Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Transfer Tuesday


                     

Hello Tuesday!  This is the day that we make an extra effort to pay down our debt.  Most every Tuesday we apply extra cash (whether it be BIG or small) to our outstanding debt.  This helps keeps us aware of and accountable for our debt. And it all makes a difference.

My last Transfer Tuesday was June 16th


Previous balance  $78,142.20
  • $1000.00 payment from eBay earnings( includes payment of $285 for the monthly bill)
New balance     $77,427.20

When we started paying down the debt in Sept 2019 we were at $95,853.00

My inspiration for Transfer Tuesday is Pennies Not Perfection

We have had several medical bills, the hubs had cataract surgery on both eyes, ($3500.00) I had an MRI on my shoulder ($385.00) Perscriptions for hubs eyes pre and post-surgery ($250.00) Ortho office visits ($80.00) I think that is it.  

I pulled more money from eBay savings and some from an RMD payout from last year.  The bills are all paid and let's hope that is it for now :-)


eBay is slowing down a bit, but there are still some sales happening.  I am still working on listing the Noritake that was given to me by a friend.  Free is always good.

There is lots to get done today, mow the yard, pack up a few things for eBay, clean bathroom, and work on eBay shelves in the garage.  There is plenty more to get done, but that is it for now.


Sidenote:  I looked for an hour for the airchuck to blow up the mower tires.  It was not where it was supposed to be and luckily my son in law had one in his truck.  Good grief, I finally got the mower ready to go and was able to mow about half the front yard, and here come the rains.  Now the yard looks sketch and I am over it for today lol.


This may be my favorite Crepe Myrtle this year.  I love this color!

Friday, July 3, 2020

Turning 60 and MRI results

Yesterday I turned the big 60, stepping into a new decade and looking to simplify life, plan for
retirement, and not to take stuff so seriously. 

It was a great day, with calls from family, text messages, FB messages from friends and family too.  My daughter took us out for dinner at Red Lobster, there was social distancing in place at the restaurant.  Tables and booths were spaced accordingly.   Dinner was delicious and was followed up by Raspberry Delight cake from Publix.  It is a tasty cake BUT super-rich.  A little bit goes a long way.


Earlier in the day, I went to my appointment to get the results of my shoulder MRI.  The doc said a lot, but basically, my shoulder does not need surgery at this time.  He said the muscles need to be built up to strengthen the shoulder and this would reduce pain.  He also gave me a Cortisone shot in the shoulder (OUCH) and ordered physical therapy.

The physical therapy office is next door to his office, so I went over there and set up my first appointment for next Wednesday. I am willing to give it a go to avoid surgery.  After a month of therapy, I go back to the Ortho Doc and then we decide if I had enough therapy, or I need more therapy,  with the last resort is an arthroscopic surgery called a decompression. I will have to look that up.

Today I went to Aldi and picked up a few things, mostly produce and butter.  They were super busy!
They were only allowing a certain amount of people in at a time.   Here is a pic of those shoppers waiting for their turn to go inside.

When we go to Publix, this is not the case. As of yet, they allow however many shoppers in the store. 

What are your plans for the Fourth?  We are staying home, my daughter loves to spend money on Fireworks and no doubt this year will not be any different.

It will probably pretty much be just us, maybe our oldest son will join us, but if not that's cool. 
It will be HOT and HUMID which is no surprise. At least we can take refuge in the pool.  But even some days it is too hot to go swimming.

Next week, bills will be paid, money will be shuffled around to make payments on CC that were used for the hubs medical bills, my MRI test bill, and now my upcoming physical therapy. I just don't have the energy to do that today.  In fact, a nap sounds like a good idea right about now. :-)



Have a Happy Fourth!








Tuesday, June 30, 2020

It Is HOT Here

It is soooo Hot here that staying inside seems like the best and only option. The heat index has been in the 100's and there is little if any rain to break up the hot days.  I guess I am getting to an age where I cannot take this heat.


