Tag Archives: Retirement

I Love to Travel Part 1

28 Jul

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

I guess I must have gotten my “Travel Genes” from my father as he was on the road a lot, for his work, when I was growing up.  Then as a teenager I worried my parents when I made several long trips on my motorcycle.  When I joined the U.S. Navy they took me all over the world, and by the time I got out, I was hooked on travel.  After my wife, DiVoran, and I were married, and I was going to college in California, it didn’t bother me a bit to travel across the “Great American Desert” to visit my parents living in Albuquerque, NM or to drive to northern California to visit DiVoran’s parents in Livermore, CA.

After I finished college we moved to Florida for my work on the Apollo Manned Space program.  Over the years I ended up working for several of the major aerospace companies and traveled quite a lot for those jobs.  I had been shuffled around various areas of the country during all that time and I was ready for a change.  I was working for Lockheed (LSOC), in Florida, when NASA decided to change their Space Shuttle processing contractor.  I was going to have to change who I was working for again, and that was the last straw for me.  I retired from the Manned Space program in 1996, after 35-years, as what I called myself, “An Aerospace Nomad.”   I was just 58 years-old when I retired, and  I felt like the “Aerospace Hassle” had made an old man of me before my time.  I was ready for a rest from the fast pace and constant pressure from the NASA schedulers.

Image: https://favpng.com/png_view/design-cartoon-computer-download-png/Wr40rMyb

I’m sure my first year of retirement was like a lot of men; wondering if I could adjust to all that time with nothing in particular to do.  I also wondered if I would be called back to the job like many men I knew had been.  If that happened, what would I do?  I would just have to wait and see how I felt about that, if and when I was called back.  As it turned out, I was able to adjust fairly well.  It took a while to take care of all the repairs around the house (Honey Do’s), but I managed.  A couple of years later I started volunteering, one morning a week, to help at the Car Care Ministry at our church.

Image: https://www.pinclipart.com/pindetail/iTmRm_clip-royalty-free-download-car-repair-shop-clipart/

A year or so after that, a friend talked me into volunteering, as a Tour Guide, at the Warbird Air Museum here in Titusville one morning a week (that wasn’t hard).  I am interested in all kinds of airplanes, and this allows me to keep up with the warbird community as well as the on-going evolution of the aviation industry.  I love the time and the comradery I get to spent with the friends, I have made over the years, at both of these weekly volunteer occasions.

Photo: Bill Lites

Then in 2012, in addition to the volunteer work, I took up a new hobby – Travel (one of my favorite things to do) and blog writing.  While browsing thru the gift shop at our Warbird Air Museum, one volunteer day, I happened upon a book titled “GUIDE TO OVER 900 AIRCRAFT MUSEUMS.”  This guide book covers museums in the U.S. and Canada.  I thought, “WOW!  This is just what I need to help me find aviation museums to visit.”  As you might have guessed, I have developed a love of going to museums.  All kinds of museums.  Airplane Museums, Auto Museum, Train Museums, Maritime Museums, or any other kinds of museums I happen to come across.

Photo: http://www.aircraftmuseums.com/28book/pasteditions.htm

Using that guide book, I have established a method for my travel plans.  I usually try to make one (two week) trip in the spring and one (two week) trip in the fall of each year.  My 2020 and 2021 trips have been interrupted by a hernia surgery and a shoulder replacement surgery and Covid-19.  I have had to postpone one of this year’s trips, because of Covid-19 travel restrictions, but I am determined to get at least one two-week trip in before the end of the year, in spite of the ridiculous, ongoing national phrase of….

—– To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 63 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

On the Street Where You Live…Part 14

3 Nov


Fred retired from the Air Force and from Langley AFB and we stayed in Virginia for another seven years in that house.

Both of our daughters had married, and we decided we didn’t want to live in snow anymore in the winters.

My only sibling – my brother, and his family, live in Florida and we had visited them many times, and liked it.

And so we came to Orlando, looking for a house.  We actually settled on a new house in Kissimmee, in a new subdivision.

It was a three-bedroom, two bath, split plan house, with the master suite being on one side of the house, and the other two bedrooms and bath on the other side.  I liked that idea – the separation was convenient when we had visitors staying with us.  The living room/dining room were sort of together, so that was something we had to arrange furniture around.  The kitchen and family room divided the master bedroom suite from the other bedrooms. 

The master bathroom was an interesting shape.  Along one wall were two sinks in a counter space, and a long mirror covering the entire area.  At the end was the glass-walled shower, and next to that was a garden tub.  There was a window over the tub with an “orange slice” at the top.  We eventually had that window filmed for privacy.  The toilet was in a room off the next wall, with a door.  Interesting and convenient.

This small chest of drawers is now in the guest bedroom

There was a small wall space between the bathroom and closet.  Only wide enough for a narrow chest of drawers.  We had one TV and some book cases in the bedroom with us, as well as a dresser.  The closet was a walk-in closet; small but efficient.

At the end of the hall leading to the other bedrooms and bath, was the space for the washer and dryer.  Along that hallway was a narrow pantry.

