Baby Boomers to enjoy time away from their normal routines.  New Years in Las Vegas is an especially exciting time to be in the city.

If you are a Baby Boomer interested in staying up to date with other travel locations as well as general information affecting your retirement plans, you may want to bookmark or follow this blog at 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Scrapbooking with Christmas Cards

Save Your Photo Holiday Cards
(photo by
After the holidays, most people scoop up all the Christmas cards and holiday letters they received and toss them in the trash along with the wrapping paper and other holiday waste.  However, there is an alternative that will bring you and your family joy for years to come.  Create a special Christmas scrapbook, using all your favorite holiday cards, particularly the photo greeting cards.

Pick out a wonderful red or green scrapbook, or one with a holiday motif.  On the first few pages include any old Christmas photos you can find, going back as far into your family history as possible.  Once you have the scrapbook started, begin to add your own Christmas photo card and holiday letter each year.  As you write your holiday letter, keep in mind that you are creating a family history.

In addition to your own photo greeting cards, add those from other members of your family, as well as close family friends.  If you want additional enhancements to your Christmas scrapbook, add some holiday stickers or little notes that explain who everyone is, or what they are doing.  After 10 or more years, you will begin to realize that you have created a wonderful family keepsake.

As your children become adults, make color copies of the pages in your scrapbook, use them to start new scrapbooks, and give one to each of your adult children.  They can add their own pages, and your family history will continue to grow.  Using your Christmas cards in this way will create a family treasure that will be valued for generations to come.

If you are a Baby Boomer or a retiree who is looking for information on how to make your senior years more satisfying, you may want to bookmark this blog or continue to follow it at http://baby-boomer-retirement/

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Top Toys for Grandkids

Barbie is Still A Popular Toy
(photo by
What are the best toys to get your grandchildren?  If you are like most grandparents, this is a difficult problem since you only buy gifts for your grandchildren a couple of times a year. Fortunately, Amazon comes to our rescue with their periodic list of the Top Toys for Kids which is very helpful when you are looking for gift ideas.

This year, Amazon has put forth their list of toys that are popular for Christmas 2011.  You can purchase them directly through Amazon, or you can purchase them in most large toy stores, whichever is more convenient for you.  Even if you decide to purchase them at a local store, you may want to check them out online first, to compare prices and see if they look like something your grandchild would want.

According to Amazon, here are the Top Toys for Kids:

The Barbie Collector 2011 Holiday Doll
Real Construction Deluxe Tool Workshop
Vtech InnoTab (Child's Tablet "Computer")
Qwirkle Board Game
Simon Flash
Crayola Model Magic Jewelry
Disney Princess Ultimate Fairytale Kitchen
Spy Net: Stealth Video Glasses

Here Are the Top Electronic Gifts for Kids:

Philips Rich Bass Neckband Headphones
Alfred's Kid's Guitar Course Starter Pack
Kodak PlaySport Zx5
Parrot AR. Drone Quadricopter

These are The Best Gifts for Babies:

Cloud b Twilight Constellation Night Light
Prince Lionheart Wheely Bug
Tiny Love Move and Play Gymini
Baby Einstein Count and Compose Piano

Simply type these names into an Amazon search box, and you can get complete details on each of these items.  On many Amazon toys, you can even read parent's comments before you make a purchase.  In addition, Amazon will also show similar products, if you wish to compare them.

Don't forget to check with the parents before purchasing any gift for a child.  They may already have it!

If you are a grandparent who is retired or planning to retire, you may want to follow this blog for more up to date, relevant news stories that could affect you.  Follow by email, or bookmark,

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Tips for a Happy Marriage for Baby Boomers

Tips for a Happy Marriage
(Photo by photoxpress)
The marriages of many Baby Boomers have been strained to the breaking point during the past few decades.  In fact, marriage problems have caused the divorce rate for our generation to be much higher than the divorce rate for our parents.  Divorce among people who are in their 50's has become so common there is now a name for it ... grey divorce.  However, after 40 years of marriage, my husband and I have discovered that there are things you can do to strengthen your marriage, and these actions may reduce the chances that your marriage will be one of those that fail.

First, many of us Baby Boomers began our relationships without a strong commitment to the idea of marriage.  We were the first generation to live together before marriage in large numbers.  Today, some of that lack of commitment is still causing couples to give up on their relationships at the first sign of trouble.  Of course, if you are in a relationship that involves what is known as the three "A's" ... abuse, addiction or adultery ... you may be wise to leave.  Otherwise, simply believing that a committed relationship is important may be very effective in reducing the chances that your relationship will flounder.

In addition to commitment, we all need to accept that there are no perfect marriages. As much as the movies still depict the concept of "happily ever after," we Baby Boomers need to realize that relationships are complicated and messy.  Your partner will have some irritating habits; you do, too!

Communication is another important factor in maintaining a healthy marriage.  My husband and I have known couples that have gone to a marriage counselor for years, in order to keep the lines of communication open.  My husband and I have not had to go to that length, but we have found it important to sit down and simply chat once in a while.  Honesty and the willingness to listen are important factors in healthy communication.

