debbie leaman writing workshops

Reluctant Planning By Debbie Leaman

“You should learn how to use the snow blower in case I’m not here one day,” my husband Howard mentioned over dinner last winter. No snow was predicted.

I put down my fork. “What do you mean not here? Are you okay?”

“I’m fine. But maybe you need to learn a few house things, you know, just in case.”

Jubilation By Holly Webster

Me, retired? The word ‘retirement’ seems repugnant— dismissive and a relic of old social norms. It conjures up images of shuffling around in slippers, padding quietly through the days, waiting for the end. I'm not quiet. Nor do I shuffle. That’s not who I am.  And, I am certainly not waiting for the end! 

Fishing Without a Hook By Lynn Decker

Boxing up the last odds and ends of my work life, I sorted thirty-four years of books, papers, talismans and stuff among a few boxes and the overflowing recycling bin. I reached for one particular talisman, a button pin – Fishing for Solutions. Faded from years of exposure to finger oils and sunlight – it was smooth and perfect, nice in the hand to finger and flip while thinking. Given the handling and the dozen office moves during my career, I am not sure how it survived. It both reminded and inspired me – of the chase, chance and opportunity that every day and every challenge presented. I’d been working the last 14 years in fire and forest conservation across the U.S. The wicked fire challenges for people and our forests was both a passion and compulsion – and now it was over for me.

2018 Silver Pen Writing Contest Winners Announced

Silver Pen Writing Award Partners, Salt Lake County Aging & Adult Services, Salt Lake County Library, and Salt Lake Community College Community Writing Center, invited all older adults to participate in the 2018 Silver Pen Writing Contest by writing and submitting their own essay or poetry based on JOY . . . read the winning essays and poems . . .

Strands of Loss – Strands of Grief – Strands of Gratitude by Madeleine Sigman-Grant

From the earliest time, I can remember strands of yarn in my hands. Even before I could manipulate a needle, I held my arms out as my mother laced skeins of yarn around them so she could roll the yarn into balls. That motion symbolizes my life – unravel, rewind, create, unravel yet again . . .

Connecting with My Inner Artiste! By Cathleen O’Connor Ph.D.

Summer is approaching, and I am looking forward to that time of year when life seems to naturally slow down and I get to catch up on books I haven’t read, dip my toes in the water and breathe a bit more deeply.  

Retirement: Diving into Danger by Howard Leaman

“What are you doing with your time, now that you’ve retired?”  That was the question the Ski School Director asked me during our pre-season ski instructor orientation. My answer to him was not even close to adequate, especially when I realized that many of my friends have been wondering that very thing for themselves.  What I’ve been doing is not so much a “list,” as much as a continuing process of calibration.

Initially, thinking about going from a busy medical practice to “retired,” I'd developed a sense of impending dread. Would I become useless, cranky and senile? Would my health deteriorate? Would I “fail retirement,” and become depressed with nothing to do, and have to go back to work? 

No— I’d prove my continued vitality.