Retiring Early | Spring Days in the Life

I often think about retirement and what my life might look like then. I’m only 49 so I have years to go, but retirement life is fascinating to me. I’ve been working since the age of 16 – younger, if you consider my babysitting years. I’ve been on my own and supporting myself since I was 18.

Retirement Life

I’ve written in my journal about how I’d like to spend my retirement years, the people I would be with, the hobbies I would enjoy, the way I’d spend my time . . .

I would still wake up early, have my journal/quiet/reading time, slowly savor my coffee. I’d probably go for a walk in nature, exercise, prepare a healthy lunch. I enjoy what I do for work, so I’d likely continue doing that too – just at a slower pace. I’d love to spend time with my kids, family, friends and Elliott.

We could have meals together, cook with seasonal ingredients, do puzzles, go on picnics, bike rides. Maybe I’d get a chance to craft more, learn how to sew. I’d visit antique markets, farmer’s markets, and eat ice cream.

Retire Early

But, the more I thought about it, the more I feel like I can be living that way NOW. Why wait for retirement to live a life you love?

Based on the videos I’ve watched on retirement, you still need leisure activities and relationships and a purpose, or you can end up lonely, depressed or with way too much time on your hands.

So living my retirement life starts NOW. I try to think of myself as “retired early” even though I’m technically not retired at all.

It’s more of a mindset and it just takes being intentional with my time and how I want to live.

Less screens | more face-to-face

Less energy dealing with stuff | more simplified spaces

Here’s a peek into days in my life, keeping the “retired early” philosophy in mind.

Spring Days in the Life

Spending Time with Family

With sports winding down, our evenings are more free. Thankfully, my daughter still wants me to play with her. She’s happy with a board game, but usually prefers going outside and playing basketball, throwing the football or playing baseball.

I’m not a huge fan of participating in those things, but I do it for her. Because it’s good for our relationship, good for me to get moving, and because I don’t want to see the look of disappointment on her face should I decline her invite to play because, “mommy’s too tired” and sitting on the couch watching TV or scrolling on her phone.

Sometimes I really am very tired, but I make myself get up because once I get outside with her, I’m so thankful I did. Even 15 minutes fills her cup and mine.

We’re fortunate to live within walking distance of lots of shops, cafes and restaurants. We walked to dinner the other evening and she giggled and talked my ear off. I loved it! We sat and ate our meal the patio. Stopped for an ice cream for her after.

Then, last week, we tried a different ice cream shop and we both indulged. I like to keep it real and will mention we walked again. There was some whining on the way back. It was a long walk;)

But there’s always so much beauty along the way . . .

I’ll take what time I can get with my son. He’s 14 now and prefers his alone or friend time over time with mom. I’m happy he’s looking forward to our trip at the end of the month!


I love to read and my little girl does too. One of my favorite escapes is a trip to the bookstore. Even better when she comes with.

I’m loving this book Growing Seasons and it’s right in line with how I’m trying to live right now.

The Creative Act: A Way of Being is another book I’m reading slowly and savoring.

It’s the kind of book I know I’ll return back to and I’ve highlighted the heck out of it.

Just re-read Slow also. It’s so good!


I really enjoy baking and have to stop my inner critic from dissuading me “too many calories . . . .” That’s a harsh way to live.

On this weekend morning, I made blueberry muffins and buttermilk biscuits. Both really yummy.

That morning, my friend Trisa stopped by and it was lovely to be able to offer her something homemade while we talked and drank our coffee together. I even sent her home with a goodie bag to enjoy later.

My next baking project is making sour dough bread. There’s a starter recipe for it in Growing Seasons.

Gardening & Appreciating Nature

Starting a garden was something I’ve dreamed about for many years. Before I decluttered so much, I don’t think I had the bandwidth to start a project like this.

But, with such a simplified and organized home, it created space for me to finally create a small garden. You can check out my beginner garden post here. Since that post, our jalapeños are growing like crazy! The herbs are doing well too.

And I’m loving watching our magnolia tree change and bloom. This is the first year the blooms have been blossoming like crazy and I’m just mesmerized by the beauty.

Low Acrylic Vase

I also like buying inexpensive grocery store flowers and arranging them. Such a nice way to bring nature and color inside.

Decluttering & Organizing

I’m one of those weird people that loves extreme organization. So cleaning, decluttering and organizing are things I do for fun. Even my nightly kitchen reset brings me so much joy.

I want to do more decluttering projects with you, but I’ve already done so much without documenting it. Perhaps I can just show you the “after” of some of the areas in our home. Would that be helpful?

We did declutter a bathroom drawer together and I shared my minimal-ish makeup collection.

Maybe I should walk you through the kitchen and pantry next??

Here’s a post about where to start with decluttering.


I’m lucky to get to work with one of my closest friends (Rhonda) and that really gives me that girlfriend time I need. Otherwise, I feel like we’re multitasking friend time with sports, which is okay. Two birds . . .

