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Alan, As a person who experienced a similar situation as your early unforced retirement at age 55 two years ago, I understand. What I found was that once I determined my wants and needs, it was fairly simple to allocate the assets.

The more difficult factor in the equation was time. I don't know your background or experience, but recommend that you consider one of my solutions to the time situation. It doesn't pay off in money, but the value is considerable. I started substitute teaching in a local school system in a variety of subjects and all grade levels. There's a critical shortage of people like us.

The payoff in working with our young people has been unbelievable. They are eager,and educable; some truculent, some absolutely wonderful. I recommend checking out all levels then deciding a preference. I like middle schoolers and high schoolers, but elementary and pre-K have been fun too.

Friends like Dave (TMF Pixy) can tell us the great financial alternatives available. But once you decide on those plans, the idea of how to spend your time (once the travel and summer house allocation is spent) is really important.

The best part about substitute teaching is that I can decide to make myself available only a few days a month or lots of days a month and it doesn't matter. The schools want you whenever you can fit them into your schedule. In Austin, Texas, there's no teacher certification required for subs, only 60 to 90 semester hours of college. My masters degree doesn't get me any more pay, but it did prepare me to teach subjects as varied as physics, biology, spanish, world history, American history, computer science. You get to choose.

Wish you the best on both the financial and personal side of this early retirement opportunity! Cheers!
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