Have fun together and separately!  While it is important to have date nights, and spend time together doing things you both enjoy, it is also important that you both spend time separately.  There is nothing wrong with the husband playing golf with his buddies, or the wife going off on a girl's weekend once in a while.  Like everything else in a marriage, there needs to be balance ... time together as well as time apart.  This may be especially important after you are both retired.  Baby Boomers need to take heed of this.  Too much time together can actually increase the strain on your relationship!

Split the chores fairly.  There is no such thing as "man's work" or "woman's work."  She can take out the trash, do the gardening or hang a painting.  He can cook some of the meals or do the dishes and laundry.  Especially as the two of you become empty-nesters and, eventually, retirees, it is important to be flexible about your roles.  Do what works best for the two of you, without preconceived notions.  You'll both be happier and more relaxed. 

Finally, never forget to show each other affection and respect.  Both are essential for a loving relationship that lasts for decades.

If you are planning your retirement, you may want to check out the tabs or the pull-down menu at the top of this page for links to hundreds of additional articles on relationships, where to retire, financial planning, medical issues and more.

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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Copy a Photo Album as a Unique Gift

Photo Albums Make Cherished Gifts
(photo by
Photo albums are often passed down through families, lovingly enjoyed by future generations for decades.  In fact, owning the photo album of a favorite or famous relative can even cause family conflict, when everyone wants to own the album after the relative's death.

However, thanks to color copiers, this no longer needs to be a problem.  One of the most cherished gifts you can give someone you love is a copy of a favorite family photo album.

Give the Gift of a Copied Photo Album

Below are examples of some of the ways I gave photo album gifts to our adult children and other relatives.

*  Eight years ago, I made color copies of the baby books I had put together when my adult children were infants, inserted the copied pages into new photo albums, and gave them each a copy of their baby books.

*  When our children were in elementary school, I decided years ago to make a photo album of the school photos and major events in their lives.  I gave our daughters a copy of my photo album about each of them as a Christmas gift five years ago.

*  Four years ago, I made color copies of my Christmas photo album for each adult child.  This photo album contained copies of all our holiday photos, Christmas cards and Christmas newsletters for the past 40 years.  All of our daughters now have a brief history of our family.

*  My father-in-law was an Olympic gold medal winner in the 1920's.  He received a number of other sports honors as well.  I put together an album containing copies of a variety of his sports memorabilia and gave it to my daughters, as well as my nephew who was also descended from him.

*  When my sister-in-law was in a flood and lost most of her childhood photos, I copied photographs that my husband had from their childhood, and put together a photo album for her.

Why Photo Albums are Ideal Gifts

Of all the gifts that I have passed on to our children over the years, I'm sure the photo albums will be the gifts that they will hold onto the longest.  In fact, these are the gifts most likely to be passed on to their own children and grandchildren.

There are other reasons for sharing these photo albums.  If we ever have a house fire I know that all the treasured family photos of the past will not be lost.  In addition, during these times when so many people store their photos on their computers, it is nice to have a real photo album that you can enjoy with your grandkids, while you share stories about their ancestors with them. 

Knowing that I will share our photos with the rest of the family has also encouraged me to look for new photo album ideas.  For example, a photo album of all their grandkids went to my parents;  other small photo albums have been sent to family members.  It seems there is always someone who would enjoy having some of our old family photos.

If you are looking for loving and unique gift ideas, the easiest and most thoughtful gift of all may simply be giving a loved one a color copy of a cherished family photo album!

If you are a Baby Boomer looking for retirement ideas, information about building relationships as you age, health facts, and more, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this page for links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Shopping Safety Tips for Senior Citizens

Use Caution When Gift Shopping
(photo by
At any time of year, senior citizens can be particularly vulnerable when they are out shopping in malls and stores.  They are easy victims of pick-pockets, purse snatchers, muggers and similar criminals.  It is sad that some criminals will take advantage of people who appear to be frail, but it is an unfortunate reality.

During the holidays, it is particularly easy to become busy and distracted. As a result, people of any age may forget some basic rules of shopping safety.   Whenever we are out in public, we have to be aware of our surroundings and particularly careful.  We all have to keep our wits about us, especially when we are shopping.

How to Stay Safe While Shopping in Malls and Stores

* Be aware of your surroundings.  Notice anyone who may be watching you or following you while you are doing your holiday shopping.  If someone makes you feel uncomfortable, ask for a store or mall security guard to escort you to your car.

* Whenever possible, go shopping in groups.  Whether you take family members with you, or go with your friends, there is safety in numbers.

* Do not flash around a lot of cash.  Be careful about putting your credit cards and debit card away after each transaction. Take your time.

* Do your shopping during daylight hours and park your car close to the store.

* Be cautious about leaving packages in your car.  When you have made some of your purchases, do not simply load your packages into the trunk of your car and go back into the mall to buy more.  Someone could be watching the parking lot, and they might break into your car while you are gone.  Instead, take that load of packages home.  If that isn't possible, get in your car and drive to the other side of the mall, where any observers will not know that your trunk is full of gifts.  Then, re-park and re-enter the mall.  Do not leave any packages in plain site inside your car.