I’m so thankful for this group of mom friends and we’re good about at least getting together for birthdays. And with a group this size, we sometimes double up. Here, we celebrated Kelly (she’s got the adorable pixie cut, standing next to Ali-Shaun and has the best style) and Ali-Shaun together with a couples’ party.

My Guy

Elliott and I are into year 2 of our relationship and have been settling in. When he’s here, he’s a big help with chores around the house, pool stuff and little household projects.

I’m grateful that he’s good about mentioning if we need more quality time or simply fun time. Last weekend was stressful because we were worried about the potential for his home to flood, but once he was in the clear, we breathed a sigh of relief.

We often eat at home, but I like to go to a restaurant once in a while because it gives us more chance to focus on each other and have a long conversation.

We went to Savoir for brunch on Sunday and it was so good.

We also have a shared “Note” in our phones where we can put down things we want to do together, memories we’ve made, and other little flirtations. I highly recommend!

While retirement may still be many years ahead for some of us, we can live NOW doing the things we envision in the future. Why wait? We aren’t guaranteed the time and they say that our healthiest retirement years are at the beginning.

I get that there are busy seasons, new mama seasons with sleepless nights and you’re struggling just to hang on.

But what if we cleared out the clutter to make room for the things we want to enjoy in life right now? What if we put our phones away and turned off the tv? What good things might we find instead?

What would you love to make time for now? Are you retired? Does it look like what you thought it would? I’d love to hear.

Have a fantastic day friend!

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Meet Megan

Hi! I’m Megan, mom to a thoughtful teenager and spunky young girl. We call Houston home and recently moved into our dream home. I traded my lawyer hat to become a full-time blogger in 2010. I love sharing my passion for affordable fashion, home decor, organization, & fitness to help inspire you to take care of you!


    1. I retired from teaching this past fall. At first, I just needed to REST! 🤣 Then I had a lot a little projects around the house. Then I got those done and I started thinking what now? I have to admit, it got to where I was looking forward to the postman coming each day! And that’s when I learned I had to start getting up and being very intentional about my day. I volunteer with DFW Pug Rescue, helping little pugs find their forever homes. I go out to lunch with friends. And yes, I bake! I have discovered the joys of sourdough baking and I have to say, my friends are loving my experiments! My first grandchild is coming in August, and I have already booked a trip to Yellowstone National Park in September to experience the elk rut. I am working on an adult book and a child’s book about Yellowstone. Retirement is what you make it. Don’t squander the hours. Get out there and live!!

  1. Loved every word you said. Enjoy the now, no one is guaranteed tomorrow. I need to declutter big time.

    1. It’s so true. I lost my dad way too young and two more of my close friends are dealing with ill parents. Makes me appreciate today.

  2. Wonderful post! I love your mindset. It’s very intentional and purposeful. and yes to all the organizing posts!

    1. I’m really trying Susie. Thank you for the appreciation. I’ll share more organization posts soon – I love that stuff!

  3. Beautiful post! I will be retiring this year and moving from NY to South Carolina. We are building a smaller house and I am really enjoying the process of shedding things I don’t need, your posts have helped so much with that!

    1. That sounds wonderful Stacy. I’ve been wanting to visit South Carolina. When we declutter, it’s like a weight it lifted. Cheers to this new era in your life.

  4. Wow! Beautifully written, thought-provoking post. Loved every single word and plan to incorporate some of this into our not-yet-retired life! 💖

  5. Something to consider, even when you are financially secure enough to retire if your children are struggling it’s impossible to watch them do without while “living the good life”. If it meant retiring a little later, for me it was worth it to be able to offer help when they need it.

  6. I love this post. I’m dealing with some health concerns right now, and it’s exactly what I needed to read. I feel like I need/want to live simpler and with more purpose. I’m buying those two books, and am really enjoying the new direction of your blog/IG.

    1. I’ve always enjoyed your posts but since you’ve been changing the topics of some of your posts I like them so much more. Yours is the one blog I look for regularly. This post about retiring is so thought provoking and at the same time inspiring. Definitely opened my eyes and my mind. Please keep them coming. ( but the ‘after’ pictures would be great too!).

  7. Great post! My husband retired early at 51 and you would not believe all the comments given about “what are you going to do”, “aren’t you going to miss working” etc. In a world where so much emphasis and self-worth is put on being “busy” and working it is truly sad to see. I love how you are shifting the narrative a little. Your insights are very positive, healthy and refreshing. I work part-time and enjoy it, as I help and empower other women in my health related business, but I am taking in a slower pace and enjoy discovering what I like to do, we travel more, take in more time and trips with our adult children, I love to garden, read and I think I’ll pull out some cooking books, as you’ve inspired me. It’s funny, since you’ve made a change with your blog, I’ve looked at some of the other blogs/Influencers I’ve followed and just click through now, when it does not align with where my life is going. Over buying, spending, more, more, more isn’t really peaceful or fulfilling is it? Thank-you, really enjoy following along

    1. I’m with you Sandra! I love how you’re living your life on your terms. It is wild how much emphasis and value we put on our work lives and how it can tend to define us if we let it. I was “proud” of becoming a lawyer- all I had to do to get there, so it was hard to let go of the title. It’s like I felt more important/impressive with that career title. But I enjoy my life so much more now and know the title doesn’t mean anything. I’m more appreciative of teachers. They are real heros.