Last Friday I had the MRI of my right shoulder.  The appointment went well except for the pain of the actual test.  The positioning of me, my shoulder and the device clamped to my right shoulder and then shoved into the MRI tube made for a painful experience.  I had to request we stop to reposition once and that helped only a little bit.  After the exam which was only 20 minutes, I immediately left the MRI room and went into the patient bathroom and threw up from the pain.  Follow up with the Ortho Doc is this Thursday. 

Yesterday, I took the hubs to his cataract surgery on his second eye.  We were up at 3:30 AM so we could get ready and leave here by 5:00 AM for his 6:00 appointment.  Same as the first time, they let him in the facility but I had to wait outside in the car for 2 hours.  Luckily it was early and only moderately hot outside.  Now that both of his eyes are done, we can move on to scheduling both of our colonoscopies. This is the year of getting medical procedures done, I guess.

Today we go back to the eye doc for a follow-up check on hubs eye.  After that, I will clean what I can around the house.  The shoulder pain is limiting what I can do and what I want to do.  Mostly just the basics are getting attended to. I take breaks to rest and ice my shoulder. 

This weekend, I picked up a carload of vintage Noritake china from a friend for free.  Her mom was a dealer in Noritake and after her mom's death, they had to close out her estate, sell her home which also had a  separate building FULL of Noritake china. My friend loaded all she could and took it to her house, ( her son said they left at least 20,000 pieces behind) and sell it for a $1.00 apiece.

Well, that was last year, and this year she gave me what was leftover for free.  I managed to list about 50 pieces this weekend with probably 100 more pieces to list sitting in my garage. 


 Cue the theme to Sandford and Son.


Going back to bed  before I HAVE to get up and take the hubs to town for his eye re-check.  Have a fantastic Tuesday!

Monday, June 22, 2020

Monday and a Loaf of Bread


It was a productive weekend around here.  Saturday, I was able to get all the linens washed, the living room, kitchen, and dining room swept and mopped and all the clothes that were clean in the basket put away. 


Sunday, I was  able to use my new to me breadmaker. I found this breadmaker at the GoodWill for $5.00.  It is a Toastmaster TBR15  and comes with a horizontal bread pan that makes both 1 pound and 1 1/2 pound loaves.


Our local stores have not had bread flour, so I ordered it fro WalMart.com. ( Come to find out, I also ordered bread flour  from Amazon as well...oops) Oh, and yeast was not on the shelves either so I had to order that from Amazon.


 The breadmaker did not come with directions/recipes, so I ordered a recipe book specific to this breadmaker.

It was easy enough to throw the ingredients in the pan and push the button and let the machine do all the work. I forgot just how good it smells when you have bread baking in your breadmaker/oven.  It is the best!


My husband and I  taste-tested the loaf after it cooled off but was still warm. If we didn't have family coming over for a Father's Day cookout, we could have made a meal just on the loaf of bread and butter.




Yesterday, the grown kids passed by for hamburgers and hotdogs to celebrate Father's Day.  It is always nice when you can get all of your kids together to celebrate and visit.  Along with hamburgers and hotdogs, we had baked beans, coleslaw, and my granddaughter made a devil's food cake for dessert.

My granddaughter is 6, so she was supervised while she made the cake.  She reads the directions and can follow them pretty well, but she still needs someone to sorta double check when it comes to using a measuring cup.  Her favorite part is licking the beaters and the bowl. That could be my favorite part too!




Time to start the day.  There is always something to do and its time to be productive.  It's going to be another hot one, I am going to try to get the yard mowed but that has been on my list for almost a week.  I guess letting it go to seed it more of a positive way of looking at it. 

I enjoy mowing the yard, but since my shoulder is so jacked up it is not near as much fun.  My husband said he would do it, but the control freak in me won't let him.   I know, I need to let that go. I just can't lol.

