Amazing Over 50’s – Donna Connolly

Amazing Over 50’s – Donna Connolly

Once again, I am excited to introduce another guest to my series:

Amazing over 50’s

I am inviting and featuring ‘Mid-lifers’ who are enjoying life over 50 and who are happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or their achievements etc, but more importantly who are embracing this time of their lives with pride and open arms.

This month I’m happy to introduce Donna Connolly as my next guest on the Amazing Over 50’s’ series.  Donna writes a blog, Retirement Reflections, which I love to follow as she is always busy doing something fabulous!

Welcome Donna, to Loving The Fifty Something and the ‘Amazing over 50’s’ series

Do you remember what turning 50 meant to you and how you feel now in relation?

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Absolutely. My husband and I were living in Beijing, China, at the time. He arranged a large party at a local Mexican Restaurant. It was an awesome night. (I still have the banner from that evening.) As I lived and worked in Beijing from my early forties until my mid-fifties, I viewed my 50th as just another birthday (with a really great party). The most significant age for me was 57 when my husband and I retired and moved to Vancouver Island. That took a huge leap of faith. Although I loved my work life, and our time overseas, I am incredibly grateful for this chapter.

How do you stay fit and healthy?   

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I am far from being an athlete, but I love being active. My husband and I live in a relatively small town, surrounded by stunning hiking trails. This gives us the opportunity to walk daily both for transportation and for pleasure. We have also completed four Camino Trails — three in Spain and our most recent one in Italy.  It is so true that once the Camino gets into your blood, it does not easily let go. You can read about our Camino adventures here and here.

In addition to the above, my husband and I try to eat a healthy diet, maintain a balanced lifestyle, surround ourselves with positive people, and explore new things.  Currently, I am taking a course on Natural Medicine at Elder College, (part of Vancouver Island University).  It’s a great reminder to:

– Stay Active,
– Be Social,
– Contribute,
– Have a sense of wonder,
– Eat fresh, unprocessed food.
It also emphasises that you can’t outrun your fork!!

I loved reading about you and your husband walking the 400 km on the Camino trail in Italy, you described it all so well, and the photo’s are stunning.

What are the things that you feel most proud of after turning 50?

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I am grateful that I had a fulfilling career that I loved, a family who I adore and a husband who makes me smile every single day. I am thankful for being able to retire young, to live on an island that is often (correctly) referred to as paradise, and to be able to fill my days with people whom I admire and passions that inspire me.

Are there other messages and advice that you would like to give others who are considering retirement?

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So often, I have heard people struggling with the concept of retirement because of fears of boredom. Then when they do retire, they wonder how they ever had time to work! I have been retired for four years and cannot imagine being bored. Instead, I constantly find myself trying to juggle my calendar to fit in everything that I want to do. Retirement today offers so many incredible opportunities. The choices can be endless.

You and your husband certainly seem to be living the ‘Retirement Dream’.  

Thank you so much for being another inspiring ‘Amazing over 50’s’ guest.

More about Donna

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Donna lived in Beijing, China for fourteen years, where she worked as a Middle School Principal/Deputy Director at The Western Academy of Beijing.  Leaving international life behind, she and her husband retired to Vancouver Island, Canada, in June 2015. To document this transition, I initiated ‘Retirement Reflections.’

Comments are one of her favourite aspects of blogging.  You can connect with her there, or on any of the social media links below.

 

 

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Donna’s Blog: Retirement Reflections

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Are there any ‘Mid-lifers’ out there who are enjoying life over 50?  Are you happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or any achievements since turning 50?  Do you embrace this time of your life with pride and open arms?

If so, then please contact me Here and maybe you’ll be featured in this series of

❤️ ‘Amazing Over 50’s’ ❤️

 

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Me with Crazy Rose (left) and our beautiful, (late, but always remembered) Jenna 💕

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Millie our ‘Funny’ Puggly

 

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Amazing Over 50’s – Jon and Jo

Amazing Over 50’s – Jon and Jo

Once again I am excited to introduce another guest to my series:

Amazing over 50’s

I am inviting and featuring ‘Mid-lifers’ who are enjoying life over 50 and who are happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or their achievements etc, but more importantly who are embracing this time of their lives with pride and open arms.

This month I’m happy to introduce my first ‘amazing over 50’s’ couple, Jon and Jo. Together they write a fabulous blog, which I personally love reading, called JWalking.  A few years ago they made an interesting and brave life decision, which has taken them all over the world.

