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Archive for January, 2011

My Bucket List and More......

January 31st, 2011 at 03:40 am

Monkey Mama,

You got me thinking about life and all.. so here it goes:

MISSED OPPORTUNITIES:

**Go to college in Oregon
**Travel to Hong Kong (too many strings attached)

THINGS I HAVE DONE:

**Took an unpaid leave of absence as a single mom to pursue a degree (met current DH there!)
**Obtained BS and MS degrees while working and living
**Traveled to Europe for 3 months to visit relatives - met my grandfather - priceless
**Went on a game show (only won the door prizes)
**Texas on for a family reunion on DH's side - saw the family farm
**Current Girl Scout Leader
**Won 3rd place in a racquetball tournament
**Las Vegas
**Ran a half marathon
**Northern California/Oregon - RV road trips
**Cruise to Mexico
**Master's thesis was published
**Play inline hockey on a beginner team 40+
**Learned to play the accordion (with lessons)
**Enjoy working in a traditionally male dominated field as their boss
**Made wine at home from grapes we grew
**Travelled to New Mexico twice
**2 wonderful children
** Processed home grown olives
**Great husband of 15+ years
**Earned a certification as a LEED AP
**Directed a murder mystery for a work project
**Hiking in the June Lake, CA area


THINGS I WOULD LOVE TO DO:

**Grand Canyon
**Alaskan RV road trip (this summer!)
**Zipline with DD and the Girl Scouts
**Join a cycling club
**Volunteer at a local shelter for pregnant women and their babies
**Adopt an older child
**Go on another game show
**Become a life coach specifically for young women who need a fresh start
**Grandchildren (DD plans to have lots!) DS is noncommital at this point! Smile Can only hope!
** Travel to all states in the continental US - RV road trip
**Become a published book author

There's probably more, but all I can think of for now.

Got the News....

January 17th, 2011 at 04:34 am

My friend with the brain tumor met with her neurosurgeon on Thursday. She definitely has a tumor, but it is slow growing (Grade 1 almost to Grade 2). As soon as insurance approves the surgery, it will be a go. She will have to off the blood thinners for 2 weeks prior to surgery. The hospital time should be no more than 1 week. The Dr. was very positive about everything, which reassured my friend. Of course, one will not know if it is benign for sure until she is on the table.

On the financial front, I am determined to do my taxes sooner this year. I usually get them done in time, but the lags increases each year. I use Turbo Tax, and it looks like Amazon may be the cheapest place to buy in (in conjunction with Quicken - I have not updated Quicken for a long time). Plus I have some Amazon GC $ from Swagbucks.

Lazy day today - except for hockey - we won yay! Cleaned and did laundry. Am off tomorrow due to the holiday and plan to do some roller blading at the local school......DD has a composer report to finish (Beethoven)and he was a strange one.....

Why Do I Save?

January 13th, 2011 at 05:42 am

Got into a philosophical discussion with one of my co-workers (actually I supervise him and the gang of stooges). He knows I save bucks Smile and was snickering when I was talking about the Kellogg's cereal settlement if you had purchased Mini-Wheats during a specific timeframe (http://www.cerealsettlement.com). A $15 check is the probable amount of the settlement if one had purchased 3 boxes. Anyway, he said that it would be a darn shame if I died tomorrow without getting a chance to spend any of the monies I had been saving. And you know what? He is right! I have always been in high gear (at least since 1991 when I got divorced from the first DH) to save and my dear, current DH is also like-minded. We both grew up lower middle class and did not have a lot of stuff (good thing) growing up. Our house has been paid off for 8 years and our retirement funds (401K, 457b, Roth IRA) have always been fully funded. In fact, this year I just began the catchup provision. We have been blessed with good health (so far) and both of us will receive pensions when we retire in addition to the retirement vehicles previously mentioned.

Maybe I do need to lighten up a bit. I do not have expensive hobbies and DH and I do not particularly like to go out. DH likes to hunt and fish but has not due to caretaking issues with his father. The Alaska trip is exactly what we need.

52 and Counting.........

January 8th, 2011 at 01:28 am

Not my age (yet!) but number of items to donate to date. This does not count the umpteen little trinkets that my DD has collected over the years (small things like McDonalds toys, etc.). Those I may try to put on Freecycle. The lbs. (or maybe almost tons) of paper I have been putting in the recycle bins has been endless. We take all of our items to be recycled to the nearest university's recycling center. Hopefully we can make it out there next weekend. A local elementary school is also hosting an e-waste recycling event. We have lots of old stuff for that as well.

I even found some unused gift cards - Baskin Robbins and a Bed, Bath, and Beyond. More razors that I got for free and stashed away in a safe place (Ha). DH has been bugging me for more razors so this is his lucky day!

This weekend it is off to the library to bring the books and magazines to donate. Also to a local school to donate e-waste.

Started back on the BL Wii game. My back had been bothering me so I did not use it at the intervals. But it was weigh in day and I lost 3 lbs in one week. Yay! I went to a chiropractor and he did adjustments (scared me) and got a massage. The massage really made a difference. So.. now back to more exercise and monitoring my diet.

My friend who has the brain tumor had another MRI and will be seeing a neurosurgeon next week. Her DH said that the tumor looks large and he is also feeling really down. DH and DD are headed over their home tonight (I have bunco) for dinner and a night of Wii games and spread some cheer. I printed out some info from the Web about gamma knife surgery for them to read and discuss with the Dr. It is less invasive than ordinary surgery and maybe this could be an option for her. If anyone has any knowledge of this procedure, please comment.