Retired and Inspired

This is a group for people who are doing something interesting and worthwhile, now that they're retired. Not necessarily amazing, just worthwhile. If you are involved in something interesting please let me know as I would love to interview you.

Website: http://retiredandinspired
Members: 12
Latest Activity: Aug 23, 2013

I have included one of the interviews that I have posted at I hope you enjoy it. If you have a story to tell, please let me know.

Chris Gulbin-Back in the Day

Anyone who is a firefighter has seen more than anyone should have seen so it is an interesting twist that seeing a picture of a fish helped give a new direction to a retirement. Chris Gulbin has always loved the outdoors and fishing and inspiration struck one day when he was looking at a magazine and saw a drawing of a trout. "I'd like to do that." and so he started on a path to give his life a new meaning.
He took a beginner class in art from The Art Lab and started to learn to draw and paint.
When asked how he improved, Chris said, "You just have to put in the time. It's like working out." So Chris kept painting and people started to notice.
Life, and Chris' art changed on Sept.11, 2001. Chris had just finished a 24 hour shift covering a vacation when he was sent to ground zero. After working there for 24 more hours he went back and finished his regular shift.
Opening on Sept.11,2008, Chris has an exhibition of his watercolours on display at the New York City Fire Museum. "Heroes of September" is the museum's commemorative display of the 7th anniversary.
Proceeds from the exhibit will help the burn unit at Staten Island University Hospital where many firemen are treated.

What's next for the retired FDNY Lieutenant? Painting and improving his painting. As Chris said, "The only way to run faster, is to run faster."

If you would like to see more of Chris' work, please go to


Discussion Forum

Comment Wall


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Comment by jean fields on August 23, 2013 at 2:54pm

why are the comments from 2009 still on the page.. has everything moved or is the blog finished...

Comment by jean fields on July 8, 2013 at 10:26am

I am a retired horse trainer..going a little used to working seven days a looking to downsize my home and move nearer to my daughter.. but I have to buy something I can afford. because money has just gone gone to taxes etc..I am going to a house again. I love to fix up. and keeps me occupied.and its a love of mine..

Comment by Ron MacDonald on June 14, 2013 at 5:36pm

.............just found this group and it looks interesting......and as it turns out, I just started reading a book that is appropriate....The $100. Start Up..................interesting.............more later......

Comment by Charles O'Dale on June 10, 2013 at 7:53pm

Landing at Buttonville, having a great time!!!

Comment by jack on May 5, 2009 at 11:45am
“You have the need and the right to spend part of your life caring for your soul. It is not easy...To be a soulful person means to go against all the pervasive, prove-yourself values of our culture and instead treasure what is unique and internal and valuable in yourself and your own personal evolution.”

—Jean Shinoda Bolen; psychiatrist, author
Comment by clarence haynes on March 24, 2009 at 4:44pm
I am computer rookie insulin-dependent since 1977, have found a way share my experiences of being a CNR porter for 25 years, maitre'd at 3 soul food restaurant, in Toronto, SOUL AMBASSADOR with TORONTO TOURISM for 22 years,and a ROLE MODEL to over 40.000 diabetics and telling them to being in CONTROL. not DIABETES. On JULY 30, INSULIN APPRECIATION DAY, I will asking insulin-users, worldwide, to join me, in silence, and give THANKS for BANTING & BEST, giving hundreds of millions of US a chance to live a healthy lifestyle. Check out www.restorethebantinghomestead. com and find out why AMIGOS will be selling BLUE ROSES on that day to support them. We chose this flower because one of its meaning is "ATTAINING THE IMPOSSIBLE" our motto. At 91 and a student of the UNIV OF HARD KNOCKS, where there is NO GRADUATION DAY, and you never finish your apprenticship, I realize how little I know and yet to learn.
Comment by Linda Edwards on February 3, 2009 at 8:33pm
Interesting story about Tom McCreight. I really enjoyed reading it. Thanks.
Comment by jack on February 3, 2009 at 7:43am
re the Tom McCreight article..... sorry the pictures didn't come through again. If you would like to see the article about,"The Old Coot" in its entirety.. go to Thanks
Comment by jack on February 3, 2009 at 7:41am
Tom McCreight

Sometimes what we do in our retirement is an extension of what we did in our earlier life. Tom McCreight was a teacher in North York and he loved being a teacher. His career took him to all areas in the board where he taught math and sciences. One day the music teacher at his school came to him and told him that he was putting together a band and asked Tom if he would like to be the bass player. Well...... Tom had never played the bass but hey he knew a few chords and before he knew it, he was playing in a band. Ultimately that group went where most groups go but by now he had become involved with the Toronto Bluegrass Committee. He received a call and was asked to put together a house band and they started playing The Brunswick Hotel in downtown Toronto on Saturday afternoons. Ultimately this led to the founding of SILVERBIRCH of which Tom is the sole remaining member.


Retirement came and Tom got more and more involved with bluegrass. The band continued to play and Tom started selling bluegrass CDs under the name Coot. His business grew as did his nickname, "The Old Coot."
This ultimately led to his publishing a quarterly newsletter and you can still find his column at The Blugrass Music Association of Central Canada website.

Through his association with "his hobby" Tom met Mike Stevens, the famed harmonica player which led to his involvement with Arts Can Circle.

During a layover in Gander, Mike talked a reporter into taking him up to Davis Inlet. What he saw and experienced led to the founding of Arts Can Circle, an organization which, in their words: "is an independent, volunteer-run group working to link creative artists with Native youth at risk in Canada. Our hope is to encourage self-esteem amongst Native youth in isolated communities through a cooperative exploration of the arts."

So Tom continues to play bluegrass but now his hobby has led to a much greater involvement with a much larger project.
You can catch Tom and Silverbirch on Saturday March 28, 2009 as they play a concert fundraiser for Arts Can Circle at The Uxbridge Music Hall. He has been very grateful for past support from the merchants and people of Uxbridge. Previous concerts have been extremely well received and supported especially by The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 170 and by the Rotary Club. There are only 300 seats in this wonderful hall and tickets can be puchased for only $15 at The Blue Heron Book Store. Come on out for a wonderful night of Bluegrass!!

When I asked Tom for a favourite quote he said, "I'd rather be sorry for something I did than something I didn't do."
Ya gotta take a chance and get out there and do it!!
Comment by Linda Edwards on February 1, 2009 at 10:57pm
Hi all, I am retired from my regular job as an occupational therapist, but I still had a drive to work so I have continued to work in developing my own businesses. We all have so many skills to share from our work experiences. Let's keep sharing our successes.

Members (12)



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