The second bathroom had a door in it, leading to the back yard.  Since so many houses in this area have pools, that door was for the purpose of coming in the house after getting out of the pool.  We didn’t have – nor did we want – a pool, so I covered each pane of clear glass in the door with “crystal” contact paper, so all things going on in the bathroom were private but still let in outside light.  It had a single sink, a toilet, and the tub/shower.  Small but quite efficient.

The ceilings in this house were modified cathedral ceilings, peaking over the kitchen.  They were finished with the popcorn finish.  There were many cabinets and cupboards, and the sink looked out into the family room.  There was the usual refrigerator and stove and dishwasher included.  It was a quite comfortable kitchen to work in.

There was door leading from the kitchen to the garage – a double-car garage.   There was an open doorway from the kitchen to the dining room/living room.

There was a patio in the back yard.  There were sliding glass doors in the master bedroom and the family room.  It was covered, and made of concrete.  We didn’t use it much.  I had thought of screening it in, and we might have used it more, but we never did.

When we began thinking of moving into Orlando, realtors kept telling us we needed to put in a pool, as no one would buy it without one.  We didn’t need or want the expense of adding a pool, and as it turned out, the lady who bought the house didn’t want a pool!  So it would have been a real waste of money to put one in.  It might have even negated a sale to have one.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Letting Go

22 Jun

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and ArtistWhen Bill retired, I had no idea what I was going to do with him. It was the same old story that happens when people retire. The retiree is lost and feels a need to go back to work. Bill had nothing of his own to do. He could only relate to what I was doing. He told me how and to do laundry, wanted the dishes in the dishwasher placed just right, wanted to take me everywhere he went, and expected my full attention when I was trying to concentrate on my own writing.

Now don’t get me wrong. I love Bill dearly, even after fifty-seven years of marriage. But at retirement time I had the normal aversion to change, and to adjusting to someone else being in the house most of the time.

It wasn’t long until Bill got a chance to learn to fly model airplanes — something he has loved all his life. Then, thank Heaven, he was out of the house for several hours every morning. That helped.

Eventually I got him to go down for a nap in the afternoons. I take one and I thought it would be good if he took one too. Now he loves it.

As time went on, he added volunteering at a church to help with their Car Care ministry on Saturdays. Then he started going to the fitness center. All was well.

Slowly, though, airplanes started crashing because of electronic interference. He was going to have to learn to fly in an entirely different way – a computer way.

We each have our own computer and have been working on them for years, but we need a lot of help with them. We have computer angels who make house calls and one that we can trust that we pay, so we’re blessed in that way, but none of them is interested in flying airplanes.

Bill had a friend who volunteered with the Valiant Air Command museum and so he decided in order to still have airplane time, to spend one morning a week doing that. He has made new friends and enjoys meeting people from all over the world.



Then he decided he wanted to travel around the U. S. and visit other airplane museums and attend fly-ins. At first he invited me to go, but I’m more of a stay-at-home type. We’re a rare type and most people don’t understand us. Did you know that?

The more he traveled, the more of his non-traveling life it took up. He now spends hours at the computer making the most detailed and meticulous plans you ever saw. Then he goes on a trip. He started out going only for one week, but then expanded it to two. He had to, there are many museums to see. Sometimes he visits as many as eight in one day. He travels fast, and he travels cheap. When he comes home he organizes his pictures, and his notes, and writes blogs. When the whole journey has been precisely documented, he starts planning the next one.

Proverbs 3:5-6Amplified Bible (AMP)

5 Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding.

6 In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.

My Newest Thing

23 Feb

I’ve added a new thing in my life and I never saw it coming. One day I was playing in the garden, canning and baking in the kitchen and the next thing I know, I am glued to my keyboard, pounding out 140 characters.

I thought I was going to spend a nice winter/spring in Florida, reversing the trend and mooching off our daughter. I planned to carry my weight with a little cooking and cleaning in exchange for a winter escape. It hasn’t quite worked out that way.

I was so proud of Rebekah when she self published her first book in the Seasons of Faith series. To be a writer has been her dream since she was a child, writing, “I’m very mad at you” on her chalkboard. She had to interpret the scribbles. Since we were mooching off of her for the winter, I offered to help her promote her book.

Book promotion has changed since the old days. Rebekah held a book signing at a friend’s restaurant and made an impact on seven people. I quickly learned social media is the way to go. Fortunately I love technology and was already a twitter addict. So here I am, pounding out 140 characters, hoping it makes a difference and best of all making new friends like you.

If you are new to social media and blogging. Check out this very short eBook by my new twitter friend. I promise it won’t overwhelm you.

How to Make a Splash Online eBook: Kathy Lynn Hall: Kindle Store http://j.mp/A2XKNM

I would love to have you follow me on twitter @onisha or @iluvscoops if you don’t mind my political side.

It would be greatly appreciated if you would Like Rebekah Lyn author FB

What do you do with all your time?

13 Jan
  •       The first question friends ask when I tell them I am retired is what do you do with all of your time. Well this photo should give you a pretty good idea. I am busy  doing the things I didn’t have time to enjoy while working.Image
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