View Full Version : Daily Routines for Retired Folks- Yay or Nay?

March 26th, 2018, 09:10 AM
Good Morning Fellow Quilters! My hospital (where I worked) closed, if you can believe THAT...So I find myself retired a year early (my choice). When working full time, I would think of all the things that needed done at home and that when I retired, I would tackle these projects. Well, I've been off work now for 2 months and I haven't tackled anything. I sew, read, watch Netflix, Amazon movies, eat out with friends and family...I just do what I want to do. I am nervous that I won't ever get to my projects. I am blaming the weather (winter in Ohio) on my lack of ambition. Soooo my question is for those of you that are retired- how do you spend your days? Do you have routines? How did you decide what to do each day? I would love to hear from you...Thank you! Cyndie

March 26th, 2018, 09:33 AM
Sorry, i'm no help. Retired last September. I do take care of DGD while DD works (not a set schedule) so I find it hard to plan and get myself on a schedule. Then DS moved back home and works from home 3 days a week (desk area in kitchen). The first few months I did watch a lot of tv, but now I hardly turn it on during the day. Congrats on retirement.

March 26th, 2018, 09:38 AM

Welcome to the world of the retired! Personally, I have a schedule- created by DS#1- Monday, we pick up the two youngest kids for the morning. Thursday I get J, the oldest for homeschool. Wed. I have his family for family dinner (Mon and Wed are his long days). His wife has changed jobs and works from 7 pm to 7am in a satellite er. so it helps him to not have to worry about dinner and clean up when he'll have no help at home with the kids.

After we take J back, depending on DS#2's schedule of work... I plan on having 3 days I can work on my projects. I usually work when Mike's at work to occupy my time.

When in doubt, I'll put out my hexies... It's only been 4 years, one day I'll finish it!

March 26th, 2018, 09:49 AM
I too have retired recently. And like you I thought of all that I would be able to accomplish. All that deep cleaning that doesn't get done while working. So far I have done none of it. Not sure what I should do and when. I am truly enjoying my time doing what I want and when I want. Thinking that one day I will fall into some kind of routine. My friend said it took her 6 months before she found her daily routine. So I have a few more months to sluff around. Just enjoying the freedom.

March 26th, 2018, 10:23 AM
Hi Cyndie,
Welcome to retirement, and an even busier time of life. I retired almost 5 years ago from a strssfull govt job. . I didn't get much of a break as my daughter had first child the very next day. Now we had one grandchild already who was one. Now we have five, and another one on the way. I hope that's it. We did help with babysitting a bit more in the beginning, but as my DH is 12 years older, I think he prefers GKs that are older and not as screamy. So now we help occasionally, when they have run out of options. I also think the first year, I was physically recovering from being over-worked in a stressful job. I did loose 20 lbs since then. Lost it slowly over 2 years, no big changes, but figured I gained over time, so would lose over time. And didn't come back.

In the beginning, there were a lot of chores around the house that I wanted to do. Painting, decorating, extensive yardwork and getting maintenance done on the house. We replaced the roof and I finally got to paint the wood fence. I did a lot of cooking, made more types of pickles and relishes. I do have my mom who just moved to a nursing home, so I do go a few times a week. I have decluttered and got rid of a lot of things in the house that we don't use. My new DH and I got married, my daughter got married. We did road trips and an Alaska cruise and western Canada tour. I would like to travel more, but my DH health is not the greatest, but he's always up for a road trip.

We have more dinners and visits with friends and family. Although recently, we have cut back on the sizes of get-togethers.

Best thing I did was take a quilt class. I always wanted to learn to quilt, even though I had been sewing clothes since I was 10. It was fun and addictive and my husband also decided to take up this hobby. So this is why we do a lot of road trips to LQS and he enjoys discovering small villages and towns. We have spilled from one sewing room to two bedrooms and into family room. We bought a sit down quilt machine and enjoy sharing these with family and friends.

I used to watch more TV when I worked, but rarely do during the day. I might watch some tv (movies, taped shows) on one or two nights per week. I prefer to watch quilting tutorials and read a lot at night.

Morning, I watch the weather channel, catch up on emails, do forums like this. I do limit the time, as it can take over the whole morning. Then I make my TO-DO list for the day, from my weekly list. Days are busy, but I try to leave a few days open to breathe, and the unexpected.

