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Everything posted by Pegasus

  1. I have a co-worker who had a long military career and worked around the globe. He's willing to try anything that other people are eating. The stories about food he loves to tell! Balut is one of them that he actually sprang on some friends once in the U.S. His favorite story is about trying a live octopus dish. He actually acts it out, hilarious! I don't relish eating out by myself but was not uncomfortable with it as it was often necessary when traveling for work. . .or alternatively fasting! I wouldn't be bothered by a large teddy bear joining me at my table. Sounds like a pretty peaceful eating companion.
  2. Person 1: I need X and I need it soon. Me: Ok. I can get you X today by doing A or within the next couple of days by doing B. For me to do C, I'd need you to do Z. Person 1: A and B won't work for me because blah blah blah. I can't do Z until weeks from now. I really need X. Me (after researching options): I found a solution. I can do D to get you X tomorrow, you would only need to do Y. Person 1: That will be ok as a one time thing but I really can't be doing Y or Z going forward. It's just too inconvenient/time consuming. ARGH! Then TELL me how you want me to do it! I'm doing somersaults here to try to accommodate you.
  3. I've been eating low carb for several years now; it works best for me. When eating out, it takes a while to learn the tricks and tips on where to go, what to order, and how to order. Apparently, I'm still learning. I've always "known" that there was no point in walking into a Dunkin' Donuts and expecting to find anything I could eat. But yesterday, after an early appointment, I really wanted a coffee and walked across the parking lot to a near-by location. After studying the menu, I stepped up to order my coffee, no sweetener, extra cream. I also asked about getting egg, sausage, and cheese without the bread options. Not only did the cashier not blink, she stated that she could sub an extra egg for the bread. I've never had anywhere else ADD something when I've declined bread, with the exception of a few sandwich/burger places that will wrap it in lettuce instead of bread. The price was the same. Win! Edited to remove the horrifying extra "h" in "sandwich." I just couldn't leave it there.
  4. I sincerely appreciate all this discussion. Please feel free to add more and I will be returning to make sure I glean the information and experience of the board! It's really helping. I called and talked to the would-be carer relative to explain more clearly what would and would not be needed from her and to get an understanding of what her own expectations of a reasonable payment would be. She really wasn't sure and suggested between $20 and $50 a week! I reminded her of all that she would be assisting with on a daily basis and bluntly stated that wasn't enough. She later called back and suggested $350 per month, including the cost of groceries to feed him. Again, not enough, he has a pretty good appetite and could eat much of that.
  5. No, I haven't. Thanks for the tip! I'll look for them.
  6. Thank you for the information. We will definitely follow up on all of these leads being suggested. Very much appreciated! We'll also re-apply for the state medicaid as he was turned down when he wasn't living in the family home in which he owns a share. I think they may account for the property asset differently if they live there.
  7. He'll be on Medicare once he has been on SSDI for two years. He is currently uninsured. He was turned down for the state medicaid program as he has a share in the jointly-owned family home and it was considered an asset. We'll definitely be looking into any services in the area that may be available to him but this home is in the middle of nowhere, along a gravel road, with an hour's drive to anywhere bigger than a small country town. Not sure there is going to be much.
  8. This is helpful. I'll need to make a judgement call on the amount of time it would take on a daily/weekly basis. She would be cooking/cleaning up for herself at the same time which she would have to do anyway. Should I account for that? Or, since HE would need it done even if it was just for him, account for the full amount of time?
  9. I'm managing the finances for a disabled relative. Another relative (not a spouse or child) has offered to provide in home assistance for the care that he needs, which primarily includes preparing meals with cleanup, laundry, and overseeing his medication. They will be in the same house so no transportation issues. What is a reasonable pay rate for these services? I want it to be fair as both parties are very low income. Area is low cost of living and the home is jointly owned by family so neither has any lodging costs beyond utilities. Even the property taxes are paid from a trust. Thanks. Peggy
  10. What type of imaging did you have done? I had a series of x-rays. I've been told they won't be able to get insurance to pay for MRI unless I "fail" conservative treatment, such as physical therapy, first.