Hope your Monday is FABULOUS!






If you were curious, I posted my eBay numbers from last week HERE

Saturday, June 20, 2020

The Health Department Called

The health department called yesterday to let me know the results of my Covoid-19 antibodies test I took on May 28th.  I was in Publix picking up BOGO peanut butter when the call came.



 I walked over to the Pharmacy waiting area to hopefully get a better signal and to find out the results. After confirming my identity I was informed that I was negative for the Covoid-19 virus antibodies. Well, there you go.





The CV-19 numbers are going up quick in Central Florida. Talk is Florida is the new Hot Spot for the virus. Is that because some of the theme parks are open?  Universal, SeaWorld, and I think Busch Gardens is open.



Disney is slated to open mid-July.   When that happens, there will be a high influx of out of state visitors headed to the parks.  Chances are they won't be self quarantining if they are from states with high CV-19 numbers.

MAR 8, 2020 HAUNTED MANSION LAST VISIT BEFORE DISNEY CLOSED



People are itching to get back into the Disney parks.   I like Disney, but having to wear a mask in the heat and humidity is just not something I am going to do.


 It is hot enough without a mask. And with out of state and out of country visitors thrown in the mix, I think we will wait until the numbers start going down.

 In Orlando and the county, it is located in, starting today, masks are mandatory.  The county we live in is a little more hard-headed and I don't see the county requiring mandatory masks for us.


Friday was slated for rain, I was going to mow in the AM but the clouds said otherwise.  Then in the early afternoon, the sun came out! The grass did not get mowed because it was too dang hot.


I ended up listing a few items on eBay, packed up a couple of things, and put up a few things into eBay storage. After dinner, it did finally rain and luckily it was enough to soak the yard and all the plants.  It also cooled it off to a comfortable temp so that is was enjoyable to walk Cricket.



What's on the list for today?

  • mow the yard
  • wash bed linens
  • pick up Father's Day card for hubs
  • start painting the trim in bedroom 

Always lots to do!   Happy Saturday!








Thursday, June 18, 2020

Dr Appointment Update and a List

Cricket, our Papillion She runs the house.
Monday we were up at 4 AM to take the hubs to his cataract appointment in Orlando, the
appointment was at 6:30.  They checked him in car side,( take temp, fill out Covoid 19 questionnaire, etc), and then when it was his turn they came out the parking lot to walk him in.  They did not allow companions inside to wait, so the parking lot was full of cars with significant others waiting on their people.

All in all, he was inside for about 2 hours, and when he was done I was instructed to drive around the back and pick him up.  He was rolled out in a wheelchair, we loaded him up and the headed back to the house.  He said the procedure was painless and that even after the procedure, he did not experience much pain.  The next day we were up early again to take the hubs back for a re-check of his eye.  Everything looked good the doc said, and we count the hub's cataract surgery on his right eye was a success.  On the 29th of June, we will do it all over again for his left eye.

I am counting down the days until I can get my MRI of my shoulder on the 26th.  At first, I was dreading the thought of possible surgery.  NOW, I will do just about anything to alleviate the pain. Sleep is sketchy and the pain is increasing.

Earlier this morning I had a nice phone chat with the new financial planner advisor at PERSONAL CAPITAL. As I stated before, I moved the inherited IRA from a fee-based planner to a fiduciary planner.   He answered all my questions regarding the move of the account and where it will put us at retirement. (This is available if you allow them to manage your accounts for a percentage).

I have been using the  FREE Personal Capital app and website to track everything financial in my life, Bank accounts, saving and checking the HELOC, The CD's, Credit Cards, Retirement Accounts, everything.  The FREE tools included is an investment check-up,  spending analysis, and retirement analyzer. It is a hand app to have on your phone if you are like me and tend to check accounts daily.  This way, the info is all in one place. And it is FREE.
THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT THE APP IS LIKE

PERSONAL CAPITAL is offering each new customer who links an investment account a $50 bonus and I will get a $50 bonus as well.  Remember, this tracks all your accounts, and it is FREE.  You do not have to buy anything.