Welcome to Loving The Fifty Something and the ‘Amazing over 50’s’ series 

I’ll hand you straight over to Jon and Jo…

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Hi, we’re Jon and Jo a fifty-something couple originally from Kent but currently on a little adventure that takes us all over the place. Just over four years ago we quit our jobs, sold our house, and gave away all of our possessions in order to wander off and see what life had in store for us. We’d brought our three wonderful sons up in Maidstone, Kent and absolutely loved being Mum and Dad to them but when they left home we suddenly felt that there may be more to life for us rather than just tread water waiting for retirement. Our home had become just a house and we’d never been possessions orientated so we just decided to let go of everything and go. What was the worst that could happen? Continue reading “Amazing Over 50’s – Jon and Jo”

Cruising UK Canals and Avoiding High Waters

Cruising UK Canals and Avoiding High Waters
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All packed up and ready to go!

During July we, (myself, Jon, our two dogs and two cats) set off again, on our annual cruise from our mooring in South Yorkshire, in our home on the water.  Last year, we travelled up to York and loved every minute of it.  This time, we said we’d like to explore other areas of the canal system, but with Jon’s work primarily being around the York area this summer we decided to head up to that magnificent city again, and why not?

The whole journey is fabulous from the South Yorkshire navigation to the Aire and Calder River, onto the beautiful Selby canal, braving the rapid Ouse river toward Naburn and then a sedate trip into York.

There’s always so much more to explore there too, especially as I’m a bit of a history lover so York again?  Absolutely!  Who knows, we may just head up further along another stunning stretch of water, the Ripon canal which leads to the heart of Ripon, if time allows, well that was the plan…

As we set off on a glorious, late afternoon one Friday, our first mooring wasn’t too far away. Continue reading “Cruising UK Canals and Avoiding High Waters”

Amazing Over 50’s – Darlene Foster

Amazing Over 50’s – Darlene Foster

Once again I am excited to introduce another guest to my series:

Amazing over 50’s

I am inviting and featuring ‘Mid-lifers’ who are enjoying life over 50 and who are happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or their achievements etc, but more importantly who are embracing this time of their lives with pride and open arms.

This month I’m happy to introduce Darlene Foster as my seventeenth guest.  Darlene is an author and blogger.

Welcome to Loving The Fifty Something, Darlene

Can I ask you to tell us a little about yourself  

Of course you can, but you might be sorry. I’ll try to keep it to the Readers Digest version. I was brought up on a prairie ranch in Continue reading “Amazing Over 50’s – Darlene Foster”

We Made It To York!

We Made It To York!

Last Summer we took our first big cruise from South Yorkshire to York in our floating home.  By car it would take around an hour to get to York from where we have our permanent mooring in South Yorkshire, but on our canal boat last summer, we enjoyed a leisurely week or so of cruising, with a few exciting moments and experiences along the way, a truly enjoyable cruise along, approximately 19 miles of the industrial South Yorkshire Navigation, 6 miles of the very straight, yet interesting New Junction Canal with it’s, quite different swing and lift Bridges, then 9 miles of the Aire and Calder Navigation with it’s stretching views over the English countryside.  We then met the tranquility of the Selby Canal, with it’s 5 miles of Continue reading “We Made It To York!”

Amazing Over 50’s – P J Skinner

Amazing Over 50’s – P J Skinner

 

Once again I am excited to introduce another guest to my series:

Amazing over 50’s

I am inviting and featuring ‘Mid-lifers’ who are enjoying life over 50 and who are happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or their achievements etc, but more importantly who are embracing this time of their lives with pride and open arms.

This month I’m happy to introduce P J Skinner as my fourteenth guest.  PJ is an exploration geologist who has travelled worldwide, she is also an author and blogger.

Continue reading “Amazing Over 50’s – P J Skinner”

Amazing over 50’s – Geoff Le Pard

Amazing over 50’s – Geoff Le Pard

Once again I am excited to introduce another guest to my series:

Amazing over 50’s

I’m inviting and featuring ‘Mid-lifers’ who are enjoying life over 50 and who are happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or their achievements etc, but more importantly who are embracing this time of their lives with pride.

This month I am very happy to introduce the first male guest to this series.

A big welcome to Geoff Le Pard as my thirteenth guest. Geoff is an established author and blogger who I had the pleasure of meeting last year at the Annual Bloggers Bash as he was one of the many smiley faces who welcomed me, (with an unusual blue beard, I might add).

Continue reading “Amazing over 50’s – Geoff Le Pard”

How Arriving In Fernie Became An Education – La Niña Who?

How Arriving In Fernie Became An Education – La Niña Who?

 

Ever heard of a Polar Vortex, El Niño or La Niña?  They’re words I’ve heard of, but until now, not really known the meaning of.