Only use ATM's in well-lit areas, and take steps to make sure your PIN number cannot be observed.

By being cautious and aware while out holiday shopping, you should be able to protect your purchases and avoid being attacked or injured during a robbery.  Don't let criminals ruin your holidays or other shopping experiences.

If you are looking for additional information for Baby Boomers and Senior Citizens, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this article to find links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Monday, November 21, 2011

Gratitude at Thanksgiving

Pecan Pie
(photo by

Happy Thanksgiving to all Baby-Boomers!

Times have been tough for many Baby Boomers during the past few years.  However, it is important to take a few minutes at Thanksgiving to remember all the aspects of our lives for which we can be grateful.

For many of us, our families are extremely important.  Yes, we may have spoiled our children and grandchildren, or disagreed from time to time with their decisions, but we still delight in watching them grow and mature.  Our family dinners may not be as formal as the ones our parents prepared, but we still enjoy getting everyone together for a holiday meal, or even to just gather around the television and watch a good holiday movie or football game.  Despite all the ups and downs of family life, we love our own families the best.

We also can be grateful for the amazing lives that many of us have lead.  We have traveled more widely than any generation before us.  We have seen inventions that seemed inconceivable when we were young.  We have witnessed major transformations in our society as far as the acceptance of different races and religions within our communities.

The majority of Baby Boomers have also had the opportunity to own at least one home during their lifetime.  They have been able to indulge themselves in ways that their parents could never even imagine, with everything from big screen TVs to home computers and amazing cell phones.

According to the federal website, Baby Boomers have made meaningful contributions to our nation.  About one-third of Baby Boomers volunteer for a formal organization each year; on average we each volunteer about 51 hours a year.  Baby Boomers actually increase the amount of time they spend volunteering during the years immediately after they retire.  We enjoy giving back to our communities and trying to improve life for future generations.  Boomers have a lot to be proud of! 

When I look around at my family, my quality of life, the places where I have traveled, and the ways in which I have served my own community, I feel very grateful for the life I have lived.  Consequently, when I wake up on Thanksgiving morning, I want to start the day off by saying “I have been blessed beyond measure.”  Because, despite all the ups and downs of the economy, as well as the disappointments and setbacks I have faced over the years, I am still able to feel truly blessed by this wonderful life that I have lead!  I hope you will, too.  Happy Thanksgiving!

If you want to stay up-to-date with summaries of news articles and other information pertinent to our generation, add the Baby Boomer Retirement blog to your favorites list, or subscribe to email updates.  The blog can be found at

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Las Vegas Weddings for Seniors

Famous Little White Chapel
in Las Vegas is one place
you can marry, but there are
many more!
Las Vegas is the perfect wedding location for many people who want to keep their marriage plans simple and affordable.  It is ideal for Baby Boomers thinking about getting married or re-married.   Vegas has long been known as a delightful place to have a fun wedding, without the necessity of inviting lots of people or planning a big, formal affair.  Thousands of people from all over the country go to Las Vegas each year to have a private wedding with just a few friends or family members.  If you are thinking about getting married there, here are some of the things you need to know.

This article will give you an overview of what you need to know about getting married in Las Vegas.  However, if you want to learn more and plan a wedding there, you will want to get a copy of the Amazon book:  Your Guide to a Fabulous Las Vegas Wedding.  It tells you about the laws, chapels, restaurants, how to get discount show tickets, and much more.  It is available in both Kindle and paperback editions.

Las Vegas Marriage Laws: 

The basic laws for getting married in Las Vegas are simple.  Just go to the Clark County Marriage License Bureau (any cab can take you) and show your driver's license, passport or other ID that proves you are both over 18 years old.  The current fee is about $60, although that changes from time to time.  You are best off if you plan to pay in cash.  Sometimes you can pay by credit card, cash or cashier's check; other times, they will not accept credit or debit cards.

If you have been divorced, you need to provide the date, city and state where the divorce was finalized.  You don't need to show your divorce decree.  If you have been widowed, you must provide the date, city and state of your former spouse's death.  There is no waiting period, and you do not need a blood test.  The Marriage License Bureau is open from 8:00 a.m. until midnight 365 days a year.  Once you have your license in hand, you are immediately ready to get married.

Where to Get Married:  

Your license is good for a year; however, most people use it within the next day or two.  There are many chapels throughout Las Vegas that provide fun wedding venues.  You can get married at the Mandalay Bay Wedding Chapels, the Graceland Wedding Chapel or the famous Little White Wedding Chapel where many famous people, including Joan Collins and Michael Jordan, have been wed.  Most of the major hotels also have wedding chapels.  I have seen a wide variety of nuptials performed in Las Vegas, and enjoyed them all.  You can usually call a chapel for an appointment and get married the same day.  For some of the fancier places, such as the Mandalay Bay, you may want to call a few weeks in advance.  The book I mentioned above contains information about a number of other chapels, too.

