Buying insurance -- Necessary at any age

Yep, I’m a senior…

When I say I’m a senior, I don’t mean in high school or college. I am a senior in life.

My husband just celebrated his 72nd birthday so I guess its time to start thinking about the pros and cons of long term care insurance
. I am Mrs. Cheapskate…any way to save money on senior health insurance or senior health care will get my attention. Actually, I’ve never liked thinking about insurance….the only way YOU come out ahead is to die.

My friend, who has more money than George W. Bush has a long term care and a burial insurance policy . Actually, she doesn’t need an insurance policy, she has more than enough to get buried like royalty, but her accountant said she needed additional insurance in case she, for some reason, ended up in a nursing home or needed help with Medigap plans. According to him, her small fortune in stocks, bonds and savings would dwindle down to a pittance.

Ugh, this is not a subject that makes me happy…, I’ll just stop writing and go read a book! We have the new Harry Potter one (gift for granddaughter) …she won’t mind if I read it first.

Trace Your Family Tree

Soooo, you're curious about your ancestors.....or aunts, uncles and cousins who you didn't know you had. Or, maybe you think you're linked to a politician, gangster, millionaire or a movie star (look for their real names, not something made up by a publicity agent)

Since you're at step #1, we'll begin very easily.….this is the way I started and the procedures and steps are my own….others search in different ways, but I tend to hop around a little in my searches……(so, if you are a dedicated, professional searcher, don’t yell at me….but, you can add your ideas and techniques)

1. Ask your parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins or any living relatives to tell you about your family. Where did they live? Where did the family originally come from? Try to get dates or approximately when they were born.

Any family bibles laying around? You know, that big, bound book, sometimes closing with a clasp. They're not as popular now, but in the past, you'd find children listed with birth dates, parents, marriages, and deaths. There are many genealogy programs available on CDs and they are easy to understand.

I use
Ancestral Quest but Family Tree Maker , and many others are available.
About Genealogy can give you ideas about a good beginner program.

WorldConnect, type in your family name and see if anyone is searching or has searched for it. World Connect will not list anyone who was born after 1930 unless that person has a death date, so start with your oldest relative.

Keep in mind however, that this information is submitted by individuals, sometimes through word of mouth from family members. It does not always contain entire families and sometime contains errors. If you know something that the submitter doesn’t….contact them! They will love hearing from a new “cousin”.

Find A Grave has 9 MILLION grave sites listed. Maybe one of your ancestors is listed. The listings are submitted by genealogists or just plain ole people who want others to know where people are buried.

Many ancestors arrived in America and were processed through
Ellis Island. This information will tell you what ship they arrived on, the date, and who was traveling with them.

Gen Forum - look for your family name…..someone may be asking questions about YOUR ancestor….or….may have the information you’ve been looking for.

LDS Family Search – this is a wonderful site created by the Mormon Church. You neither have to be Mormon nor have Mormon ancestors to search it. (my ancestry is heavily Catholic, and they are listed)

Social Security – lists deaths from about 1940 to present. Gives birth dates and dates of death. Approximates the place of death by using the zip code of where the last benefit was sent.

Contact me.....we might be related!

How to Avoid the "con man"

Who is the "con man"? He's the guy who digs through your trash and finds your social security number on a document, your credit card number on a statement or personal information about your health from a discarded doctor's bill. Addresses, account numbers, birth dates, email addresses, names, passwords, PINS, phone numbers, signatures, social security numbers...dug out of a trash can or apartment dumpster and pure gold to a "con man".

He finds that your father had lung cancer and was treated at a local hospital, you took out a cash loan to pay for your new car, have several credit cards even though you have bad credit, applied for and was refused another credit card application last month and have recently filed for bankruptcy.

Doesn't sound like your finances would appeal to anyone...heaven only knows who would want your credit rating...Boy, could you be wrong.

Take a few minutes and read The Con Man's Blog may save you a big headache.

Little Sioux Scout Ranch restoration

After the deadly June 11 tornado, which took the lives of four young Boy Scouts, restoration projects for the Little Sioux Scout Camp are being organized.

The tornado destroyed much of the camp and damaged thousands of trees. Work will also be started on the 25 miles of trails on the property which need to be cleared of the debris left from the storm. The restoration project includes reforestation, road reconstruction, rebuilding the Scout ranger's house which was totally demolished, and construction of new shelters.

Seven teams are working on restoring the camp at this time. However it's unknown how long the cleanup will take. So far, the Mid- America Boy Scout Council has received $174,000 in donations to restore the camp. In addition to the restoration, a memorial is being planned in honor of the four Boy Scounts who died there and the boys who were injured during the June 11, 2008 tornado.

If you'd care to send a donation to help restore the Little Sioux Scout Ranch please send to:

Mid-America Council
Attn: Little Sioux Recovery
12401 West Maple Road
Omaha, Nebraska 68164

Lets get those young scouts back to their ranch.

Boy Scouts killed in Little Sioux, IA Tornado - June 11, 2008

The Midwest has had terrible weather the 2nd week of June. Tornados, torrential rains, flooding, 100+ mph winds.

