Originally Posted by Txtriathelete
I had always envisioned retirement as golf and travel, stuff "old" people do. Having kids around definitely changes that dynamic. Would be interested to hear from anyone with youngish kids still in the house.
With kids, not even close to what many folks considered "retired". I never called myself retired until a few months ago when I realized that DW and I can begin a "retired" lifestyle later this year.
I retired from my career engineering/management job at 50 years old, over 17 years ago. My one and three year old sons were underfoot at my going away breakfast. I was offered an early retirement as a result of re-organization/downsizing. Not a typical retirement but have so enjoyed being with my sons through out their childhood. I was the soccer dad (with minivan) available to give rides, cub and boy scout leader, soccer coach, be home as they came home from school.
Our time and activities have very much been in support of the boys activities. Initially I did some consulting and we camped/traveled with the boys until school age. The school, travel & school soccer, and Scouts have pretty much dictated our schedule for the last 12 year and we have been active participants in supporting these activities. I've most commonly served as treasurer of multiple organizations over the years (currently down to only one!)
For the last 15 years, to keep intellectually sharp, set a working example, and fill in the "dog days of winter", I've prepared income tax returns for three months each year. Five years for a nation-wide storefront firm, last 10 with a local CPA firm. Always referred to myself as "semi-retired" as I was collecting a pension but still had W2 income.
Only now, with the younger one graduating HS in three days (my wife is the organizer of the all-night after grad party) can we now start thinking of living a "retired" life. Both boys will be in college in the Fall and don't need us to be as readily available.
It has been a priceless ride these past 17 years, a role that I'll very much miss in the coming years, but it is time for the boys to move on from home and my wife and I re-defining who we are and what we do in the future.
Other than the Troop's Scoutmaster (he's only a few years younger than me), I almost never interface with adults my age, I'm always the oldest adult involved typically by a good 20 years. Except for my body reminding me that I'm a Medicare card holder, I don't think of myself as old or retired. And I'll never consider myself old enough to play golf. If my knees would let me, I'd love to go for a five mile trail run this afternoon but will settle for either a hike through the woods or a 15 mile bike ride. A week ago did a overnight backpack with the Scouts, hope to get more backpacks in this fall as I won't need to work around the HS soccer game schedule anymore.
Welcome aboard to the ER community and enjoy every minute with your kids you can, they will be soon gone from your everyday life, just now said goodby to my younger one as he heads out the door to his summer job.