What to Do in Las Vegas:  

If you have never been to Las Vegas, you may be surprised by all the possible activities you can enjoy during your stay.  There are spectacular golf courses, tennis courts, lovely swimming pools, casinos, incredible restaurants, shopping and the famous Las Vegas shows.  If you decide to go to a show, go to a Tix4Tonight booth first.  They are located throughout Las Vegas and they are a great place to get 1/2 price tickets for shows on the evening of the day you purchase your tickets.

Baby Boomers are looking for ways to save money and simplify their lives.  Planning to have your own wedding or the wedding of one of your children in Las Vegas is one way to keep your life simple!

Whether you are planning a wedding, wondering how to maximize your retirement income, or find out about the latest medical advances, you may want to add this blog to your favorites list, or sign up to have Google email notices of the latest posts.

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

New Rules for Grandparents of New Babies

 New Rules for Changing Diapers!
(photo by
Are you about to babysit for a new grandchild for the first time?  Or, are you about to become a grandparent?  If so, be prepared for some careful instructions from your adult children.  New research over the past 20 years has created several changes in the way we need to care for those precious grandchildren, and their parents will want you to educate yourselves, and heed this new advice.

Yes, somehow we managed to raise our own kids without knowing about all this research.  However, if you want to get along well with the parents of that new baby, you had better be willing to learn this updated information.  It is one of the best ways you can begin to build rapport within your growing family.

Here are some of the changes that have been made to parenting guidelines since we were raising our own children:

Make sure your whooping cough shot is current.  Many pediatricians are telling young parents not to let anyone around their newborn who does not have a current whooping cough vaccine, and this remains true for the first year of a child's life, until they are vaccinated themselves.

Do not put a baby to sleep on its tummy.  This increases the chances of sudden infant death syndrome.  Instead, doctors recommend that babies be put to sleep on their backs.

Do not use talcum powder when you change a diaper.  New parents now use diaper cream, instead.

Don't push the new parents to begin feeding the baby cereal when they are only a few weeks old. Evidence indicates that babies are better off waiting until they are about six months old to begin eating cereal or other solid foods.

Take a grandparenting class.  Many hospitals now offer grandparenting classes for the parents and in-laws of expectant mothers.  Find out if one is offered in your area, and take it.  It doesn't matter how many children you have already raised.  Just showing up for the class will enhance your relationship with the new mother, and increase her confidence in your willingness to be a supportive grandparent who will encourage her, rather than try to undermine her.

Learn how to install a car seat in an automobile correctly.  They can be very tricky, and you want to make sure you do it right.  The last thing you want to have happen is for the child and the car seat  to flip over if you need to slam on your brakes!

Finally, the most important thing you can do is learn to curb your tongue.  You may not agree with everything the new parent does.  However, if you want to maintain good family relationships, and get to really enjoy spending time with your grandkids, make a sincere effort not to make suggestions.  They will be considered criticisms, no matter how gentle you try to be!

For more information about retirement, family relationships and other issues as you age, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this page to find links to hundreds of additional articles.

If you are a Baby Boomer and you are looking forward to retirement, you may want to follow the Baby Boomer Retirement blog at for more information on how to enhance your senior years.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Online Money Scams to Avoid

Don't Fall for Scams
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Learning how to make money online may seem like a puzzle at first.  There are a number of good, solid companies that actually do give you the opportunity to earn money while you work from home.  Some of these opportunities include writing articles for InfoBarrel or Hubpages, starting your own blog, answering questions on WebAnswers, or selling products for Amazon or eBay.  However, there are also a lot of scams out there that can cause you to lose money instead of make it.  Listed below are some of the ones to watch out for.

Multi Level Marketing: 

These are the pyramid schemes that encourage you to get 3 or more people under you, and each of them gets 3 people under them, etc.  Most of the time, you have a hard time getting your 3 sponsees.  However, once you have coerced some of your friends, they may not even bother to try recruiting anyone else.  Your pyramid falls apart quickly, and any money you spent to "buy in" or purchase products for resale is simply wasted.

Online Business Training:  

There are lots of ads out there telling you that they will teach you how to make money online, start your own business, make money posting ads, data entry jobs, etc.  Most of the time, they are selling you a book; often the book simply suggests that you run ads like the one that hooked you.  Putting together your ads is your online business or data entry job.  This is not a real business.  You'll probably lose your initial "training" expense. These are very similar to the "envelope stuffing" businesses that were advertised all over the place in the days before the computer.  I've never known anyone to make money on any of them.

Lists of Companies Hiring Online Workers: 

Some websites offer to sell you a list of companies that are hiring workers.  However, real companies that are looking for employees will not require you to pay to find out about them.  They advertise in places that you can access for free.  They are simply charging you for a list of corporations in your area. 

Other Scams: 

Watch out for other sites that offer extravagant amounts of money for you to complete surveys.  Often you are encouraged to buy a product, or try a product and pay later, before you earn anything.  Again, this can cost you more money than you earn.  As always, if it sounds too good to be true, it almost certainly is.  There are a few companies that do pay people to complete surveys, but be careful.  They can be tricky.

This article cannot include all the possible scams, because the scammers keep coming up with new ones all the time. Just be careful about spending any money in order to make money.  There are plenty of free and legitimate online sources of revenue available. 

