Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Accounts closed and revised

The check I deposited into my Chase checking has finally cleared and I just did an electronic transfer to move it to my regular checking, which usually takes 1 day. Then I called and closed the account.

I have this annual subscription to a cloud computer back up service to back up our computers. I've had it 2 years, It was a special offer the first year of only $7.95. Then last year was regular annual price of $79.50. This covers backing up both our computers. Now I just got an email that it's going up to $99.50 per year. Ya.....I don't think so.  It's for 5 TB and between the 2 of us we are only using like 3% of that! I see on their website they have "mini" plans that fall into the amount we back up for only $10/mo, but when I got into my account online, there were only options to upgrade, not downgrade. So,  I got into a chat screen and now it's being downgraded to $10 a year. I logged back in after we finished chatting and it's still showing the higher priced plan, so I will have to keep an eye on it, before it renews on March 7th to make sure the change took effect.

I moved the grounding mat over to dh's side of the bed last night for him to give a try for awhile. Well....now I'm even more convinced it works. Because around 2am my right leg started aching again (as it used to do every night) and it didn't hurt the whole time I was using the mat. I didn't sleep very good at all. I want my mat back!! LOL. I've been up over 2 hours and my leg is still aching. He's not up yet this morning, so no report yet on him. But, even if it helps him, I have a feeling he's not going to admit it.  After he got up I went downstairs and brought the mat up to put under my desk and sit with my feet on it awhile and see if my leg ache goes away.

Oh - and guess who texted me again yesterday about his inheritance.........this was his text:

And I got a whole bunch of stuff from Charles Schwab doesn't make any sense to me so let me know when you know something for me okay thanks I read all the pages didn't help LOL

My reply:

I haven't received anything more yet and nothings been updated on my account online they set up. Still at zero. They won't be updating me on you or the other beneficiaries, as these inherited accounts are each beneficiaries private accounts now. I did look at my calendar this morning and it's only been a little over 3 weeks since they got the death certificate and started the process. I'm sure it takes time. If I get any more mail or emails from them I'll let you know

I do see in my informed delivery I have another something in the mail from the investment company, probably what he got yesterday and doesn't know what it is. I seem to be a day or two behind him on getting mail on this stuff. So far it's just a lot of account disclosure type stuff. His not understanding what this stuff is is giving me flashbacks to a few years ago with my mom. (after moving her here and already knew she was starting to have memory problems) and she would get stuff like this in the mail and not know what it was and would call and ask me about it. Or she'd get an insurance explanation of benefits paid on her prescriptons in the mail, you know where 3 of the 4 pages is just legal fine print stuff, and I'd have to explain to her every time what it was and that she didn't need to keep it.

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Mini struggles/headaches

For a Monday, yesterday wasn't too bad. I still can't get logged into my side job (again!) and last Thursday requested my side job boss to put in an IT help request. It's all convoluted how their remaining "business" works now, after their relative bought out their business a little over a year ago. But, for tracking the bookkeeping of what they still have going on (very little) they are being allowed to use the server of their old company. Anyway, when there are IT issues, it's now through the IT company the new owner uses and the request for help needs to come from my side job boss. She's mostly on retirement mode now, so it's always days before she gets around to doing it. 

It had been over 2 weeks since I ordered that copper table top and since I got their email saying it was in stock and they would be shipping soon and send me tracking. So, I emailed back yesterday to ask for a ship date. It's still in their shipping queue/process, but should go out this week. Put the dang thing in a box and ship it, LOL. It's only 20 inches in diameter, haha.

Tomorrow is supposed to be when that check hold in my 44 year old checking account is finally released. I will be calling to close it first thing tomorrow. After I do that, I also need to remember to go into my payroll account and remove the $250 direct deposit to this account.

I just got an email from Chase asking them to rate my experience with my call into customer service. I gave them a 1, LOL and typed out in the explanation box a short reply as to why.

