Agility training — fun for you and your dog!

Yorkshire Terrier leaps over hurdle in canine competitionIs your dog rambunctious? Does he or she love toys? Chasing a ball? Consider setting up a cheap & easy agility course for your dog. It will increase your bond with each other — and give you both more fun, more laughs, and more exercise.

However, if you have a lazy dog that just wants to sleep and snuggle — this probably won’t work. I have one of each type dog and my snuggle dog STEPS over the jump — he’s not willing to jump even for treats(!) My other dog LOVES the jumps.

Wikipedia has a great overview of the sport, showing each type of equipment used. You can spend hundreds of dollars getting professional equipment — or you can recreate almost all of it yourself for under $100.  Continue reading “Agility training — fun for you and your dog!”

How your state lets insurance companies screw you

ScrewedYou did everything right. You picked a doctor within your health plan network. You made sure the hospital was in your network. Yet you suddenly face a bill for thousands of dollars for doctors or anesthesiologists who were not in your network. Bait and switch, anyone?

Only about a quarter of the states have even the smallest protection for this. A few states — California, Connecticut, Florida and New York — have passed laws since 2015 giving stronger protections. If you live in another state — your politicians care more about donated campaign money from insurance companies than they care about you.  Continue reading “How your state lets insurance companies screw you”

What if Your Retirement Income Isn’t Enough?

Before panicking, we need to know exactly how much is coming in and how much is going out.

Money you receive: This consists of your social security, any pension (if you have one) and interest income. It also includes what you can take out each year from your investments. See How much $ can you withdraw each year without running out?

Money you will spend: See You need just 3 numbers to Budget Expenses for Retirement. 

The result: Can you live on the net of these two? If so, congratulations! If not, read on…

Continue reading “What if Your Retirement Income Isn’t Enough?”

Discover if your new biz idea will succeed — BEFORE you launch!

In support of the 10% of seniors who have just launched a new biz
and the 25% who intend to

Screwed up dollar notes in a pile on fireNobody wants to spend a ton of money launching a new business — only to discover they might as well have set it on fire. It’s doubly true if you’re a senior — as you won’t have as many years to recover financially.

CB Insights (a venture capitalist database) examined what contributes to the failure of new businesses. “After analyzing 101 startup post-mortems, they found that 42% suffered from a lack of demand for the product or service being offered. They used a harsh phrase to describe this cause of failure: ‘no market need.’” (Source Harvard Business Review)

Fortunately, you can determine this market need (or lack thereof) BEFORE you spend the big bucks!  Continue reading “Discover if your new biz idea will succeed — BEFORE you launch!”

Proof that age doesn’t always bring wisdom

FastRiver_shutterstock_1163812393My excuse is… I never grew up around rivers. I first got in a boat of any kind (a kayak) in my late 30s. But it still takes an astonishing lack of wisdom to underestimate Mother Nature.

She and I fought this past weekend, and I’m very lucky to be alive. And still have both my dogs alive.

Like most of you, I feel guilty I don’t exercise enough. And the only kind of exercise that doesn’t feel like being forced to scrub floors on my hands and knees (thanks mom & dad!) — is sports. So when a friend suggested we go kayaking last weekend — it sounded great. Continue reading “Proof that age doesn’t always bring wisdom”

Start Your Own Biz: WEBSITES

In support of the 10% of seniors who have just launched a new biz
and the 25% who intend to

website_shutterstock_450545578You can’t have a business today without a website — no matter how local and how small you are.  But you can save yourself a LOT of time, angst, and money by picking the right hosting company and formats.

There are certain “must haves” that will make your business life much, much easier. They are:  Continue reading “Start Your Own Biz: WEBSITES”

You’ll be back in the hospital within 30 days, unless…

hospitalBed_shutterstock_1090717301According to the New England Journal of Medicine, 20% of all medicare patients who experience a hospital stay will find themselves right back in the hospital within 30 days. And it won’t be from your original health problem. That’s 2.6 million of us a year(!)

About 64-71% of readmitted seniors are back in for something new — commonly including a wide range of problems such as “heart failure, pneumonia, COPD, infection, gastrointestinal conditions, mental illness, metabolic derangements, and trauma.” Doctors are recognizing that the hospital experience itself is making you sick, and are calling it Post-Hospital Syndrome.  Continue reading “You’ll be back in the hospital within 30 days, unless…”

Should you buy an RV?

RV at Nashville ShoresSometimes it seems like senior citizens have all bought RVs and have all hit the road, including myself. But… should you join us?

The answer is very dependent on you and your circumstances — social, medical and financial.

If you are a single woman, don’t stop reading — you may be surprised at the benefits of owning one. I certainly was. The only reason I got one originally was because my dad’s wife suddenly banned animals inside her house. Which meant I couldn’t visit her or my dad, unless I was willing to get a local hotel room and leave my two small dogs inside for hours.

Instead, I got an RV and parked it on her land by the house. Win for my dogs, win for me, and win for her.  Continue reading “Should you buy an RV?”

Suddenly Schizophrenic at 78 – A Medical Mystery

Have you ever feared you might go insane? Perhaps you had a relative it happened to? Perhaps you worried about genetics?

In my case, it was an aunt of mine. I’ll call her Helga. When I was young, we’d see her for family holidays. She was fine then, married to a man she adored. She was an artist, a good one, who sold her paintings and taught art students on the side. I was impressed because she had a career at a time when that was extremely unusual. She had a daughter I liked and a chihuahua I hated (probably the only dog I’ve ever met I didn’t like).

Then I grew up and moved east and didn’t see her for almost three decades. Some time after her husband died in 1985, Helga became paranoid. She started thinking the neighbors were talking about her. Soon she was convinced they were shooting at her.  Continue reading “Suddenly Schizophrenic at 78 – A Medical Mystery”