View from the top of ‘The Bear’ chair lift

As we landed in Canada on our snowboarding holiday, we expected more snow.  We came here last year and the snow was incredible, it was the powdery snow skiers and snowboarders dream of and apparently here in Fernie, it was pretty much nailed on to be the same every year, because on average they get up to 37 feet of snow falling every year. Continue reading “How Arriving In Fernie Became An Education – La Niña Who?”

No Excuses – Lets Just Do It!

No Excuses – Lets Just Do It!

 

I learnt how to snowboard in my early forties.  One of the main reasons for me was because both my sons were learning to snowboard at that time and they were naturals, making it look so easy.  They took to it like a duck to water and as I watched them from the viewing area of the indoor ski centre, strap on their boards and slide down the slope with grace, ease and without fear I wanted to be out there with them, it was something we could do together.  Oh the holidays we could have, I was quite excited at the thought.  I remember approaching Jon with the idea knowing he wouldn’t hesitate because he’d be up for the challenge and Oh yeahContinue reading “No Excuses – Lets Just Do It!”

#WordlessWednesday – Back On The Boards

#WordlessWednesday – Back On The Boards

It’s that time of year again when myself and my better half start looking forward to getting back on our boards and tripping off to find snow up in the mountains somewhere.  These are just a few photographs of last years trip to Fernie, Canada and the stunning scenery which took my breath away.

IMG_0036 2 Continue reading “#WordlessWednesday – Back On The Boards”

Amazing over 50’s – Debbie Harris

Amazing over 50’s – Debbie Harris

Once again I am excited to introduce another guest to my series:

Amazing over 50’s

I’m inviting and featuring ‘Mid-lifers’ who are enjoying life over 50 and who are happy to shout out about great health, fitness, lifestyles, work or their achievements etc, but more importantly who are embracing this time of their lives with pride.

This month I introduce Debbie Harris as my ninth guest to this series.

Debbie is the author of one of my favourite blogs ‘Debs World’ and describes herself as an Australian midlife, travel, adventure and lifestyle blogger.  I had the pleasure of meeting Debbie in May of this year at the Annual Bloggers Bash where she won Runner Up in the ‘Hidden Gem’ Award!  I have to say the main thing you notice about Debbie when you meet her, is her amazing and contagious happy smile!

Continue reading “Amazing over 50’s – Debbie Harris”

A Slow Meander to York – Part 2 – The Selby Canal & Our First Challenge

A Slow Meander to York – Part 2 – The Selby Canal & Our First Challenge

We bought ‘Head in the Clouds’, over sixteen years ago, she was an empty rusty shell and has been transformed into our home.  There are still many things needing to be done to her, but we were able to move aboard last October and so far, we love living the boat life.

You can read this post, ‘It’s time to sell up and live on a boat where I explain a little more about her and the transformation so far.  Although we’ve had her for so long, we have only, so far enjoyed short journeys, so we thought it was time to try a bigger trip and venture up to York, which was always one ‘cruising‘ journey we wanted to do.  We were quite excited about the trip, it was a big deal for us because:- Continue reading “A Slow Meander to York – Part 2 – The Selby Canal & Our First Challenge”

A list of things to do at Sherwood Pines

A list of things to do at Sherwood Pines

The Forestry commission have excelled themselves in developing a wonderful area for all ages to enjoy nature at its best within the beautiful surroundings of Sherwood Forest, Nottinghamshire.  Sherwood Pines is open every day except Christmas day, from 8am until dusk and has large, scenic areas for parking.  It cost us £6 to park for the whole day, which we felt was well worth it for the great day we had in such a gorgeous place.  There is so much to do at Sherwood Pines… Continue reading “A list of things to do at Sherwood Pines”

A Good Excuse to go back to Canada!

A Good Excuse to go back to Canada!

Going to Whistler last year, was supposed to be a one off ‘special’ snowboarding trip for us and although we had a great time, we certainly didn’t think we’d be going again soon as it was a little on the expensive side, but of course it was fabulous and it left us feeling that we’d just love to see a lot more of that beautiful country, so of course we would have to add more of Canada to our never ending travel wish list or so we thought.. Continue reading “A Good Excuse to go back to Canada!”

An Unexpected Day in London

An Unexpected Day in London

I was in London for a flying visit to meet my youngest son from his three months away in Canada, but as I woke up excited in my hotel room, looking forward to seeing his face, the morning soon turned out to be a disappointment to hear that his plane had been cancelled and he was now due the next day.  So, there was a day to kill… a tootle about London it was to be then.

It was nice though, because it meant I had a bit of (very rare) quality time with my eldest son Continue reading “An Unexpected Day in London”