Sorry for dragging out. You will find your groove and have a blast.

Carlie Wolf
March 26th, 2018, 10:25 AM
I may have found the transition easier because I had pretty much worked from home or contracted out so I could always make my own hours.

When I first totally quit working I joined up with the local animal shelter and volunteered there for a few hours a week on several days. I did enjoy that and it kept my mind occupied. Who doesn't like doggie kisses? After three or four years my body started complaining and I took up quilting :-) I still do the sewing that's needed at the shelter.

I do find that with the change of the seasons I still get that old nesting syndrome so the deep cleaning always seems to get done then. Since I live alone the house always stays neat (that's a shock to the system after all these years), well except for Carlie's dog hair. However, she says:


I've finally learned how to relax and thats nice. Lots of book reading and naps :-)

Navy Wife
March 26th, 2018, 10:27 AM
I think most people start out retirement just like you. We are so glad not to have anything that has to be done that we end up not doing anything. But as the months go on, you will find yourself getting into a schedule. Just enjoy resting and doing whatever you want to, and be sure to find a volunteer or charity group to join. You'll find that you feel better when you are helping others! That usually leads to new friendships and new activities.

Granny Fran
March 26th, 2018, 11:10 AM
Welcome to retirement. Like many others here, it takes time to find your grove. So nice not to have to set that alarm clock unless it is something you want to do early in the day. It does take awhile to find what you really love to do, but don't rush and for goodness sake do not stress over it!
The only downside (sometimes) is that when I worked I had extra money but no extra time. That is why I have a stash to work with. Now I have to budget my spending, but I have the luxury of the time I need to work on projects.
Enjoy this time of your life. You have earned it!

March 26th, 2018, 11:28 AM
I retired this past September and was very concerned about doing so, because I just loved my job and had a great boss and coworkers. But being as how I hit the big 70, I decided I needed to do some of the things I always thought about doing "when I retire", and decided I needed to get on with it. I just have to say it is GREAT!!! I took a solo flight to Fl to visit friends in February, it was great fun and went without a hitch! Whew, was very nervous!!! I am presently making a quilt for DGD graduation this spring. I am using the edge to edge quilting system on my embroidery machine by Amelie Scott Designs. And it was fantastic!! Never had done anything like that before it took me 2 1/2 hours to do a quilt 53 x65 minus the piano key border, which I am doing now. I have always been a stitch in the ditch quilter. I do not have much of a schedule, the only thing that is scheduled is water exercise class and swimming lengths of the pool. This began after I retired. And as far as big projects are concerned they get done when I get the notion to do them. No plan and I guess I like it that way!

Cathy F
March 26th, 2018, 11:28 AM
I've been retired 20 years. When I first retired I had no schedule just relaxed and did whatever for the first few months because I didn't have to live by the time clock then fell into a routine. Usually get all the household chores done in the morning and then the rest of the day is mine to take advantage of whatever unfolds for the day.
Some days it does seem I got more accomplished when I was working because I had to.
Enjoy your time for a bit then you can decide what you want to do as far as a routine.

March 26th, 2018, 11:33 AM
I'm reading this with interest as my retirement day is 6 weeks away!! My first thought was I've had a schedule for 35 years, the last thing I want is a schedule. I want to do whatever I want, whenever I want to do it :) Realistically though I guess I do want some sort of schedule, just not sure what that looks like yet. I know there are many deep cleaning/organizing projects I want to tackle. Cleaning my closet and purging it of work clothes I will no longer need is something I'm looking forward to. Getting my sewing room cleaned and organized is a big priority so I can spend more enjoyable time in that room. Cooking healthier meals and spending more time on healthy pursuits, walking and bike rides, are things that I want in my new schedule.

March 26th, 2018, 11:57 AM
Congrats on your retirement! I've been retired for two years and nine months, to be exact. I belong to a few quilting and knitting groups which meet on a regular basis. We have a restaurant that we try to go to every Burger Night. Those are pretty much the things that make up my schedule now. I keep thinking that I need to have a sewing schedule for home but I just basically do what I feel like doing when I feel like doing it. Lots of book reading, baking for friends and family, knitting and stitching, oh and time with my best friend. We like to go for walks and check out the variety of shorebirds around here.