Monday, February 19, 2024

Weekend wrap up

The weekends always go by so fast, even when I'm really not doing much. Saturday I vacuumed the downstairs. I made a pan of brownies. Now I can't remember what else I did. Saturday evening, just before it got dark, we had at least 11 deer out in front of our property. We've never seen that many that close to the house. We were watching them out the window with our binoculars for a couple minutes and then our neighbor who lives down at the end pulled into our street and that scared them all off :(

I've gotten 5 1/4 eggs the past 6 days. How did I get a 1/4 of an egg, you may wonder? The egg yesterday was one of those "fairy" eggs, LOL. 

I spent quite a bit of time, over the weekend, playing around with all the numbers in the spreadsheet I made to figure out distributions of my inherited IRA over the next 10 years, as well as how each distribution would affect my taxes, when I can have the house paid off and when I can retire. Just trying to play around with different scenarios. Is it weird that I almost feel guilty to take my first distribution, when it becomes available? LOL. I'm sure I'll get past that feeling when I can see $$ in my account, haha.

In some ways it is a good thing this is in an IRA and still taxable monies. Then I am not just getting this huge lump sum at once (that apparently the average person squanders away). I mean, sure I could just take it all at once and pay the tax bill on it, but I'm not stupid enough to pay 37% taxes on it. I'll spread it out over the 10 years and keep most of it in the 22% tax bracket. If I retire at 67 and still have 3 years left to take the distributions, those would mostly then put me down in the 12% tax bracket.

Another thing I am trying to do more research on is Medicare and also having a Medicare supplement plan (I think that's what they are called) vs. a Medicare Advantage plan. We have 5 years before dh can go on Medicare and most likely I won't be going on it until I retire, at 67, as I will still have work insurance. But, I'm sure medicare and supplement for dh, at 65, will be cheaper than having him on my work insurance plan.

Yesterday I gave dh another haircut with the clippers. He did laundry. We played pool in the afternoon. Then I took a short nap. We've been trying to just have really light dinners once in awhile, so last night was just grilled cheese sandwiches and a brownie for dessert. I saved copies of my recent receipts for OTC medication purchases and one for dh's prescription and got those added to my HSA "vault". I now have almost $1000 built up in expenses I can reimburse myself for someday.

DH has run into town last Friday and stopped in the lumber store. He wants/needs to build some stairs to make it easier to get up to the loft in his shop. He had an idea, but in talking with one of the guys that work there, he gave dh a better plan. DH isn't ready quite yet to build it, but now at least knows how he will do it and what he'll need. 

He's still trying to decide what car lift to get. The one he wanted to get ended up being an extra $1600 for installation. He's like, even if it's 2 guys, there's no way it would take them more than 8 hours/1 day to install it. He's not paying $200/hour for labor. Then just recently he watched a youtube video of one being installed in someone's shop and it wasn't on time lapse or anything and took 2 guys just 2 hours. He said one guy did most of the work and the other guy was just there to basically help hold things while the other guy did the work. So, that made him even more convinced he's not paying $1600 for an installation fee.

Saturday, February 17, 2024

Patience is a virtue

My plan to text my uncle yesterday, later morning, that I still don't know anything about his money, got derailed by work and then sure enough, my phone rang with you know who asking if there's an update. OMG! Like my half sis said "he's gone his whole life with out that money - he can't wait a month or two? Geez!"  Can you imagine if the inheritance had to go through a will probate that would likely take 6-18 months?? I probably would have had to block his number LOL! If he asks me again, I'm just going to tell him to call the investment company and ask them, because at this point I am just a beneficiary like him and my step siblings are and I don't know anymore than him or them what is going on with it and how long it will take. And like my daughter said - he's called more times since my mom died then he's called in the last 4 years to check on her!

