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In the vestibule at the fork in the road
Old 09-26-2007, 07:35 AM   #1
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In the vestibule at the fork in the road

So much for mixed metaphors. It seems to me that most everyone here is either on the road to retirement or in the actual retirement maze now. Are there one, two, or three ideas or things you did on your specific path that significantly helped you, changed your experiences for the better?

(T-Al, buying $2.99 Veggie Subs is NOT an answer.)
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Old 09-26-2007, 07:42 AM   #2
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Are there one, two, or three ideas or things you did on your specific path that significantly helped you, changed your experiences for the better?
Yep.

1) Finding FIRECalc (Thank you Dory36!)
2) Finding this forum
3) .......I'll have to get back to you on #3 Finding Benadryl "Itch Releif Stick" for all the damn chigger bites.
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Old 09-26-2007, 07:47 AM   #3
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1) Prepared for a decent paying job (programming) in college
2) Maxing out 401k (from 1983-2006 in my case). Keeping it invested in stocks. This
alone provided me with enough to retire at 48, even if I had not saved another penny.
3) Saving additional $$, keeping most of it in stocks, paying off mortgage, LBYM.
4) Learning how to invest.
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Old 09-26-2007, 07:54 AM   #4
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1. UCLA Master's degree in Aerospace (mega buck jobs awaited).
2. Flying over 800,000 miles in Business Class at taxpayer's expense.
3. Being part of Echelon so that I have a realistic idea of what's happening.
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Old 09-26-2007, 08:31 AM   #5
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1. Index Funds and Asset Allocation. Thank you Warren Buffett.

Here's a quote from the Oracle of Omaha: I don't look to jump over 7-foot bars: I look around for 1-foot bars that I can step over.

2. Tricare makes my retirement possible. No health insurance problems.
3. LBYM. But you knew that. Trite but true and it works 100% of the time.
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Old 09-26-2007, 08:32 AM   #6
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Yep.

#3 Finding Benadryl "Itch Releif Stick" for all the damn chigger bites.
Do they have that in a cream? Here in Minnesota we sometimes need to apply large quantities of the stuff all over our nekked bodies, especial when a certain Texan is on TV.
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Old 09-26-2007, 08:39 AM   #7
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I agree with Eagle43 on the index funds and allocation principle. Make sure you have planned something to retire "TO" and you're not just in a big rush to reitre "FROM" something. You have a clean retirement slate and you will need to fill in the blanks and create you own lifestyle. If you don't, it will not be nearly as enjoyable!
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Old 09-26-2007, 08:54 AM   #8
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Do they have that in a cream? Here in Minnesota we sometimes need to apply large quantities of the stuff all over our nekked bodies, especial when a certain Texan is on TV.
I'm not sure if it comes in a cream. However, I am surprised to hear you have such an unusual reaction to Anna Nicole Smith.
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Old 09-26-2007, 08:55 AM   #9
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1) Learned from my parents how to LBMM, watched them retire at 57, and vowed to follow their examples.

2) Got my CFA charter, which helped my career and taught me more about all the good investing principles.

3) Divorced my spendthrift husband at 30, young enough to recover from his financially disasterous behavior.
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Old 09-26-2007, 08:57 AM   #10
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It seems to me that most everyone here is either on the road to retirement or in the actual retirement maze now. Are there one, two, or three ideas or things you did on your specific path that significantly helped you, changed your experiences for the better?
Setting specific, ambitious financial goals and realizing them one after the other really helped.

1) My first goal was to get rid of all debt, and to buy a car in cash. Got that done in late 2000, though I started working on it in 1998.

2) My next goal was to start contributing the max (plus over-50 catchup when that became available) to my TSP and not stop doing that. Got that started in 2000 and haven't quit.

3) Finally, buying my house in 2002 and paying it off in four years was a tremendous boost to my morale. For me, this is a dream come true (above and beyond any financial or practical aspects).