Ginny B
March 26th, 2018, 12:02 PM
I too have read this thread with great interest as I will be retiring in about 4 months. It will be summertime so I am hoping to get to spend more morning time in my garden like I always want to do but have to leave for work. I do think about all those projects and chores that we squish into the weekends or an evening here and there and, since dh doesn't plan on retiring just yet, then I can get some of them done during the week (if I feel like it, lol) and his weekends can be less filled with stuff from the "to do" list.

But we'll see I guess. Seems like I am reading that it will take a # of months for a routine to be found. But I'll be patient and wait for it.

March 26th, 2018, 12:43 PM
Welcome to retirement. I get all of my work done in the morning. I don't have set days for laundry, cleaning, etc., I just wing it. The dishwasher gets cleaned out, laundry done, house picked up, bathroom wiped down, as it needs it. My suggestion is don't schedule anything until you're ready. Once you're ready tackle the bigger projects one day at a time. If you start and get sidelined, no big deal, finish it another day.

March 26th, 2018, 01:22 PM
Good question! I too retired from an extremely demanding and stressful job in healthcare. At first I was a bit lost, and just did some traveling, volunteer work, and reading, things I was missing. Then I discovered quilting, but I guess I was still in transition because I didn't really go at it with my usual style. Eventually I emotionally disconnected from that work persona. I don't have crazy clean standards and I don't always cook (though I love it, just not unless I feel like it). I have a dog and we walk. A lot. I put on weight and I needed to change things. So I did, and I've taken it off again. Having the dog led me back into more involvement with animals and I volunteer at the kennel to walk dogs. I enjoy training them. Now I typically have some coffee and then the dog and I go out, sun, rain or snow. Back home we eat breakfast and then I sit down to do some free motion quilting. I stop around noon and then I tackle the laundry, vacuuming, kitchen cleaning, etc in the afternoon. After dinner if I'm not going out I generally watch baseball or basketball and I do hand applique or EPP while watching. I can't just focus on tv, even my beloved Indians * Opening Day * this week! So I have fallen into a schedule, but it really took a while. Just don't forget to exercise as much as you can. It energizes your mind and your body.

March 26th, 2018, 01:41 PM
Hello! Congrats on making the decision to retire. I retired early too (not my choice) after 35 years in nursing. The company made major changes to retirement benefits, which would be lost if those of us with over 35 years of service remained with the hospital.
It took me the better part of 6 months to process this radical change in my life. In that time, I kind of vegetated. Lots of couch time, lots of tv... Stuff that didn't require much concentration.
After 6 months, I began to have more energy & interest in life. That's when I created a very flexible schedule.
I do the domestic stuff on Mondays (laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping). The rest of the week is open to whatever I feel like doing.
My advice is don't put any pressure on yourself. Enjoy.

March 26th, 2018, 04:07 PM
I worked while the kids were in college and that was over 20 years ago. I stay really busy with things now that I want to do. I try to help out with the grandkids when I am needed. ( they are here for the week ) I usually pick them up from school a couple of times a month when there parents are out of town or are working late. I do like things clean and orderly and try to do a little everyday and then jump in about once a month and do some hard scrubbing. I spend most of my time quilting. I am not a big tv or movie watcher and its on mainly for the noise. I have some outside painted touch ups, tons of yard work and the dreaded attic that needs attention. Its really nice to take a nap when you want to :).

March 26th, 2018, 05:40 PM
I retired 13 months ago. I worked a lot of hours so the house and yard were suffering. My general plan was to get organized at home but other than that, not to make any commitments for at least a year. I spent the first month gradually cleaning closets and drawers. The next month I did spring cleaning. Then I started tackling the yard, doing just a little every day. It looks months but it felt good getting everything clean and organized. Then I sat back and relaxed into a gentle routine. I'm not a morning person so I don't get up at the crack of dawn, don't set an alarm and just sleep until I wake up. I have coffee, read the paper, catch up on the forum and pick up a little around the house. I give the house a good cleaning every other week, doing a couple of rooms a day. I generally make a good supper every day...hubs is still working so it makes me happy to put something on the table when he gets home. The rest of the time I sew, read, garden when it's nice out. My one rule is no TV during the day and I've stuck to it.
I love retirement...I've found it peaceful, quiet and simple.