As always, this blog is designed to keep you up to date on any new trends that could affect Baby Boomers and other retirees.  Use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of the article to find links to hundreds of other articles of help to Baby Boomers

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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Gray Divorce or Divorce After 50

Divorce Happens at All Ages
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Many people assume that their marriage problems will smooth out as they get older.  However, there are indications that this may not always be the case.  According to the National Center for Family and Marriage Research from Bowling Green State University, the number of couples who are getting divorced after the age of 50 has doubled in the past 20 years.  Baby Boomers are getting divorced even at the stage of their lives when they had once envisioned themselves traveling, having fun and living in empty-nest tranquility.

In 2008, over 300,000 couples over the age of 50 got divorced, and the number is expected to continue to increase in coming years.

What will be the consequences of these late-in-life divorces, sometimes called Gray Divorce?  For many couples, their already fragile retirement savings will be further depleted.  Homes and other real estate will be sold and any profits will be shared; retirement accounts will be split; investments, savings accounts and other assets will have to be divided.  This will put Baby Boomers who stay single in even worse financial condition than they were during their marriage.  They may also have difficulty selling their real estate if they get divorced during a bad real estate market.

On the other hand, some of those divorcing Baby Boomers can expect to remarry.  In fact, many boomers who are getting divorced are already on their second or third marriage, and are likely to marry again.  Therefore, getting divorced after 50 does not necessarily mean that you will spend the remainder of your life alone.

However, any couple who gets divorced late in life needs to consult with both an attorney and a financial planner, especially if they want to make sure that both of them will have adequate assets to survive, particularly if they do remain alone for the remainder of their lives.  Both partners need to have a clear understanding of their expected retirement income from Social Security and pensions, as well as the amount of income they can expect to receive from any investments they may have.

The majority of people in a gray divorce will need to carefully evaluate their situation and make sure they fully understand their finances and immediately take steps to preserve as many of their assets as possible and make whatever adjustments are necessary to their cost of living.

They also need to discuss the situation with their adult children and work out arrangements for holiday visits and other family events, so that everyone will be as comfortable as possible.  Divorce counseling is highly recommended, so you can discuss issues such as how you will treat each other (and your ex-spouse's potential future spouse or dates) at family events such as weddings, graduations, the birth of grandchildren, etc.

If you are looking for additional information about retirement planning, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this page to find links to hundreds of articles about retirement planning, where to retire, health concerns, family issues, etc.

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

How Much Money Do I Need to Retire?

When Can You Retire?
In early 2011, on my way to work, I heard a disturbing news report.  Approximately 44% of Americans felt that they did not have enough money to be able to retire comfortably.  That number has only grown worse.  Millions of Baby Boomers are not prepared to retire.  In fact, since that report in 2011, the truth is that currently mover than half do not feel they have saved enough.

More recently, the CBS also reported that more people than ever before expect to work past the age of 65, primarily because they need the money.  Reality is beginning to set in for Baby Boomers.

The Retirement Situation for Baby Boomers

The November 2011 AARP Bulletin reported some alarming statistics.  While the exact numbers have changed a little since that time, they are roughly the same.

*  31% of people over the age of 50 have credit card balances

*  44% have mortgage payments on their home

*  In 50% of households of people over the age of 50, neither spouse is currently saving for retirement!

*  The average monthly Social Security benefit is $1,182 a month (that amount was closer to $1,200 a month by 2015, although that is still depressingly low).

*  In 2009, 22% of retirees relied on Social Security for at least 90% of their retirement income

*  In 2010, 56% of Social Security beneficiaries were women ... and they often receive lower benefits than the average man

These statistics paint a discouraging picture about the future financial situation of the aging Baby Boomers.  It may be time that more of us take a hard look at our investment income, and decide what we can do now to prepare for retirement.  Although many of us assume that we will just keep on working forever, the reality is that it isn't always possible.  Sometimes people get laid off in their 60's and find it difficult to find another job.  In other cases, our health declines and we simply are not physically capable of continuing to work.

What Are Your Plans for Assisted Living?

Finally, think about what will happen to you if you need to go into assisted living.  According to the Genworth 2011 Cost of Care Survey, the median annual cost of a one bedroom unit at an assisted living facility ranges from about $28,800 per person in Georgia to about $55,000 in Maine and Delaware.  It is an extraordinary $66,000 in Alaska.  Can you and your spouse afford to pay that?

There are options.  The time to purchase long-term care insurance is when you are young and relatively healthy.  Purchasing this insurance means you will have to save far less money to cover your future medical expenses.

How Much Will You Need to Retire?

The bottom line is that only you can figure out how much you will need to retire.  Start by looking at your benefit estimates from Social Security.  Compare that to your budget.  Look at the difference between the two amounts.

Are there areas in your budget that will disappear by the time you retire?  If possible, pay off all the bills you can.  Look at all the ways you can get your budget as low as possible by retirement.  Then compare the differences between the two amounts.

