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Old 07-11-2011, 10:13 AM   #21
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We've re-discovered an old hobby - hiking and hill walking. For the last 30 years we have had kids to bring up, limited vacation time and lived in S. Louisiana or SE Texas, so it was a long way to go to find hills.

This last 2 years we have spent many months in rental houses in hilly or mountainous areas and have been really enjoying this hobby that we have not been able to pursue for so long.

We've always like to travel, and we've done a whole lot more of that since retiring, the difference being that we can spend a lot more time at the destinations we travel to, and take more time getting there.

We've also added to our exercise programs in both time spent plus a larger variety of types of exercise.
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:21 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Walt34 View Post
we were introduced to Photoshop Elements, the "consumer" version of Photoshop.
I'm not familiar with those, or the fancier manipulations, but there is plenty of free software out there to make easy, minor changes. I posted the following in another thread, but got unhappy with it:


and used a free program for Linux "DigiKam" to sharpen it, darken, and increase contrast:

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Old 07-11-2011, 05:37 PM   #23
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What hobbies and interests have others discovered by chance and serendipity, and allowed to flourish in the freedom of retirement? Have you found a unexpected hobby or interest that surprised and delighted you?
Surfing!

I'm glad I didn't know about it when I still had to show up for work.
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Old 07-11-2011, 07:47 PM   #24
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I'm looking forward to trying personal mini-triathlons once per month to once per week...swim 400m, bike 13 miles, run 3 miles. I usually run 3 miles in 32-33 minutes, and the bike takes 50 minutes or so. So I'm guessing it will be a 2-2.5 hour adventure. I intend to start with a course around our home, then venture out to the lake about 10-15 minutes from our house. Or, I may ride to the lake, run, then cool off with a swim in the lake, and ride home with a final cool down in the pool.

Also looking forward to camping, RVing, hiking, and getting in longer runs once or twice a week. I intend to avoid airports (in the Tokyo airport right now heading for Singapore). There is a little store about 2 miles from our house in the country, and I intend to ride the bike there and back when all we need from the store is milk or something simple like that...they don't have produce or meat.

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Old 07-11-2011, 10:29 PM   #25
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...(snip)...
What hobbies and interests have others discovered by chance and serendipity, and allowed to flourish in the freedom of retirement? Have you found a unexpected hobby or interest that surprised and delighted you?
I think your cloud formation activity is really fascinating. In summer around here (Northern Calif) we tend to have either no-cloud days or foggy mornings and then burn-off to sunny days.

Here are a few things I've become interested in as I explored the terrain:

1) oil painting -- occasionally I go out with DW to a Monday Morning painting group. I use water soluble oils (Duo-Aqua Holbein) and try to get a scene done in 2 hours. Today we met at a local winery. The people I meet there are very nice, not much competition and some real good painters too.

2) First I got interested in geology and the rocks around our region which morphed into chemistry and physics a little. That brought me back into physics which was an interest in college. So I've been catching up on the developments in basic physics that have taken place over the last 40 years or so. Things like the Standard Model which includes quarks, gluons, and all that stuff. There are several good books which don't require you to master higher math to appreciate the concepts -- just a peak at what the masters think about.

3) As the stock market collapsed in late 2008, began to rethink our investments. I did a lot of analytical work using a lot of public data placed into spreadsheets. Became much better at Excel and used a little Visual Basic too. The approach I came up with kind of surprised me -- very different from the ones generally presented. It's not based on hunches or economic views either. I know I'm not good at predicting the future.

Other activities tend to be extensions of what I was doing in may spare time while working -- running, gardening, reading novels ... afternoon naps .
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Old 07-11-2011, 11:26 PM   #26
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I have become increasingly interested in photography, especially astrophotography and time-lapse. When I saw the video below, I just knew I wanted to do that. Sold my father-in-laws lawn tractor we inherited and bought a nice Canon T2i. Working on a few necessary accessories and then we will see what I can do.

Plains Milky Way on Vimeo

I am also considering trying my hand at video. I am thinking of shooting some underwater stuff, mainly trout. Go figure. I have a Kodak PlaySport, but want to get GoPro HD Hero. Both are waterproof. I want to do this, but haven't quite figured it all out yet.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:20 AM   #27
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That video is amazing! Especially catching the satellite (I assume that's what it is) at 2:49.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:32 AM   #28
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It all started when we bought a small digital camera, DW wanted to go to a photography class, and we were introduced to Photoshop Elements, the "consumer" version of Photoshop.
Do you think the class was worth the time and cost? I'm a visual learner (don't tell me, show me); reading instruction manuals is painful. That is why YouTube tutorials is a blessing!
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:39 AM   #29
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I come from a family of craft-type hobbyists. Modeling, woodworking, needlework of all kinds, painting, gardening, baking...parents or siblings or I did it/do it. I think the main reason I resent w**k, is that it keeps me from doing stuff I really like to do! One of my biggest fears is that after I retire, my eyes/hands will decline, so I will never get as good as I want to be.

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I do some craftwork; specifically, decoupage and it's spinoff collage. Decoupage is an old art. People have been decorating items for centuries. It's an absorbing hobby.