  11. Interesting. I wasn't aware of the $500 "family credit" for older dependents. Between that and the AOTC for my two college-are DC, our total federal income tax liability will likely be very low. Or not; I'm not sure how that balances against the loss of the personal exemptions. I have some forms not coming until sometime in February so I haven't started actually plugging in numbers yet. We only itemized once ever so the higher standard deduction is definitely a help.
  12. Thank you, everyone! I saw the chiro yesterday for a new patient evaluation. His assessment agreed with the MD that it doesn't appear to be a disk problem. However, he was able to point out that I'm carrying myself funny (one shoulder is definitely lower than the other) to compensate for the pain. He said things look even wonkier from the back. He also had me examined separately by a nurse practitioner who noted a couple of places on my back where the muscles seem tight/bunched. I'm supposed to return after they have had a chance to confer with one another, review the x-rays that they took, and develop a treatment plan. I've made an appt for tomorrow. Today, I visit the physical therapy place so I'll see how that goes as well. I'm game for doing both, I just wasn't sure if there was a professional competition aspect to it where one or the other wouldn't approve of doing both. Fortunately, I have good insurance and have met my deductible already this year. Heat (hot showers or heating pad) feel good when I use them but I haven't noticed any general improvement in my pain after I remove the heat. I have determined that, while my comfortable recliner feels great to sit in, I have more pain after getting up from there. I do better in a more erect kitchen chair or desk chair. I appreciate all the other recommendations and will be following up on them as I can. Massage sounds great but that would definitely be out of pocket.
  13. I both turned 50 and hurt my back for the first time this month. Argh! I went to the doctor and he reassured me that it is likely a sprain/strain type injury and that I was showing no signs of anything more serious being wrong. He gave me a script for short-term use of a muscle relaxant, recommended NSAIDS, moist heat, and gentle movements. He said I could pursue physical therapy if I didn't recover just fine within a few weeks. It's now been 3 weeks and I keep getting better and then have a big setback. The latest: I was feeling 90% better on Saturday and still was very careful about how I carried myself and other than walking more, I didn't do anything strenuous. Well, Sunday was really bad again and I had my worst night so far last night. I'm not 100% sure, but I think it is muscle spasms as I can't predict which movements will cause the sharp pain, which passes quickly, and then the same exact movement won't twinge at all. Looking for reassurance that this small steps forward and big steps back process is not unusual while recovering from back pain. DH wants me to go back to the doctor but I figure he will say the same thing. I don't need his referral to seek physical therapy so I've made an appointment. They can see me Thursday. A bit desperate, I also called a chiropractor practice that I can walk to. I've never been to one before but this one has good reviews online. They can see me this afternoon. Thanks.
  14. In regards to drawing free body diagrams and solving for unknown forces on a basic beam type problem: I understand that roller supports will result in only one reaction force on the beam, perpendicular to the surface the roller is resting on. I intuitively think that the reaction force must be away from the surface. However, DD recently had a homework question where the correct answer given had the reaction force "into" the roller support. Is this possible and can you explain it conceptually? I added the problem as an image if that would help. EF HW.pdf
  15. One of my DDs likes to sleep under lots of heavy blankets and had talked about wanting to try a weighted blanket. I did a little research and often saw the "10% of body weight" as a guideline. This didn't make any sense to me because the guideline doesn't take the size of the blanket into account. Obviously, a 10 pound blanket in throw size is going to place a lot more weight on a body than a 10 pound blanket in king size. I figured that if she wanted less weight, she could just use part of the blanket and let the remaining weight rest on the bed. So, I ordered a 20 pound monster. MISTAKE! It is too heavy for this 130 pound young woman! It quickly becomes uncomfortable to lie under. I want to get her a lighter blanket now. Would you recommend a 10 pound blanket in the same size? Other tips? Also, any ideas of what I can do with the 20 pound blanket? I'd like to pass it along to someone who could use it and maybe not be able to purchase on their own. They aren't cheap!
