Category Archives: Peace of Mind

How to Live Your Life at Age 85

Jock Millenson on Electric Bike on way to Tennis Court
Jock Millenson on Electric Bike on way to Tennis Court

Today, in Tucson, it is a balmy 65 degrees, strong wind, and sunny. Jock is off to the tennis court. He reminds me of my tennis coach in California when I was just 14 years old. “Fred” resembled Jock in many ways, not only his age, but the fact that he swam, ran, and played tennis everyday of the week. Fred was an inspiring elder for me, and now Jock – who is about 15 years my senior – inspires me, too.  Jock reads books late into the night and is working on updating his business website. This is his “down time” before the summer programs he founded begin again in Greece.

Jock created and manages Kalikalos, a summer school like no other. Check it out. You may wish to schedule a summer break with Jock and his instructors, and the beauty of the location.

In another email, I will write about my other Roomy, who is an internationally known expert on alternative exchange economies.



More Together

One of my new roommates has a saying whenever we needed a piece of furniture: “It will show up.”

At first it was annoying when we sat on two chairs with a round of glass-top (scavenged from the side of the road) and several cardboard boxes.

Living Room
Living Room

Since then, our third roommate arrived and we have completely decked out the house with thrift store finds such as my $10 desk, a $48 couch, $6 – $8 chairs, etc. One of us managed to negotiate a gorgeous long dining table for $40.

Tom at the table he found.
Tom at the table he found.

We call ourselves a “senior activist community”. Our oldest member, at 85, runs circles around us with his Tai Chi, biking, tennis, and musical practice on his recorder.

What I am learning is profound. First, together we have more for less: each of us pays $400 rent plus ~ $40 in utilities.  And, second, I am amazed at the really great “stuff” we can find at Thrift stores if willing to “wait until it shows up.”

Susan's $10 desk and chair given by a friend.
Susan’s $10 desk and chair given by a friend.

We are each adults with careers – yes, we are still working – and our own grown kids and families. So we live independently, coming together to throw a party, discuss ideas, and help each other achieve our goals. Recently we hosted a house warming with friends of each of us. The house was packed and we all had a wonderful time.

Together does bring more – more of the right kind of things that make life easier and richer.

$8 chair and beautiful Thai Art from the community.
$8 chair and beautiful Thai Art from the community.

After a long hiatus…

No, I have not died or been run over by a four wheel vehicle while on my two-wheeler. I’ve been thinking, plotting, and in the process, becoming a tiny space genius. Sorry, I am bragging a little here, but if you have a bunch of objects that need to go into an impossibly small space, I’m the Girl to Call.

Example One: Instant Office

Instant Office 001Starts with 1) moving my business laptop from the end of the bed to the desk so that I am looking outside to green;


Instant Office 0032) rolling the file drawer with a Samsung wireless laser printer on top to the “office”;



Instant Office 002 3) hooking up a portable Brother DSMobile600 scanner;  4) setting up music to play on a micro amplifier (Jam), and Presto! Instant Office is here.


Stay tuned for the next amazing solution to space issues: Seat at the Table.


Human Scale Housing

My friend Debbie Douma sent this link today to a TED TALK on the Tiny House movement by Andrew Morrison.  What’s great about this video is the rational behind why living closer to “human scale” improves our lives, our work, and the environment.

Calculate the percent of your weekly income, the percent of hours you devote to housing costs, and consider how living closer to human scale improves relationships with the people we love the most.