When I got the refund check for the prorated memory care (the check was made out to me). I was going to mobile deposit it in my checking, but the limit is $2500. I could have mailed it to my bank the next day, but I really hate doing that (plus I didn't want to walk on ice all the way down to our mailbox) so I mobile deposited it into my other checking account with Chase. I have had this checking account since I was 16 years old and got my first job. 44 years now! They put a hold on the check for almost 2 weeks. Good grief. I called on Thursday to ask if they could release the hold and got transferred to someone on their "hold dept". She apparently had to try to call the maker of the check to verify it's legit, but got a voicemail. She said I could call back another time and they could try again. I said no thanks. I've been a customer for 44 years. If you can't remove a hold on a $2800 check then I'll just wait until it's available and I'll be calling back to close out my account. After we moved here, I had to open a checking with a different bank, because Chase isn't in this state, but I kept the Chase account open just for sentimental reasons. I've had this same checking account # all these years. I have it set up so $250 per paycheck gets auto deposited in the account, so that I keep it open and no fees. But, I usually don't keep much in there, as I then usually either use the money in my monthly budget or transfer it to my savings where I earn interest. I had just wanted to keep this open since I had it so long, but if they have no loyalty to me, there is no reason I need to have any loyalty to their business. Besides.......they aren't the bank that called and wished me a happy birthday!! LOL!

And since I was in a phone calling mood, I then made calls to cancel 2 credit cards I never use anymore and don't need. The first one was AmEx and I was on hold longer than I talked to the customer service rep, but after I declined a couple of times to keep the card open, he finally closed it. The second card was a Target credit card. This guy was way more annoying and kept asking the reason and I just kept saying I don't shop there anymore, so I don't need the card. Finally, it's now closed. Not to mention about every 6 months they send me a letter saying due to the inactivity on my account, if I don't use it by such and such date they will close it, and they never do. I have one other one I want to close, too, but by then I was no longer in the mood to be on the phone, LOL. The AmEx was one I opened 4 years ago, for a rewards they had offered at the time. The Target was first a store card, but a few years ago they changed it to a regular Mastercard, good anywhere. I never use it, because I use cards that offer rewards.

I'll let my credit score take the temporary hit (I guess I will drop down from excellent to good, LOL) as I have no plans in the near future to buy anything on new credit.

Friday, February 16, 2024

A link and fabulous Friday

Someone asked for a link to the grounding mat. This is where I got mine from Earthing.com.  A friend has ordered some for her and her husband and I'm anxious to get her feedback on it.

The blinds I ordered for the bonus room 2 windows arrived, so dh got those installed. We are often up there at night, with the lights on, playing pool, so it will be nice to be able to pull the blind down with the window that is facing the main road out front, if we want. Next up for that room will be some seating, for 4, for in front of the tv. I'll probably figure out something on that in another month or so. It is something I want to get with some of my inheritance money and I'm guessing it should be available in a month or so? Who knows!

The money for the inherited IRA's still has not processed. The estate dept is at the corporate office, not the "local" office that set up the accounts and handles the investing/personal side of it all. The small office has done what they can do, for their part, now they just have to wait for corporate to get through the estate dept process. They don't have any control over when that happens. I'm sure my uncle is having fits and will be calling me again about it. I'll probably just preempt him today with a quick text that just says they are still being processed, I don't have a date.

We finally got a decent amount of snow last night. Not a lot, but enough that dh will shovel and likely plow. I think he's expecting a friend to stop by today, so unless it warms up to melt, which it's not supposed to, he'll probably get the driveway and street plowed. The temps are supposed to get down into the teens the next 2 nights.

I got another egg yesterday. Woo! LOL. I was laughing, saying they must have liked the spaghetti noodles I gave them. I gave them some and the next day got 2 eggs. Forgot to give them the rest the next day and no egg and then remembered Wednesday and then got an egg yesterday. Maybe I just need to make a batch of spaghetti noodles for them, haha. When I'm giving the noodles to them I say "here's your spaghetti worms!".

For some reason it's seemed like a long week, so I'm glad it's Friday. I just opened my last carton of milk this morning. We were going to try to make it 3 weeks before having to get groceries again, but might have to be 2 1/2 weeks, haha. I do have some of the shelf stable milk I want to use up some, since it's only supposed to be good for 6 months, I'll need to rotate it in and use it every so often anyway.

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Grounded

This post is just my experience, so take it for what it's worth, but I thought it worthwhile to share.

A couple months ago I came across something I hadn't heard of before: Grounding. Also called earthing. Just me being curious, I read about it (or maybe it was a video). I was very skeptical and didn't think much more on it. Then of course, due to the "magic" of the internet, my facebook feed and news article feeds with google were filled with grounding testimonials and products for sale. I looked into it a little more. Interested in the claims of better sleep and less pain. Grounding reduces inflammation in the body, which is the cause of most health issues.