By doing all of these, I proved to myself that I can set ambitious financial goals and reach them. Now, my expenses are very small, my nestegg is building, and I know I can get from where I am to a decent retirement income.
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Old 09-26-2007, 09:20 AM   #11
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At age 30 I started working for an employer where participation in the 403B was mandatory. Without that I probably would have put off saving for retirement.

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Old 09-26-2007, 09:33 AM   #12
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So much for mixed metaphors. It seems to me that most everyone here is either on the road to retirement or in the actual retirement maze now. Are there one, two, or three ideas or things you did on your specific path that significantly helped you, changed your experiences for the better?

(T-Al, buying $2.99 Veggie Subs is NOT an answer.)

For me it was setting realistic goals that could be attained.

I guess the biggest things for me was growing up while I traveled and lived in different parts of the world. Seeing poverty and realizing that life is not about $$$$, the title that one has, the size of one's house or how much one's car cost.

the goals that I set

1. retiring in my 40's (retired at 48 after 26 plus yrs of military/DAC service)
2. buying a house and a new car (done that)
3. moving to TX (going back to one's roots)and taking care of my parents (presently taking care of father & grandmother)
4. having time to spend with my wife, kids and grandchildren (doing that)
5. being able to give back to my community (volunteering with church & school events/activities)
6. being happy with what GOD has blessed us with and not wanting more than what we really need.

GOD BLESS
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:11 AM   #13
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Setting specific, ambitious financial goals and realizing them one after the other really helped.

1) My first goal was to get rid of all debt, and to buy a car in cash. Got that done in late 2000, though I started working on it in 1998.

2) My next goal was to start contributing the max (plus over-50 catchup when that became available) to my TSP and not stop doing that. Got that started in 2000 and haven't quit.

3) Finally, buying my house in 2002 and paying it off in four years was a tremendous boost to my morale. For me, this is a dream come true (above and beyond any financial or practical aspects).

By doing all of these, I proved to myself that I can set ambitious financial goals and reach them. Now, my expenses are very small, my nestegg is building, and I know I can get from where I am to a decent retirement income.
Not to hurt anyone's feelings, but this is the best post I have read on here in awhile......
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:30 AM   #14
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At age 30 I started working for an employer where participation in the 403B was mandatory. Without that I probably would have put off saving for retirement.

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Old 09-26-2007, 11:33 AM   #15
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I'm not sure if it comes in a cream. However, I am surprised to hear you have such an unusual reaction to Anna Nicole Smith.
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:58 AM   #16
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Really believing that the later I retire the less opportunity I will have to enjoy an active life.
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Old 09-26-2007, 12:35 PM   #17
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T-Al, buying $2.99 Veggie Subs is NOT an answer.
Well, actually... If it's a metaphor for reducing expenses from 60K to 30K per year, which was prompted by finding this forum, it is my answer.

BTW, I forgot whether you and M are in the retirement waiting room, or have pulled the pin and made the jump.
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Old 09-26-2007, 01:20 PM   #18
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Well, actually... If it's a metaphor for reducing expenses from 60K to 30K per year, which was prompted by finding this forum, it is my answer.

BTW, I forgot whether you and M are in the retirement waiting room, or have pulled the pin and made the jump.
Yep, kinda. Martha doesn't go into the office, but she takes telephone calls sometimes and bills for um.

REMarthahoo
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Old 09-26-2007, 01:41 PM   #19
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Took a lot of classes for fun after college and developed many many interests outside of work–-things worth retiring to. Took about four months a year off for twenty years and did many things I may return to in retirement.

Ironically, a BA helped rather than hurt, never had high paying jobs along the way; always lived frugally. When I saw a job I really wanted, I had already developed a relationship with the people who hired me, a relationship based on those outside interests.

I bought low, held and kept buying for 35 years, and sold high; and am very surprised to have reached a FI goal.
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Old 09-26-2007, 02:42 PM   #20
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1. Avoiding debt (except student loans & mortgage where were paid off ahead of plan)
2. LBYM (have only owned used cars, don't go out much)
3. Save >= 50% of net wages
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