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Beth S

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    Costumed Dramas and the WTM forums

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  • Biography
    Happy Wife & Mom of 5
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    Reading, Sewing
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  1. Many apartment complexes have locked mailboxes in a single location (like a cabinet). These boxes also have slots to receive mail into a locked box. (We're rural, but our subdivision has one of these.) For incoming mail, there are mailbox signals, indicating if the mail has been delivered. https://www.amazon.com/MailSig-Mailbox-Signaling-Device-Standard/dp/B06ZZ2RLJP Also, USPS provides a daily email alert with scans of the mail/pkgs to be delivered later that day. You can sign up online at usps.com That system also allows you to ASK the mail carrier to schedule a pickup of a package at your house. Good luck helping your Dad enjoy his mail, rather than getting stressed out about it!
  2. Also consider more exercise to wear her out a bit. Running a lap around the house was what I used (for slightly older kids).
  3. Yes to the suggestion of walking to work in tennis shoes, then wearing the work shoes only at work. Sometimes we go shopping at shoe stores, then buy an equivalent used pair on Ebay.
  4. The plot of the movie "I Care A Lot" (2020) with Rosemund Pike is a fictional account of something like this. It's on Netflix. I expected it to be Dark Comedy . . . but it's just Dark.... Thankful that we have a family attorney, and loving children. Things can spin out of control very quickly.
  5. It's hard to quantify all the successful Hive Advice I've benefited from: Speed Queen. Cinnamon Rolls. Of course SWB's WTM and WEM books. Giving $20.21 as a gift check (fun, affordable amount). And Assisted Living advice today. 😉
  6. Both sets of our parents are in AL, private pay and high quality. One pays rent, the other owns the unit. Just a PSA as we all begin to plan for retirement . . . it's nice not to HAVE to live with your kids. AL still requires a lot of oversight from the children, but none of us could have housed either set of parents in our homes. Here's our experience on Private Pay, which is what we all would prefer . . . BUT.... One set of parents has LTC Insurance, intended to pay for their nursing care, but I have literally spent 100+ frustrating hours over 3 years trying to keep up with the baffling maze of paperwork. Of course the patient could never handle this on their own, so it falls to a family member. We estimate they paid at least $120K over the years ($6K x 20 yrs) for the coverage, and we've managed to get $100K in reimbursement. IMO, it would have been far better for the payments to be invested, and have them live off the proceeds. I know I'm side-tracking the discussion, but Medicaid nursing home beds are indeed VERY hard to find. And Private Pay nursing care is very expensive. Everyone wishes they could just stay in their home and "age in place" . . . but that's not always safe or wise. Our current plan is to set aside the proceeds of the sale of our house for this care in the future. This has been yet another VERY helpful Thread. Thanks!
  7. I've benefited from NewRetirement.com which has a complex free graphing planner, and several articles each week. We have a newly Empty Nest, so I've spent time researching Medical Insurance (newly expanded with the Covid Relief bill), IRA rules, and Social Security thresholds. (Also, the government changes the rules periodically, so your Soc Sec situation may improve.) CollectingWisdom.com is an aggregate of newly posted Financial Independence blog entries, updated each hour. Many of the articles are not interesting to me, but it's a very easy way to get an broad (or deep) understanding of a specific topic. Rabbit Trail: I'm enjoying the Mom Youtubers & bloggers who encourage cheerful frugality like: Minimal Mom, Erica Lucas, Frugal Fit Mom, Our Rich Journey, Frugalwoods, Simple Dollar. This thread has been helpful to me as well. Wishing you well as you continue your challenging journey. ETA: The easy-for-me answer to investing is a combination of liquid savings and stock market index funds (like FSKAX @ Fidelity).
  8. I think you should offer to give the new neighbors a tour of the neighborhood, esp. explaining the Monolith. 😉
  9. Here's a family of four who travels the world full-time, currently in a sailboat off the coast of Spain. This week, the Mom described their daughter's high school homeschooling journey. It's well done, capturing both the academics and the lifestyle aspects that make homeschooling so unique. Everyone's path is different, but I'm glad they captured their daughter's experience, to share it with the rest of us. She includes all their resources, etc.
  10. Slo-Niacin (OTC) helped my dh lower his cholesterol numbers . . . but many people can't handle the various side effects. He now manages it well with just a low-fat diet.
  11. IMO, your Anxiety is based in Reality. I would maybe re-frame this: you're living temporarily in a camper, until you figure out the optimal Next Step. Wouldn't it actually be a blessing, if this "temporary" living situation ended up yielding a DIFFERENT, better "permanent" living situation. Honestly, I agree with the PPs that your Anxiety is actually an acknowledgement of a series of Red Flags. Praying for you. Thankful for The Hive. 👍 ETA: I, too, am 57yo. Yes, my dh & I are talking about what to do in retirement, but having kids move to live next door to us NOW is absolutely not Our Plan.
  12. Rabbit Trail: Two weeks ago, I indeed played "dress up" with my grandkids. One of them wore a cotton jumper her Great-Grandma had sewed for her mom (starting homeschool Kindergarten), 25 years ago. My dd calls it the "Ms. Frizzle" jumper, with all kinds of school supplies scattered on it. We squeezed my grandson into a cotton romper that my brother wore 50 years ago. It was truly a fun photo moment . . . but it really takes effort to actually "dress up" with them 25 years later! Both of their great-grandmas were blessed to see the kids wearing these old clothes (very briefly). I would consider passing some of your heirloom hand-me-downs to nieces and nephews.
  13. Our church gals are reading "All the Light We Cannot See" for next month's book discussion. Last time it was a Jane Austen book.
  14. My understanding is the 529s can affect financial aid eligibility too. My understanding is that the full ride scholarship allows withdrawal of an equal amount from the 529, penalty free. I'm still very skeptical about committing to anything that locks in the money for so long. (The rules governing 529s could change quite a bit over 10+ years.) Another unknown component--could your brother have MORE children be born between now & end-of-her-life? Apparently it is difficult to leave money to a grandchild, even if you have the SSN. Agreeing that the child has to be 23yo+ to inherit without a trustee/guardian. We've put our local bank in charge of the $$ for our minor children, if we pass on. I think there are problems in all directions, sadly. You also don't want the grandchild to become a "trust fund kid" where he's not learning to become an independent adult, due to the future inheritance (which indeed could be $20K, if invested in stock index funds, which follow the stock market). ETA: The definitive answer is to talk with a tax accountant or estate planning attorney for solid suggestions.
  15. Sorry. We put all the boys (4!) in one room, the large bonus room over the garage. We too had knee walls & had to work with the angled ceilings. I was understanding you had 2 kids in one room. Our boys always only built Legos in their bedroom. There's actually a little alcove which was dedicated to Lego. We bought a 3 drawer plastic dresser thing from WMart for the loose pieces, & a bookcase to display assembled items. We also had separate plastic bins for other toys (we mainly bought them construction sets like Tinkertoys, Lincoln Logs, Brio, Magnetix, Knex). LOTS of little pieces! One tip is to rotate the toys (keeping some in the attic) so that they can just dump them ALL out at once. I realize this is all Mom-led, but when you move, you have an opportunity to change the routine setup. (I watch lots of organization youtubers. Minimal Mom just re-did her 2 sons' room & put their toys in Ikea square bins under their beds)
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