Tech Tips for Retirees

For retirees interested in learning more, making life easier and staying connected with distant friends and family.


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Using Your Computer for Creative Inspiration

image courtesy of Simon Howden/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

image courtesy of Simon Howden/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Expressing our creativity, plays a key part in retaining youthfulness. I pursue many hobbies, and find that they change over time. When feeling the need for a new idea it is easy to find inspiration as close as a computer. There are numerous sites with detailed how-to instruction, and blog sites where individuals share there own particular take on a skill. Be it painting, woodworking, needlecrafts, sculpture or photography, help is always at your fingertips.

Because my favorite pursuits are so visual (quilting, embroidery, and multimedia art) I especially enjoy finding inspiration in the photography of others. This works just as well, however, when you are looking for writing inspiration. A picture can set off a new idea for for a quilt pattern, color scheme, or story line. Try looking in such places as Google Images, photography blogs, Pinterest and clip art sites. In no time you’ll have a mind full of inspiration and will be excited about beginning your new project.

Please comment if you have found inspiration for your creativity on-line.


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Never Forget an Appointment / The Benefit of a Calendar App

image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I never truly appreciated the value of a calendar app until after I retired. I loved my planner and kept a calendar at home to organize the household’s comings and goings. Once I retired, however, and with the nest long empty, I had a new problem. Days could go by when I never had a thought of looking at any calendar. This, as you might have already guessed, led to missing both important appointments and fun events. An appointment can usually be rescheduled, but a fun event is an experience gone forever, so something had to be done.

I found that by simply installing a free calendar app on my smartphone or tablet, I never forgot another event of any kind. They are very intuitive and allow you to set reminders of the appointment at your chosen intervals. They also pop the event up on your screen when you first turn your tablet or phone on, which takes care of the problem for me. I would recommend just putting the calendar on the device you use most consistently, as maintaining two is cumbersome. You might also want to check reviews of the app you are considering, before installing. In this way you can find the features that appeal to you most, and avoid apps that have demonstrated problems.


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image courtesy of ddpavumba/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

image courtesy of ddpavumba/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s been a challenging year for me when it comes to health insurance.  Affordable healthcare got off to a rocky start and had many wondering if they would be helped or hurt.  As the dust settled, my healthcare costs went down and my coverage is greatly improved.  Yes, my old plan was one that was canceled, but I can think of no scenario in which I will be hurt.  The on-line registration was a bust on this one though, and I fear it may have damaged the faith in computers of some of my peers.  I hope you picked up your phones and got assistance that way, as did I.

So now I am immediately faced with a new dilemma, as this is the year of my 65th birthday.  Yes, that is right.  I now need to choose a decent Medicare supplement.  As we have just been talking about the cost of retirement, it is fresh in my mind that financial planners state that the biggest portion of their dire predictions about our income needs is based on the continually rising cost of healthcare.  It therefore makes sense to me that my health coverage should be as good as available, within a cost that makes sense.  I am also leaning toward choosing Blue Cross, just because my providers are happiest with their coverage and tell me that they are processing claims much more quickly than in the past.  The website I found most helpful was at medicare.gov.  It explains medicare insurance and helps you decide on a plan.  Any other thoughts out there.  Please comment…we are all ears.