Go early; go often


I’m finding that retirement is filled with lots of doctor’s appointments. And oftentimes things don’t go exactly as planned.

My husband had an outpatient procedure scheduled last week. He is not an early riser, so we chose to come to the hospital at noon. Then that got pushed back to a two o’clock arrival time with the surgery to start at three.

My husband ate an early-for-him breakfast since he wasn’t supposed to eat or drink anything from nine o’clock on.

The nursing staff got him all checked in, blood drawn, IV access inserted, and we waited. And waited. By this time, my poor husband was hungry, thirsty, and getting crankier by the minute. Not that I blamed him. I was offered and gladly accepted a package of Chips Ahoy cookies. For him, nada.

The nurses, bless them, offered to turn on the TV for us. We didn’t want to watch anything, so they tuned the channel to what one called “Zen music.” It was a combo of new age and classical that was, indeed, soothing. Or as soothing as anything could be under the circumstances. Then they set out to discover what was hanging things up.

Unfortunately, the patient ahead of my husband had some complications. At this point, it was four thirty. The estimate was at least another two hours to wait. The nurses suggested we re-schedule. Her comment was revealing: “I wouldn’t want to be the next patient when the surgeon is tired.” Agreed.

We’re going back to do it all over again this week; however, this time my husband is first on the schedule.

What has been your experience with hospitals and medical care in general?





Give it a Rest



I venture a guess that no woman in America will be surprised by the results of research done by Cornell University, the University of Minnesota, and Minnesota Population Center. They studied time diaries from 12,000 parents and concluded dads are happier when parenting than moms are. It seems moms do more of the work tasks while dads do more fun tasks. Ya think?

Moms were often alone with their kids, but dads often spent time with their kids in social situations with other adults around to give support. Moms were also more likely to be on call 24/7, so dads got more uninterrupted sleep.

For a fictional look at how this can play out, I recommend Leave Me, a novel by Gayle Forman. The mom in this book suffers a heart attack and subsequent bypass surgery only to return home to whining, demanding children and a husband who thinks she can make a full recovery in a week so as not to inconvenience him.

Having facts from a study like this one to back up fiction and anecdotal evidence is good, but when will this situation change? I don’t have children, but I do find myself jumping in to do things that others could and should do for themselves and then feeling resentful. I need to learn to back off, set better boundaries, and ask for help instead of playing martyr. Do you?

Don’t rely on Prince Charming



A study done by Hiroshima University (and by the way how ironic is that?) says that Japanese women still expect that their spouse will one day take charge of their retirement finances. Even if they are currently not even in a relationship. The same thought process has also been identified in American women.

The researchers studied data from an insurance company retirement savings plan, the Japanese equivalent to a 401(k). Women and men understood retirement options equally, yet women assumed a “Prince Charming” would make the decisions, or worse, that it would all work out somehow.

Since women earn less money to begin with and then live longer in retirement, the decision to make no decision can have big implications on how comfortable their eventual retirement will be.

I was feeling all superior about this until I remembered that my husband handles all our finances.

C’mon ladies. It’s time to educate ourselves about economic matters. Suze Orman, are you listening?


New magazine premieres

Displaying MediaKit_Logo_IndieLoveMagazine.jpg

IndieLove Magazine

by Sarah Gai

IndieLove Magazine is a new publication showcasing Indie Everything. From Independent Authors, Musicians, Film makers, Actors, Art, Etsy Crafters. With Bonus features such as content articles, recipes, DIY, not for profit and travel.



Sarah will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Please follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:





Facebook page : https://web.facebook.com/indielovemagazine/

twitter :  https://twitter.com/IndieLoveMag

Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/indielovemag/

Bullying on the job


A lot has been written about the topic of bullying in schools over the past several years. But what do you do if you are an adult and the bullying is occurring in your workplace?

The Workplace Bullying Institute definition is “repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators. It is abusive conduct that is threatening, humiliating, or intimidating, or work interference — sabotage — which prevents work from getting done, or verbal abuse.” The Institute conducted a national survey in 2014 and found that 27% of responders have been subjected to bullying. Most of the bullies are bosses, but 72% of employers deny it is happening, defend it, or even encourage it.

Who becomes a target of a bully? Generally someone who is a veteran employee and the most skilled and thus poses a “threat” to the bully. When a target tries to preserve their dignity and their right to be treated with respect, the bullying escalates.

Workplace bullying, sadly, is not illegal. At least, not yet. The Institute is lobbying to have a bill passed. Until that is achieved, what can an individual do?

The Institute offers suggestions but not much hope.

First, call it what it is; give it a name. This legitimizes the problem. The source of the problem is external. You did not invite it.

Second, take time off. Check the state of your mental health with a professional, not your employer’s EAP. Decide whether to stay and fight or look for a new job elsewhere. Check the state of your physical health too. Stress takes its toll. Research state and federal legal options. In a quarter of cases, discrimination plays a part. Talk to an attorney and look at your employer’s internal policies, but if you take an action, expect retaliation.

The Institute cautions against taking advice commonly given by human resources or career coaches. Don’t beat yourself up for not confronting the bully. If you could have, you would have. Hold your employer accountable for creating the work environment that allows bullying. Don’t ask for relief from the bully’s boss. They are allowing the bullying. Create a paper trail, but don’t share your documentation with anyone at work.

The Institute estimates that a person who has been targeted by a bully has a 66% chance of losing his or her job either by quitting or by being terminated. That is a sobering statistic.

S.L. Young in the Huffington Post states that workplace bullying is a “toxin to an organization.” He urges leaders to take proactive and corrective measures.

