An Ordinary Day in the Life of a Retired Teacher

When I write a Slice, I usually  end up writing about something I’ve read that piques my interest and often leads to connecting thoughts which leads to a new post. Or I write about family matters, milestones, travels, shared interests. This past year I often wrote about my family’s involvement in local political challenges to the health and well being of our town and its natural resources. I frequently write about my interactions with nature and local flora and fauna which I love. But today I’m going to write about what is for me “an ordinary day.”

I just finished a small bowl of Halo ice-cream since I was craving something sweet after lunch and Halo is extremely low in calories. I almost never have ice cream after lunch unless it’s a special occasion.

Before that…I sat down at my kitchen table to eat my ice cream and write today’s Slice. But first I circled the bedrooms and hampers for anything that could go into a dark wash. I filled the washing machine, punched in the appropriate settings, and now I can hear my washing machine humming away as I write this post. I love it when I can accomplish two things at once!

Before that… I made lunch for myself of leftover spaghetti and one meatball, and a healthy mixed greens salad. I even took care to choose a lo-calorie dressing in my never-ending effort to lose weight.

Before that…I browsed the refrigerator for things that needed to be discarded, something I’ve been trying to do more frequently since we do eat leftovers. I even rearranged a few things in the fridge that were misplaced. (It feels like a constant battle with my husband who constantly rearranges things according to “his” system!)

Before that… I dropped off an item that needed to be returned at the UPS store nearby.  I love going to that little group of stores in a corner of my neighborhood because they are still, for the most part, mom and pop stores with a lot of personality.  Even the UPS store is fun to visit.

Before that… I was at my local library browsing in their used-book room for possible purchases.  Since they created the book shop, I buy mostly all my books there. Yes, they are gently used, but as a bookophile, I can’t resist hardcovers being sold for a buck each and paperbacks for fifty cents! Today I spent the most I ever have on five hardbacks for five dollars.

Before that… I attended my twice weekly chair yoga class for seniors. I joined this group soon after my recovery from cancer four years ago and have been going ever since. I’ve had the same teacher who is very competent and for the most part the same group of women (with an occasional male participant) have attended for four years.  We are a small community at this point. The yoga moves are imprinted on my brain but they keep me limber and stronger than I would be without them. I am not an aerobics person, so this class is just my speed.

Before that…I got up earlier than I usually do to have a quick breakfast and be in time for my yoga class.  Again…trying to be mindful of my desperate attempt to lose weight I had cottage cheese with blueberries on two brown rice cakes. Delicious! Of course, I also had my usual two cups of coffee which I downed while browsing the New York Times which I do every day.  Before I retired from being a teacher, I vowed to treat myself to leisurely reading the NY Times for as long as I like, accompanied by a cup or two of java.

Before that… after rising I came downstairs to the kitchen, poured a cup of coffee and opened my MacBook Air to see if I had any new, compelling messages.  Then I immediately realized I hadn’t yet done a post yet for today and decided to write it when I came home from yoga class. So here I am, back to the beginning.  Somehow, the things I accomplished took up half a day since I move a bit more slowly now than I used to. It is now 2:45! Where did the morning go?

I ‘m pretty sure tomorrow’s post will be about the second half of my ordinary day.  When you are participating in the SOL March Challenge anything is fodder for a new Slice!  So I’ll see you tomorrow then.


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barbara suter

I'm a retired teacher who enjoys writing and sharing in this; unique blogging community.

19 thoughts on “An Ordinary Day in the Life of a Retired Teacher”

  1. Your ordinary day (even half day) is quite full. I totally agree with you in that during March anything if fodder for a Slice, especially as we head toward the end of the month. I look forward to hearing about your ordinary afternoon tomorrow. I do love this format. I have never tried it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your ordinary day sounds a lot like mine. A bunch of disparate to do items mixed with a dose of self-care that all add up to days and life. I really enjoyed how you worked backwards until you formed a circle. The pattern of how you began each segment was clever with the ellipses. Thanks for that. Enjoy your retirement. I look forward to the leisurely read of the NYT with a couple cups of coffee. Sweet pleasures!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “A bunch of disparate to do items mixed with a dose of self-care”… I love how you captured the essence of the day in that line. I wish you the same. Tomorrow I will complete my ordinary day post, so tune in if you’re interested.


    1. There’s so much more time in retirement to pursue a variety of things. This week I am preparing for a presentation I’ll be doing in June as a volunteer for the Walt Whitman Birthplace on Long Island. I’m collaborating with a colleague on coaching a class of English as a New Language Students to present their own versions of lines form a Whitman poem. But that I don’t consider “ordinary.”
      I try to pace myself more now so I don’t take on too much. Now with a grandchild on the way, I’ll probably be trading some other activities for pitching in with the newborn!

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  3. I like the structure of this …”Before that,” We travel with you through your day. Sometimes we retirees get stuck in a rut. Glad to see that doesn’t happen to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Your post reminds me that I don’t spend much time in the company of retired people. While we are still working, many of us have idealized versions of this time in our lives minus the genuine experience. So I appreciate you sharing what your ordinary day looks and sounds like. I’m closer to retirement than I perhaps want to believe. It seems like good practice to listen closely to people who are in the thick of it.

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    1. I find what you wrote to be very interesting and true. All of us try
      to imagine what retirement will be like, but it’s really not possible unless you do hang out with retirees. And that is impossible to do when you are on the hamster wheel of raising children and having a fulltime job. Also, I never expected to be told I have cancer immediately following my retirement. So there are always surprises, too! But now I am becoming a grandma. I wish it had happened when I was 10 years younger so I’d feel more energetic, but I never thought it would happen. So that’s a great surprise! Listening to retirees is a great idea.


    1. I love that you taught me a new word today….anaphora. Even as an English major in college I have never encountered that word, so thank you for that. We are all here to learn! I didn’t realize my day had a rhythm but I do try to balance the mundane with something pleasurable if possible. Thanks for commenting!


    1. Really? I’d like to know what you think is extraordinary about it. I’m beginning to slow down, but I’ve always been busy. Thanks for sharing your compliment about the format. It really helps you to reflect about how you spend your time!


  5. As I am getting closer to retirement age, the details of your ordinary day sounds irresistible – a leisurely read of the paper! Time for extra cups of coffee! Yoga in the middle of the day! I can’t wait.

    Liked by 1 person

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