  16. Person A to Person D : I'm cooking breakfast for A, B, and C. Would you like me to cook enough for you? Person D : No, thanks. I'm not hungry. Person A cooks just enough for A, B, and C since no one likes breakfast leftovers. After food is cooked and pan is washed, Person D takes a slice of bacon and eats it. Kerfuffle.
  17. I have limited experience, only two cruises under my belt, but the above captures my experience. The actual cruise rates offered through the travel agent were identical to the rates available to me directly online but the travel agent offered a small onboard credit as well as a gift awaiting us onboard. The onboard credit was fun to spend on little souvenirs because we otherwise are quite frugal for such things and the gift was a yummy platter of chocolate dipped strawberries. Since it didn't cost us more to go through a travel agent, I would do it again.
  18. DD had a similar situation due to dance. She waited until she had her last senior year dance recital then immediately had her long brown hair cut short, bleached, and dyed a bright blue color. We tried several temp things over the years but none really worked well on her hair color.
  19. ICE! I recently had very similar pain from a tooth that we had already been trying to diagnose/repair but I was on a business trip when the pain flared. I was Googling like a crazy woman and trying every internet trick out there to relieve the pain. I was taking OTC meds that are counterindicated for me. ANYTHING to try to get some relief from the extreme pain I was in. I finally discovered that it felt ok (not pain free but tolerable) if I kept an ice pack on that side of my face. I couldn't take it off for more than a couple minutes before the pain came roaring back. The flight home was so miserable I had tears running down my face. Try ice. And yes, a root canal was the final solution and was a HUGE relief to finally get it done.
  20. Thank you, everyone! I really appreciate the feedback. I'll let you know if I make contact!
  21. Not a dumb question at all! MerryAtHope is correct that a double major refers to a student studying two (usually related) fields that COULD each lead to a separate degree. The school would award them one degree for the double major. However, there is also a dual degree, which people sometimes also refer to (incorrectly) as a double major, which leads to two degrees. Plus, some schools will award two degrees if a student is "double majoring" in fields of study that actually result in a different type of degree (e.g., BA versus BS). As always, consult the specific school of interest to be sure!
  22. I think many people miss the opportunity to maximize their AOTC credit when their student(s) receive significant grants/scholarships. The IRS fully endorses the coordination of the credit with grants/scholarships and full details along with examples can be found in IRS publication 970. Search the document for "coordination with Pell grants and other scholarships" to read it directly from the source. I suspect many more people will miss out starting this year since the 1098-T will be reporting amounts paid rather than amounts billed and the taxpayer will be too timid to claim more than the amount paid directly to the institution towards the AOTC. Here's a couple snips from IRS pub 970: You may be able to increase your American opportunity credit when the student (you, your spouse, or your dependent) includes certain scholarships or fellowship grants in the student's gross income. . .consider including some or all of the scholarship or fellowship grant in the student's income in order to treat the included amount as paying nonqualified expenses instead of qualified education expenses.
  23. I agree that this is one of the most misunderstood aspects of college finance planning. Because this is such a complex and nuanced topic, I'd like to add a couple items of clarification to this discussion: 1. It would not have been enough for the parents to have purchased a house with their savings if they were still living in the provided housing when they applied for financial aid. The purchased house would have to be their primary residence for the value to not be fully counted. Also, while the value of the primary residence isn't counted at all for the FAFSA, each school that uses the CSS Profile or their own methodology for computing financial need can and do count the value of the primary residence over a specific amount. 2. The federal loans are always available to eligible students as long as the loans do not cause the total aid to exceed the cost of attendance. So, even if a school reduces the amount of federal direct loans on the financial aid statement, the student can request the full amount. Note that the loans would not be subsidized.
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