Let's assume you will still be short $800 a month or $9600 a year.  If you are going to follow the 4% rule, which financial planners suggest as a way to make sure your money lasts the rest of your life, then you need to save 25 times the $9600 a month in order to have enough money to retire.  That means, in this case, you will need to save $240,000.  Obviously, the sooner you start, the easier it will be to save this amount of money.

If you don't think you can save this much, you need to figure out how you will cut your expenses or increase your retirement income ... perhaps by postponing your retirement.

Start planning early for a successful retirement.

If you are interested in reading more about retirement planning, where to retire, health issues, and more, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this page to find links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Work From Home and Make Money

Work Wherever You Want!
Whether you are just barely getting by, hoping to raise extra money for your kids' college expenses, saving for retirement, or supplementing your current retirement income, there are many good reasons you may want to earn extra money by working at home.  However, you may be uncertain about the different options that are available to you.

Most work at home opportunities fall into two different categories.  You can either offer a personal service, or you can work online.  Here are some options that you should consider:

Provide a Service 

Babysitting: Our family has hired bonded baby sitters several times while staying at out-of-town hotels.  On several occasions, the babysitters were older women who were earning a little extra money on weekends by registering with a babysitting service.  Another option is to become a licensed babysitter and provide childcare in your own home.  You could do it every day or, if that doesn't appeal to you, you may want to just host a "Mom's Day Out" or "Date Night" service.

Sell a Product:  Companies like Mary Kay Cosmetics, Tupperware and Pampered Chef all have independent sales people.  If you enjoy selling, this can be a fun way to supplement your income.

Teach a Skill:  Retired school teachers often earn extra money by tutoring children.  However, you don't have to be a retired teacher to earn money passing on a skill.  If you know how to play a musical instrument, speak a foreign language, or paint water colors, you can offer classes or private lessons as a way to earn money from home.

Make Money Online

Start an Online Store: With websites like eBay available, you can now easily sell your own crafts and artwork, or collect things from garage sales and thrift stores and sell them online.  It's a fun way to start a business without having to rent a location, spend a lot of money on inventory, or hire sales people.

Freelance Writing:  With sites like you can write articles, post them on the internet and occasionally earn a little money from the advertisers.  You can see samples of the articles I have written there at If you enjoy writing, you could also start a blog like this one.  Either way, you may not make a lot of money, but any extra income is always a good thing.  In addition, it is mentally stimulating to share your experience and knowledge by writing about it online.

If you are interested in staying-up-to-date with new developments that could affect your retirement plans, you may want to receive regular information through

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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tips for Healthy Cholesterol

Exercise Lowers Cholesterol
(photo by
Are you trying to reach healthy cholesterol levels and postpone taking statins as long as possible?  Here are a few natural techniques that you can use for lowering your cholesterol.  They are all easy, and are certainly worth a try.

According to the RealAge website, in their article "Exercise and Cholesterol," combining daily exercise with a low-fat, high-fiber diet can improve your cholesterol levels within three weeks.

Aerobic Exercise Can Reduce Your Cholesterol

First, they emphasize that aerobic exercises, such as walking, swimming or cycling, can raise your good cholesterol (HDL) and lower your bad cholesterol (LDL).  It can also lower your triglycerides.  It is important to do the exercises every day, if possible.  Just taking your dog on a long walk a couple of times a day may make a big difference in your health.

Foods That Will Reduce Your Cholesterol

In addition to exercise and a diet that is generally low in fat and high in fiber, RealAge also recommends that you consume these 10 foods as an additional step in reaching lower cholesterol levels:  almonds, orange juice, olive oil, steamed asparagus, oatmeal, pinto beans, blueberries,  tomato products (such as tomato sauce), avocado and dark chocolate.

While you will still need to seek medical advice, and have your cholesterol levels regularly tested, there is nothing in this program that will harm anyone (unless they have allergies), and it is a healthy approach to getting lower cholesterol levels naturally.  As we all know, anytime we can improve our health and postpone taking medications, the better off we will be ... both medically and financially!

If you are looking for more health and retirement information, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this page to find links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Why You Should Join AARP

Long before my husband and I quit working, while we were still in our 50s, some friends suggested to us that we join AARP.  This is the American Association of Retired People. We thought they were crazy. We were still years from retirement, and could not imagine why we would need to join a retirement organization.

However, like millions of other Baby Boomers, as well as people who are older than us, we have discovered that there are many benefits to belonging to AARP. Their money saving discounts have more than covered the modest amount of their annual dues.

As a result, one of the first money saving tips I want to pass on to other Baby Boomers is that they should sign up for AARP as soon as they are eligible. AARP has negotiated discounts at hotels and tourist attractions. They also make it possible for you to use your AARP card to get discounts at Walgreens.

AARP will also send you emails and magazines with information about financial planning, fitness for seniors, heath facts, and more.

You can find out more about the member benefits that are available at  However, below is a list of some of the major discounts that you can expect to use when you sign up.

