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Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 01:11 AM   #1
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Hobbies in ER

ER is within range and was wondering what types of hobbies some of the board members have taken up besides sleeping and drinking beer. Also, are their any good websites or books on this topic.
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 05:09 AM   #2
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Good question. There are so many possibilities. I plan to do more knitting, once I catch up on the sleeping and in between the cleaning of the junk out of the house. Also, working out (cardio and weights) and maybe I can finally practice enough to be better than terrible at golf. That sounds like a full day to me.

This question reminds me of the short time I spent at home when my second child was a baby and my first was 3. I was so worried about being isolated at home, and I read in one of those "mother advice" books, "adults (friends) will not magically appear in your living room". I took this to heart, and by the second month or so, I was in two playgroups, La Leche league, an organization to support our local library, and on a community board. I was sort of a maniac. (If DH reads this post, I'm sure he will agree.) This was the only time in my life I was ever too busy to eat lunch, and I've had some tough jobs. And, you may not believe this if you have children, but people actually asked me what did I do all day. I had fun, but I was happy to go back to work (this was 20 years ago).

So, I recommend knitting, which can become an obsession and a drain on the net worth if you aren't careful, and there are plenty of on line forums to document that fact. Also, working out.
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 08:09 AM   #3
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Retired almost two years now.

My main hobby is improving my health.

losing weight
exercising (building some muscle)
lowering blood pressure

I research vaccinations, supplements, foods, food sources, food preparation...

Will possibly start getting annual physicals (since my insurance offers them for free).

Have to be careful it doesn't become an obsession.

I feel good.

All those years, 'normal' was actually sub par/unhealthy/downright sick.

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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 08:21 AM   #4
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Well, traveling was the first high priority, and it became traveling for photography and traveling for bird watching both of which became great passions. Not to mention lots of hiking, getting back in shape, learning all sorts of new computer skills (mostly related to photography and web/graphic design), studying natural science, etc., etc.

Who has time to sit around all day and drink beer? That's what you do when you are too exhausted from work to function in your leisure time.

The wonderful thing about ER is that hobbies are not just "hobbies" anymore - they can become full-fledged avocations because you have lots of time and energy.

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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 08:32 AM   #5
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Continue my current one:

http://www.patchworkshelties.org/dogs.php?d=a
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 08:52 AM   #6
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Re: Hobbies in ER

My old mainstays have been even more fun since ER.
Amateur radio has been a hobby of mine since childhood. I have met some of my best friends over the years on the radio.
Motorcycling is another. Again, the friendships have been rewarding.
I play on softball teams when I get the chance. Team sports also builds comraderie.
I also do volunteer work for charities that help with addiction issues, child welfare issues, and emergency management services.
I am careful with my time because I don't want to get overloaded. People tend to think you are desparate for something to do after retirement. I still want time to relax and "piddle" when I want!
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 10:10 AM   #7
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by ferco
ER is within range and was wondering what types of hobbies some of the board members have taken up besides sleeping and drinking beer. Also, are their any good websites or books on this topic.
Wanna make one of these? Buy a kiln, get some optical crystal glass and start cooking. You can also visit this site for some tutorials and lots of fun. Don't forget to visit the forum.
http://warmglass.com/



Or maybe one of these? Buy a wood lathe, some wood and visit http://www.sawmillcreek.org/


[img width=750 height=533]http://mrcol.freeyellow.com/turning-stuff/walnut-hf1.jpg[/img]
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 10:11 AM   #8
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by OkieTexan
My old mainstays have been even more fun since ER.
Amateur radio has been a hobby of mine since childhood. I have met some of my best friends over the years on the radio.
My folks both enjoyed ham radio for YEARS!!! That was my Dad's #1 hobby since the late 40's or early 50's. He, too, enjoyed the friendships made and kept over the airwaves. He had so many good friends who were hams, that when I was a kid I thought EVERYBODY became hams when they grew up. (BTW...Dad was W9AJX, and Mom is W9AJZ...though she hasn't been on for some time)

My hobbies are model railroading (for 40+ years), gardening & landscaping, photography, computers, and travel. I always travel with a laptop & camera, and take pix of RRs, gardens, flowers, landscapes, and people! Most of my hobbies intermingle most of the time! I plan to continue all these 'til I croak!!! 8)
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 10:25 AM   #9
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Re: Hobbies in ER

I retired in the city when I was 40, but after 5 years of loafing I took another position. So when I retire this time I have a game plan. I bought a house in the country, on a small mountain top. The people are great, no or little crime, no traffic, and no noise.

I took up gardening, bought a greenhouse, got an ATV, motorcycle, feeding the birds, cutting fire wood, fishing, boating, and beer drinking with the locals. Everyone meets at the bar's and play Euchre and we bs. People are honest and hardworking and true good neighbors.

I think I will have to program myself to relax and practice doing nothing sometimes.

I can't wait to get out of the city, I hate it.

I am hoping that these new interests will keep me busy.
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 10:43 AM   #10
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by ferco
ER is within range and was wondering what types of hobbies some of the board members have taken up besides sleeping and drinking beer. Also, are their any good websites or books on this topic.
Hey, now I don't have to sneak around or lock my office door to get in that afternoon nap. Same for the beer, too!

We didn't exactly start it as a hobby, but like Tawney says one of our more time-consuming activities has been raising a teenager. It's not being a helicopter parent as much as it is being free (and on their case alert, and rested, and patient) when you get those phone calls or those seemingly innocuous questions. And if I stay up late proofing a paper or suggesting how to complete a project more efficiently, I know that at least I'll get a good nap tomorrow. That helps me help more effectively.