The rest of the day will be devoted to accomplishing the following: 

  • packing up eBay stuff
  • sweeping and mopping the living room 
  • going to Publix for BOGO peanut butter
  • maybe mow the yard

How is your Thursday going? 





Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Transfer Tuesday




Hello Tuesday!  This is the day that we make an extra effort to pay down our debt.  Most every Tuesday we apply extra cash (whether it be BIG or small) to our outstanding debt.  This helps keeps us aware of and accountable for our debt. And it all makes a difference.

My last Transfer Tuesday was April 28th.  May was a busy and emotional month.  I was working with the grandkids and their distance learning, dropping off their work to the school, going to school to pick up free lunches twice a week.

Then our bulldog Princess became super sick and I was running her to different vets to seek treatment for a condition that turned out to be too advanced to treat.  We had to help her crossover the rainbow bridge and THAT was so hard.  Gah.

So here it is mid June and time to get back on track and post about our progress.

Previous Balance $79,157.65
  • Payment of $48.35 CC rewards
  • Payment of $1000.00 from eBay earnings.
New Balance $78,142.20

Just for a little perspective, when I started to focus on paying down the HELOC, we started 12/15/19 with a balance of $84,630.00. This is a $6487.80 REDUCTION in the balance.  Our goal is to reduce the HELOC balance by $20,000.00 this year. Only $13,512.20 to go!


We still have a ways to go, and there are some upcoming medical bills to pay which may slow down our progress.  But, small and slow progress is better than NO progress.









Monday, June 15, 2020

Pineapple Upside Down Dump Cake

We love our sweets!  Yesterday, I put together a Pineapple Upside Down Dump Cake.  The recipe is loosely based on one I had for a slow cooker, but we did not want to wait for our cake.

This is the end result! 


Here are the ingredients you will need for this delicious and easy dessert.



  • 3/4 cup butter, divided
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 jar (6 ounces) maraschino cherries, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted (optional)
  • 1 can (20 ounces) unsweetened pineapple tidbits or crushed pineapple, undrained
  • 1 package yellow or white cake mix (regular size)

Directions: 
1.  In a microwave, melt 1/2 cup butter, stir in brown sugar. Spread evenly onto bottom of 13 x9 pans. 
2.  Sprinkle with cherries and the optional toasted pecans.  (we did not have pecans and it was fine) 
3. Top with pineapple and pineapple juice from the can.
4. Sprinkle with the dry cake mix. 
5.  Melt remaining butter ( I sliced it super thin) and drizzle or place over the top of the cake. 
6.  Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes based on your oven and location. 

Next time I will add more butter on the top.  The crust was a little powdery in some places.  But overall, you can't go wrong with a dump cake, and this one certainly is delicious. 








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Saturday, June 13, 2020

Cheers

Here is the last gift I will receive from my previous Fee-Based Financial Planner. We were sent an email asking what kind of wine we wanted, White, Red, or Bubbly.  I picked bubbly. We were also asked to join in on a zoom type meeting. Obviously, that's not going to happen.

  They were always big on inviting their clients to "events".  This included expensive dinners so they could talk about what they are doing for "us". 

They also use to send Christmas gifts which were usually fancy cookies.  That changed in the last couple of years, now they send a card thanking us for donating to whatever cause they picked for the year. 

It will be interesting to see how the change to a fiduciary planner will play out.


It is early, early, early, Saturday morning and I am up because my shoulder is throbbing.  I took some Advil, had some coffee, and am using an icepack to quell the pain.  I must have slept wrong or something.  I am hoping to get the pain under control and either go back to bed or at least take a nap today. 

I have stuff to do today and it's all the usual stuff.  Laundry, pack up eBay stuff, list eBay stuff, but first I am going to try to get some more sleep.