March 26th, 2018, 06:08 PM
WooHoo! Welcome to the sweet life. :)

I've been retired 6 years now and for the first 6 months I did nothing and I didn't think about creating a plan. After that got out of my system, I then thought about what I wanted to do. I got involved in a few groups to keep me busy, but I made a concerted effort not to go overboard. Volunteering is easy to do but there is only so much one person can tackle.

I found it awesome to do my errands in the morning during the week instead of on the weekends or just after work.

Don't worry about not having a schedule or plan. You can create a list of things you want to do and work on them as you feel like. There's no pressure or deadline.

March 26th, 2018, 06:43 PM
I've been retired 3 years & I too spent the first 6 months doing nothing. I then started cleaning, organizing & purging so that moving would be easier. I set up a routine of sleeping til 9 am, checking the forum, having breakfast & then doing a daily chore. I have the chores set up so I can do a little everyday. I spend the afternoon reading, quilting, in the yard & cooking. I sometimes go out to the thrift stores or to lunch with a friend. The past 5 months I have been slowly painting the rooms in our house so we can put it up for sale in June. I don't watch a lot of tv but do listen to music. I've never been much of a "sitter" so I'm usually busy doing something.

March 26th, 2018, 07:38 PM
Congratulations on your retirement. I retired at the end of September last year. I had worked full time for 42 years and enough was enough, also DH had retired a couple of years before me.

All those projects I either had no time for or no energy became my mantra...when I retire I will do.....

Thee first couple of weeks I tackled cupboards and drawers, then we went on holiday for a week - I caught a hasty cold the day before flying and felt ugh! the whole time. When we got back my FIL was very ill and died a week later, I was so glad I had retired as I couldn't face working whilst grieving!! Then December arrived so very busy with Christmas preparations.

In the new year I realised that just doing what I want when I want didn't really work for me, I have to have structure to my day so I wasn't really enjoying retirement!! So I get up anytime between 7.30 - 8.15 each morning. On Monday morning I go to the supermarket and any other shopping that needs doing. A bit of washing or ironing then the day is mine. Tuesday I volunteer, Wednesday is my dedicated sewing day, Thursday is craft group until 1pm then home to do washing etc. Thursday evening is my big shop at the supermarket. Friday is change the bedding and baking or cooking for the freezer. Saturday is a whatever day, usually spent with the family and Sunday is church.

At the warmer weather comes, my routine will probably change but I feel more in control as I make conscious decisions about what I want to do. I'm a list maker and I find it helps to start one at the beginning of each week, but it doesn't work for everyone. I was told it usually takes between 3-6 months to settle down and the people who told me were definitely right, I am now enjoying my retirement.

March 26th, 2018, 07:59 PM
Wow this is all so interesting...and come 1/1/19 I will be joining the club too!

March 26th, 2018, 08:11 PM
I retired 13 months ago. I worked a lot of hours so the house and yard were suffering. My general plan was to get organized at home but other than that, not to make any commitments for at least a year. I spent the first month gradually cleaning closets and drawers. The next month I did spring cleaning. Then I started tackling the yard, doing just a little every day. It looks months but it felt good getting everything clean and organized. Then I sat back and relaxed into a gentle routine. I'm not a morning person so I don't get up at the crack of dawn, don't set an alarm and just sleep until I wake up. I have coffee, read the paper, catch up on the forum and pick up a little around the house. I give the house a good cleaning every other week, doing a couple of rooms a day. I generally make a good supper every day...hubs is still working so it makes me happy to put something on the table when he gets home. The rest of the time I sew, read, garden when it's nice out. My one rule is no TV during the day and I've stuck to it.
I love retirement...I've found it peaceful, quiet and simple.

This sounds perfect to me!

March 26th, 2018, 09:11 PM
I've retired about 20 years ago so I've been through so many different cycles, relaxing and enjoying yourself is #1. When you feel bored or too unproductive just ask the members here for some advice, as you can see they will be only too willing to give you some suggestions.

PS: No matter how many times I've organized the house or my quilting room they never stay that way for too long .