Have you ever experienced or witnessed workplace bullying? How did you handle it?


2 Broads Abroad book tour



2 Broads Abroad: Moms Fly the Coop

by Deborah Serra and Nancy Serra Greene

GENRE: Nonfiction, Motherhood, Travel Memoir



When sisters, Deborah & Nancy, discovered that motherhood was a temp job they decided to run away from home. After packing up that last kid for college, and facing the sad stillness of their suddenly quiet homes, they decided to leave the country. 2 BROADS ABROAD: MOMS FLY THE COOP is a funny, irreverent, occasionally poignant travel tale of their impulsive road trip around Ireland.

In this witty warm-hearted adventure, they experienced some of Ireland’s quirkier history while sharing universally relatable stories of maniacal school coaches, neurotic neighbors, and tiger moms. Having kicked that empty nest into their rearview mirror, the sisters took off careening down the wrong side of the road, making questionable choices, getting trapped in a medieval tower, sneaking Chinese take-out into a famous cooking school, drinking way too much, and gaining a changed perspective on their lives ahead.




Deborah Serra and Nancy Serra Greene will be awarding a $50 Amazon or BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Please follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:



When we thought about the phases of our lives at each juncture of change: our own departure from home, our first real job, our marriages, the birth of our children, all of the big phases of change held out something new for us.  This change was shaping up very differently.  This change was loss – complete dissolution of the fundamental family structure forever and that was all.  We had to plan.  We needed to be proactive.  The alternative was to be left standing frozen in time, in a life that had moved on without us, and to become observers and visitors in our kids’ lives. Not acceptable. So, we set our imaginations loose.

We considered our location. Now that we knew we were leaving – where could we go?

“Angkor Wat,”  I said.

“Wat what?” Nancy asked.

“It’s the largest temple in the world, built in 1125.”

“Where is it?”


“Uh, huh. Deborah, I was thinking more along the lines of a bucolic vineyard in Tuscany.  You know, stroll along the hills, sample the fruit of the vine, nectar of the gods?”

“Oh.  Okay, how would you feel about a camel trek in Morocco?”

“Probably sore, smelly, and hot.  And I understand camels are mean and they spit.  They spit, Deborah. What about a civilized boat ride down the Rhine River in Germany?  They have castles and I know how you like castles.”

“I do like castles, but don’t you think we should go more exotic?”

“This is our first trip together.  I’d like to steer clear of nations at war, places we’d need to wear a burka, or can’t speak the language, or ride on an angry animal.  Surely we can agree on somewhere.”

“I’ve always wanted to see where grandma’s family came from.”

“Me, too!”

“With a little research and a rental car we can see the entire island in a couple of weeks.”

“Perfect. Ireland it is!”





AUTHORS Bios and Links:

Deborah Serra has been a sought-after screenwriter for twenty-five years having written for NBC, CBS, Sony, Lifetime, Fox, and others. She was a recipient of the 2012 Hawthornden Literary Fellowship. Her first novel was a semi-finalist for the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Award given by the Faulkner Society in New Orleans, LA.

Nancy is a graduate of San Diego State University. She worked in medical sales before stepping away to raise her two children, at which point she became: Team Mom, Snack Mom, PTA member, Assistance League Volunteer, and the list is never-ending. Nancy was the editor and publisher of the Buffalo Hills Echo newsletter with a circulation of 1400. She also designed and managed her community website.


Buy Link:

Amazon: www.amazon.com/Broads-Abroad-Moms-Fly-Coop-ebook/dp/B016DVCWBY/

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/2-Broads-Abroad-Moms-Fly-The-Coop-214434485258098





Thinner in 30 book review


If you’re a fan of the Today Show, you undoubtedly recognize Jenna Wolfe. I had seen a few of her fitness segments, but I really didn’t register that she is a certified personal trainer. I never met a diet or fitness book I didn’t want to read, so when I learned that Wolfe had written one, I eagerly picked up Thinner in 30.

Besides being filled with the 30 days’ worth of tips alluded to in the title, this is a very funny book. She (or her co-author Myatt Murphy) has a breezy style. Her reported conversations trying to get her parents to embrace healthier habits when they can’t or won’t grasp the concepts made me chuckle.

Wolfe also includes scientific backup to her advice.

The 30 changes start small with day one being sip water as soon as you wake up. She then moves through eating and exercise advice in small, doable increments. The changes don’t even have to be made in 30 calendar days. You can work at your own pace. Once you’ve mastered one step, move on to the next. The catch is you must continue doing all that came before.

By change 29, you will be doing a 60 minute workout three times a week. Wolfe has included photos to demonstrate exactly what exercises to do and how many to do.

Personally, I know I am not going to do those workouts. What I would like to incorporate is her advice to eat a maximum of three servings per day of processed food. She defines that as packaged foods or beverages with more than five ingredients.

I’ll be trying to do more cooking at home. How about you?


Jenna Wolfe Online Fitness Portal

Study at Wharton for under $600

Do you dream of attending an Ivy League School but lack the tuition or GPA to get in? For less than $600, you can be certified by the prestigious Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. How is this possible? Through the magic of MOOCs. Coursera is partnering with Wharton for this opportunity. The certification process includes four online classes and a capstone project. The first four-week session, Intro to Marketing, starts today. Intro to Financial Accounting, Intro to Operations Management, and Intro to Corporate Finance follow. Top-rated projects will be reviewed by Wharton staff and industry partners. The creators of the top 50 projects will have application fees to bricks-and-mortar Wharton waived.