my big announcement.

I have big news to share with you today.  I’m retiring from the day job!

Honestly, I can hardly believe it myself.  It hasn’t really sunk in yet.  But November 30 will be my last day as a 9 to 5’er.

Most people plan months, or even years, in advance for retirement.  They have a target date in mind and they count down the remaining months, and then days, until the big day.  They have plenty of time to wrap their heads around the idea of being retired.

It didn’t quite happen that way for me.

Up until recently, I always said that I would work until 65 to avoid paying the high cost of health insurance.  After all, I loved my job.  It was my home away from home.  I had a beautiful office, tasks that I enjoyed doing, great benefits and pay, an easy commute, and co-workers that were like family to me.  Why wouldn’t I keep working?

But then the uppermost management position turned over.  Things started to go downhill, and then people started leaving.  One by one, people that I had worked with for decades were handing in their notices.

The atmosphere has grown increasingly stressful and I have never seen such low morale throughout the entire workforce in all of my 34 years with my employer.  It got to the point where the stress was causing me to toss and turn at night, and to dread Monday mornings.  When I found myself crying in my car in the Target parking lot over my lunch hour, I realized that it was time to move on.  Life is too short to spend it this way.

Fortunately, I am eligible for a pension and Mr. Q and I have been putting money away for years in anticipation of retirement.  Both of which will make it possible for me to retire so much earlier than I ever planned on.

And that brings me to the fun part of this post.  As of December 1, I am FREE!  No more full time job.  No more struggling to cram blog projects into the weekend.  No more alarm clock.  No more commuting in a snow storm.  No more feeling inadequate because I can’t meet unreasonable demands.

I am super excited to discover whatever the future might hold, the possibilities are endless.  And I’m also really looking forward to having more time to devote to painting furniture, repurposing vintage finds and posting here on q is for quandie!

 

152 thoughts on “my big announcement.

  1. This is amazing! I am so happy for you and so excited to see and hear more from you. I understand completely where you are coming from – I work in healthcare and COVID changed – literally – everything. I would be very interested to hear what you are doing for health insurance – I will have a three year gap between retirement and Medicare and it is a major concern.

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    1. Well, I’ll definitely be paying for healthcare, and for 7 (!) years. Just not sure if I’ll be doing it through COBRA with my soon to be former employer, or purchasing something in the marketplace. We’ve found a broker who will be helping us with that decision.

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  2. Congratulations to a dear friend and co-worker! You are going to be missed more than you know. Change is constant but some changes are harder to adjust to than others, this being one of them. I am so happy for you and wish you all of the best in your retirement. 🙂

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  3. Congratulations and Yay for more Quandification for us! You will quickly fill your days and wonder how you ever found time to work a 9-5. So glad you will be leaving the stress behind.

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    1. I do believe you are absolutely right about that Susan. I really struggled with making this decision. In many ways it just feels so indulgent. I have to keep reminding myself that I worked really hard for 34 years to get to this point. The next hardest part was actually telling my employer, that was rough too. But now I’m looking ahead and feeling positively giddy with relief!

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  4. Oh Quandie!! So excited for you. Be prepared – you’ll be busier than ever and oh so full of joy about it. Selfishly, I’m thrilled to see more inspiration here. Congrats to you!

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  5. WHOA I was not expecting that!!! Congratulations!!!!!🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉 Such excellent news! I look forward to reinstating thrifty Thursday’s daytime edition 😉 Cheers to you for knowing when to leave. Here’s to your exciting future! 🥂✨

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  6. Congratulations! A new season of life can be scary, but will lead to so much more! I had the same scenario at my previous employer, and God opened the next door WIDE….I’m going on 3 years at my new place, and the morale, the pay, the commute, and my life are so much better….
    Excited for you! 🙂

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  7. Your decision sounds very similar to mine. I retired a couple years early from teaching this past May. Smartest thing I have ever done. I still am working every other week at my antique shop and have been subbing 4-5 days a month. I thought I would miss it, but I have not at all. So, welcome to the retirement world, and just know it’s very enjoyable without the constant daily grind.