I have lived in Nebraska for 70 years and cannot remember this many tornados hitting this close to home. Last Sunday, one ripped through my hometown Omaha, NE....first hitting the Millard area and then moving on through parts of southwest Omaha.

Now, this very sad incident in Little Sioux Iowa. Four scouts were killed and several were in critical condition at area hospitals.

DES MOINES, Iowa: At least four boy scouts were killed and dozens injured when a tornado tore through a Boy Scout Ranch in western Iowa Wednesday evening, June 11, 2008, as more than 30 twisters ripped through the Midwest. The deadly twisters struck the Little Sioux Scout Ranch in western Iowa, about 40 miles north of Omaha, NE about 5:35 p.m., killing four and injuring at least 20, authorities said.

All of the children had been accounted for late Wednesday after rescuers cut their way through downed trees and debris to reach them. Search and rescue operations at the scout camp where dozens had gathered for a summer retreat continued early Thursday after a storm-wracked night. Officials had yet to say how many of the dead were adults or boys. The scouts had been attending an annual "Pohuk Pride" week long junior leader training event at the 1,800-acre ranch, which has four cabin shelters, a 15-acre lake, a rifle range and six hiking trails. 92 campers aged 13 to 17, and 25 adults were at the scout camp when the tornado struck.

In addition to the four dead, three from Omaha and one from Eagle Grove, Iowa, at least 20 and possibly up to 40 people were injured, several critically. Boys who had gathered in the largest shelter were showered with bricks and debris when the tornado hit the building, shattering the large fireplace and collapsing the roof. Ambulances, police and emergency personnel from neighboring counties raced to the area along with volunteers and Red Cross crews who were on hand to assist frantic parents searching for their children.

Parents were unable to reach campsites and were gathered at the Little Sioux Church of Christ in nearby Little Sioux, Iowa, waiting, slumped against walls, crying, and praying. Some parents whose children had cell phones got quick word that they were OK….others did the only thing they could do ....wait and pray.

Four scouts died that horrible afternoon, Aaron Eilerts, 14, of Eagle Grove, Iowa; and Josh Fennen, 13, Sam Thomsen, 13, and Ben Petrzilka, 14, all of Omaha, NE.

Tornado in Millard and Omaha NE

Well, to add to our "fun" summer, we were awakened at 2:27am on Sunday morning by the storm siren in the park going off. We had been getting tornado warnings and watches floating aross the bottom of our TV screen on Saturday, but most were for outstate Nebraska and Iowa. This one was for us!

I woke my husband (who sleeps through anything) and he and I got dressed. In case the tornado did hit in our area, I didn't want to be wandering the street in my nightgown and Ken's usual bedtime attire... BVDs. We went to the family room in the basement.

We watched as the newscasters described the area where the most turbulance was....on 144th and Q and headed northeast towards 120th Street. By the time the TV stations started reporting, it had already torn roofs and buildings apart in Millard. Only one station, Channel 7, was broadcasting about the weather....Channels 3 and 6 were still showing old movies.
WAKE UP GUYS! .... this is what you get paid the big bucks for!

It was raining extremely hard, I couldn't see the house behind us, and the wind was unbelievable, straight out of the west and nearly horizontal. We found out later that the tornado which was traveling 110-135 mph had been near 120th and Pacific Street by the time the sirens started wailing and I was in the kitchen trying to close windows. It was no longer a tornado but was creating tornadic winds. We live on 117th Street between Pacific and Dodge Streets....the funnel had gone back into the clouds when it passed over our area. It was not our time to be hit.

At 3:00am all was quiet....the wind had stopped and there was no sound....we went outside and it felt like the dead zone. The air was a strange color and very quiet. I've heard of being in the "eye" of a hurricane, but didn't think there was such a thing as the "eye" of a tornado.

We had no major damage other than a few branches that had blown off the trees...and furniture on our deck had been rearranged.

The crazy thing is....I called our daughter who lives on 168th and Pacific and our son who is on 13th and "P" Streets about 8:30 Sunday morning to see if everything was OK with them. NEITHER of them had heard the sirens and didn't know anything about a tornado hitting Millard....Nancy, our youngest, on the other hand, had spent the remainder of the night in the space under her basement steps with her husband Jon, the kids, the cat and dog. She called early Sunday to see if we were still in one piece.

No deaths had occurred although some folks were injured by flying debris and debris falling on them. A friend who lives in Florida once told me "we always have lots of warning and time to prepare when a hurricane is approaching, but a tornado just appears"....unless you have seen or been in one, you can't imagine how frightening and how much damage Mother Nature can do.
Our home is near where the tornado lifted......too close for comfort!

Homeless little squirrels

Where do homeless squirrels go?

Omaha has had some really nasty weather in the month of June, and we've lost many, many old, established trees. The wind devastated them, blew them over and tore limbs.

I was wondering about the squirrels who had nests in these trees. Where do they go? Not that I am a squirrel fanatic or even a squirrel lover, in fact, if they were all to go to some other part of the state and stop digging up my flower bulbs and storing acorns in our gutters and downspouts, I would be very happy.

But, where do the little fellows go when their nests are blown down and carted away to the nearest landfill?

It's a quandary.