Examples of AARP Discounts for Members

Kindle e-readers and e-books from Amazon
Denny's Restaurants
Ticket Masters
Papa John's
Regal Movie Tickets purchased online
Best Western Hotels
Budget Rent-a-Car
ADT Home Security

Other AARP Benefits

Of course, there are many other benefits that you will receive with your AARP membership.  Some of these are:

Medicare Supplement plan
Identity Protection Plan
Debt Consolidation Calculator
Rent vs. Buy Calculator
Mortgage Payoff Calculator
Roadside Assistance Plan

Whenever my husband and I purchase tickets to a tourist attraction, make hotel reservations, rent a car or do many other things, we always ask if there is an AARP discount.  Without a doubt, the discounts alone make our membership dues well worth it!

If you are looking for more retirement information, use the tabs or the pull down menu at the top of this article for links to hundreds of additional articles on where to retire, health information, financial planning and more.

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Best Employers for Workers Over 50

Cornell University
(photo from
Many good, reliable employees in their 50's and 60's find themselves in the uncomfortable position of looking for a new job.  Other older workers may have jobs, but feel they have been marginalized as they aged.  They crave new job prospects where they will be appreciated for the experience and knowledge they have to offer.

Once a year, AARP comes out with its list of the top employers of workers who are over age 50. Some of these companies offer health insurance for part-time employees.  Others offer on-site fitness classes.  One offers bonuses for employees in the form of gift cards.  All of them are considered good places for senior citizens to work.  Depending on where you live, you may be interested in seeing if one of these employers is right for you.

Best Employers for Workers Over 50 

Scripps Health in San Diego, California
Cornell University in Ithaca, New York
National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland
First Horizon National Corporation in Memphis, Tennessee
West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia
YMCA of Greater Rochester in Rochester, New York
Atlantic Health System in Morristown, New Jersey
Mercy Health System in Janesville, Wisconsin
Bon Secours Richmond Health System in Richmond, Virginia
The Aerospace Corporation in El Segundo, California

Since a large percentage of Baby Boomers are going to have to work until their late 60's or longer, there are many benefits to knowing the best employers in your community who are willing to extend job opportunities to older employees.

If you do not live near any of the employers on the above list, you should talk to your friends or contact the local senior center and ask about job fairs in your area.  In addition, you may want to contact retirement communities and nursing homes in your area.  Many of them are willing to hire older workers to help in their offices and reception areas. 

Just because you are no longer young, does not mean that you are no longer able to be a valuable employee.  In fact, as our society ages, the need for older employees will be even greater!

If you are looking for additional retirement information, use the tabs or pull-down menu at the top of this page to find links to hundreds of additional articles about where to retire, work at home suggestions, financial planning and more.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Prevent a Broken Bone or Hip Fractures

You Can Protect Your Bones
(photo by
Learning how to prevent hip fractures, as well as any other type of broken bone, is something everyone needs to think about as we age.  According to research published in JAMA, "The Journal of the American Medical Association," in 2009, there are about 300,000 Americans over the age of 65 who suffer a hip fracture every year.  Of these, about 20% to 30% of them will die within a year.  This is a pretty harsh statistic and the numbers have undoubtedly grown since this research was done.

However, as grim as these statistics sound, there are ways you can reduce the chances that you will fall, suffer a fractured hip, and destroy your health.  Below are some simple steps which everyone should take, beginning before they even retire.

How to Prevent Hip Fractures and Broken Bones

1.  Request a bone-density test from your doctor.  Not only has my doctor ordered these medical tests for me about every five years, I've even had these tests performed at free health clinics at my retirement community and senior center.  The test is completely pain free, and it is the best way to find out if you have started to develop osteoporosis.

2.  Get exercise.  Building up your muscles, improving your balance, and increasing your flexibility are all ways to protect your bones and decrease the likelihood that you will lose your balance and have a hard fall.  Weight bearing exercises, such as walking, are also good ways to strengthen you bones.

3.  Eat right and take supplements. According to a November, 2011 article in AARP Magazine, in order to stay healthy you should consume at least 46 grams of protein a day, as well as take in 12 mg. of calcium and at least 600 - 800 mg. of Vitamin D.  People who do these things are about half as likely to suffer a hip fracture.

4.  Have a fall-risk assessment and physical examination.  Talk to your doctor about your medications and dizzy spells.  Ask him if any of your medications could make your dizzy or create balance problems. Get your eyes checked regularly.

5.  Take a hard look at your home.  Do you have objects, electrical cords or rugs which could cause you to slip or trip?  Is your home well-lit?  Do you have grab bars in the shower and bath enclosures?  Do you put items such as your shoes away so you do not trip over them after removing them?  Setting books, shoes, or other items on the floor in areas where you walk could easily turn a safe area into an unsafe one.

6.  Do not take unnecessary risks.  Avoid walking on ice or walking up and down stairs without using a handrail.  My husband and I recently attended a play, and a woman fell down the stairs as we were leaving.  She was not using the handrail.  Do not take chances.  Fractures can happen to anyone.

Remember:  Preventing a broken bone is much easier than healing broken bones.

If you are looking for additional information for Baby Boomers, including about health concerns, where to retire, financial planning, Social Security, Medicare or more, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this page to find links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Crafts to do with Your Grandkids

Beaded Star
Photo by
What types of activities do you enjoy doing with your grandkids?  While it is fun to read them stories, or even watch a movie together, you may also have unique talents and abilities that your grandchildren would love to have passed on to them.