I'm mostly a practical sewer. I sew curtains, placemats, napkins, etc. But I love-love-love using fabric color and patterns in creative ways, such as mixing a floral print and a stripe print with coordinating colors.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:45 AM   #30
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Recently I've taken up knitting prayer shawls - I had knitted a bit way back in jr. high school but not since then. I find it very relaxing and I don't have to worry about what to make as they all go to people who need them.
I never learned to knit, but throughout college I crocheted - my roommate taught me. I haven't crocheted in over 25 years, but if I can find my crochet hooks, I think I could get started again.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:52 AM   #31
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We've re-discovered an old hobby - hiking and hill walking. For the last 30 years we have had kids to bring up, limited vacation time
Same here. In fact, I'm currently looking for a new lightweight daypack. DH and I are taking longer day hikes, and I need a bigger pack for the 5-6 hour hikes.
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:09 AM   #32
 
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I wanted to learn how to play bloues harmonica but can't find a teacher in my area, very frustrating. I am now researching meditation classes. Of course I have even more time to do my favorite thing, read. I want to start walking again but the summer has been too hot and humid to do it.
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Old 07-12-2011, 02:57 PM   #33
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Not retired here. Work half time due to a health issue, and to parent the kiddoes. Nonetheless, have a few hobbies:
Brew beer
Like to build and restore things (have restored 1910 telephone, several furniture items, starting on 1976 Chev. Monte Carlo. Built all tube home stereo and speakers)
Volunteering (Scouts and homeless shelter)
Music! I am an inveterate collector with lots and lots of cd's and lp's.

Would like to get into cooking, and back into photography. I have the supplies for a darkroom, but have never set it up.
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Old 07-13-2011, 12:27 AM   #34
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I re-started a couple of hobbies; photography and scuba diving. I have not combined the two yet because I can't justify the cost of the underwater gear to do it. If I continue then maybe.

I did expand and upgrade my regular photography kit and have read several books on various current techniques including Photoshop (Essentials), portraiture, macro, flash and various digital photo techniques. Now I just need to get off my lazy tail and get going.

My genealogy work comes and goes as I find the time and patients for it. I have several trips planned to some old family living areas for records research (not everything is on the internet yet). But, with what I have dug up I can happily say that all 4 family lines were in this country before 1700; so my family helped create this country.

Someday I will put all of it into a book for the family. Speaking of which, I am editing and creating a manuscript for my mother's second book; not bad for a nearly blind old lady of 89 in Assisted Living. I hope to find an illustrator for the book (childrens book) and then either self publish again or find a publisher willing to take it on (not an easy task with this type of book).

DW's hobby is her dress boutique which keeps her busy with buying, networking and business issues. (Sounds like w*rk to me). I do the books and the maintenance; neither of which take a lot of time most days.
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Old 07-13-2011, 04:36 AM   #35
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I do not have the time for hobbies. Too much work to do and volunteering activities take the rest of my time.
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Old 07-13-2011, 09:15 AM   #36
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I have had the same hobbies all my life, and many of them I still have. Various participant sports, dancing, people watching, reading, and stamp collecting. I used to hunt and fish, but it seems more trouble than it is worth under my present living conditions. I haven't been a stamp collector since I was a boy, and I am not sure that I would enjoy it as much now as then, as considerations of value and investment gains often dominate older collectors' thoughts, whereas a child is just interested in the pretty pictures and the far off places.

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Old 07-13-2011, 09:27 AM   #37
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...(snip)...
I haven't been a stamp collector since I was a boy, and I am not sure that I would enjoy it as much now as then, as considerations of value and investment gains often dominate older collectors' thoughts, whereas a child is just interested in the pretty pictures and the far off places.

Ha
That's an interesting observation about the adult approach to activities. I have a stamp collection passed down and expanded from my grandfather. Once every decade or so I take a peak at it. When I was a kid I spent many hours looking at the stamps and visiting post offices in hopes of finding an old cache. I remember finding some stamps from the 1940's (I think) that hadn't been sold at one post office. Nice memories.

With art the trend around here seems to be that the serious artists should be selling something. I think it can ruin a person's creativity as they are constantly trying to figure out how to paint something someone will buy. Many artist's even pay "galleries" to offer their work.

If you don't need the money it can be greatly liberating to avoid money and competition in your activities.
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Old 07-13-2011, 09:42 AM   #38
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I used to love to tinker in the garage, paint and draw, but I recently got a request from my daughter to make her a box for the ringbearer to carry her rings down the aisle in for her upcoming wedding. I made the box and started painting it and have realized just how much my skills have deteriorated since I last did that sort of thing. I need a lot more light, my hands aren't that steady and I don't seem to have as much patience... all in all not very enjoyable since the results are just not what I was hoping for.

I still play music for fun with some local guys and recently finished recording a CD and I do (mostly) enjoy it, but I seem to enjoy travel more than anything else. I am also working on an automation-oriented book and website and actually enjoy that more than most of my old hobbies. That actually relates to w*rk which is rather odd...
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Old 07-13-2011, 09:46 AM   #39
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I continue with pre-ER hobbies and spend more time on them which includes golfing, reading, dining in new places, etc. ER allows me to appreciate and develop what I already do to something I can learn, nurture and enjoy more for example - learning about wine (pre ER was just drinking wine), enjoying cooking (pre ER was just get the food cooked quickly), photography and organising photos on Facebook or displaying them at home (pre ER was just taking photos and not developing them), improving my golf game (pre ER was just week-end golf), I dine and read more and comment on the food and books in related websites, etc etc. I guess you can say by expanding and developing old hobbies, I now have more indepth hobbies which are the same but yet don't seem the same. They are better and more interactive. And yes, I watch more TV - one of my favourite hobbies.
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Old 07-13-2011, 09:56 AM   #40
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I do not have the time for hobbies. Too much work to do and volunteering activities take the rest of my time.
I think of volunteering as a hobby.
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