I won't go into the science of it - I can't explain it, LOL, and it sounds hokey anyway. (look it up) But, the gist is the earth/ground has properties to react with our skin/bodies, but it has be be direct contact. Not with shoes (which now most everyone wears rubber soled shoes), but with bare feet/skin. Well, I can't go try to stand outside on the grass for a half hour a day - it's 30 degrees and there was snow.

I kept reading all the reviews and comments and it was one after the other of how it works and has helped with sleep and pain. Not reviews on websites, where those can be faked, but real people with real Facebook profiles commenting. Hundreds of them, even a couple thousand of them. It was piquing my interest. I watched some more videos and went to earthing.com to look at the products. This was just before Christmas and the "mat" was for $49. I figured let's order it and give it a try. If it's a total hoax, I am only out $50.

While I usually sleep pretty well, I do experience many aches and pains, especially while sleeping. I tend to sleep on my right side, facing the edge of the bed.

I have (for years) always pretty much experienced my right leg aching halfway through the night/early morning hours. Likely from laying on that side for too long of period and my other leg laying on top of the leg, creating pressure. I then turn over to relieve it, but it will take a long time to stop aching. Around November my right shoulder started hurting me. It was hurting every day, anytime I'd use my arm in certain motions, like stirring a pot of soup. Not to mention my back and neck always hurting some, off an on (from the car accident years ago). My other issue, the past several months (or longer with my right foot) is my feet hurting when I first get up in the morning, the first several steps. Then they feel ok the rest of the day. (I'm assuming plantar fasciitis. It's been my right foot for a year or two, but the past several months also my left foot started doing it, as well. The other issue I have had for at least a year or more, is when I am sitting in my recliner in the evenings, every time I go to get up out of it, my back is a bit stuck in the bent position and it's painful to get straightened back up. Every time.

The grounding mat came Monday Jan 8th. I plugged it in to try on my bed, under my cotton fitted sheet (apparently it will work ok through thin cotton). It also needs to be to skin, not through clothes. I sleep with bare legs and feet, so no problem there. There is nothing you can really feel while touching it. I put it down where my feet and lower legs would contact it, during the night. I would say, just before I fell asleep, that first night, I felt just a bit like a very light vibration going through my body, but I certainly could have imagined it. Later I read that this is common feeling when you first use it, as your body is adjusting to it.

Then during this first night of trying it was when I got the call at 3:50am that my mom had passed, so this mat and it's effects were the last thing on my mind for a few days.

The first thing I noticed the next evening, though,when getting up from the recliner, was that there was no pain! It must just be a fluke. Or maybe there are some times I get up and no pain and just don't remember (no, there was always stiffness and pain).  Sometime during the 2nd or the 3rd night I must have kicked off where the cord snaps into the top of the mat, so it wasn't plugged in for a night or two, and I didn't realize it.

I then took it up to my desk, to try under bare feet, while sitting at my desk. I'm not sure this was too helpful, as I apparently don't sit very still! I also tend to sit with my feet back towards the rolling base of my chair, kind of on my toes. Plus I am up and down out of my chair a lot. And my feet got cold. I tried this for several days, but wasn't feeling anything noticeable in regards to my aches and pains. Plus, I wasn't working the rest of that week, due to taking time off for my mom's death, so I wasn't at my desk for long periods.  I then read a Facebook comment saying to give it a couple of weeks. I then decided to try on my bed again and turned it sideways under my bottom sheet, so that where the cord snaps into the mat was hanging over the side of the mattress and no chance of kicking it off. 

That next morning (or maybe it was the morning after) I realized that I slept all through the night with no pain in my right leg, as I get every night. Then the next night I had no leg pain. I have not had leg pain during the night since (and have been sleeping more on my right side, since I don't wake up in pain and need to turn over or stretch my leg out). A couple days later I realized my right shoulder wasn't hurting much anymore either. Maybe just a very slight ache, some days.

