Another year around the sun and another milestone birthday. Or maybe it used to be considered a milestone birthday. 62 used to be the age that social security started. Actually, it still is the age to take Social Security early but full benefits are now 67. So is 67 the new senior citizen? I’m not sure. I still feel middle-aged, definitely not senior! Here’s to turning 62, a reflection on the past year.

My birthday, last year, was celebrated with my first pureed food since my operation on October 26th. If you recall, I had a bariatric sleeve operation done. Up until my birthday I was on liquids. I was so happy to have my first actual food. And a birthday dinner of fat-free refried beans with cheese and a little green sauce was heaven at that point.

No birthday dinner ever tasted better. (Ok, I lie. With a chef husband, my birthday dinners are usually Lobster Newberg in a puff pastry.) But still, those refried beans tasted so good that day. Since that operation, I’ve lost 70 lbs and am still in the process of losing. I’ve seen a picture of me before the operation and can’t believe the difference.

Recently, I stopped losing weight even though I hadn’t met my goal. But a meeting with the dietician and a renewed focus on exercise is helping to move that number again. I’ve made an exercise pal, and even though we only meet one day a week, that one day motivates me to work out on other days.

This past year we moved again. But now we both feel we’re here to stay for a few years. After the threat of a category four hurricane hitting us last year, we decided we didn’t want to be on the first floor anymore. So we found a four-floor apartment building with an elevator. We’re closer to the beach now but don’t worry about flooding anymore.

With this move, even though we’ve gotten a bigger apartment, we still had things in off-site storage. So we’re doing another downsizing purge. Each week, we take a few boxes from the old storage bin and go through them. Some, we’ve just thrown out without even removing a thing. Others we’ve gone through, keeping what we need and donating, recycling, or throwing out the rest. So far, I’ve donated a lot of clothes that I no longer fit. Like all the times in the past, it feels good to downsize some more.

This past September, we traveled back to Connecticut to visit family and friends. Sadly, we weren’t able to get back in time before Chris’s father passed. At that time, the decision was made to wait to hold a memorial service in October, so last weekend, we flew up to Connecticut on Friday. Went to the service on Saturday and flew home again on Sunday.

One of the biggest things I did in the past year, besides committing to a healthier lifestyle was to open a new Etsy store. You already know that I have an Unfold and Begin store to support your goals and visions. But I actually opened two new ones. One, JRK Printables is just getting started. It’s a bit on the snarky side.

The other is When Pigs Fly Creations by Jen. This one is filled with coloring sheets, planners, and other printables. Right now, an updated version of the Christmas Memories Planner is available in this shop as well. There’s also a Christmas Gratitude Journal that will help you reflect on the feelings that you want to evoke this Christmas. Even better? I currently have a Birthday Month sale going on. Everything in all three shops is 62% off!

If you’ve known me long enough, you might recognize the When Pigs Fly Creations label. My sister Joni and I used it when we were selling handmade items. She sold handcrafted wall art and I was selling homemade soaps, bath salts, and oils. I went back to this store name in memory of my sister. I have several flying pigs in my apartment that are all gifts from her. In the future, I may create some printables that include pictures of her wall art. I have so many from when we used to have an online Yahoo store way back in the day!

Well, it’s been an interesting year. Focusing first on my health and then on my creative side. I think I’ll keep that going in the future. Health and creativity seem like great goals for the next year.

Another year around the sun and another milestone birthday. I still feel middle-aged, definitely not senior! Here's to turning 62, a reflection on the past year. #babyboomer #turning62 #notretiredyet