One of my hobbies is managing my finances. ER allows time to completely overhaul a financial picture-- analyze insurance expenses and look for better deals, check over utility bills (especially phone & cable TV) for mistakes or to cancel unused features, decide whether to pay for home/yard/vehicle maintenance or do it alone, and in general spend more time doing things (like food prep) that used to be done by someone else (pizza delivery).

You'll also have time to educate yourself. When you figure out how to reduce your portfolio expenses from 1.5% to about 0.25% the tuition pays itself off pretty quickly.

Another big hobby-- since ER we've greatly expanded our home-improvement skills. The power tools are a lot cheaper, the references & training is a lot easier to get, and the results quickly pay for themselves. It's actually been profitable-- I'm happy to help a neighbor for free but some of them feel more comfortable paying me with baked goods or cash.

I eat much healthier and work out much more regularly & sensibly. Those hobbies aren't "new" but now I have the time to do them right.

Brand-new ER hobbies include tae kwon do and surfing. I wish I'd disovered martial arts as a teenager-- especially for my teenager's attitude-- and I'm glad I didn't start surfing until ER. When it comes time to choose between working or surfing I usually choose the latter.

It's not exactly a hobby, but in ER I've also been able to grow a ponytail. This wouldn't have gone over well in 1970s Pittsburgh or in the military.
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 12:20 PM   #11
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by OkieTexan
My old mainstays have been even more fun since ER.
Amateur radio has been a hobby of mine since childhood. I have met some of my best friends over the years on the radio.
Motorcycling is another. Again, the friendships have been rewarding.
I play on softball teams when I get the chance. Team sports also builds comraderie.
I also do volunteer work for charities that help with addiction issues, child welfare issues, and emergency management services.
I am careful with my time because I don't want to get overloaded. People tend to think you are desparate for something to do after retirement. I still want time to relax and "piddle" when I want!
My dad still is on the ham radio from time to time. His call sign is W9DUJ
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 12:25 PM   #12
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by OkieTexan
My old mainstays have been even more fun since ER.
Amateur radio has been a hobby of mine since childhood. I have met some of my best friends over the years on the radio.
Same here OkieTexan! One of the most pleasant aspects of ham radio is meeting people and making long term friends. DW and I have close friends met through the hobby decades ago living nearby and all around the world.

I also enjoy the fact that its a hobby that keeps me up to date technically and also in touch with history. I'm active with the latest digital modes and my station is computer controlled, but I still enjoy using Morse Code and have a telegraph key collection and some vintage receivers and transmitters.

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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 12:35 PM   #13
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleHoney
Wanna make one of these? Buy a kiln, get some optical crystal glass and start cooking.
I love art glass but never thought about making it myself. After seeing your post I looked up glass classes in DC but I am not sure what is what. DC Glassworks offers "Beginning Glass Blowing." New Dynasty Glass in Virginia has "Basic Flameworking," and talks about lampworking, pulling stringers, beads, etc. Are these the same basic concepts or is there a difference between "working" glass in a kiln and "blowing" glass?
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 12:37 PM   #14
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
I love art glass but never thought about making it myself. After seeing your post I looked up glass classes in DC but I am not sure what is what. DC Glassworks offers "Beginning Glass Blowing." New Dynasty Glass in Virginia has "Basic Flameworking," and talks about lampworking, pulling stringers, beads, etc. Are these the same basic concepts or is there a difference between "working" glass in a kiln and "blowing" glass?
Dunno about a kiln, but lampwork as I understand it involves fairly fiddly stff done over a small flame (lamp). Big difference from pulling a wad of glass out of a kiln and blowing it up like aballoon...
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 12:50 PM   #15
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Re: Hobbies in ER

No-one's mentioned cars yet.....



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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 01:01 PM   #16
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Re: Hobbies in ER

UncleHoney, that glass sculpture looks great. Do you have a picture of it before it broke?
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 01:08 PM   #17
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Re: Hobbies in ER

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl
UncleHoney, that glass sculpture looks great. Do you have a picture of it before it broke?
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 02:20 PM   #18
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
I love art glass but never thought about making it myself. After seeing your post I looked up glass classes in DC but I am not sure what is what. DC Glassworks offers "Beginning Glass Blowing." New Dynasty Glass in Virginia has "Basic Flameworking," and talks about lampworking, pulling stringers, beads, etc. Are these the same basic concepts or is there a difference between "working" glass in a kiln and "blowing" glass?
The processes for lampworking and blowing are different from kiln forming. Kiln formed or fused glass most often starts with sheet glass that is cut and shaped cold. Then it's put in the kiln and and heated till all the pieces fuse togethr, shomewhere around 1400-1500 f. The piece I posted is a variation of the kiln formed process called kiln casting. I started with a mold of a rock and then melted a slab of glass into it in the kiln.

The DC area has one of the largest concentrations of glass fusers around the country outside of Oregon and Washington. One of the best places to learn fusing is at Vitrum Studio in Beltsville. I've taken several classes there in the past few years and it strickly top notch. Judy Conway and Kevin OToole run Virtum and are very accomplished fusers themselves. During the year they have several guest instructors teaching classes and they teach classes themselves.

http://www.vitrumstudio.com/

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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 02:26 PM   #19
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Re: Hobbies in ER

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
UncleHoney, that glass sculpture looks great. Do you have a picture of it before it broke?
Thanks Al. It's made from about 8 pounds of 45% lead optical crystal.

Gadzooks, don't say the broken word.

That piece took a lot of hours, about 3 days in the kiln and then about 4-5 hours to grind and polish the front and back surfaces.
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Re: Hobbies in ER
Old 12-19-2006, 03:23 PM   #20
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Re: Hobbies in ER

I didn't realize that you made it. Impressive.
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