I have a plan in place for when I visit my mom next week. Thanks everyone for your comments and suggestions. While she is not in anyway unable to take care of herself, right now, I just want to have my ducks in a row and be able to help her when she has a problem, without having to ask her a bunch of questions (because I don't know her details), which gets her more stressed out and then she can't seem to remember what's what.
At this point and time I would like to mainly accomplish two things:
1) be able to remote into her computer and help figure out what is wrong with it when she thinks she has a problem with it or can't figure out how to do something she wants to do. It's basically impossible to help her over the phone, when she doesn't understand the computer (I still can't even get her to know the difference between the computer unit itself and the modem box), the programs or the internet to be able to convey to me what she is looking at. It's not like the IT guys who service my work system. They can get on the phone with us remotely and step us through what to do. You cannot do that with her.
2) know who her service providers are, so that I know who/what and can better help direct her to a resolution. If she's not sure who she pays her internet or phone too and gets all flustered and has to dig out her bills, then she is just getting frustrated and that makes it harder for me to get good responses out of her. And after I hung up with her the other day I realized it would do no good for her to see if her neighbors phone is working, if they use Quest, while she has Comcast.
I think I won't have too much trouble bringing up my mom's expenses to her. I'm just going to bring a notebook. Tell her I know we have already taken care of, covered some things, but I want to be sure I have all the info in case something happened to her and I'm not having to scramble trying to figure it out.
1) Sluggy brought up an excellent point: Permission to talk to doctors. That is a must be done and we'll have to find out how to go about it. She could have a stroke or heart attack and I'll need to be able to talk to them about it all. Contact her current doctor(s) and fill out something? Not sure how that works if she ended up in the hospital and dealing with different doctors, who would have nothing on file like that.
2). I know I am on her investment and checking accounts, and she does most of it online, so I want to have her log in and passwords, too, so I have easy access, if the need arose.
3). For her monthly and semi-regular bills. I'll get her to go through them with me and make a list in my notebook. That way, if something happens, I know what/who needs to be paid and when. She won't have a problem with that and I'm sure she will think that is a good idea. I think she pays most of her bills by still writing checks.
4) house key. I'm pretty sure I gave her house key back when I moved and she gave it to her neighbor. I think I still need a key. If something happens to her I don't want to be trying to track her neighbor down to get the key.
Also, the thing that has ALWAYS driven me batty is her log in and passwords! Little slips of paper in her desk drawer and half you don't know what is what or they aren't correct anyway. She's worried that if someone breaks in and she had them all written down in one spot.... I don't know how many times I have told her to throw away one of the slips. She doesn't even know what it's for anymore, supposedly for her wi-fi, but probably her old provider. Every time, it's still in her little stack of paper slips. I'm going to write them all down in my notebook, so I at least might have most of them.
So, I'll be finding out who for sure her phone/internet and tv are paid to. Her auto insurance, health insurance, garbage, sewer/water, electricity and natural gas. What credit cards she has/uses. I know she uses ADT security services, so has a bill for that. I will write down her code to turn off her alarm system, so if I needed to get in, I'm not setting off the alarm. I'll see where she keeps her extra set of car keys, just in case for whatever reason I can't locate hers. Find out where she keeps her mailbox key. As far as I know, she has no debts. House and car are paid for. She should just have monthly expenses.