March 26th, 2018, 09:57 PM
I retired the first of Nov. last year. First I washed windows, put things in places, cleaned corners and closets and then I got into a lazy cleaning routine that is working fine. I pick up the clutter, empty dishwasher, wipe counters and vacuum and then.....
I'm free to do whatever. I sew a lot. If DH is going to town, (45 min. one way_) I ride along, we have lunch in town. If we are home, I'm the only one who eats lunch...he smokes so he says he isn't hungry. I make dinner...big balanced meal every other day, hand to mouth food the other days...I was a Chef so I have no desire to fall into the trap of food being my all important role in life.
On good sunny warm days, I go outside and feed the fish, walk in the woods, play in the dirt.
I haven't made any routine appointments or obligations. If I want to go see the children...I plan a day in advance and go.
I go to bed when I'm tired and dI get up when I'm not. I drink 2 cups of coffee, look at the forum and feed the cat and bird and then I'm off...to whatever I feel like.

March 26th, 2018, 11:34 PM
Thank you, thank you,thank you for taking the time to reply to my question!You are all so willing to share your daily lives and routines. You have given me food for thought and also enlightened me that this nonproductive time might be normal and to enjoy it. I appreciate your input soooo much! Cyndie

March 27th, 2018, 12:19 AM
This thread has been awesome to read. I am still at least two years from retirement. But the biggest plan is no schedule. Nobody telling what to do, when to do it, etc. Chores are no where on my list on things I want to do. If someone comes to visit me and does not like my possibly messy that day home, they should not come. I am not a dirty super messy person, clothes always clean etc. I am so looking forward to a life I can do what I want. Lots of crafting for sure. More reading. Ahhhhhhh

Thank you all for sharing your retirement time. I am happily jealous of you all.

March 27th, 2018, 01:08 AM
I'm a bum..........................

April 4th, 2018, 09:14 PM
There has to be some wiggle room for adjusting to your new rhythm of life. We downsized and moved away (for several months of each year)from where we raised our kids so I was much farther away from my work friends and the kids. I was so worried about making friends! But I did. And we became retired together. Who knew how loudly he could eat apples? I sure didn't but wouldn't trade it for the alternative, of course.
Make sure you ask yourself: What do I really want to do right now? And listen carefully.
Exercising is a very good idea, too.

April 5th, 2018, 12:44 AM
The first 2 things on my list after I retired were: 1) take a quilting class, & 2) become more computer savvy. Our senior center has great computer classes at a reasonable price. It's seniors teaching seniors. Each student has a personal coach, & the instructors go at a slower pace so everyone can keep up. One of the students was an 85 y.o. lady who came in using a walker. She sat right up front b/c she was hard of hearing. I took classes even before I bought my own laptop. I shopped for a while before I found the deal I was looking for.

I was a nurse for 18 yrs. at our local hosp.; I retired in Oct., 2009. I took a 7 or 8 week beginner's quilting class starting in Jan. We made a 9 blocks sampler. I fell in love with quilting! Since I had worked swing shift, I still maintained my 2nd shift hrs. after retirement. However, DH's health was on the decline. Six yrs. ago this week, he fell & broke his arm (shoulder area) in 4 places. That ended my 2nd shift hrs. I had to get used to getting up at 5 a.m. to help DH. I've maintained this schedule since then. DH is so set on his daily routine, a person could just about set his watch by what he's doing -- snack times, meals, shower, bedtime, etc. Because I am his caregiver, I need to work around his schedule.

I do think after that early relaxing time when a person first retires is over, it's helpful to sort of have a schedule. Our bodies work better if we eat at about the same time each day. Of course now that I have Type II Diabetes, it's important that I eat regular meals & snacks so I don't get wide swings in my glucose levels.

I don't have the luxury of traveling & doing a lot of things I thought I would do after retirement. Due to caregiving, it's been 4.5 yrs. since I've had a vac. to get out of town & go visit family. There's no way DH would agree to have a health care provider come in to help. He cannot stay alone except for short periods of time.

My quilting hobby is something I can do at home, have "therapy" time, & still be available for DH. He's very supportive.

I hope you find your retirement niche.

April 5th, 2018, 09:18 PM
My basic routine is; get up and have coffee watching the sun come up. Then do what I have to so I can do what I want to. Go to bed when I get tired. Rinse and repeat. I AM retired, and feel I have earned the right to live in a manner that pleases me now.