About Me (and a few other things) On Monday…

     Happy first Monday in November, everyone!  Can you believe it?!  Less than three weeks until Thanksgiving,  less than twenty-four hours until Election Day, and it’s now been over a week since hurricane “Sandy”.  There’s so much going on, it is making my head spin!
     Many people affected by “Sandy” still don’t have electricity!    I’m from the south, and I just can’t imagine being without electricity when it’s near freezing outside!  I’m praying that the situation for the people in those affected areas improves soon.  Thank goodness the governor of NY cancelled  the weekend marathon, after receiving so much criticism for trying to have it!   For a while I was wondering if the world had completely gone crazy.
     Speaking of crazy–How about those L-O-N-G early voting lines in some of the swing states?  Wow!  Something is definitely going on!  I guess in a few hours we’ll get more of an idea of exactly what it is.  I will take several things away from this election–(1) How polarized our country has become, (2) How different the presidential candidates and their political rallies are (3) How varied the versions of current events are in today’s news media.  Wow!
     It was another busy weekend around our house.  We began the weekend with a family (pizza) get-together on Friday evening.  Those are always nice, and it had been quite awhile since we’d had on.  These days, our children and their families fill up the entire dinner table, so Ed and I have moved over to the kitchen bar to eat.  It’s a beautiful sight to see such a big family, and know that it all began with Ed and me!  We don’t mind giving up our seats one bit.
     As for the rest of the weekend, I’ll save that until tomorrow.  For now, I’m going to join Heather for her Monday meme.  Here are her questions:
1. What is your favorite thing about November?
My favorite things about November are celebrating Thanksgiving with our family, then decorating for Christmas the weekend afterward.
2. What was the last thing that you bought that you regretted soon afterwards?
A while back, I ordered several  inexpensive “house dresses”  from an internet company.  The only way to return the dresses is through the mail, and we all know how expensive postage is!  Even though some of the dresses didn’t fit as well as I would have liked, I kept them rather than spend money for postage.  The good news is the dresses didn’t cost much, and I won’t be wearing them anywhere other than the house, so all is good.
3. What is your go to snack food?
As awful as it is, I prefer something “sweet” for a snack.  A cookie, a scoop of ice cream, or a couple of pieces of candy will usually satisfy my “sweet tooth”, and  hold me over until mealtime.
4. Do you believe that newspapers should charge for their online content? 
It doesn’t seem right to have to pay to read something on the internet.  I guess I’m old-fashioned.
My question for you:
5.  Would you stand in line for six hours to vote?
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Published in: on November 5, 2012 at 9:11 am  Comments (14)  
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Thursday’s Thoughts ~ Are We Better Off?

How well I remember the care-free days of my youth!  Back in those days I rarely watched the news or even cared about who was running for president.  I didn’t know anything about monetizing debt, labor unions, hyperinflation, or lobbyists.  I never worried about tomorrow, because tomorrow would take care of itself (or so I thought).

I woke up a few years ago, and realized that Ed and I are old–and getting older by the minute.  Tomorrow hadn’t taken care of itself, and our time was quickly running out.  It was way past time to get out of debt and get ready for Ed’s impending retirement.  This realization hit me hard, but once I set my mind to something, I’m determined.  I stopped spending, and started paying more on our debts!

As I began to stop spending, and pay off our debts, I began to take notice of the national debt, and what a mess our country is in!  I began to learn about politics and quickly realized that some crazy things have been–and still are–going on.  Our country simply can’t continue to travel in the direction it’s  going, and survive.   It’s time to stop the madness!

Ed and I watch the news together now, and discuss what’s happening in the world, and here at home.  We both know our country is in trouble, and we’ve tried hard to get ready to face whatever lies ahead.  When I say that Ed and I watch the news, I mean we really watch the news. We watch mainstream media, conservative news, and more recently, The Blaze tv.  It’s amazing how much difference there is in what we see on the different channels!   Folks, if you’re only watching the mainstream media for news, you are not getting the entire story of what’s really going on in our country!

The question is being asked, “Are we better off than we were four years ago?”  I don’t know about you, but my answer is a resounding “NO”!  My husband hasn’t had a cost of living raise in three years.  (Actually he hasn’t had a raise of ANY kind in three years, due to poor economic conditions.)  Unfortunately, the cost of living is not the same as it was three years ago!  Of course, we’ve taken it all in stride, and been thankful that he has a job, when so many others don’t.  However, “taking it all in stride” doesn’t help pay our ever-increasing grocery bill or fill our tanks with that high-priced gasoline!  We’ve had to tighten our belts substantially.

Next take the issue of health care!  It’s so disgusting, I hate to even go there.  Four years ago, our insurance paid for me to see necessary “specialists”, and covered all of my required medications, except for a small co-pay.  These days I can no longer afford to see “specialists” because our insurance no longer pays for them, and several of my medications aren’t  covered at all by our insurance.  I’m currently under the care of a local doctor (general practice), and our out-of-pocket expenses for medications run about $150 dollars a month.  Oh, and our health insurance policy costs us more than ever before–about 25% more!

Our youngest son, a high school honor graduate, worked and went to school to earn a bachelor’s degree.  He was a responsible young man who lived at home, worked days, and attended classes at night.  He used his salary to pay his own way through college, but guess what?!  Since he graduated from college, several years ago, he’s been unable to find a job in his field of study–and he’s not alone, many others have suffered the same fate.  

When I look all around me, it saddens me to see all of the empty buildings where businesses once thrived.   This summer, two new businesses opened in our small town.  They’ve both already closed. I’ve also watched surviving businesses continue to reduce their inventories.  Even the “ever popular” Wal-mart has greatly reduced their inventory from what it was just a few years ago.  Our dollar stores have become stocked with more groceries than anything else, because that’s all most people can afford!

What about “Fast and Furious”?  How about the recent attack on our ambassador to Libya?  The secret service prostitution scandal?  So many lies, so much cover-up!   I hope eventually the truth will come out.

In closing, I’d like to share these recent statistics, which really caught my attention.

(1) Middle class income has decreased $3, 960 since 2008.  (2) Gas prices have risen 107%  since 2008!  (3) Home values are down 11%  (4) The cost of health insurance is up 23% since 2008.  (5) College tuition is up 25% since 2008.  (6) The number of Americans on food stamps has changed from 32 million to 47 million, since 2008–a rise of 46%!  (7) Our federal debt has risen 51% under our current administration, and perhaps worst of all, (8) our rate of competitiveness in the world has dropped from #1 down to #7.

Need I say more?  No!  In my opinion, there is absolutely, positively no way we are better off than we were four years ago.

Published in: on September 20, 2012 at 11:01 am  Comments (7)  
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