One of our grandsons recently got a metal detector and he loves using it to explore the beach. When the detector indicated the presence of metal, he was having trouble sifting through the sand to uncover his discovery.  My husband took both our grandson and granddaughter to the hardware store, bought a piece of screen and then, together, they attached the screen to some scrap pieces of wood to make a sand sifter.  The grandkids love it!  My husband has also taken them fishing, and shown them how to carve pieces of drift wood.  We've also taught them how to crack eggs and make their own scrambled eggs.  Basic sewing skills are also being passed on.

When they were growing up, I taught my daughters how to crochet.  In coming years, I hope that at least one of my granddaughters will show an interest in it, too.  It is an easy and relaxing hobby. 

However, I am not ready to stop with just the simple homemade crafts that I already know how to do.  I have been scouting around for more ways to spend fun winter afternoons with my grandkids.  Recently I saw a wonderful craft website that is loaded with ideas for making beaded jewelry, painted t-shirts, easy napkin rings and simple flower arrangements.  If you are looking for some creative ways to have fun with your grandkids, you might check out  For example, I love her Stained Glass Cuff bracelet, which can be made using safety pins, stretchy cord and colorful beads.  You can see a photo of it below and get detailed instructions at  Both boys and girls will enjoy this craft, since the bracelets make wonderful gifts for mothers and grandmothers!  You'll find detailed directions for lots of other crafts on the site, too.
Easy Stained Glass Bracelet
photo by Domestic Diva Online

In addition to crafts you might find online, think about all those simple things you enjoyed doing as a child.  Whether you liked making hooked rugs and potholders, decorating gingerbread houses, beading felt Christmas ornaments (like the one pictured above) or designing simple doll clothing, your grandchildren would probably enjoy doing the same things.  These crafts make it possible for children to create gifts for their families and friends, and is time much better spent than playing video games!

If you are looking for more information about grandparenting and retirement, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of the page for links to hundreds of additional articles.

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Have a Long Life and Live to 100

Why do Some People
Live to Be 100?
Have you ever wondered why some people can stay healthy, have a long life and live to100, while others may die of age related illnesses when they are decades younger?  Researchers have begun to unravel some clues that may give you an idea of how fast you are aging and how likely you are to see the century mark. Based on a lengthy article on Yahoo Health called "10 Surprising Clues You'll Live to 100," this summary just reports the essential facts. If you want more detailed information on any of these factors of aging, you may also want to read the research in the full article on their website.

The first clue that you might live to be 100 is whether or not you have had relatives who lived to be at least 90 years old.  Longevity does seem to run in certain families.

Next, measure how fast you walk when you are strolling normally.  People older than 65 who are able to comfortably and normally walk at a speed of 2.25 miles per hour or faster tend to be healthy and live much longer than their peers who walk more slowly.  This speed works out to 3.3 feet per second.

Sorry, guys, but women really do seem to live longer than men.  They are much more likely to live to be 100. Don't give up, however.  Some men still make it to the century mark.  Look at George Burns.

The next clue applies to women, only.  If you are a woman who conceived a baby naturally after the age of 35, you probably age more slowly.  This means that you are likely to have a longer lifespan.

Another point the researchers made seems to follow a trend that has been going on for hundreds of years.  Just as you are likely to live longer than the generations who went before you, young people today have an even greater chance of living to be 100 than you do.  (Do you think the time will come when Medicare doesn't even start until age 80?  Do you ever wonder how long a life is too long?)

I found the next point very interesting.  People who worry, but only a little, have a longer life than people who worry excessively or people who do not worry at all.  You would think that being free of worry would help us to live a long life.  However, the truth is that people who worry a little are less likely to be risk takers.  This means that they are not as likely to die an accidental death.  On the other hand, people who worry too much are more likely to develop stress related diseases.

Having a Body Mass Index of 27.4 or less increases your chance of living to 100.  Like a lot of Baby Boomers, this may be a weakness for me, as I know that my BMI is higher than that.  However, my heavy-set grandmothers both lived until their late 90's, so it is possible that I will still live a long life, too.

The next factor is one that you cannot evaluate without expensive testing.  How long are your telomeres?  The telomeres are DNA sequences on the ends of your chromosomes.  Long telomeres indicate a longer life.  Although you could have yours tested, you can also simply choose to live a lifestyle that helps maintain the length of your telomeres as much as possible.  Avoid chronic stress, don't smoke, and eat a healthy diet high in Omega 3's.  Researchers have also discovered that walking briskly for at least 40 minutes a day can actually lengthen your telomeres. 

Finally, have a positive attitude.  Your emotions do affect your health, and people with a positive attitude seem to live longer than people who are negative.

Obviously, you cannot control all of these factors.  However, if you control the ones you can, you may live a longer life than you ever imagined.  The opportunity to live to 100 may be within your reach!

If you would like to learn more about retirement, healthy aging, where to retire or financial planning, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of the page.  They contain links to hundreds of other helpful articles.

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