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  8. Good for you! Enjoy yourself and your own projects on your own time. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with next!

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  9. This is such great news to us, your ardent followers and fans. The trips you will take! The thrifting you will now do! The beautiful updating of small and large projects you will undertake. Somehow I see a booth or a shop in your future and so many creative things you will dream up. Congratulations- you are young and ready for your best life. Enjoy and relax.

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    1. You never know, I could end up with a booth. But an entire shop sounds like way too much work. Maybe after I chill out for a year or so I’ll get bored and think about it 😉

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  10. Well happy for you Linda and sad hearing the new management has caused so much chaos – I hear Sue & Brian are also checking out .
    Wondering why city council who hired this person hasn’t been listening & working with employees?
    Anyway retirement keeps me extremely busy….. we are providing pottery to 5 shops on the north shore & Jaci was called back to Washington Co – if anyone needs a new job they are hiring!
    Take care loved working with the Oakdale team!

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    1. Yes, you’ve heard right. I can’t even imagine how the city will run without Sue! She has been a fixture there for 40 years. It’s a tragedy that she is also leaving. But, this is going to work out perfectly because now she can do even more ‘picking’ for me, and we’re planning to have a regular thrifting date! Losing Brian will also be a major blow. So sad.

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  11. Congratulations! Its’s so good that you knew yourself enough to know that it was time to say so long to that chapter of your life, especially because it was no longer giving you joy. We tend to put so much energy into things that we hope will “get better”, thankfully you were financially able to make that separation and now focus on your creative side and all the fun things that you share with all of us!! Wishing you all the best! Can’t wait to see what you have up your sleeve!!

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    1. After more than two years of ‘it will get better, just hang on’, and instead it just keeps getting worse, you realize it’s just time to let it go. let it go (breaking out into some Frozen singing now …) turn away and slam the door.

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  12. Great news! Good for you! Looking forward to the “fruits” of you having time now for your various projects, which you will share with us! Have a wonderful retirement!

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  13. Congratulations on starting a new chapter in your life! I am glad that you are able to do this!! I imagine it will be an adjustment but you’ll find your groove and I can’t wait to see what comes next for you!! 🙂 This is truly a blessing!!

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  14. YAY! I am so excited for you and what the future holds! What an amazing self-care act! You are an incredible inspiration to me and I am sure many other followers. I hope to walk your path to retirement in the next few years…and who knows maybe do it sooner just like you!!!

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  15. Congratulations 👏🏻🎉 I know God has other plans for you. “For I know the thoughts I have toward you says the Lord. Thoughts of peace and not of evil to give you a future and a hope” Jeremiah 29:11. Have fun !!!!! I’ve loved it 😊

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    1. I hear you. Over the past six months or so I have been jealous of all of my co-workers that have walked out the door. With each new one I’ve thought ‘gosh, I wish that could be me!’ And as it turns out, it can be me!

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  16. I am so happy for you! I have always been amazed at all you accomplish with your makeovers, while working a fulltime job. Now you can work at your leisure and have time to travel and do whatever your heart desires. No more stress!
    Congratulations!

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  17. That is great news-congrats! Having been retired a year now I must say being the “mistress of my own time” is the best job ever.You will do amazing things.

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  18. I’m thrilled for you! But what a bitter-sweet experience – from loving your job and coworkers to being stressed to the max. Well, you’ve chosen wisely and will now be free to pursue the next chapter whatever that may be. Congratulations and Enjoy!

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    1. Yes, it is bittersweet. For so many years I really loved my job, but it’s clear to me that the job I loved so much is really already gone. And so are quite a few of my co-workers. It’s definitely time to move on.

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  19. Yay, I say!! Retirement is wonderful and, you’re spot on, the possibilities are endless! You will even have time to watch your paint dry!
    P.S. No more “Sunday night feeling” — every day feels like Saturday!!

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  20. Best decision you have made! When the going gets tough, and management doesn’t care about their employees, it’s time to move on. I enjoyed working with you, enjoyed my job, loved (and still do) most of the coworkers (you, Brian, Bruce, Kelly, Keith), but sometimes you just have to do what’s right for you and this is one of those times. I look forward to seeing more of you during the day hours!!!