Have a great Saturday!



Friday, June 12, 2020

Friday Stuff

It's hot and humid almost every day now, so summer is officially here.  Last week we endured daily deluges of heavy rains due to the tropical system in the gulf that was heading to Lousiana.  The gray days were depressing as heck. 

This week the sun has been out so we are more motivated to get things done.  Yesterday, I mowed the lawn, washed the pool deck and did laundry.  Today I just got back from Target to pick up a few things.  They had toilet paper and disinfecting wipes limit one each.  I automatically pick up toilet paper and wipes if stores have them.  You just never know. 

Late last week I decided to move my retirement accounts from a fee-based financial planner to a fiduciary financial planner.  I have been thinking about this for months.  When I researched the fees that were being charged to my account I discovered that they were hidden and high.  

I have been with this Financial Planner since my mom passed and I had to roll over her IRA into my name as a beneficiary.   I think what sealed the deal for me to move the accounts was when they changed from Mellon to LPL it was a cluster as far as communication about the move and how it was handled.  

Of course, time will tell if the move was the right move.  Maybe the extra fees were worth it?  We will see. 

Ortho Doc's office wall 
After a visit with the Ortho doctor, he ordered an MRI which is scheduled for June 26.  He suspects torn rotator cuff but who knows?  It sure hurts.  I am still taking Advil, using the ice pack, and the TENS unit.  All of which provide some relief. 

The hubs is supposed to get his cataracts done this month.  I say supposed to as he is experiencing some scheduling and communication difficulties. The surgery center needs the physical from his primary which according to him they have faxed multiple times.  The surgery center did not have it as of yesterday afternoon.  

The hospital pharmacy called him and said we don't have your eye drops available for surgery. Oh man.... the hubs was getting hot now.  Then to top it off, the hubs had to fill out an online health survey questionnaire  for the surgery center. You know, the hubs is not one for technology.  This pretty much sent him over the edge.  He tried to log on but may have misspelled a few things.  He came home yesterday flustered and frustrated.  He was HOT!! 

 This is not something he usually does, but then he has never had a surgery before.  He never asked for assistance so I am letting him experience the joys of navigating our wonder healthcare system.  

We did navigate the online questionnaire last night.  The rest of the stuff he will have to take care of today.  

 Monday is his first one and two weeks later will be his second one.  This is what I don't get.  We are on the hook for $1500 per eye as it is robotic surgery and from what his doc says the manufacturer of said robot gets a $1500 fee every time it is used.  For the LOVE OF PETE! 

This will dramatically affect our savings, to say the least. 

I had my 6-month dentist appointment this week, and that was good.  I still need to call and get in for a colonoscopy.  Now, those are super fun.  

For dinner, I am using the crockpot.  We are having Crock Pot Ravioli/Lasagne. I had some frozen sauce which I defrosted, frozen ravioli, and mozzarella cheese.  I warm up the sauce and then layer the sauce, frozen ravioli, and mozzarella cheese into the crockpot.  It takes about 4 hours on high or 6 hours on medium.   We use the Reynolds crock-pot liners so clean up is a breeze.  Add in a loaf of sliced Cuban bread and a salad and dinner is done. 










  

Thursday, June 4, 2020

A Month of Appointments

We did a drive-by of a Sunflower Field 
First of all, today feels like Monday. It's not, but it sure feels like it.  June is filled with appointments for both me and my husband.

 The hubs is having cataract surgery on both eyes,( not at the same time).  His vision has been suffering for the last few months and I know he is excited to get it taken care of.

I finally made an appointment with the orthopedic doctor to get the ball rolling on my shoulder.  The pain has not gotten better, it has only increased with time.

At least we can get the ball rolling with diagnostic imaging to see what is going on.  Meanwhile, I have been using cold wraps and a TENS unit to manage the pain.

