Every Day Is Your Best Day! Q. My husband will be eligible for retirement next year when he becomes 62. However, he has a serious inoperable heart condition over which he has no control. We want to share as much time together to love and care for each other as long as possible.…Read more. What Lies Ahead? Q. My husband and I are in our mid-50s. We recently discussed how we wanted our lives to be during our next five years. In during so, we have experienced our wake-up call. We realized we need to quit procrastinating and to make a plan that will work …Read more. Marriage Is Always a Matter of Choice! Q. After nearly five years of marriage, our relationship continues unhappily. In fact, if we are unable to accept and determine why not and resolve our negative feelings, we will soon divorce. We were both previously married, had children and …Read more. Happiness Simply Explained? Q. My husband and I are in our 70s, and recently our 8-year-old grandson asked why we were so happy. We asked what prompted his question, and he said because he says his best friend's grandparents are old and grouchy. We consider ourselves quite …Read more.more articles
Choosing a Place For Mom!
Q. I am a full-time working widow. My mother is not well and now needs to live in a place that offers full-time care, safety, some social interaction and peace. She is on a limited budget, and I help out financially as much as possible. Because of my work schedule, I can only check out a possible spot for her on weekends. Do you have some suggestions as to how to prioritize my efforts and find the best location for her? If you can, please also recommend how I can locate a to-do list for the best questions to evaluate her new home — it would be of great help!
A. Many good sources are available, such as local, state, national, charitable and private organizations. Start by asking for advice from friends who now have parents in similar homes, your mother's doctor, nurses, religious counselors and retirement professionals. Check out the U.S. News & World Report website, which compiles an annual checklist of health care options and pertinent questions to ask before making a commitment. Their checklist is free on their website. If you do not have a computer, either a friend or neighbor could prove helpful. Local library computer help is available, inexpensive and employs staffers who are knowledgeable and will willingly guide you through information and printouts. A wise idea is to visit prospective locations to discover which would be most suitable for your mom. Every home and location has its own personality and features that make a difference. Before making your final choice, you will need to make compromises, but the most important factor is how well the management and staff will take care of your mother.
Q. My wife and I retired nearly five years ago but failed to factor in what now appears to be less money than we projected. We are becoming more and more concerned about what lies ahead and if we will have enough money for our needs. Will costs of living continue upward?
A. Yes. However, I'm second-guessing what direction different categories will be most effected. Last year who would have guessed "gasoline"? However, as an overview, you can be assured prices are rising and will continue to rise. Overspending is a major cause, and although the value of money will fluctuate, percentages will change. Some slated to increase in 2015 include all insurance rates, including heath, auto and homeowners; condo maintenance fees; hotel room rates; chocolate; beef; bourbon; coffee; butter and cranberries. We already know Girl Scout cookie prices were up and sold more. Grandparents know why! Costs projected to lower this year include international airline tickets, but baggage and other junk fees will be a factor; TV sets; cable fees; some clothing categories; smart phones; some fast-food items; and newspaper and magazine prices. A bonus is that there will be more dollar store openings, which will offer more name brands on their shelves. Always remember prices are often based on what the market will bear. Be prepared!
Doug Mayberry makes the most of life in a Southern California Retirement community. Contact him at email@example.com. Betty is a friend of Doug Mayberry, whom she helps write this column. To find out more about Doug Mayberry and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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