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  21. Congratulations!! Well done, prioritizing yourself! I did that when I left a job and lost 5 weeks of vacation pay (they only paid out 2 weeks and I had 7 saved up …. It was so busy and stressful that I could never take vacations). My sanity was more important than trying to stick it out to use up vacation days!

    Best wishes!!

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    1. Ugh! How awful that you had to give up five weeks of paid vacation! You know things are bad if you’re willing to give that up just to get out. I’m so sorry that happened to you Sarah.

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  22. I am so happy for you! I’m all for less stress. Now we your blog readers have the privilege of experiencing even more of your beautiful projects. Win- Win!!

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  23. Congratulations! Nothing is worse than a stressful job with unsupportive management. It takes over your life. But now you can do what you really love and are so good at: flipping furniture and inspiring the rest of us! Yours is definitely my favorite blog (i scroll down all the others to read yours first) and look forward to what you have created. All the best to you and Mr Q with your creating and travels.

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  24. Congratulations. Sorry to hear the “day job” work environment has become so toxic. I have missed our monthly chats, but so many things have changed the past year and a half. You are right life is to short to have so much stress. I’m excited for this new chapter for you and the Mr.

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  25. I’m so happy for you! Now for the rest of your life. I took early retirement a year ago and I have never looked back. I love the freedom to do what I like (within constraints of course!). Enjoy 😊

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  26. How wonderful! I am so happy that you are able to leave! I know I will be looking forward to seeing all your fabulous projects! Big congratulations! 🎊🎈🎉🍾
    Smiles, Alice

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  27. Congratulations! So happy for you to be able to do this. Your day job experience is very similar to what I went thru. Retired now for 5+ months and LOVING IT! The stress is gone, the worry is gone, able to sleep at night! Time to spend on creative efforts without having to squeeze it in! Enjoy yourself, give yourself time to relax, then go for whatever you want to do in this next chapter of your life!

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    1. Thanks so much Deb! I will definitely miss working with you via phone. I hope we stay in touch, and my sister and I can make it an annual thing to come out and pick grapes!

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  28. How exciting! Congratulations!
    I’m sorry your last years were so stressful but I’m so happy for you! I have started my retirement countdown, it’s 10 months away and I am Uber excited about it! I’ll be retiring at age 62 and just 3 months short of my 34th work anniversary. I love my job, the people I work for, my staff & my peers but I am so ready for my “second half”.
    Again, Congratulations and may your “second half ” be filled with loads of happiness, creativity and great adventures!

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    1. I have to admit that I think I would have found making the retirement decision so much harder had I still loved my job. So maybe this worked out for the best for me after all. I’m sure the next 10 months will fly by for you and the next thing you know, you’ll be joining me for the second half!

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  29. Wow. I sit there too and wrestle with making it happen. You shared a lot of your process but I wondered if you had any formal “workbook” or coaching to help you make the decision. Just wondering if there are any tools you can share for those of us still in the Target parking lot questioning….

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    1. There’s nothing worse than crying in the Target parking lot, am I right? I don’t really have any tools, but I recommend finding a good financial planner. I’ve found one that takes a holistic approach and will be helping us with health insurance, managing our investments and how to make the best decisions from a tax perspective. It’s a good idea to bring in a professional who understands all of those things.

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      1. Thanks. Great advice but hard to find a jack of all trades like you did. I’m talking to 3, one for each topic and the facts are covered, It’s my hesitation to sit home alone seeing no one (I have some immunity issues) that keeps me in the parking lot unsure of which problem is better or worse…glad you figured it out.

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      2. I’m also have been collecting stuff ? Dressers – trunks- a giant steel wheel -thinking of you and the oakdale team wishing peace & blessings- I’ll send pics shortly- Linda Artist

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    1. You know, I did briefly consider whether or not I’d have to start making some advertising revenue from this thing, but in the end I think we’re going to be fine and I can continue to keep this blog ad-free and just a fun hobby rather than a money maker.

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