 What's a TENS unit?  They are small devices that work by delivering small electrical impulses through electrodes that have adhesive pads to attach them to a person's skin.  These electrical impulses flood the nervous system, reducing its ability to transmit pain signals to the spinal cord and brain. I picked one up at Walgreen's and it is battery operated.   It helps more than I thought it would.

I am still waiting on my Covid-19 antibodies results.  A friend who went two days earlier than I did, already got her results. She was negative.

Our savings took a hit with all the vet bills associated with our bully, Princess.  You know, it is what it is.  At least we had the cash stashed and it did not end up as a charge card expense that we could not pay off.

We have had a glut of rain this week and it continues into the weekend.  It is hard to get motivated when the sun isn't shining.  When I get back from getting my haircut and picking up my glasses today, I will probably catch up on laundry.

Tonight's dinner is spaghetti with bread and salad.  It won't take long so that will be nice.  I recently painted our bedroom, this was before Princess passed, and now I am going to tackle the trim work.  Maybe today, maybe tomorrow.  More like tomorrow.

I did pick up another 10 lbs of Jasmine rice to divide up, use my seal and save and put it up as back up to whatever may be coming down the pike.  Oh yeah, we still pick up a pack of toilet paper when we go to the store.  It may or may not be needed when and if things go south again with a reboot of Covoid-19 or whatever else there is.

Are you building up your supply pantry?  Maybe you already are stocked up, what do you think is important to have on hand?


Friday, May 29, 2020

Today is a Better Day

Up until this morning, the days were hard to get through with the passing of our bulldog Princess.  I woke up feeling like the weight of grief had been lifted.  I am grateful for that and am content know that Princess is in a better place without pain and suffering.

Yesterday I went to a Covid-19 drive-thru testing center.  I wanted to get tested for the antibodies to see if I had them.  Today was the last day that this particular center was going to be open and the test is only $20. 

If you do end up having the antibodies it does not guarantee that you won't get  Covid-19, but if you do get it it may be a less significant case of it.  But who really knows?   

I was super sick in late February and I am curious if I had a case of Covid-19  or maybe it was just the flu. 

On the way back from the testing center, I passed by Goodwill.  They have been open since the 15th of this month, but I have only now had a chance to go.  They had arrows on the floor to promote proper direction in the aisles, and the announcements reminded everyone to practice social distancing.  I think everyone was cognizant of staying proper distances from everyone else and we all tried to pay attention to the arrows on the floor. 

There were a few fun finds that I feel pretty good about being able to flip on eBay.  After that, I took a ride to town about 20 minutes south to pick up a box of items that I found on FaceBook Market place.  It was a porch pick up, they left the items on their porch and I left the money under their front doormat.

Before I put the items in the back of my car, (both from Goodwill and the FB porch pickup) I spray them down with alcohol.  I keep a small spray bottle of alcohol in my car at all times.


 I use it on my self when I get back in my car from shopping, on my purse, and any purchases while they are in the bag before take-off for my next destination. Does it help?  I hope so.  I feel better when I use it.

My budgeting and saving have been ignored for the last couple of weeks.  We were busy taking care of Princess, running to different veterinarians, and mourning her passing.  Bills were paid on time, but that is about it.  The vet bills took a chunk out of savings, but it what it is.  I am grateful we had the cash to cover it. 

Time to get busy with a new day.  Enjoy your Friday!




Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Letting Go of Princess

Princess 
The last two weeks have been filled with visits to the Veterinarian, Emergency Veterinarians, and Opthomologic Veterinarians. 

My Princess was sick and dying from mast cell cancer.  The cancer metastasized to her nasal cavity, blocking it and pushing her left eye back out of the socket. 

We kept her comfortable as possible as we researched options.  Unfortunately the location of the mass greatly limited any treatment plans for a full recovery. 

We made the decision last Friday to help her across the rainbow bridge.  Our vet came to the house and Princess crossed over pain free and surrounded by love.


The hole she left in our hearts is huge.  I miss her so much.