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Life in Baltimore: Enjoying the retirement lifestyle, Part II

Brenda Bowe Johnson | 9/25/2015, 9 a.m.
Retirement should be a time to engage in activities that you always wanted to do but did not have the ...
Retirees Carol Green and JoAnn Jolivet.

Retirement should be a time to engage in activities that you always wanted to do but did not have the time. During this active life try something new, stay social, travel, and spend time with family and friends. The retirees who are highlighted here represent examples of leading an enjoyable lifestyle. They are truly grateful for these precious moments in their lives to share with children and grandchildren.

A retired principal, Carole Green starts her day thanking God for his goodness and exercising to continue a healthy lifestyle. Since retiring, she has taken courses in jewelry making, scrapbooking, line dancing, Zumba, Spanish, computer classes and African American short stories.

Green volunteers at Douglass Memorial Community Church's Strengthening Families Program. As a member of Women Behind the Community, Inc., Green serves on the education committee which mentors fourth and fifth grade girls at Edgewood Elementary School. She also volunteers at the organization's "Dressing Room," which provides clothing for women returning to work. She is also an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

"I love spending time with my husband, grandchildren, family and having lunch with former co-workers," said Green.

Even though she has done some traveling, she has created a bucket list of places she would like to visit, including Rome and Japan. Carole suggests, "to be thankful for this time to do whatever you want, when you want, sometimes you have to say ‘no’ and make a bucket list and aim to check off activities."

"Retirement is a misnomer. My son said, ‘Mom, you were tired and now you are getting retired," said JoAnn C. Jolivet. "During my twenty year career as military nurse and officer, I served in various diverse assignments and positions throughout the Army Medical Department.”

Jolivet’s last assignment was Deputy Commander for Nursing, U.S. Army Hospital, Ft. Belvoir, Virginia. Four months into her retirement, a colleague recommended her for a position with the National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC), an AmeriCorps program. She served as the first Director of the North Atlantic campus of NCCC and was part of the team to successfully open the first NCCC program, which was in Maryland.

Since retirement from the military, Jolivet served two terms as president of Rho Xi Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., taught basic computer skills to elementary and middle school students, served as a Loaned Executive with United Way of Central Maryland, coordinator of the Student Enrichment Program at Coppin State University 's College of Health Professions. She also served on the quality committees of two not-for-profit healthcare institutions, and volunteered many hours in various community programs.

Currently, Jolivet is on board of trustees at the historic Union Baptist Church. An avid reader, she is a member of Literarily Yours (LYBC) and Reading by the Dozen book clubs. According to JoAnn," LYBC is my Alpha Kappa Alpha Sister Circle and besides monthly meetings, we have hosted a meet the author and book discussion in Tobago and traveled together to Cancun and Brazil." She loves to travel and has traveled extensively in the United States and abroad. JoAnn says, "My favorite pastime is spending time with family, especially my two adorable grandchildren, and friends. I don't complain about the weather or other things over which I have no control. My daily routine is to thank God for this day and try to be a blessing to someone."

These impressive retirees have developed a lifestyle that is meaningful and healthful. Now that they are free to design their lives, they have chosen to volunteer their talents and skills in the community to enhance the lives of others. To those planning to retire there is plenty to do and plenty to achieve.