The weekend before last, I got up and my right foot was hardly any pain, though my left foot was still about the same. A couple/few more nights and my right foot is still pretty much pain free and my left foot pain has subsided quite a bit. 

Another surprising pain gone is I can now sleep on my stomach again, with no neck nerve pinching. I have always been a stomach sleeper, that is until my car accident. I can rarely sleep on my stomach for the past 14 years, because turning my head to either side that far always pinches a nerve. I can now sleep on my stomach if I want to. Amazing.

The last difference I have noticed, just in the past couple of weeks is I now have vivid dreams that I am remembering every morning when I wake up. I hardly ever remember my dreams. After I started experiencing this, I also came across a few other users comments that said the same thing.

I am now 100% convinced this works. To be able to sleep with no aches and pains is amazing. I definitely want dh to try it out to see if it helps him. He has so much trouble sleeping and so much pain going on. There are different products, but I'm thinking I might try the bigger sized sheet mat, that can go across the width of the mattress.

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Just another day

I was busy with a work project yesterday, so jumped right into it when I got up yesterday, rather than taking my half hour or so, before I logged into work to get a blog post started. I was hoping to finish the project yesterday, but still have a bit to do this morning, but it shouldn't take me too long.

DH is happy - Google maps/earth is finally showing the satellite view of our house, LOL. He's only been waiting for almost 5 years, haha. Street view is still showing the same, from after we were done building, but before the landscaping was in. Why did this make him so happy? Because he was able to measure stuff! He now knows how many sq feet of lawn and asphalt we have. I guess that is important, haha.

As I have aged my hair has gotten curly. It always had a wave in it, but my white hair is much curlier. Some of it I like ok, but I don't like the back, where it just kind of ripples down. I also don't like the curls in that my hair always looks too poofy and a little frizzed out, but I haven't got myself to wanting really short hair yet. I've had short hair once in my life and while I liked it (I think I was around 19 years old), it also required getting it cut every month and I have no desire (nor am I close to a hairdresser) to do that. Most days I just let it dry and pull it back into a pony tail. Once in a blue moon I will use the curling iron on it to make it more wavy/beach type curls. Most days I don't have any ambition or need, haha. A while back I bought this brush that dries and straightens hair. It's just too big of brush and makes it awkward to use. And it must be my age showing, but listening to a hair dryer for 5 or 10 minutes annoys me. I just bought this brush straightener that you use on dry hair. The brush is more normal size and I tried it out yesterday after my hair was dry. It worked fairly quickly and did a good job, especially to get the ripples out of the back. It was only like $20. Seeing it straight again made me realize it's getting long and in need of a cut again.

I haven't gotten any eggs for weeks and I think a grand total of 2 eggs so far this winter, so imagine my surprise to find 2 eggs in the nest yesterday. I felt like I hit the jackpot. I hope it's a sign of at least a few eggs starting to come on a more regular basis each week.

Our neighbor down at the end of the street - with the 1st grader....well, she got into a bit of a panic yesterday afternoon, when he wasn't home from school. The bus comes around 4:30 (gosh that seems so late to me!) and is down at the entrance to our street. They live down at the other end. Well, she rarely makes it down there in time to meet him when he gets of the bus. Usually he's just walking down our street by himself and sometimes she's on her way down the street when the bus drops him off. Yesterday she texts us and the other neighbors to ask if any of us saw the bus go by (this was at 4:47) as he wasn't home yet. I did not see the text (and I don't think the other neighbors were home) until 5pm and then about 5 minutes or so later had she texted back she thinks he's been found. I guess he thought he had wrestling practice and didn't get on the bus. I gotta say, if she would be there to meet his bus every day before it would arrive, she'd at least have known he wasn't on the bus and that it wasn't the bus that was late. There is no way, even living here, that I'd let a 6 year old off a bus by himself. When my son was that age, the bus dropped them off at the entrance to our private street(s) and I was always down there in plenty of time and stood there and waited for the bus and even when it was both him and dd (4 years apart) together, I went to the bus stop. 

I've never been a Valentine's Day fan. I always joke with dh "Happy stupid love day". So, he's off the hook from having to ever buy me something. Not to mention we just had our anniversary and my birthday last month.