  8. Another great post that has me thinking. I’m fortunate to be retired already at 50 (due to real estate investments). But I do have five years to go until my son graduates from high school, so I have taken on leadership roles in the community. I likely “work” as much as a full-time employee, and I need to find a better balance. Appreciate your ideas!

  9. I love this post! My husband and I are retired. Like you, I started babysitting when I was 12 (full time in the summers), started my first “real job” at 16, and then worked my way through college. I’m in a very busy mama season right now – my daughter is about to graduate HS before moving to Dallas for college. So retirement now means supporting her through this amazing time; in the fall, it will hopefully look like travel and reconnecting. And I’m decluttering all along the way, it helps me decompress when I’m stressed and my monkey mind doesn’t want to shut off. PS I would love to see your “after” shots, especially the pantry and kitchen (I have WAY too much clutter in those areas).

    1. You are so young to have a daughter going off to college soon. I’m sure that comes with so many emotions and I know you must be so proud! Thanks for letting me know you’d like to see the afters- I’ll start taking photos!

  10. I’m drawn to your posts and season of life. I’ll be 45 this year – work full time. We have one in college, one in high school and one in grade school. Although busy, I went into the new year with a goal to stress less, be more mindful , declutter, etc. Big goals … your posts speak to me. Loving all your content , ideas, honesty … keep it up. So many of us appreciate this change of pace in such a material world. 🧡

  11. I really enjoyed reading this! I recently retired at a young age. It’s great so far! But now I’m trying to figure out what’s next. It can get lonely at times. And having a purpose I’m realizing, is important!
    Thank you for all of your inspiration! 😘

  12. What a thoughtful and meaningful post. I love the transition in your life. Your priorities are admirable and quite impressive. I find your posts truly motivating. Thank you.

  13. Love this post!! I can’t wait to check out the book “Slow” (totally into living that way right now too) and I absolutely love your idea of a shared note. I often feel like I’m always making the suggestions of things to do, see and eat, so this is a great idea to get my husband involved in some decision making. Keep posting & writing!!!

  14. This is a wonderful post! I am a 50 yr old empty nester & a farm wife. I retired as a hairstylist of 25 yrs due to sciatic nerve issues. It’s been hard going from seeing so many people in a day to very few. I have definitely missed my clients they were like family! People think I have a lot of free time, not true! I am going to check out those books! I have been decluttering, very freeing! Great inspirational post!

  15. I really love this post! I have many thing in common with you but I’m much older, (58). My girls have graduated college and are going back in August for graduate school in business and the other starting a nurse practitioner track. So they are both home for the summer, so nice. My most favorite thing to do is workout, cook, read by my pool, spend time with my two cavaliers and organize it my therapy. The time goes so fast and it’s so important to keep a strong relationship with your kids and significant other. Unfortunately my dad is in late stage dementia and is basically bedridden, it so sad but my time now is spent with him and I feel guilty because it’s taking time away from my family but I know it’s short lived. I’ve never really thought about the retirement piece but you’re right, why now do the things you love now!! Thanks so much for uplifting post!!

  16. I retired early (59) When we made the decision about a year and a half ago to move from a larger more busier town to two hours away to a smaller town in Missouri to be close to our daughter, son n law and grandchildren. I decided I was done working.. people were asking what was I gonna do with my time? How was I gonna say busy and honestly that’s not a problem I spend my days enjoying things I want to do I cook more, read more, just enjoy life more. I’ve always been really organized. Now that we have been in our new house for a year and half, I am focusing on making our house more organized and functional based on how we use each area/space. I see my grandchildren and daughter every day, and get to be a Nana to them. I love the slower pace of life and spending everyday doing what I love.

  17. Great post! I love the idea of living the life we love NOW, and especially spending more time with family and friends! The key here is to “declutter” our schedules to free up time to do the things that matter most. I’m so glad you’re writing more posts on simple living. Would love to see more strategies on freeing up time as well as space!

    1. Yes, so true. The more I declutter and reduce screen time, the more I realize that we DO have time in our day for what’s important.

      1. Screen time is such a huge culprit! I’ve already put time limits on several apps, but need to work on putting my phone away altogether for the last couple hours before bed (which would help with sleep too!). I’m always looking for ways to save time on “undesirable” tasks. I’m always looking for ways to save time on things like grocery shopping (love curbside pickup!), household chores, etc. Being a type A, I always feel like I should be doing something more productive! Or ideally, relaxing! lol.

  18. Love your words of wisdom, and authenticity! Loved seeing your annotations in your books too! Happy Mother’s Day! Xoxoxo

  19. I’ve been a very long time follower when James was a baby! I have looked up to you and have always enjoyed your content, but I am especially loving your simple living posts. I have two small kids of my own now and I think so many of us are craving a slower paced life. Thank you for sharing your heart with us!

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